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

Volume XV, Issue #3,703
Wednesday, May 3rd, 2017
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In the News:

1) Trump regime hints at meeting with Kim, but sends B-1 bombers on flights over Korean peninsula
2) SC: Killer cop to plead guilty of federal civil rights violation in murder of Walter Scott
3) Mexico nears legalization of medical marijuana
4) Trial begins for woman charged with laughing at a politician
5) Clinton: It’s everyone’s fault but mine that I lost the election
6) Massive lake of molten carbon the size of Mexico just discovered under western US
7) Report: Kushner failed to reveal business ties to Goldman Sachs … and George Soros
8) Trump tweets for future government shutdown, easier passage of laws
9) Congress to airlines: Improve service or we step in
10) Science: Women’s brains shrink during pregnancy, but that’s probably a good thing
11) TX: Police change story in shooting death of black teen
12) Trump regime unwinds Michelle Obama’s school lunch program rules
13) US Congress approves $120 million for Praetorian Guard theatrics
14) Security theater, travel edition: US State Department issues alert for Europe
15) Syria: At least 21 reported killed in Islamic State attack
16) CA: Airbnb, HomeAway give in to San Francisco extortionists
17) Hamas tries to project moderation, but still won’t recognize Israel
18) Venezuela: Maduro invokes constituent assembly measure
19) US Pacific Northwest: Dozens arrested as May Day marches turn violent
20) Hollywood writers’ strike averted after “tentative” deal reached

Everybody Has An Opinion:

21) Carry a gun — without a permit
22) Trump is right: “Shutdowns” are good for America
23) Trump will test Democrats’ tax patriotism
24) The constitutional rights of noncitizens
25) The government-medical complex: Why health and social services fail
26) What is to be done in Venezuela?
27) March for Science stomps out free thought
28) Sessions’s dream of resurrecting Reefer Madness foiled by Congress
29) The war on cash: Haldane edition
30) The war on Yemen and the delusional Saudis
31) What’s wrong with abolishing circus animal shows?
32) The war on facts hits prescription drug regulation
33) Burn the heretic!
34) Despite everything, I am happy Hillary lost
35) A Baker’s Dozen [TM] reasons to get your children out of there!
36) Tax lies for the gullible?
37) Rising oil prices don’t cause inflation
38) The next great experiment
39) Using persuasion to create assets out of nothing
40) The Oregon Fail
41) Trump’s crude, ignorant theory of American history
42) Homophobic purges in Putinland
43) The SNP’s thinly disguised independence agenda
44) Ignorance, intolerance, violence
45) Instead of separating families by building walls, invest in schools
46) When the facts change … the British election plays out
47) Thoughts on literature, economics and education
48) Could the Civil War have been avoided?
49) The tyranny of the distance
50) Antiestablishmentarianism

The Sound and the Fury:

51) The KN@PP Stir Podcast, episode 127
52) Everything Voluntary Podcast, episode 70
53) Free Talk Live, 05/01/17
54) Foreign Policy Focus, episode 34
55) Video: Portland, Oregon protests turn violent
56) The Jason Stapleton Program, episode 591
57) Gareth Porter on The Scott Horton Show

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

1) Trump regime hints at meeting with Kim, but sends B-1 bombers on flights over Korean peninsula
Source: CNN

“US Air Force B-1 bombers have flown over the Korean Peninsula twice in the past seven days — a move that has drawn sharp criticism from North Korea amid rising tensions in the region. On Monday, two US B-1 bombers departed Andersen Air Force base in Guam and conducted a joint drill with South Korea and Japan’s air forces over the Korean Peninsula, according to the US Air Force. Separately, two B-1 bombers also flew over South Korea on April 26, a US defense official confirmed. … The second of the two flights came on the same day President Donald Trump said he would be willing to meet with North Korean leader Kim Jong Un ‘under the right circumstances’ to defuse tensions over Pyongyang’s nuclear program. No sitting US president has ever met with the leader of North Korea while in power, and the idea is extremely controversial.” (05/02/17)

http://www.cnn.com/2017/05/02/politics/us-b1-bombers-korean-peninsula/

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2) SC: Killer cop to plead guilty of federal civil rights violation in murder of Walter Scott
Source: ABC News

“A white police officer whose killing of a black motorist running from a traffic stop was recorded on a cellphone video agreed to plead guilty Tuesday to violating his civil rights, a conviction that could send him to prison for decades. As part of the plea deal, South Carolina prosecutors would drop the state’s murder case against Michael Slager, who was fired from the North Charleston police force when the bystander’s video became public. … Slager still faces the possibility of life in prison as well as $250,000 in fines, but prosecutors are proposing a sentence based on federal guidelines for a second-degree murder conviction, which recommend more than 20 years.” (05/02/17)

http://abcnews.go.com/US/wireStory/officer-plead-guilty-fleeing-black-motorists-death-47155266

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3) Mexico nears legalization of medical marijuana
Source: Smell the Truth

“Building from a series of rapid marijuana law reform sweeping Mexico, the country’s lawmakers have now voted to approve marijuana use for medicinal purposes. Mexico’s Lower House of Congress passed a bill on Friday to legalize cannabis for both medical and scientific needs, reports the Associated Press. ‘The ruling eliminates the prohibition and criminalization of acts related to the medicinal use of marijuana and its scientific research, and those relating to the production and distribution of the plant for these purposes,’ the Lower House stated on its website. The bill passed with 374 votes in favor, seven against and 11 abstentions. President Enrique Pena Nieto is expected to sign the legislation into law.” (05/01/17)

http://blog.sfgate.com/smellthetruth/2017/05/01/mexico-approves-bill-to-legalize-medical-marijuana

—–

4) Trial begins for woman charged with laughing at a politician
Source: AL.com

“A woman is standing trial on disorderly conduct charges for laughing during U.S. Attorney General Jeff Sessions'[s] confirmation hearing. The trial for Desiree Fairooz, a 61-year-old protester with the group Code Pink, got underway yesterday in D.C. Superior Court after Fairooz declined to accept a plea bargain from prosecutors, who moved forward with the case. Fairooz laughed after Sen. Richard Shelby, R-Ala., who was introducing Sessions, said the then-junior senator from Alabama’s history of ‘treating all Americans equally under the law is clear and well-documented,’ according to the Huffington Post.” (05/02/17)

http://www.al.com/news/index.ssf/2017/05/woman_on_trial_for_laughing_at.html

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5) Clinton: It’s everyone’s fault but mine that I lost the election
Source: Washington Post

“Hillary Clinton on Tuesday attributed her defeat in the 2016 presidential election to interference by Russian hackers and FBI Director James B. Comey, and declared herself to be ‘part of the resistance’ to Donald Trump’s presidency. ‘If the election had been on October 27, I would be your president,’ Clinton told moderator Christiane Amanpour, the CNN anchor, at a Women for Women event in New York. … Clinton said a range of external forces were responsible for her surprise defeat. She said she was a victim of misogyny and unfair treatment by the news media. And she said she was confident that she was on track to winning the election until two things reversed her momentum: the release of campaign chairman John Podesta’s emails, which were allegedly stolen by Russian hackers, and Comey’s Oct. 28 letter to Congress that he had reopened the bureau’s investigation into her use of a private email server.” (05/02/17)

https://www.washingtonpost.com/politics/hillary-clinton-blames-russian-hackers-and-comey-for-2016-election-loss/2017/05/02/e62fef72-2f60-11e7-8674-437ddb6e813e_story.html

—–

6) Massive lake of molten carbon the size of Mexico just discovered under western US
Source: Forbes

“A recent scientific discovery has drastically changed our view of the global carbon cycle and identified a new significant risk. Researchers have discovered a giant lake or reservoir made up of molten carbon sitting below the western US. The molten carbon (primarily in the form of carbonate) reservoir could drastically and immediately change the global climate for over a decade if it were to be released. Thankfully there is little risk in the near future of this happening. The carbon sits 217 miles beneath the surface of the Earth in the upper mantle and has no immediate pathway to the surface. In total the lake covers approximately 700,000 square miles, approximately the size of Mexico. This has redefined how much carbon scientists believe sits locked away in the Earth’s mantle and its interaction with surface and atmospheric carbon. Geologists at Royal Holloway University of London were able to use the largest array of seismic sensors in the world to detect what exists below the surface of the western US.” (05/01/17)

https://www.forbes.com/sites/trevornace/2017/04/30/a-massive-lake-of-molten-carbon-the-size-of-mexico-was-just-discovered-under-the-us/amp

—–

7) Report: Kushner failed to reveal business ties to Goldman Sachs … and George Soros
Source: Raw Story

“Jared Kushner failed to reveal his business connections to Goldman Sachs and billionaires George Soros and Peter Thiel when filling out financial disclosure forms required for his job as a White House adviser. The president’s son-in-law and senior adviser didn’t identify his partial ownership stake in Cadre, a tech startup pairing investors with real estate developers, and other ties to large financial institutions on his disclosure forms, reported the Wall Street Journal. The 36-year-old Kushner’s stake in Cadre makes him business partners with other part owners such as the Goldman Sachs Group Inc., conservative bête noire George Soros and tech investor Peter Thiel — a prominent backer of President Donald Trump. The newspaper reported that Kushner failed to divulge those ties, as well as loans worth at least $1 billion, from more than 20 lenders, and personal guarantees on more than $300 million of that debt.” (05/02/17)

http://www.rawstory.com/2017/05/jared-kushner-failed-to-reveal-business-ties-to-goldman-sachs-and-george-soros-on-government-forms

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8) Trump tweets for future government shutdown, easier passage of laws
Source: Reuters

“U.S. President Donald Trump endorsed a government shutdown later this year in a post on Twitter on Tuesday that also urged Republicans to consider changing Senate rules to make it easier to pass spending and other bills without any Democratic support. ‘Our country needs a good ‘shutdown’ in September to fix mess!’ he wrote. Trump also backed the so-called ‘nuclear option’ for legislation but added that the party could strengthen its hand by winning more Senate seats in the 2018 congressional election. Democrats (and some Republicans) quickly denounced his call to close the federal government in a spending fight just as both parties were closing in on a final measure to fund agencies through September.” [editor’s note: One step toward liberty, then run away? – SAT] (05/02/17)

http://www.reuters.com/article/us-usa-trump-congress-idUSKBN17Y1J0

—–

9) Congress to airlines: Improve service or we step in
Source: San Francisco Chronicle

“Frustrated Republicans and Democrats on Tuesday warned top airline executives to improve customer services or face congressional intervention after a passenger was dragged from a United Airlines flight in an incident the company’s chief executive called a ‘mistake of epic proportions.’ House Transportation Committee Chairman Bill Shuster, R-Pa., said carriers should use the notoriety of last month’s forcible removal of a passenger to make long-needed improvements. If the airlines don’t make changes, Congress is likely to step in, Shuster and other lawmakers said.” [editor’s note: Yeah, like Congress has ever made ANYTHING better … – TLK] (05/02/17)

http://www.sfgate.com/news/politics/article/United-CEO-faces-questions-as-Congress-examines-11113935.php

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10) Science: Women’s brains shrink during pregnancy, but that’s probably a good thing
Source: USA Today

“It’s a wonderful thing to see: the deep bond between a mother and her baby. And it may be because the mom’s brain shrank during pregnancy. Yup, it got smaller. A just-released study published in the journal Nature Neuroscience shows that pregnant women lose gray matter in areas of the brain that deal with people’s feelings and nonverbal signals. However, the loss, rather than diminish this area of brain processing, appears to make it more efficient, enabling improved interpretation of their babies’ needs and emotions, and therefore increasing their maternal attachment. Due to the time frame of the study, which was conducted by researchers in the Netherlands and Spain, it is not known whether the effects are permanent or temporary.” (05/02/17)

https://www.usatoday.com/story/news/2017/05/02/yes-womens-brains-do-shrink-during-pregnancy—but-turns-out-s-probably-good-thing/101190032

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11) TX: Police change story in shooting death of black teen
Source: Atlanta Journal-Constitution

“The police on Monday changed their story about the shooting death of 15-year-old Jordan Edwards by a Balch Springs, Texas, officer. The car in which Jordan was riding was not backing toward officers ‘in an aggressive manner,’ as police initially described, Police Chief Jonathan Haber said. Rather, police video shows that the car was actually driving away when an officer fired his rifle into the vehicle, striking Jordan in the head, Haber said. Jordan was killed Saturday night as he and four other teenagers left the scene of a house party at the home of another teen. A neighbor had called police, saying he thought teenagers were drinking at the house.” (05/02/17)

http://www.ajc.com/news/local/texas-police-change-story-shooting-death-black-teen/rnNH2FJTy3WUCVCOdMUR7J/

—–

12) Trump regime unwinds Michelle Obama’s school lunch program rules
Source: The Hill

“Agriculture Secretary Sonny Perdue took steps Monday to roll back healthy school lunch standards promoted by former first lady Michelle Obama in one of his first regulatory acts. In an interim final rule, aimed at giving schools more flexibility, Perdue and his department are postponing further sodium reductions for at least three years and allowing schools to serve non-whole grain rich products occasionally as well as 1 percent flavored milk. The rule allows states to exempt schools in the 2017-2018 school year from having to replace all their grains with whole-grain rich products if they are having a hard time meeting the standard. USDA said it will take ‘all necessary regulatory actions to implement a long-term solution.'” [editor’s note: In other words, not deregulation, just tweaking prior regulation – TLK] (05/01/17)

http://thehill.com/regulation/healthcare/331400-trump-unwinding-first-ladys-school-lunch-program-rules

—–

13) US Congress approves $120 million for Praetorian Guard theatrics
Source: Business Insider

“The bipartisan spending agreement from Congress scheduled to be approved this week reportedly sets aside more than $120 million to alleviate the financial burden on agencies tasked with protecting President Donald Trump and his family. About $60 million will be allocated to the US Secret Service, which requested the additional funds for expenses that include costs for Trump’s security detail and protecting Trump Tower in New York City, according to a New York Times report that cited the legislation. About $34 million of it will go toward the costs of protecting Trump through the end of the fiscal year. Another $23 million is reported to go toward retrofitting Trump Tower with equipment and personnel — which also requires the government to rent space inside the building, according to a Homeland Security official.” (05/02/17)

http://www.businessinsider.com/trump-protection-secret-service-costs-2017-5

—–

14) Security theater, travel edition: US State Department issues alert for Europe
Source: CNN

“The US State Department has issued a travel alert for its citizens going to Europe, citing the continued threat of terror attacks. ‘While local governments continue counterterrorism operations, the Department nevertheless remains concerned about the potential for future terrorist attacks,’ the alert said. ‘U.S. citizens should always be alert to the possibility that terrorist sympathizers or self-radicalized extremists may conduct attacks with little or no warning.'” (05/02/17)

http://www.cnn.com/2017/05/01/politics/us-travel-alert-europe/

—–

15) Syria: At least 21 reported killed in Islamic State attack
Source: ABC News

“Islamic State militants staged a surprise attack early Tuesday in northeastern Syria, killing at least 21 people, many of them civilians who had fled fighting in areas of Syria and Iraq held by the extremist group, a Kurdish spokesman and Syrian activists said. The attack took place after militants sneaked into the village of Rajm Sleibi, a front line that separates the Kurdish-controlled Hassakeh province and IS-held areas further south. The village, near the Iraqi border, houses a temporary camp for displaced people fleeing IS-controlled territory in Syria and Iraq.” (05/02/17)

http://abcnews.go.com/International/wireStory/monitors-attack-northeastern-syria-kills-22-47151360

—–

16) CA: Airbnb, HomeAway give in to San Francisco extortionists
Source: SFBay

“A settlement signed Monday morning in a lawsuit filed by Airbnb and HomeAway will ease the registration process for short-term rental hosts and help ensure that only those who are legally registered can list properties on the sites, San Francisco City Attorney Dennis Herrera said. … City law enacted in 2015 requires short-term rental owners to register with the city, obtain a business license and observe limits on the number of days a unit can be rented. It also prohibits multiple listings by the same host, requires that hosts be a permanent resident in the unit they are renting out and prohibits the use of affordable units with income restrictions for short-term rentals.” (05/01/17)

https://sfbay.ca/2017/05/01/settlement-forces-airbnb-toward-legal-compliance/

—–

17) Hamas tries to project moderation, but still won’t recognize Israel
Source: Boston Globe

“Hamas, the militant group built around violent resistance to Israel, sought Monday to present a more moderate public face, taking its next shot in an intensifying struggle for leadership of the Palestinian cause and international recognition. A new document of principles for the group calls for closer ties to Egypt, waters down the anti-Semitic language from its charter, and accepts at least a provisional Palestinian state — though it still does not formally recognize Israel. The document was released by Hamas just days before its chief rival, the Palestinian Authority leader Mahmoud Abbas, was to meet President Trump.” (05/01/17)

https://www.bostonglobe.com/news/world/2017/05/01/palestinian-power-struggle-hamas-tries-project-moderation/Jk6kOcVdykS35m3pIeaPAN/story.html

—–

18) Venezuela: Maduro invokes constituent assembly measure
Source: Yahoo! News

“Venezuela’s socialist President Nicolas Maduro announced on Monday the creation of a new popular assembly with the ability to re-write the constitution, which foes decried as a power-grab to stifle weeks of anti-government unrest. ‘I don’t want a civil war,’ Maduro told a May Day rally of supporters in downtown Caracas while elsewhere across the city security forces fired tear gas at youths hurling stones and petrol bombs after opposition marches were blocked. Maduro, 54, has triggered an article of the constitution that creates a super-body known as a ‘constituent assembly.’ It can dissolve public powers and call general elections, echoing a previous assembly created by his predecessor Hugo Chavez in 1999 soon after he won office in the South American OPEC nation.” (05/02/17)

https://uk.news.yahoo.com/weeks-unrest-venezuela-president-maduro-065602529.html

—–

19) US Pacific Northwest: Dozens arrested as May Day marches turn violent
Source: New York Daily News

“May Day protests turned violent in the Pacific Northwest as demonstrators in Portland, Oregon, threw smoke bombs and Molotov cocktails at police while elsewhere thousands of people peacefully marched against President Donald Trump’s immigration and labor policies. … In Portland, Oregon, police shut down a protest they said had become a riot and arrested more than two dozen people. Police in Olympia, Washington, said nine people were taken into custody after several officers were injured by thrown rocks and windows were broken at businesses in Washington’s capital city. In Seattle, five people were arrested during downtown protests and in Oakland, California, at least four were arrested after creating a human chain to block a county building where demonstrators demanded that county law enforcement refuse to collaborate with federal immigration agents.” (05/02/17)

http://www.nydailynews.com/newswires/news/national/dozens-arrested-day-marches-turn-violent-northwest-article-1.3128518

—–

20) Hollywood writers’ strike averted after “tentative” deal reached
Source: USA Today

“Hollywood averted a potentially debilitating writers’ strike early Tuesday, as the writers’ union and a group of studios and networks announced they had tentatively agreed to a new three-year deal a little over an hour after the expiration of the previous pact. … The Writers Guild (WGA), which represents film and TV scribes, and the AMPTP, which negotiates on behalf of studios and networks, had been holding contract talks in recent weeks in an effort to reach a new deal before the expiration of the current agreement.” (05/02/17)

https://www.usatoday.com/story/life/tv/2017/05/02/writers-guild-deal-reached/101163990/

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

21) Carry a gun — without a permit
Source: Reason
by JD Tuccille

“‘The eight-year assault on your Second Amendment freedoms has come to a crashing end,’ President Trump claimed on Friday while addressing a National Rifle Association gathering in Atlanta. ‘No longer will federal agencies be coming after law-abiding gun owners.’ Well, that’s a relief. I was afraid the feds were risking repetitive strain injuries. It’s time for them to change things up and bash on some other freedoms. Somehow, I’m sure we can count on them to do just that. But relief for self-defense rights might well be a thing, especially outside the nation’s capital. Look, for example, at the growing ranks of states recognizing people’s right to discreetly carry weapons without first seeking government approval. That’s a practice I sometimes jokingly call ‘New York carry,’ though I inevitably confuse people when I do. New York doesn’t encourage carrying a gun without a permit, they protest! Well, actually, it kind of does.” (05/02/17)

http://reason.com/archives/2017/05/02/carry-a-gunwithout-a-permit

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22) Trump is right: “Shutdowns” are good for America
Source: Garrison Center
by Thomas L Knapp

“‘Our country needs a good ‘shutdown’ in September to fix mess!’ the Donald suggested in a tweet on May 2, in a fit of pique over the US Senate’s 60-vote cloture requirement. That requirement forced Republicans to negotiate with Democrats over a stopgap spending bill, in turn requiring Trump to give up on some of his policy goals for the short term to avoid the dreaded ‘shutdown.’ The president’s reasons for rattling the ‘shutdown’ saber are wrong — the harder it is for Congress to spend money, the better! — but his instincts are right. ‘Shutdowns’ are much-needed opportunities for Americans to look more closely at, and hopefully re-think, the federal government’s true role.” (05/02/17)

http://thegarrisoncenter.org/archives/10438

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23) Trump will test Democrats’ tax patriotism
Source: USA Today
by Glenn Harlan Reynolds

“Democrats have been saying for years that we need tax increases, and that paying taxes is one of the greatest forms of patriotism. Now it looks like President Trump is going to put their beliefs to the test. Trump’s new tax plan would hit blue states hardest, by eliminating the federal deductibility of state income and property taxes. That’s going to make it harder for blue states to maintain the high tax rates they’ve traditionally levied. Right now, if you pay state property or income taxes, you can deduct them against your federal income taxes. In effect, it means that if you’re in a high federal bracket, your state taxes may be offset by that federal deduction to the tune of 40% or more. End the federal deduction, though, and high state taxes come straight out of taxpayers’ pockets with no offset. As economist Nicole Kaeding told The Hill, by allowing deductions for state taxes, ‘the federal government is essentially subsidizing high tax rates in states like California and New York.'” (05/02/17)

https://www.usatoday.com/story/opinion/2017/05/01/trump-test-democrats-tax-patriotism-glenn-reynolds/101159082

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24) The constitutional rights of noncitizens
Source: Libertarian Institute
by Ilya Somin

“Immigration restrictionists sometimes claim that noncitizens have no rights under the Constitution, and that the US government is therefore free to deal with them in whatever way it wants. At least as a general rule, this claim is simply false. Noncitizens undeniably have a wide range of rights under the Constitution. Indeed, within the borders of the United States, they have most of the same rights as citizens do, and longstanding Supreme Court precedent bans most state laws discriminating against noncitizens. There is little if any serious controversy among experts over this matter. The more controversial issue is whether the Constitution provides any protection for noncitizens outside US borders, particularly in regard to immigration issues.” (05/02/17)

https://www.libertarianinstitute.org/justice/constitutional-rights-noncitizens/

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25) The government-medical complex: Why health and social services fail
Source: HubPages
by Garry Reed

“The healthcare crisis has been around for a very long time. Its cause has been known for a very long time too: Government. Its cure has also been known for a very long time: The Private Sector. The problem is that very few people other than libertarians want to deal with this reality. Cynical collusion between the medical industry and politicians has made both wealthy and politically powerful, and they’re not about to give up one penny of their wealth or one erg of their power to genuinely fix the problem. As far as they’re concerned it’s already ‘fixed,’ in the sense that ‘the fix is in.'” (05/02/17)

https://hubpages.com/health/The-Government-Medical-Complex-Why-Health-and-social-services-fail

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26) What is to be done in Venezuela?
Source: The Nation
by Greg Grandin

“The news from Venezuela is grim: A ‘fall in oil prices [and] soaring interest rates … have intensified an already deep-rooted recession. The country is being pauperized. It has the highest inflation in Latin America, increasing unemployment and more than 40 percent of the population lives in extreme poverty.’ With economic immiseration comes political violence: Over the course of one year, ‘security forces killed 126 people, 46 in extra-judicial executions, and 28 when they were in police or military custody. Authoritarianism and repression are growing. Of 13,941 arbitrary detentions, 94 percent occurred during anti-crime operations mainly in poor neighborhoods. … Violent death has become a feature of Venezuelan life. On Monday mornings, the newspapers carry a grim roll call of those killed in stabbings and shootings in the city’s slums. The figure often reaches 40 or 50, mostly young, male and poor.'” (05/02/17)

https://www.thenation.com/article/what-is-to-be-done-in-venezuela

—–

27) March for Science stomps out free thought
Source: Strike The Root
by Carrie Burdzinski

“‘Science,’ the method by which we understand the world and apply knowledge to improve human existence, is the latest casualty of the Progressive agenda. On April 22nd, 2017, several million people gathered at March for Science rallies across the United States to ‘stand up for science.’ But surely science needs no publicity stunt in the industrialized world, where the benefits of scientific advancements — cars, electricity, cell phones, and the Internet — are widely accepted. So what exactly are these demonstrators promoting? The first goal of the March for Science is to supplant the correspondence theory of truth with the consensus theory of truth–the belief that reality is determined by social opinion.” (05/02/17)

http://www.strike-the-root.com/march-for-science-stomps-out-free-thought

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28) Sessions’s dream of resurrecting Reefer Madness foiled by Congress
Source: Foundation for Economic Education
by Brittany Hunter

“Having Jeff Sessions as US Attorney General in the era of Trump has had civil liberty advocates on edge from the get-go. As one of the last remaining champions of marijuana prohibition, Sessions would erase all progress made toward decriminalization over the last several years — if given the chance. Luckily, Congress has taken precautionary measures to ensure that the Trump appointee cannot get his regulatory claws on medical marijuana legislation passed by 29 states. The Rohrabacher-Farr amendment, which was included in the newly revealed Congressional budget, would block any federal impediment on state laws that legalize the use of medical marijuana by barring any federal dollars from being spent on enforcing national drug laws.” (05/02/17)

https://fee.org/articles/sessions-dream-of-resurrecting-reefer-madness-foiled-by-congress/

—–

29) The war on cash: Haldane edition
Source: Cobden Centre
by Prof Kevin Dowd

“I would not presume to be able to describe all the negative effects of abolishing cash, but some are obvious. There are many transactions for which cash is the ideal medium of payment, and it is not for nothing that cash is used in 85 percent of global transactions. Cash is a very efficient way of handling small transactions; it is costless and easy to use; cash transactions are immediate and flexible; cash is highly anonymous and traditionally, the anonymity of cash was considered to be one of its greatest benefits …. Most of us have experienced situations where we had difficulty paying for a bill at a restaurant or gas station because of some system failure on the part of our debit or credit card provider, and have then had to resort to cash to sort the problem out. Good luck trying to sort out such problems when the government won’t allow you to use any cash at all.” (05/02/17)

http://www.cobdencentre.org/2017/05/the-war-on-cash-haldane-edition/

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30) The war on Yemen and the delusional Saudis
Source: The American Conservative
by Daniel Larison

“The Saudi-led war on Yemen has wrecked the country’s infrastructure, destroyed its economy, and brought millions to the brink of famine, but it has failed to achieve any of the coalition’s stated goals for over two years. The Saudis have persisted in their indefensible war as long as they have in part because the reputation of both the king and his son are bound to its outcome, and they are unable or unwilling to admit that they recklessly plunged into a war they couldn’t win for no good reason. Like any hawkish dead-ender, the prince doesn’t have a clue how to win the war he started but won’t concede defeat, and so the senseless war drags on.” (05/02/17)

http://www.theamericanconservative.com/larison/the-war-on-yemen-and-the-delusional-saudis/

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31) What’s wrong with abolishing circus animal shows?
Source: Center for a Stateless Society
by Chad Nelson

“At first glance, H.R. 1759 — the ‘Traveling Exotic Animal and Public Safety Protection Act (TEAPSPA)’ — seems like a big victory for animals. TEAPSPA actually seeks to abolish an entire cross-section of animal exploitation. One that is as old as mankind: circus animals. Many parts of the world are already aware that circus animals endure great suffering through their captivity, confinement, never-ending transport, and forced labor. The passage of TEAPSPA would bring the United States in step with modern approaches to the circus. Not your typical piece of welfare legislation pushing larger cages and gentler torture, right? Could ending this age-old institution across the entire United States possibly be a bad thing? The short answer is no.” (05/02/17)

https://c4ss.org/content/48638

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32) The war on facts hits prescription drug regulation
Source: The American Prospect
by Jerry Avorn

“Regimens of ‘regulatory relief’ have begun to course through Washington’s veins, to treat a presumed diagnosis of severe governmental constipation. President Donald Trump has vowed to purge ‘over 75 percent’ of the regulations governing the approval and manufacture of prescription drugs. His nominee for commissioner of the Food and Drug Administration, Scott Gottlieb, a physician at the American Enterprise Institute, has argued that many of the current requirements that oblige manufacturers to demonstrate that their drugs are safe and effective represent excessive big-government impositions on the creative élan of pharmaceutical manufacturers. Two other worrisome developments in these directions predate the election and are likely to further transform the medications landscape.” [editor’s note: So we’re supposed to mourn the fact that the longstanding handmaiden of Big Pharma might have less power under Trump’s regime? – SAT] (05/02/17)

http://prospect.org/article/war-facts-hits-prescription-drug-regulation

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33) Burn the heretic!
Source: Bleeding Heart Libertarians
by Jason Brennan

“Rebecca Tuvel, an untenured assistant professor at Rhodes College, recently published ‘In uvelefense of Transracialism,’ at Hypatia, a feminist journal. In that article, she argues we have more or less the same reasons to accept transracial identities as we do to accept transgender identities; the arguments on behalf of accepting the latter apply roughly equally as well to accepting the former. Fair enough, right? Seems like a rather common style of argument you see in many philosophy papers. Maybe in this case it’s a good argument. Maybe it’s not. But it passed peer-review and was published in what is arguably the leading feminist philosophy journal. You’d expect that if a scholar disagrees with it, that scholar would just write a critical article. Nope. You see, certain subfields are politicized, and the people within them no longer behave like academics or scholars.” (05/02/17)

http://bleedingheartlibertarians.com/2017/05/burn-the-heretic/

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34) Despite everything, I am happy Hillary lost
Source: CounterPunch
by Ted Rall

“Despite Trump’s near catastrophic performance to date, there’s still flop left in this fish. There really is more than a little Hitler, and probably a lot of Mussolini, in Trump. Just watch: his fascist freak flag will fly free following a foreign policy crisis like a war or a terrorist attack. This is the crazy calm before the inevitable, terrifying storm. Liberals are already in full-on panic mode. … For non-progressive Democrats, this is the place where the mind naturally wanders to an alternate reality in which Hillary Clinton won. It’s natural to wonder aloud, as Smith does: ‘Where would we be on the 100th day of a Hillary Clinton administration?’ I didn’t vote for her. Despite everything — despite all the chaos I feel coming — I cite Edith Piaf: Je ne regrette rien.” (05/02/17)

http://www.counterpunch.org/2017/05/02/despite-everything-i-am-happy-hillary-lost/

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35) A Baker’s Dozen [TM] reasons to get your children out of there!
Source: The Price of Liberty
by Nathan Barton

“It’s no secret that this website and its writers are opposed to public schools — which we unkindly refer to as ‘government-run, tax-funded’ schools — or even more bluntly, ‘government-ruined, theft-funded schools.’ The alternative? Home schooling. It is a rational decision by good parents to get their children out of institutions that, despite all their claims, mostly abuse children and demean them in various ways. For years, we’ve encouraged parents to get their children out of these institutions. Let us look quickly at 13 reasons to do so.” (05/02/17)

https://thepriceofliberty.org/2017/05/02/a-bakers-dozen-tm-reasons-to-get-your-children-out-of-there/

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36) Tax lies for the gullible?
Source: Town Hall
by Thomas Sowell

“One of the painful realities of our times is how long a political lie can survive, even after having been disproved years ago, or even generations ago. A classic example is the phrase ‘tax cuts for the rich,’ which is loudly proclaimed by opponents, whenever there is a proposal to reduce tax rates. The current proposal to reduce federal tax rates has revived this phrase, which was disproved by facts, as far back as the 1920s — and by now should be called ‘tax lies for the gullible.’ How is the claim of ‘tax cuts for the rich’ false? Let me count the ways. More important, you can easily check out the facts for yourself with a simple visit to your local public library or, for those more computer-minded, on the Internet.” (05/01/17)

https://townhall.com/columnists/thomassowell/2017/05/01/tax-cuts-for-the-rich-n2320748

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37) Rising oil prices don’t cause inflation
Source: Ludwig von Mises Institute
by Frank Shostak

“A very good visual correlation between the yearly percentage change in the consumer price index (CPI) and the yearly percentage change in the price of oil seems to provide support to the popular thinking that future changes in price inflation in the US are likely to be set by the yearly growth rate in the price of oil. But is it valid to suggest that a price of an important input such as oil is a key determinant of the prices of goods and services? It is true that producers of goods and services set asking prices. It is also true that producers, while setting prices, take into account various production costs including the cost of energy. Whether the asking price set by producers is going to be realized in the market place, however, hinges on whether or not consumers will accept those prices. Consumers dictate whether the price set by producers is ‘right.'” (05/02/17)

https://mises.org/blog/rising-oil-prices-dont-cause-inflation

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38) The next great experiment
Source: The Atlantic
by Adrienne La France, Irina Raicu & Eric Goldman

“We are witnessing, on a massive scale, diminishing faith in institutions of all kinds. People don’t trust the government. They don’t trust banks and other corporations. They certainly don’t trust the news media. At the same time, we are living through a period of profound technological change. Along with the rise of bioengineering, networked devices, autonomous robots, space exploration, and machine learning, the mobile internet is recontextualizing how we relate to one another, dramatically changing the way people seek and share information, and reconfiguring how we express our will as citizens in a democratic society. But trust is a requisite for democratic governance. And now, many are growing disillusioned with democracy itself.” (05/02/17)

https://www.theatlantic.com/technology/archive/2017/05/the-next-great-experiment/523890/

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39) Using persuasion to create assets out of nothing
Source: Scott Adams Blog
by Scott Adams

“Yesterday President Trump unexpectedly said he would be ‘honored’ to meet North Korea’s Kim Jung-un. And that’s how a Master Persuader creates an asset out of nothing. I’ll explain. By holding out the possibility of meeting with Kim Jung-un, President Trump has conjured out of thin air a virtual “asset” that he can use for negotiating with North Korea. I’m sure the North Korean leader would like the international respect and recognition that such a meeting would confer. Best of all, Jung-un could use that future meeting as evidence for his citizens that he stared-down America and negotiated a great deal in which we remove some of our military assets while they end their nuclear weapons program. Or something like that. The point is that President Trump created this ‘asset’ out of nothing but persuasion. Now Kim Jung-un has something to gain, and something to lose. And that option simply didn’t exist a week ago. Do you think this was a unique situation?” [editor’s note: Some folks see Scott Adams as a “Trump apologist;” I see him as more of an “alternate perspective” offering a unique angle on the POTUS’s words and actions – SAT] (05/02/17)

http://blog.dilbert.com/post/160228984401/using-persuasion-to-create-assets-out-of-nothing

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40) The Oregon Fail
Source: Common Sense
by Paul Jacob

“My children used to play ‘The Oregon Trail,’ an early computer game where one navigated the amazingly dangerous wagon trip out west — often dying of dysentery or drowning while crossing a river. Oregon remains treacherous. Yesterday, we bemoaned the cancellation of a parade because a Republican Party group’s participation elicited threats of violence. Now, we find that writing a thoughtful letter to public officials about problematic traffic lights garners a $500 fine.” (05/02/17)

http://thisiscommonsense.com/2017/05/02/the-oregon-fail/

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41) Trump’s crude, ignorant theory of American history
Source: The New Republic
by Jeet Heer

“Donald Trump has made some puzzling remarks lately about American history, but they can be explained by two harsh truths about the president: He’s learning much that is new to him, and has a narcissistic habit of imputing his own ignorance on everyone else ‘People don’t realize, you know, the Civil War, if you think about it, why?’ Trump asked in an interview with Sirius XM radio. ‘People don’t ask that question, but why was there a Civil War?’ While these remarks sound less coherent than the inebriated ramblings found on Comedy Central’s ‘Drunk History,’ they are best understood by realizing that the question of why the Civil War started, although taken up for more than a 150 years in countless books, is something Trump himself has only started thinking about recently, perhaps under the sway of the informal history tutorials provided by his chief strategist, Steve Bannon.” [editor’s note: I’m starting to really love how this trivia dominates news and commentary, while actual policy decisions go mostly unnoticed; Trump might be smarter than anyone realizes – SAT] (05/02/17)

https://newrepublic.com/article/142437/trumps-crude-ignorant-theory-american-history

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42) Homophobic purges in Putinland
Source: Students For Liberty
by Vera Kichanova

“When someone refuses to sell you a pizza because you are gay, it is not fascism, it is bigotry. When they kidnap you because you are gay, hold you in a secret prison, torture you into giving up your friends’ names and then return you to your family saying ‘Either you kill him or we will,’ now this is fascism. And this is exactly what is going on in Putin’s Russia today.” (05/01/17)

https://www.studentsforliberty.org/2017/05/01/homophobic-purges-putinland/

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43) The SNP’s thinly disguised independence agenda
Source: spiked
by Blair Spowart

“It has become something of a cliche in political commentary to say that the great dividing line in Scottish politics is now between Unionist and Nationalist, not left and right. It’s why the once-toxic Scottish Conservatives are (comparatively) thriving north of the border and why Scottish Labour — the least convincing Unionists ever — are facing a wipeout at the General Election in June. The economy, education, housing, the NHS: all are now playing second fiddle to the ultimate constitutional question, little more than sources of ammunition for Unionists and Nationalists to marshal their respective causes. Fail to recognise this, and you fail to understand Scottish politics. Little wonder, then, that Nicola Sturgeon’s claim that the Scottish National Party’s election campaign is nothing to do with a second independence referendum has been met with near-universal mockery.” (05/02/17)

http://www.spiked-online.com/newsite/article/the-snps-thinly-disguised-independence-agenda/

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44) Ignorance, intolerance, violence
Source: Heartland Institute
by Paul Driessen

“Recent science and climate marches demonstrated how misinformed, indoctrinated, politicized and anti-Trump these activists are — and how indifferent about condemning millions in industrialized nations and billions in developing countries to green energy poverty. Amid it all, University of Michigan history professor Juan Cole helped illustrate how the marchers became so ignorant, insensitive and intolerant.” (05/01/17)

http://blog.heartland.org/2017/05/ignorance-intolerance-violence/

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45) Instead of separating families by building walls, invest in schools
Source: Our Future
by Jeff Bryant

“Nearly every cause at the center of the progressive movement has its roots, at least in part, at the schoolhouse door. That’s at least part of the message behind the ‘Build Schools, Not Walls’ campaign that kicked off this week in unison with the massive May 1st actions for worker and immigrant rights that took place Monday. This effort to join the fight for education justice with worker and immigrant rights is being led by the Alliance to Reclaim Our Schools, an alliance of parent, youth, community, and labor organizations from across the country representing over 7 million people. ‘Schools are the institutions that bring us together,’ AROS Executive Director Keron Blair tells me in a phone call. ‘We can’t stay in these silos.'” [editor’s note: How do you get something so completely half-right, and so off-base otherwise? Those “silos” he refers to are the very “schools” he wants more of – SAT] (05/01/17)

https://ourfuture.org/20170501/instead-of-separating-families-building-walls-invest-in-schools

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46) When the facts change … the British election plays out
Source: Libertarian Alliance
by Tim Pendry

“Just under two weeks ago, it seemed simple. The issue was Brexit and that meant a simple decision – to go with a Government that promised to see it through against an Opposition that could not be trusted on the issue, perhaps despite itself. Two events have shifted opinion slightly though not yet decisively. The first is the sheer energy of the beleagured Labour Party. While everyone else is complacent or whining about things already done, Corbyn’s campaign team has come out slugging in all directions on matters that are quite separate from Brexit and which should be matters of public debate regardless of our entrapment in the European political project.” (05/02/17)

https://thelibertarianalliance.com/2017/05/02/when-the-facts-change-the-british-election-plays-out/

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47) Thoughts on literature, economics and education
Source: Ideas
by David Friedman

“To me, economics is that approach to understanding behavior that starts from the assumption that individuals have objectives and tend to take the acts that best achieve them. That is what economists mean by ‘rationality,’ and it is the assumption of rationality that is, in my view, the distinguishing characteristic of economics. What I am looking for are works that tell us something interesting about the implications of that assumption.” (05/01/17)

http://daviddfriedman.blogspot.com/2017/05/thoughts-on-literature-economics-and.html

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48) Could the Civil War have been avoided?
Source: Independent Institute
by William Watkins

“Trump is taking heat from the media on his ramblings about whether a leader such as Andrew Jackson could have crafted a compromise to avoid the 620,000 deaths in the Civil War. The general view seems to be that Trump is crazy for questioning the inevitability and justness of the slaughter. Of course, everyone knows that had Lincoln not attacked the South, slavery would exist today, right? Not exactly.” (05/01/17)

http://blog.independent.org/2017/05/01/could-the-civil-war-have-been-avoided/

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49) The tyranny of the distance
Source: Future of Freedom Foundation
by Matthew Harwood

“Last summer, the Obama administration finally made good on its promise to provide some transparency to its targeted killing program — well, sort of. On a Friday before the long July Fourth weekend, the executive branch released the number range of people killed by U.S. airstrikes between 2009 and 2015, most presumed to be by drones, far away from the battlefields of Iraq and Afghanistan. The estimated number: approximately 2,500 people. Independent analysts and journalists reported similar numbers. The London-based Bureau of Investigative Journalism, for instance, counted 2,753. But there was a subset of the total number of people killed reported by the government that was positively ludicrous when you understand a bit about the U.S. target-killing program: its toll on civilians.” (05/02/17)

http://www.fff.org/explore-freedom/article/the-tyranny-of-the-distance/

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50) Antiestablishmentarianism
Source: EconLog
by Scott Sumner

“Donald Trump once said. ‘I know words, I have the best words.’ Interestingly, all of those words are one syllable. But I happen to know an eleven-syllable word, which is defined by Wikipedia: ‘Antiestablishmentarianism (or anti-establishmentarianism) is a political philosophy that views a nation’s or society’s power structure as corrupt, repressive, exploitative, or unjust.’ That seems as good a way as any to describe how conservatives in the UK can be embracing Brexit while the Labour Party moves to the far left. In America, Trump is the closest analogy to Brexit, and now we see the Democratic Party also beginning to shift left (albeit not as far left as Labour.)” (05/01/17)

http://econlog.econlib.org/archives/2017/05/antiestablishme.html

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

51) The KN@PP Stir Podcast, episode 127
Source: KN@PPSTER

“In This Episode: Thanks For Asking! (Francy pants; libertarian country startups; bad political music; why aren’t Arabs/Muslims and libertarianism more closely associated?) :: No rant, just a couple of random musings on the upcoming Libertarian Party of Florida state convention.” [various formats]

http://knappster.blogspot.com/2017/05/the-knpp-stir-podcast-episode-127.html

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52) Everything Voluntary Podcast, episode 70
Source: Everything Voluntary

“Episode 070 is the first part of a conversation on 19th century individualist Lysander Spooner’s approach to natural law, natural justice, natural rights, natural liberty, and natural society.” [various formats] (05/01/17)

http://everything-voluntary.com/episode-070-lysander-spooner-law-justice-rights-liberty-society-part-one-53m

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53) Free Talk Live, 05/01/17
Source: Free Talk Live

“UK Govt Healthcare Orders Baby Dead :: Peaceful Communication :: Ownership of Offspring :: Secession :: Lazy Libertarians :: CalExit Leader Moves to Russia :: Ridley Threatened At Jail Protest :: Sugar Ban :: HOSTS — Ian, Mark, Melanie.” [Flash audio or MP3] (05/01/17)

https://www.freetalklive.com/podcast/2017-05-01

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54) Foreign Policy Focus, episode 34
Source: Foreign Policy Focus

“On FPF #34 I discuss the clash between Turkey and Kurdish forces. I break down who the US-backed Kurdish forces are and why Turkey bombs them. In a very reckless move by Trump, he is using US troops as a buffer between the enemies. I cover several other important foreign policy stories.” [various formats] (05/01/17)

http://foreignpolicyfocus.libsyn.com/fpf-34-us-allies-clash-in-syria

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55) Video: Portland, Oregon protests turn violent
Source: BBC [UK state media]

“What began as a peaceful protest in Portland, Oregon escalated into a riot, with dozens arrested.” [Flash video] (05/02/17)

http://www.bbc.com/news/av/world-us-canada-39785767/portland-protests-turn-violent

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56) The Jason Stapleton Program, episode 591
Source: The Jason Stapleton Program

“A few times each year we see articles like this discussing how capitalism is going to kill all of us and how we need to move to a more ‘socially and environmentally responsible’ economic system. They’ve been saying the same thing since the ’70s. I’m going to break down this article today and discuss why it’s bogus.” [various formats] (05/01/17)

https://jasonstapleton.com/591-capitalism-will-kill-us-all-by-2050/

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57) Gareth Porter on The Scott Horton Show
Source: Libertarian Institute

“Gareth Porter, an award-winning investigative journalist and author of Manufactured Crisis: The Untold Story of the Iran Nuclear Scare, discusses why the entire war on terror since 2001 has been a ‘bait-and-switch’ operation wherein the US pretends to fight terrorism while sacrificing the safety of Americans to back the interests of regional allies like Saudi Arabia.” [various formats] (04/30/17)

https://www.libertarianinstitute.org/scotthortonshow/43017-gareth-porter-deep-states-real-priorities-war-terror/

*****
RATIONAL REVIEW NEWS DIGEST

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

Editor Emeritus:
Mary Lou Seymour
*****