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

Volume XV, Issue #3,712
Tuesday, May 16th, 2017
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In the News:

1) Report: Trump discussed classified information with Russian officials
2) Venezuela: Two killed in latest round of anti-regime protests
3) Trump regime accuses Syria’s Assad regime of killing thousands, cremating bodies
4) Ivory Coast: Gunfire rocks cities as mutiny gathers pace
5) SpaceX launches Falcon 9 plus satellite
6) Trump has White House lit up in blue to wow copsuckers
7) “WannaCry” cyberattack slows, but threat remains, experts say
8) Hong Kong: Regime rejects asylum applications for refugees who harbored Edward Snowden
9) SCOTUS rules in favor of debt collector in bankruptcy dispute
10) Workers say Wal-Mart discriminated against thousands of pregnant women
11) Bitcoin plunges $200 after cyber attackers demand ransom using the digital currency
12) UK: London private school may let boys wear skirts
13) First lady: Barron to attend private Episcopal school in MD
14) S&P 500, Nasdaq post record closes after crude settles at two-week high
15) Iran: Conservatives unite to pose stronger threat to Rouhani
16) TN: Man dies after setting himself on fire in Facebook Live video
17) Trump regime expands abortion restrictions for foreign non-profits receiving US taxpayer money
18) NY: School turns away ICE thug who wants to hassle 4th-grader
19) France: Macron names Republican Philippe as prime minister
20) Judge bars Uber’s former head of self-driving cars from lidar-related work
21) Yemen: Cholera kills at least 115 in Sanaa
22) North Korea: Regime claims new missile can carry “large” nuke
23) SCOTUS refuses appeal of ruling against North Carolina’s “make it hard for African-Americans to vote” law
24) Snowden, others urge Trump to drop case against Assange
25) FCC halts public comments on Net Neutrality

Everybody Has An Opinion:

26) Open letter to President Trump
27) Libertarian drama
28) Government is the cause of — not the solution to — the latest hacking outbreak
29) Economic theory really is pro-immigration
30) Geography is policy
31) Identity and anarchy, part 1
32) A quick look at President Trump and the big picture
33) Can American democracy survive Donald Trump?
34) The buttinski should butt out of Korea
35) The danger of resetting relations with Russia
36) Ayn Rand and Friedrich Nietzche
37) Proof that liberals [sic] are stupid
38) Be free
39) Feds “normalizing” in the spirit of Cato’s Buchanan Brigade
40) Letting “laws” control you
41) Trump’s loyalty crisis
42) Obama’s deportation policy was even worse than we thought
43) Three theories of social justice activism
44) Baltasar Gracian’s aphorism #193: Watch him that begins with another’s to end with his own.
45) The folk singer vs. the millionaire: A Berniecrat aims for Montana’s House seat
46) When headlines turn into mandatory minimums
47) A good thing: Donald Trump killed the “indispensable nation”
48) Juicer choosers
49) Empire effects: The case of shipping
50) What kind of FBI do we want after Comey?
51) President Trump: Toss your generals’ war escalation plans in the trash
52) Flint: Enclosure of the water commons
53) The LGBTQ movement is an intersectional fail
54) Trade deficits don’t matter — unless caused by government
55) Wages and the cost of employment

The Sound and the Fury:

56) Freedom Feens Radio, 05/15/17
57) The Freedom Report, 05/15/17
58) Reason Podcast, 05/15/17
59) Peaceful Anarchism, episode 12
60) The Bob Zadek Show, 05/14/17
61) Lions of Liberty Podcast, episode 295
62) Free Talk Live, 05/14/17

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

1) Report: Trump discussed classified information with Russian officials
Source: USA Today

“President Trump told ‘highly classified information’ to the Russian foreign minister and ambassador during a meeting at the White House last week, according to a new report. The Washington Post, citing current and former U.S. officials, reported that the the details Trump provided Russian Foreign Minister Sergei Lavrov and Ambassador Sergey Kislyak were considered so sensitive that they had been withheld from allies — and under close hold within the U.S. government as well. The disclosed information could damage a critical source of intelligence on the Islamic State. Trump and the United States did not have permission to share the information from the partner who provided the details, the Post reported.” [editor’s note: So I guess whoever this “partner” regime is, it should charge Trump with a crime a la Manning, Snowden or Assange, right? – TLK] (05/15/17)

https://www.usatoday.com/story/news/politics/2017/05/15/trump-told-classified-info-to-russian-officials/101726824/

—–

2) Venezuela: Two killed in latest round of anti-regime protests
Source: Artesia Daily Press

“Chaos erupted in western Venezuela during another round of protests against the socialist government, with buildings set afire, tear gas swirling around protesters and at least two people killed. A grisly video purporting to show the final moments of one man left dead in the turmoil capped Monday’s unrest as a morning of initially peaceful demonstrations turned violent outside Caracas, with two deaths reported at separate demonstrations in Tachira, a mountainous state bordering Colombia. … The violence added to a mounting toll of bloodshed as Venezuela’s opposition vows to step up near-daily demonstrations and Maduro shows no intention of conceding to opposition demands. More than three dozen people have been killed, including a national guardsman and a police officer, hundreds injured and as many as 2,000 detained in nearly seven weeks of protests.” (05/16/17)

http://www.artesianews.com/1457033/2-young-men-killed-as-chaos-erupts-in-western-venezuela.html

—–

3) Trump regime accuses Syria’s Assad regime of killing thousands, cremating bodies
Source: ABC News

“The U.S. is accusing the Syrian regime of Bashar al-Assad of killing thousands between 2011 and 2015 and using a crematorium to dispose of their bodies. And while Assad allies Russia and Iran may not have had anything to do with the crematorium, they are complicit in the brutal dictator’s many other atrocities, according to the U.S. The Trump administration says the regime has killed as many as 50 people a day at the Saydnaya prison complex in that time period, and beginning in 2013, it modified a building on the compound into a crematorium.” (05/15/17)

http://abcnews.go.com/International/us-accuses-syria-killing-thousands-burning-bodies-crematorium/story?id=47419832

—–

4) Ivory Coast: Gunfire rocks cities as mutiny gathers pace
Source: Reuters

“Gunfire rocked cities in Ivory Coast on Monday as a mutiny by disgruntled soldiers gathered pace in defiance of government action against a revolt that threatens the country’s rapid emergence from a civil war. The troops who rebelled over delayed bonus payments controlled the second city Bouake, and heavy gunfire also hit San Pedro, a crucial port for exports of cocoa. … The government promised bonus payments to the soldiers after a mutiny in January but not they were not fully paid after a collapse in the price of cocoa, Ivory Coast’s main export, caused a revenue crunch. The issue triggered a wave of mutinies that has exposed the lack of unity in a military assembled from former rebel and loyalist combatants.” (05/21/17)

http://www.reuters.com/article/us-ivorycoast-military-idUSKCN18B0KF

—–

5) SpaceX launches Falcon 9 plus satellite
Source: USA Today

“A SpaceX Falcon 9 rocket is set to launch a ‘behemoth’ commercial communications satellite from Kennedy Space Center at 7:21 p.m. Eastern time on Monday. Weighing in at nearly 13,500 pounds atop the rocket, the fourth Inmarsat-5 satellite will be the heaviest load lofted by a Falcon 9 yet. The 230-foot rocket will need all its fuel and 1.7 million pounds of liftoff thrust to deliver the spacecraft larger than a double-decker bus on its way to an orbit more than 22,000 miles over the equator.” (05/15/17)

https://www.usatoday.com/story/news/nation-now/2017/05/15/spacex-launch-falcon-9-satellite-monday/322739001

—–

6) Trump has White House lit up in blue to wow copsuckers
Source: WHEC News 10

“The White House went blue Monday night to show support for police officers. The lighting coincides [with] ‘Police Week’ — May 14 though May 20 — and ‘Peace Officers Memorial Day’ on Monday which President Trump issued a proclamation for.” (05/15/17)

http://www.whec.com/news/law-enforcement-white-house-blue/4485148/

—–

7) “WannaCry” cyberattack slows, but threat remains, experts say
Source: NBC News

“The massive malware cyberattack that has struck an estimated 300,000 computers worldwide showed signs of slowing down Monday. But cybersecurity experts cautioned that new versions of the virus could still emerge. Thousands more were impacted by the virus on Monday, many in Asia, where businesses were originally closed when the ransomware first began to spread like wildfire across 150 countries on Friday. John Miller, a manager of threat intelligence cybersecurity company FireEye, told NBC News the company was detecting new versions.” (05/15/17)

http://www.nbcnews.com/news/world/wannacry-malware-cyberattack-slows-threat-remains-experts-say-n759661

—–

8) Hong Kong: Regime rejects asylum applications for refugees who harbored Edward Snowden
Source: Fox News

“Hong Kong authorities have rejected asylum requests from refugees who harbored whistleblower and former National Security Agency (NSA) contractor Edward Snowden in 2013. Applications from four adults and three children from Sri Lanka and the Philippines were denied by immigration officials in the southern Chinese city, attorney Robert Tibbo said Monday. Snowden spent two weeks hiding in Hong Kong in June 2013 after he leaked documents revealing extensive U.S. government surveillance information. The refugees include former Sri Lankan soldier Ajith Pushpakumara; Vanessa Mae Rodel, who is from the Philippines and has a 5-year-old daughter; and a Sri Lankan couple, Supun Thilina Kellapatha and Nadeeka Dilrukshi Nonis, and their two children.” (05/15/17)

http://www.foxnews.com/world/2017/05/15/hong-kong-rejects-asylum-applications-for-refugees-who-harbored-edward-snowden.html

—–

9) SCOTUS rules in favor of debt collector in bankruptcy dispute
Source: Raw Story

“The U.S. Supreme Court on Monday handed a victory to debt collectors, ruling that people who have filed for bankruptcy cannot sue companies that tried to recoup old debt that was not required to be paid back under state statutes of limitations. The justices, in a 5-3 decision, ruled in favor of Midland Funding, a subsidiary of Encore Capital Group Inc, which was sued by an Alabama debtor named Aleida Johnson who entered bankruptcy in 2014. The court’s newest justice, Neil Gorsuch, did not participate in the ruling.” (05/15/17)

http://www.rawstory.com/2017/05/us-top-court-rules-in-favor-of-debt-collector-in-bankruptcy-dispute

—–

10) Workers say Wal-Mart discriminated against thousands of pregnant women
Source: Reuters

“Two former Wal-Mart Stores Inc (WMT.N) employees have filed a lawsuit accusing the retailer of treating thousands of pregnant workers as ‘second-class citizens’ by rejecting their requests to limit heavy lifting, climbing on ladders and other potentially dangerous tasks. The proposed class action lawsuit was filed in federal court in Illinois on Friday by Talisa Borders and Otisha Woolbright, who say that until 2014, Arkansas-based Wal-Mart had a company-wide policy that denied pregnant women the same accommodations as workers with other disabilities. The class could include at least 20,000 women and possibly up to 50,000 who worked at Wal-Mart while pregnant before the policy change, according to the lawsuit. A Wal-Mart spokesman on Monday said the company had not seen the lawsuit and did not have any comment.” (05/15/17)

http://www.reuters.com/article/us-walmart-lawsuit-pregnancy-idUSKCN18B23I

—–

11) Bitcoin plunges $200 after cyber attackers demand ransom using the digital currency
Source: CNBC

“Bitcoin plunged from a record high hit last week to below $1,700 after cyber attackers locked up data in 200,000 computers Friday and demanded ransom in the digital currency. ‘It’s a big hit to sentiment,’ said Brian Kelly, CEO of BKCM. ‘This is some negative publicity for bitcoin.’ Bitcoin fell more than $200 from an all-time high of $1,848.75 reached Thursday to a low of $1,644.64 Friday. The cryptocurrency steadied over the weekend and on Monday traded more than 5 percent lower on the day near $1,676.42.” (05/15/17)

http://www.cnbc.com/2017/05/15/bitcoin-plunges-200-after-cyber-attackers-demand-ransom-using-the-digital-currency.html

—–

12) UK: London private school may let boys wear skirts
Source: BBC [UK state media]

“Boys could be allowed to wear skirts at a north London private school if a plan for gender neutral uniforms comes in. Highgate School is considering mix-and-match outfits for pupils after head teachers said that growing numbers of children were questioning their gender. The school, which charges up to £6,790 a term, has also been encouraged to allow unisex toilets and open all sports to all pupils. Girls at the school can wear grey trousers, dark blue jackets and ties. But boys are not currently allowed to wear grey pleated skirts, although they would be under the new proposed dress code.” (05/15/17)

http://www.bbc.com/news/education-39921309

—–

13) First lady: Barron to attend private Episcopal school in MD
Source: San Francisco Chronicle

“First lady Melania Trump announced Monday that her son, Barron, will attend a private Episcopal school in Maryland, beginning this fall. The announcement answered one of the lingering questions surrounding the first family’s unusual living arrangement. Mrs. Trump and 11-year-old Barron have been living at Trump Tower in New York since Donald Trump took office in January, while the president has lived at the White House. Trump has said his wife and youngest child will relocate to the White House after the current school year ends, which meant finding a local school for Barron.” (05/15/17)

http://www.sfgate.com/news/politics/article/First-lady-Barron-to-attend-private-Episcopal-11146624.php

—–

14) S&P 500, Nasdaq post record closes after crude settles at two-week high
Source: The Street

“Another surge in crude oil boosted the energy sector and led the S&P 500 and Nasdaq to secure fresh records on Monday. The S&P 500 was up 0.48% to 2,402.32 and the Nasdaq rose 0.46% to 6,149.67, both new all-time closing highs. The Dow Jones Industrial Average added 0.41%. Crude oil prices rallied on Monday after energy ministers from Russia and Saudi Arabia surprised by calling for an extension to an oil production cap agreement. ” (05/15/17)

https://www.thestreet.com/story/14136062/1/s-amp-p-500-nasdaq-post-record-closes-after-crude-settles-at-two-week-high.html

—–

15) Iran: Conservatives unite to pose stronger threat to Rouhani
Source: Bloomberg

“Iranian presidential candidate Mohammad Baqer Qalibaf withdrew from this month’s election to support fellow conservative Ebrahim Raisi, state television reported, a decision that polls show would effectively create a two-man race with incumbent Hassan Rouhani. Qalibaf, the 55-year-old mayor of Tehran who lost to Rouhani in 2013, criticized the president’s ‘inefficient and impotent’ cabinet in a statement announcing his decision. A survey by the state-affiliated Iranian Students Polling Agency published last week showed support for Rouhani at 42 percent, Raisi on 27 percent, while Qalibaf was at 25 percent. If conservative voters unite behind Raisi, they could tip an election that just a few weeks ago, surveys suggested, was heading toward a straightforward victory for Rouhani.” (05/15/17)

https://www.bloomberg.com/politics/articles/2017-05-15/iran-conservatives-unite-to-pose-stronger-challenge-to-rouhani

—–

16) TN: Man dies after setting himself on fire in Facebook Live video
Source: New York Magazine

“Jared McLemore, a 33-year-old from Memphis, died over the weekend, succumbing to injuries sustained after he lit himself on fire in an apparent attempt to die via suicide. McLemore streamed his actions — which included dousing himself in gas and then running into a local bar — via Facebook Live, WMC Action News 5 reports. His ex-girlfriend, Alyssa Moore, worked at the bar. McLemore had a history of both mental illness and domestic violence. At the time of his death, Moore had an active restraining order out against him, WMC Action News 5 also reports.” (05/15/17)

http://nymag.com/selectall/2017/05/man-commits-suicide-by-burning-himself-on-facebook-live.html

—–

17) Trump regime expands abortion restrictions for foreign non-profits receiving US taxpayer money
Source: ABC News

“The Trump administration is expanding a policy that requires foreign non-governmental organizations to neither perform nor promote abortion as a method of family planning, if they receive U.S. global health assistance funding. Specifically, today’s announcement widens the number of foreign programs affected by the policy, from programs totaling $600 million in funding to $8.8 billion. Now, any foreign NGO that works on international health programs, such as those for HIV/AIDS, maternal and child health and malaria, cannot perform abortions, refer or counsel women to receive abortions or lobby for or conduct public information campaigns in support of abortion.” (05/15/17)

http://abcnews.go.com/Politics/abortion-restrictions-expanded-foreign-profits-receiving-us-health/story?id=47422963

—–

18) NY: School turns away ICE thug who wants to hassle 4th-grader
Source: Independent [UK]

“An immigration agent pursuing a crackdown ordered by Donald Trump, went to a New York elementary school to try and question a pupil, but was turned away at the door. Eric Phillips, a spokesman for New York Mayor Bill de Blasio, confirmed that an officer from US Citizenship and Immigration Services had gone to the school in the borough of Queens, but was blocked from entering because they did not have a warrant. Reports said the pupil the officer was seeking, was in the fourth grade, and would have been aged nine or ten. Mr De Blasio announced a policy earlier this year to prevent such incidents happening and told the New York Police Department not to allow customs agents onto school grounds unless they had a warrant.” [editor’s note: One of the few genuinely decent policies De Blasio deserves credit for – TLK] (05/15/17)

http://www.independent.co.uk/news/world/americas/e-agent-new-york-fourth-grader-turned-away-school-maspeth-a7737051.html

—–

19) France: Macron names Republican Philippe as prime minister
Source: BBC News [UK state media]

“President Emmanuel Macron has chosen centre-right mayor Edouard Philippe as France’s new prime minister. Mr Philippe, 46, is not from the president’s new centrist party but from the centre-right Republicans. The choice is seen as an attempt to draw in key figures from both the right and left of French politics. The announcement forms part of a busy first day for the president – he is due to meet Chancellor Angela Merkel in Berlin. The naming of a new prime minister, Mr Macron’s first big appointment, came after hours of fevered speculation in France and a day after he was inaugurated as president.” (05/15/17)

http://www.bbc.com/news/39923510

—–

20) Judge bars Uber’s former head of self-driving cars from lidar-related work
Source: Yahoo! News

“A federal judge has ordered Anthony Levandowski, the former Google engineer at the heart of a legal dispute with Uber, from working on any lidar-related work. Judge William Alsup’s order makes official a move that Uber had already made when it preemptively demoted Levandowski from leading its self-driving-car project and barred him from working on lidar. Waymo sued Uber earlier this year, accusing Uber of stealing trade secrets and intellectual property it had developed related to lidar, the radar-like sensors that self-driving cars use to navigate. Waymo says that Levandowski downloaded 14,000 files before he left Google’s self-driving car project, which later became Waymo, and took the files to Uber to jump-start its nascent self-driving car efforts.” (05/15/17)

https://finance.yahoo.com/news/judge-just-banned-ubers-former-142346778.html

—–

21) Yemen: Cholera kills at least 115 in Sanaa
Source: US News & World Report

“Cholera has killed at least 115 people in the Yemeni capital Sanaa, the local Saba news agency said, after authorities on Sunday declared a state of emergency over the outbreak and called for international help to avert disaster. Sanaa is controlled by the armed Houthi movement, which is [supposedly] aligned with Iran and fighting a Western-backed, Saudi-led [invasion]. More than 10,000 people have been killed and millions displaced in more than two years of war, which has also destroyed much of the country’s infrastructure. … 8,595 suspected cholera cases were recorded in Sanaa and other Yemeni provinces between April 27 and May 13, while laboratory confirmed cases were 213.” (05/15/17)

https://www.usnews.com/news/world/articles/2017-05-14/yemen-declares-state-of-emergency-in-sanaa-over-cholera

—–

22) North Korea: Regime claims new missile can carry “large” nuke
Source: CBS News

North Korea claimed Monday that it successfully tested a new missile the previous day capable of carrying a ‘large, heavy nuclear warhead.’ It was the regime’s most successful missile test to date, but officials in in South Korea said more information was needed before the North’s inflammatory claim about nuclear warheads could be confirmed.” (05/15/17)

http://www.cbsnews.com/news/north-korea-missile-test-kn-17-large-heavy-nuclear-warhead-kim-jong-un/

—–

23) SCOTUS refuses appeal of ruling against North Carolina’s “make it hard for African-Americans to vote” law
Source: NBC News

“The U.S. Supreme Court declined Monday to hear North Carolina’s appeal of a court ruling that found its legislature intended to discriminate against minorities in enacting one of the toughest voter ID laws in the nation. As is the court’s usual custom, no explanation was given for turning down the appeal, and no vote was noted. … In a blistering decision last July, the Fourth Circuit Court of Appeals said the state legislature explicitly set out to discover the kind of accommodations that minority voters use most often and then to roll back or eliminate them, targeting African Americans ‘with almost surgical precision.’” (05/15/17)

http://www.nbcnews.com/news/us-news/supreme-court-deals-blow-north-carolina-over-voting-rights-n759456

—–

24) Snowden, others urge Trump to drop case against Assange
Source: The Guardian [UK]

“Edward Snowden and Noam Chomsky are among those calling on Donald Trump to drop the US government’s investigation into Julian Assange and WikiLeaks. The pair — along with more than 100 other activists, journalists and government workers — have signed an open letter to the president that calls prosecuting WikiLeaks ‘a threat to all free journalism.’ The letter asks the Department of Justice to drop plans to charge Assange and other WikiLeaks staff members.” (05/15/17)

https://www.theguardian.com/media/2017/may/15/edward-snowden-assange-wikileaks-open-letter

—–

25) FCC halts public comments on Net Neutrality
Source: Boing Boing

“After hearing from so many angry Americans who wanted to preserve net neutrality rules that they had to invent a seemingly fictional ‘denial of service’ attack to explain their servers melting down, the FCC has solved the problem by telling the public to go fuck themselves. The FCC will no longer accept public comments on Net Neutrality, while it ‘reflects’ on the comments it’s received.” (05/15/17)

https://boingboing.net/2017/05/15/a-banana-in-my-ear.html

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

26) Open letter to President Trump
Source: I am WikilLeaks Legal Defense Fund
by various signatories

“We are journalists, activists and citizens from the United States and around the world who care about press freedom and are writing to you in response to the latest threat of prosecution against WikiLeaks for its journalistic work. We ask you to immediately close the Grand Jury investigation into WikiLeaks and drop any charges against Julian Assange and other Wikileaks staff members which the Department of Justice is planning. This threat to WikiLeaks escalates a long-running war of attrition against the great virtue of the United States — free speech.” (05/15/17)

https://iamwikileaks.org/openletter/

—–

27) Libertarian drama
Source: The Anarchist Shemale
by Aria DiMezzo

“In truth, when Libertarians say that they just want to see compromise, they’re implying, and sometimes state directly, that they’re referring to compromise between minarchists and anarchists. They do this to frame themselves as the reasonable ones who want to compromise, forever thwarted by those unreasonable anarchists who flatly refuse to. … However, the centrists in the party don’t want to compromise with anarchists …. They want to compromise with the alt-right people, nationalists, conservatives, and other right-wingers, not anarchists. This is problematic because libertarianism is the middle-ground between anarchism and statism. Now they want to compromise with Republican and Democrat statists. They rarely have the courage to say this directly, because they know that it’s impossible to find the middleground between libertarianism and statism while also finding middleground between libertarianism and anarchism, since libertarianism already sits between anarchism and statism. In numeric terms, statism is 100, anarchism 0, and libertarianism 50. Libertarians say that they want to compromise with anarchists at 25. Yet their actions–their drive to secure mass appeal, to water down the message to appeal to Republicans and Democrats, nominations of Johnson and Weld–show that they’re trying to compromise with statists at 75. And they keep telling each other through all of this that we anarchists are the ones being unreasonable …” (05/15/17)

https://anarchistshemale.com/2017/05/15/libertarian-drama/

—–

28) Government is the cause of — not the solution to — the latest hacking outbreak
Source: Reason
by Scott Shackford

“Privacy and cybersecurity experts and activists have been warning for ages that governments have their priorities all wrong. National security interests (not just in America but other countries as well) comparatively spend much more time and money attempting to breach the security systems of other countries and potential enemies than they do bolstering their own defenses. Reuters determined, with the information from intelligence officials, that the United States spends $9 on cybersurveillance and government hacking for every $1 it sends on defending its network systems. The ‘WannaCry’ Malware attack that spooled out over the end of last week and into the weekend, implicates both sides of this problem. The ransomware, first of all, allegedly originated from vulnerabilities and infiltration tools developed by the National Security Agency (NSA) they had been hoarding and keeping secret from technology companies whose defenses they were breaching. All of this secrecy was to facilitate the NSA’s ability to engage in cyberespionage and to prevent technology companies from building defenses that would have inhibited government surveillance. The NSA lost control of these infiltration tools and they were publicly exposed by the hacker group known as the ‘Shadow Brokers’ last month.” (05/15/17)

http://reason.com/blog/2017/05/15/government-is-the-cause-ofnot-the-soluti

—–

29) Economic theory really is pro-immigration
Source: Foundation for Economic Education
by Luis Pablo de la Horra

“Widespread biases on economics are far from being harmless. Wrong ideas held by voters usually lead to catastrophic policies due to the inherent nature of the democratic process. In other words, in most cases, politicians undertake those policies that they deem popular among voters in order to get reelected. If those policies beget pernicious consequences for the economy, harmless beliefs turn into lower living standards for all. Of those four biases, the most potentially harmful is the anti-foreign bias. This inclination to underestimate the benefits of economic cooperation with foreigners manifests itself politically in two main ways: protectionism and anti-immigration policies.” (05/15/17)

https://fee.org/articles/economic-theory-really-is-pro-immigration/

—–

30) Geography is policy
Source: EconLog
by Bryan Caplan

“For the last twenty years or so, Jeffrey Sachs and co-authors have been arguing that institutions and policy matter less than most economists think. The harsh reality is that geography has a huge effect on countries’ economic success. From what I’ve seen, the Geography Matters camp is on to something: Even after correcting for national ancestry, high absolute latitude and coastal access continue to have huge economic payoffs. In fact, geographic effects are much more robust than the effects of national ancestry.” (05/15/17)

http://econlog.econlib.org/archives/2017/05/geography_is_po.htm

—–

31) Identity and anarchy, part 1
Source: Everything Voluntary
by Chris Baker

“When you look in a mirror, what do you see? A person. An individual. Male or female? What skin, and hair color? Do these identity markers matter? What do you do when you want to be seen as an individual, but significant components of the world not only refuse to see you as an individual, but instead lump you in with some sort of outgroup? And many portions of the world either want that out group dead, or at least abolished in some capacity? What is an anarchist to do?” (05/15/17)

http://everything-voluntary.com/identity-and-anarchy-part-1

—–

32) A quick look at President Trump and the big picture
Source: Scott Adams Blog
by Scott Adams

“Let’s take a look at the things that are going well for President Trump, and the things that are not, and see if there is a pattern. Here I will include topics that are not necessarily the president’s accomplishments or faults. I’ll simply describe the current state of things. Things That Are Positive: The economy; Trade deals; China relations; Russia (our frenemy) is working with the U.S. on Syria, North Korea; China is putting pressure on North Korea; Jobs … Things that are Negative: Unproven allegations of Russian collusion with Trump campaign; Critics say Trump is crazy; Trump’s approval rating is abysmal…” (05/15/17)

http://blog.dilbert.com/post/160699204216/a-quick-look-at-president-trump-and-the-big

—–

33) Can American democracy survive Donald Trump?
Source: USA Today
by Brian Klaas

“In 2014, Turkey’s authoritarian president fired four prosecutors who were leading an investigation into an alleged corruption scandal involving the president himself. The interference was blatant. The intent was clear. President Recep Tayyip Erdogan wanted the corruption scandal to disappear. It was technically within his authority, but there was widespread outcry that the rule of law was under attack. In response, Erdogan claimed he was the victim of a widespread conspiracy by his political rivals. Then, he threatened his opponents. And he got away with it. It’s hard not to see parallels with President Trump’s decision to fire former FBI Director James Comey. In ousting the man leading the FBI investigation into Trump team ties and possible collusion with Russia, Trump behaved like a strongman.” (05/15/17)

https://www.usatoday.com/story/opinion/2017/05/15/can-american-democracy-survive-trump-column/101687476

—–

34) The buttinski should butt out of Korea
Source: Future of Freedom Foundation
by Jacob G Hornberger

“Korea is none of the U.S. government’s business. The only proper course of action is for the Pentagon and the CIA to exit the country and bring those 23,000 American soldiers stationed in Korea home. No negotiations. No agreements. No talks. Just butt out of what is none of your business and exit the scene by coming home. Why are there 23,000 U.S. troops in Korea? It’s because the U.S. government, headed by President Harry S. Truman and his newly established national-security establishment, decided to intervene in another country’s civil war more than half-a-century ago.” (05/15/17)

https://www.fff.org/2017/05/15/buttinski-butt-korea/

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35) The danger of resetting relations with Russia
Source: Reuters
by John Lloyd

“The president of the United States, the leader of the UK Labour Party, the prime minister of Hungary and the president of the Czech Republic, among other Western leaders, think a reset of relations with Russia is necessary. While their reasons vary, all believe that the world is too dangerous to have a vast nuclear power growling in the East, and that they must try to understand and address Moscow’s grievances. Some sympathise with Russian President Vladimir Putin’s charge that NATO expanded eastward as the Soviet bloc dissolved, even though the alliance promised not to. Others see Moscow’s wisdom in opposing Western interventions in Iraq and Libya, and in choosing to openly side with Syrian President Bashar al-Assad to help crush the Syrian rebel groups, bolster Assad’s rule, retain the Russian bases in Syria and reassert some measure of Russian power in the Middle East.” (05/15/17)

http://www.reuters.com/article/us-russia-relations-commentary-idUSKBN1882NW

—–

36) Ayn Rand and Friedrich Nietzche
Source: Notablog
by Chris Matthew Sciabarra

“It should be noted that Rand’s years in Russia were in the last days of Silver Age Russian culture, on which Nietzsche made an enormous impact. Nietzsche influenced everyone from the Symbolist poets (including Rand’s favorite poet, Aleksandr Blok) to Russian Marxists, such as Maxim Gorky. But to my knowledge, at least in my analyses of Rand’s college transcripts, there is no evidence of her having studied him formally.” (05/15/17)

https://www.nyu.edu/projects/sciabarra/notablog/archives/002276.html

—–

37) Proof that liberals [sic] are stupid
Source: Town Hall
by Bruce Bialosky

“I rarely use the word stupid. Most frequently the word I use is ‘ignorant’ meaning ‘lacking knowledge or awareness.’ Stupid means something significantly different. Stupidity means ‘lacking intelligence, understanding, reason, wit and/or good sense.’ Republicans have often referred to liberals as just plain wrong, though some invoked stupidity in a knee-jerk manner. If you doubted that liberals are stupid, we now have proof. The proof comes from the high priests of the Left: the editorial board of The New York Times. What displayed their complete lack of intelligence and good sense was their editorial attacking former President Obama for taking a $400,000 speaking fee from Cantor Fitzgerald. … But let us review what the Obamas have been doing since they left office [list of extravagant pursuits] … Amazingly, none of this set-off the Leftists. Hanging with the ultra-rich is fine; just don’t take Wall Street money.” (05/14/17)

https://townhall.com/columnists/brucebialosky/2017/05/14/proof-that-liberals-are-stupid-n2325448

—–

38) Be free
Source: Libertarian Institute
by Kym Robinson

“For many inside the liberty movement the need to convert the devout statist is an instinct that burns with righteous conviction. It is with frustration that one can observe so many recent and distant examples of government horror and yet nothing ever changes for the positive. In sharing these horrors, it is then assumed that those believers in the State, those enforcers of its deeds and laws will somehow see the ‘light’ and suddenly convert to the message of liberty. It is assumed that in somehow using the process of democratic governance that one can convince enough of the voters to see the message, to embrace liberty so that government can then be saved from itself. It is why perhaps many libertarians, anarchists, minarchists, voluntarists, whatever sect of liberty one belongs are the most deluded.” (05/15/17)

https://www.libertarianinstitute.org/articles/be-free/

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39) Feds “normalizing” in the spirit of Cato’s Buchanan Brigade
Source: American Institute for Economic Research
by James Mosher

“It’s not systemic reform, but the Federal Reserve’s recent indication of climbing down from its $4.5 trillion balance sheet is being met with at least half smiles by free market economists. Release of the March minutes from the Federal Open Market Committee dovetails with the release of a book from the Cato Institute containing 30 essays urging consideration of new paths after years of easy monetary policy. … Cato’s book includes an essay by James Buchanan, long associated with the monetarist free market tradition. Winner of the 1986 Nobel Prize in economics, Buchanan was also a senior distinguished fellow at Cato.” (05/15/17)

https://www.aier.org/research/fed%E2%80%99s-%E2%80%9Cnormalizing%E2%80%9D-spirit-cato%E2%80%99s-buchanan-brigade

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40) Letting “laws” control you
Source: Kent’s “Hooligan Libertarian” Blog
by Kent McManigal

“I don’t believe you should destroy the environment just to spite the socialists who use the environment as their excuse to destroy liberty. I know conservatives who do this. I also know libertarians who make a point to break “laws” just to be breaking ‘laws.’ I can sort of understand their reason, or at least how they feel. I am often tempted to break ‘laws’ I wouldn’t otherwise think of breaking, just because some idiot decided to make them ‘laws.’ But, I stop short of harming myself or others just because I hate the ‘law.’” (05/15/17)

http://blog.kentforliberty.com/2017/05/letting-laws-control-you.html

—–

41) Trump’s loyalty crisis
Source: The American Prospect
by Paul Waldman

“‘I just feel that loyalty is a very, very important part of life, not only of business but of life,’ said Donald Trump last year. He has been quoted saying similar things for years, and his underlings have learned to echo him. “This campaign, above all other things, is about loyalty,” said Corey Lewandowski last April, when he was managing Trump’s campaign. Two months later Lewandowski was fired. The truth is that Trump demands loyalty from everyone but gives it to no one. As he prowls the darkened hallways of the White House at night, alone with his thoughts, his wife and young son 200 miles away, the staff having retired for the night, it wouldn’t be surprising if Trump is becoming increasingly convinced that no one is loyal to him and there’s no one he can trust.” (05/15/17)

http://prospect.org/article/trumps-loyalty-crisis

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42) Obama’s deportation policy was even worse than we thought
Source: The Intercept
by Leighton Akio Woodhouse

“Immigrations [sic] and Customs Enforcement imprisons more than 10,000 parents of American citizens in California each year, according to a report released today by Human Rights Watch. The report, entitled ‘I Still Need You,’ analyzes the impact of immigration enforcement policy on immigrant families in California and finds that parents with U.S. citizen children were more likely to be deported from detention rather than released. The report also finds that from January 2011 to June 2015 nearly half of the immigrants detained in California had no criminal history, findings that directly contradict claims President Obama made about his immigration enforcement policy at that time.” (05/15/17)

https://theintercept.com/2017/05/15/obamas-deportation-policy-was-even-worse-than-we-thought/

—–

43) Three theories of social justice activism
Source: Bleeding Heart Libertarians
by Jasper Brennan

“My evil twin brother Jasper recently demanded I give him some space on this blog. Normally, I’d refuse, but I forgot his birthday again, so I owe him one. You shouldn’t read this post. If you do so, you are a bad person. Anyway, here’s Jasper: A great deal of social justice activism is ridiculous. Why? 1. It’s a false-flag conspiracy. Perhaps far right-wing evildoers are behind it all. The purpose of social justice activism is to undermine public support for genuinely worthwhile social justice causes by making social justice activism appear ridiculous. The silly ideas crowd out the good ones.” (05/15/17)

http://bleedingheartlibertarians.com/2017/05/three-theories-social-justice-activism/

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44) Baltasar Gracian’s aphorism #193: Watch him that begins with another’s to end with his own.
Source: WendyMcElroy.com
by Wendy McElroy

“[A]n alternate translation of the title expresses its meaning more clearly. ‘Pay heed to the man who, seeming to present the problems of some one else, seeks to find solution to his own problems.’ The most literal interpretation of this aphorism is take great care in dealing with anyone who is subtly trying either 1) to pass a burden of work from his own shoulders onto yours or 2) to make you responsible for a situation not of your making and which should not be your concern.” (05/15/17)

http://www.wendymcelroy.com/news.php?item.8015.22

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45) The folk singer vs. the millionaire: A Berniecrat aims for Montana’s House seat
Source: In These Times
Joseph Bullington

“I first heard of Rob Quist last fall, when I saw him play in White Sulphur Springs, Mont., the conservative ranch town of 900 people where I grew up. Until recently, this is how most Montanans knew him: a folk musician they had seen in bars, gymnasiums and fairgrounds across the state. Quist grew up on a ranch outside the small town of Cut Bank, on the border of the Blackfeet Nation, and has made his living playing music since the 1970s. Today, Quist tours the state in a different role–as a populist Democratic candidate to fill Montana’s sole House seat.” (05/15/17)

http://inthesetimes.com/article/20117/the-folk-singer-vs-the-millionaire-rob-quist-gianforte-public-lands

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46) When headlines turn into mandatory minimums
Source: The American Conservative
by Regan Hines

“With the spike in heroin-overdose deaths in recent years — a six-fold increase from 2002 to 2015 — lawmakers and prosecutors are pushing for new mandatory minimums. In at least 29 states, laws have been proposed to increase penalties for heroin and fentanyl-related offenses. Pennsylvania is the latest to join the fray, with lawmakers advancing legislation to reinstate mandatory minimums the state’s supreme court found to be unconstitutional in 2015. We’ve seen this sequence of events play out many times before on both the state and federal level — a certain type of crime starts grabbing headlines, and lawmakers respond by proposing mandatory sentences for that crime.” (05/15/17)

http://www.theamericanconservative.com/articles/when-headlines-turn-into-mandatory-minimums/

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47) A good thing: Donald Trump killed the “indispensable nation”
Source: The New Republic
by Jeet Heer

“In February 1998, Madeleine Albright, President Bill Clinton’s secretary of state, went on NBC’s The Today Show to defend America’s increasingly aggressive stance toward Iraq. ‘Let me say that we are doing everything possible so that American men and women in uniform do not have to go out there again,’ she said. ‘It is the threat of the use of force and our line-up there that is going to put force behind the diplomacy. But if we have to use force, it is because we are America; we are the indispensable nation. We stand tall and we see further than other countries into the future, and we see the danger here to all of us.’ … ‘Indispensable nation’ was a brand-new phrase then, though not of Albright’s invention. Presidential fixer Sidney Blumenthal claims to have suggested it to her, after coining it with historian James Chase ‘to describe the concept of the United States as the guarantor of stability as the sole superpower within the framework of multinational institutions.’” (05/15/17)

https://newrepublic.com/article/142571/donald-trump-killed-indispensable-nation-good

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48) Juicer choosers
Source: Common Sense
by Paul Jacob

“We all have our complaints about this company or that, this product or that. And it is popular to rag on ‘consumerism’ and the emptiness of ‘capitalism.’ But put it into perspective: me ‘wasting money’ on, say, an expensive juicer is nowhere near as offensive — that is, worth a rant, an excoriation, a philippic — than the government wasting money on … anything else. Or, for that matter, on juicers.” (05/15/17)

http://thisiscommonsense.com/2017/05/15/juicer-choosers/

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49) Empire effects: The case of shipping
Source: Notes on Liberty
by Vincent Geloso

“The core of the ’empire effect’ claim is that empires provide global order which we can consider as a public good. A colorful image would be the British Navy roaming the seas in the 19th century which meant increased protection for trade. This is why it is a parent of the state capacity argument in the sense that the latter concept refers (broadly) to the ability of a state to administer the realm within its boundaries. The empire effect is merely the extension of these boundaries. I still have reservations about the nuances/limitations of state capacity as an argument to explain economic growth. After all, the true question is not how states consolidate, but how they create constraints on rulers to not abuse the consolidated powers (which in turn generates room for growth). But, it is easy to heavily question its parent: the empire effect.” (05/14/17)

https://notesonliberty.com/2017/05/14/empire-effects-the-case-of-shipping/

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50) What kind of FBI do we want after Comey?
Source: Our Future
by Richard Eskow

“The firing of James Comey as Director of the FBI gives the nation more evidence of Donald Trump’s lack of fitness for the presidency. Whatever you thought of Comey, his removal showed the nation that Trump is impulsive, vindictive, and given to abuses of power. But it’s also important to reflect right now on some of the more fundamental issues raised by Comey’s firing. Why do we have a federal police agency? How should its mission be defined? And, what kind of person should run it?” [editor’s note: Asking the right questions, with some good historical analysis, but the conclusion is as usual off-base – SAT] [additional editor’s note: What kind of FBI do I want? One that doesn’t exist! -TLK] (05/15/17)

https://ourfuture.org/20170514/after-comey-what-kind-of-fbi-do-we-want-part-1-background

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51) President Trump: Toss your generals’ war escalation plans in the trash
Source: Antiwar.com
by Ron Paul

“By the end of this month, Defense Secretary James Mattis and National Security Advisor HR McMaster will deliver to President Trump their plans for military escalations in Afghanistan, Iraq, and Syria. President Trump would be wise to rip the plans up and send his national security team back to the drawing board — or replace them. There is no way another ‘surge’ in Afghanistan and Iraq (plus a new one in Syria) puts America first. There is no way doing the same thing over again will succeed any better than it did the last time.” (05/15/17)

http://original.antiwar.com/paul/2017/05/14/president-trump-toss-your-generals-war-escalation-plans-in-the-trash/

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52) Flint: Enclosure of the water commons
Source: Center for a Stateless Society
by Kevin Carson

“Over 8,000 Flint residents now face tax liens on their homes for unpaid water bills after May 19th, and are faced with the possibility of losing their homes if they don’t pay the total amount in arrears. This follows last month’s mass water cutoffs for residences with unpaid bills. All of this is taking place despite the fact that the water is contaminated with lead, and undrinkable without the use of a filter. In news stories about these tax liens, the references are to ‘residents’ and ‘homes,’ not businesses. If that seems familiar, it should. Back in 2014, when the ‘Emergency Manager’ in Detroit was carrying out similar mass cutoffs, Homrich (the crony capitalist firm hired to handle the cutoffs) only pursued residential accounts that were in arrears. The cutoff policy did not apply to business accounts — some of which owed hundreds of thousands of dollars in back payments — despite the fact that they constituted almost half of the total amount owed. And remember: as is the case in most communities, businesses were charged a lower rate per gallon than residences.” (05/14/17)

https://c4ss.org/content/48991

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53) The LGBTQ movement is an intersectional fail
Source: CounterPunch
by Andy Thayer

“In recent years ‘intersectionality’ has been the biggest buzz word in progressive circles, liberally sprinkled in activist conferences and social media. Yet few movements have been as long on intersectional talk, and little on action, as the LGBTQ movement. Few events point up this fail more clearly than the impending release from prison this Wednesday of Transgender heroine Chelsea Manning. She is by far the single most important, impactful anti-war activist and whistle-blower that the LGBTQ movement has ever produced. … Yet from 2010 arrest through her subsequent arduous trial and most of her incarceration — the longest imprisonment of a whistleblower in U.S. history — none of the big LGBTQ non-profits defended her. … The root of Gay Inc.’s betrayal of Chelsea Manning, and their flip-flops on marriage rights and Trans rights, lie directly in their being joined at the hip with the Democratic Party. The incestuous revolving door between military contractors and ex-military officers is only exceeded by Gay Inc’s revolving door with the Democratic Party.” (05/15/17)

http://www.counterpunch.org/2017/05/15/the-lgbtq-movement-is-an-intersectional-fail/

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54) Trade deficits don’t matter — unless caused by government
Source: Future of Freedom Foundation
by Richard M Ebeling

“In 2016, the United States exported goods and services equal to $2.209 trillion, and imported goods and services with a market value of $2.712 trillion. The balance of trade deficit for 2016, therefore, came to $502.3 billion. The trade deficit represented a little over 10 percent of the over $4.92 trillion of total trade in goods and services between America and the rest of the world. And was only about 2.7 percent of the entire $18.56 trillion Gross Domestic Product of the United States in 2016. But listening to the rhetoric coming from Donald Trump and others in his Administration, it would be easy to assume that America’s balance of trade deficit is causing market misery and economic harm to the people of the United States. Nothing could be further from the truth.” (05/15/17)

https://www.fff.org/explore-freedom/article/trade-deficits-dont-matter-unless-caused-government/

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55) Wages and the cost of employment
Source: National Center for Policy Analysis
by Pam Villareal

“Recently, William Galston of the Brookings Institution penned an oped in the Wall Street Journal about the lack of workers’ wage growth despite a technically ‘full-employment’ economy. Adjusted for inflation, workers’ wages have grown 0.1 percent over the past year, and only 0.5 percent since 2010. While there are many unknowns, he attributes some of the problem to weak unions, slow productivity growth and cash-rich firms that aren’t interested in sharing their treasures with workers. But there is even more going on here than Galston describes.” (05/12/17)

http://retirementblog.ncpa.org/wages-and-the-cost-of-employment/

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

56) Freedom Feens Radio, 05/15/17
Source: Freedom Feens Radio

“Phil Pollard, Jeremy Heisenberg, and Michael W. Dean yak about the misery of allergy scratch tests, being on government time, and confessing the sins of their statism. In the second hour Phil, Jeremy, and MWD talk communism and Star Trek, continue their admissions of the horrible things they said as statists, discuss business licensing without government, and mention the recent bizarre interview of Julian Heicklen (interview starts around 35 min. mark), who has been a long time jury nullification activist.” [various formats] (05/15/17)

https://www.freedomfeens.com/?p=14485

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57) The Freedom Report, 05/15/17
Source: The Libertarian Republic

“Free market economists Steve Horwitz writes at FEE about the dangers of central planning. Horwitz describes how intellectuals deny that real socialism has ever been tried in spite of the glaring examples of the failures of economies such as Venezuela, Cuba, and the Soviet Union. And what of the Scandinavian countries? Well, if you thought those were examples of real socialism, then you’re going to be sorely disappointed. Austin Petersen breaks down the news.” [various formats] (05/15/17)

http://thelibertarianrepublic.podbean.com/e/is-venezuela-real-socialism/

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58) Reason Podcast, 05/15/17
Source: Reason

“On today’s episode of the Reason Podcast,[Matt] Welch joins fellow Reason editors Nick Gillespie and Katherine Mangu-Ward to discuss Trump’s decision to fire FBI Director James Comey (‘is this the moment where the wheels come off 20th century political institutions?’); how Trump is reshaping the conservative movement; whether the Rock has a shot at becoming our 46th president (‘the logical conclusion of the increasingly empty vessels in which we pour our hopes and dreams’); Jeff Sessions'[s] terrifying decision to re-escalate the drug war (is the attorney general ‘the only person in Washington who knows what he wants?’); and the petty tyranny of the latest vaping crackdown in Austin and Laguna Beach (‘getting fined for walking down a public sidewalk and breathing out’).” [various formats] (05/15/17)

http://reason.com/blog/2017/05/15/comey-vaping-trump-russia-drug-war

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59) Peaceful Anarchism, episode 12
Source: Everything Voluntary

“The inner splendor of the individual mind cannot be micro-managed without causing significant harm. To be assessed, monitored, measured, and controlled is antithetical to the very quintessence of our being! Freedom is in our blood!” [various formats] (05/15/17)

http://everything-voluntary.com/peaceful-anarchism-012-freedom-blood-9m

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60) The Bob Zadek Show, 05/14/17
Source: The Bob Zadek Show

“Bob and his producer, Charlie Deist, discuss [Suja Thomas’s] book, *The Missing American Jury: Restoring the Fundamental Constitutional Role of the Civil, Criminal, and Grand Juries* along with the classic movie, 12 Angry Men, and the controversial idea of jury nullification.” [various formats] (05/14/17)

http://www.bobzadek.com/past-shows/2017/5/14/juries-the-other-fourth-branch

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61) Lions of Liberty Podcast, episode 295
Source: Lions of Liberty

“In today’s episode, host Marc Clair convenes another edition of ‘Libertarians in Living Rooms Drinking Liquor,’ and adds some extra spice to show by bringing in special guests Johnny ‘Rocket’ Adams of the Johnny Rocket Launch Pad and Remso Martinez of the Remso Republic, along with Lions of Liberty stalwart John Odermatt of ‘Felony Friday’ fame. The crew tosses back a few adult beverages and riff on topics such as: * Who are some of their favorite guests they’ve had on their respective podcasts so far in 2017? * Their thoughts on the controversial statements of Libertarian Party Vice Chairman Arvin Vohra regarding the U.S. military. * Libertarian gossip about some friends of the show.” [various formats] (05/15/17)

http://lionsofliberty.com/2017/05/15/295/

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62) Free Talk Live, 05/14/17
Source: Free Talk Live

“Brexit Refusing 100M Euro Exit Fee :: Vermont Secession Gaining Steam :: Open Carry :: Personal Secession :: Ransomware :: Pharmaceuticals :: Jurisdiction :: Marriage Contract :: More on State Secession :: Transgendered Wrestling :: Protection Without the State :: HOSTS — Ian, Mark, Jonny Ray.” [Flash audio or MP3] (05/14/17)

https://www.freetalklive.com/podcast/2017-05-14

*****
RATIONAL REVIEW NEWS DIGEST

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

Editor Emeritus:
Mary Lou Seymour
*****