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

Volume XVI, Issue #4,065
Tuesday, September 25th, 2018
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In the News:

1) US stocks close mostly lower as Trump’s tax war on Americans enters new phase
2) Russian regime to send newer S-300 missile systems to Syrian regime
3) India: Modi launches world’s biggest health scam
4) Rosenstein leaks “quit before I’m fired” head fake, will meet with Trump on Thursday
5) JAXA launches miniature space elevator
6) Phishing scam targets direct payroll deposits, FBI says in alert
7) TX: Whataburger fans question validity of study that named In-N-Out state’s favorite burger joint
8) Trump tax increase hits Americans’ basic Internet access hardware
9) Kenya: Obado charged over murder of pregnant girlfriend
10) Russia: Navalny released from jail, immediately re-abducted
11) BART director going to Nashville despite ban on travel to anti-LGBTQ [sic] states
12) Hong Kong: Regime bans pro-independence party
13) Gene editing wipes out mosquitoes in the lab
14) Woods bashes Twitter after getting locked out
15) Venezuela: Regime says diplomats may be tied to assassination try
16) PayPal 86es Alex Jones, Infowars
17) Love: “I take away (Dems) narrative”
18) ME: Protesters pressure Collins on upcoming Kavanaugh vote
19) Diaz-Canel makes first trip to US
20) Iran: Revolutionary Guard vows to avenge Ahvaz attack

Everybody Has An Opinion:

21) The rules of tribal politics
22) Giving TSA facial recognition software isn’t worth a faster security line
23) Kavanaugh-Ford saga: Believe the facts, not necessarily the women
24) Separating the journalism baby from the newspaper bathwater
25) Democrats forget rights of the accused in Kavanaugh case
26) Why Republicans are fighting so hard for Brett Kavanaugh
27) We are (mostly) all socialists now
28) Despite marijuana legalization successes, police keep arresting users
29) Brett Kavanaugh has already disqualified himself
30) It’s impossible to have a comparative advantage in everything
31) How to spot misleading statistics in the gun control debate
32) Echoes of Anita Hill in Kavanaugh hearings
33) Debt and war
34) A “Me-Too” externality?
35) The myth of authoritarian competence
36) Betsy DeVos fills swamp for for-profit schools
37) Jesus would have voted socialist, says Germany’s left
38) We may be witnessing a defining moment in Korea
39) Trump war whore celebrates starvation of Iranian civilians at MEK rally
40) A polarized America? Not quite
41) Quantum Vibe, 09/24/18
42) Collusion against Kavanaugh
43) Pot as political speech
44) How unions can solve the housing crisis
45) Socialist saboteurs infiltrate
46) GOP better remind forgetful voters: Tax cuts are huge boost to middle class
47) Hong Kong and the road to recovery
48) The Pledge … for the children?
49) How a new definition of “personality” wrecked a generation (or two)
50) What should young libertarians do?

The Sound and the Fury:

51) Declare Your Independence with Ernie Hancock, 09/24/18
52) Ron Paul Liberty Report, 09/24/18
53) Scott Adams Says, 09/24/18
54) One Free Family, episode 32
55) Lions of Liberty Podcast, episode 367
56) The Last Nighters, episode 38
57) Foreign Policy Focus, episode 250
58) Punk Rock Libertarians Podcast, episode 179
59) Free Talk Live, 09/23/18
60) Five Minutes Five Issues, episode 122

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

1) US stocks close mostly lower as Trump’s tax war on Americans enters new phase
Source: MarketWatch

“U.S. stocks closed mostly lower Monday as the U.S.-China trade war entered a new phase when tariffs on [American buyers of] billions of dollars of products took effect. Investors were also looking ahead to the Federal Reserve’s two-day monetary policy meeting, which wraps Wednesday and is likely to result in another interest-rate hike. The Dow Jones Industrial Average DJIA fell 181.45 points, or 0.7%, to 26,562.05 after closing at a record on Friday. The S&P 500 SPX lost 10.31 points, or 0.4%, to 2,919.37. The Nasdaq Composite Index COMP reversed earlier loss to rise 6.29 points to 7,993.25.” (09/24/18)

https://www.marketwatch.com/story/dow-futures-imply-slight-retreat-from-record-as-new-tariffs-take-effect-2018-09-24

—–

2) Russian regime to send newer S-300 missile systems to Syrian regime
Source: ABC News

“Russia announced Monday it will supply Syria’s government with more modern, S-300 missile defense systems after last week’s downing of a Russian plane by Syria, a friendly fire incident that sent regional tensions over the war-torn country soaring. The Russian military’s reconnaissance Il-20 was shot down by the Syrian government missile defense systems responding to an Israeli airstrike. All 15 people on board were killed. Russia laid the blame on Israel, saying Israeli fighter jets had pushed the plane into Syria’s line of fire. … Monday’s statement from Russian Defense Minister Sergei Shoigu said Russia will send the S-300 missile defense systems to Damascus within the next two weeks. Earlier in the war, Russia suspended a supply of S-300s, which Israel feared Syria could use against it. Shoigu said Russia is now going to go ahead with the shipment because ‘the situation has changed, and it’s not our fault.’ He also said that Russia would start to electronically jam aircraft flying in to attack targets in Syria.” (09/24/18)

https://abcnews.go.com/International/wireStory/russia-send-newer-300-missile-systems-syria-58036551

—–

3) India: Modi launches world’s biggest health scam
Source: Jakarta Post [Indonesia]

“India on Sunday launched the world’s biggest health insurance scheme which Prime Minister Narendra Modi said would cover some 500 million poor people. The programme, dubbed ‘Modicare,’ promises health cover worth 500,000 rupees ($6,900) to every poor family to treat serious ailments. The scheme is expected to cost the central and 29 state governments $1.6 billion per year in total. Funding will be increased gradually according to demand. Modi handed medical cards out at the launch in Ranchi, capital of the eastern state of Jharkhand, calling it a historic day for India.” (09/23/18)

http://www.thejakartapost.com/news/2018/09/23/india-launches-modicare-worlds-biggest-health-scheme.html

—–

4) Rosenstein leaks “quit before I’m fired” head fake, will meet with Trump on Thursday
Source: CNBC

“President Donald Trump will meet with Deputy Attorney General Rod Rosenstein on Thursday amid swirling reports that the No. 2 Justice Department official’s departure is imminent. Axios published a bombshell report Monday that Rosenstein is resigning, citing sources with knowledge. But the report was contradicted by other news outlets, including from NBC News’ Pete Williams, who reported that Rosenstein would not resign of his own accord after his off-the-cuff comments about possibly recording and removing Trump were revealed last week. He will only depart if the White House fired him and will refuse to resign if asked to do so, Williams reported.” (09/24/18)

https://www.cnbc.com/2018/09/24/deputy-attorney-general-rod-rosenstein-is-reportedly-resigning.html

—–

5) JAXA launches miniature space elevator
Source: Science News

“At 1:52 p.m. EDT on September 22, the Japan Aerospace Exploration Agency launched a rocket carrying the STARS-Me experiment from the island of Tanegashima. STARS-Me (or Space Tethered Autonomous Robotic Satellite — Mini elevator), built by engineers at Shizuoka University in Japan, is comprised of two 10-centimeter cubic satellites connected by a 10-meter-long tether. A small robot representing an elevator car, about 3 centimeters across and 6 centimeters tall, will move up and down the cable using a motor as the experiment floats in space. … A full-scale space elevator, if ever built, might use a similar setup to ferry astronauts and cargo from Earth to orbit much more cheaply and efficiently than rocket launches. Scientists have dreamed of space elevators since the late 1800s, but the technology is still the stuff of science fiction. Nonetheless, Japan’s Obayashi Corporation hopes to build such an elevator by 2050.” (09/24/18)

https://www.sciencenews.org/article/japan-has-launched-miniature-space-elevator

—–

6) Phishing scam targets direct payroll deposits, FBI says in alert
Source: CBS News

“If your paycheck hits your bank account through direct deposit, be on the lookout for emails requesting personal information including log-in credentials — they could be a phishing scam by hackers who want to access your bank account. The FBI warning comes as cyber criminals target the online payroll accounts of employees in a variety of industries, especially those in education, healthcare and commercial aviation. … The IC3 received more than 300,000 complaints in 2016 with reported losses of more than $1.4 billion, according to its annual 2017 Internet Crime Report. ” [editor’s note: So a drop in the bucket compared to the Internal Revenue Service’s “withholding” scam – TLK] (09/24/18)

https://www.cbsnews.com/news/hackers-in-phishing-scam-target-direct-payroll-deposits-fbi-says-in-alert/

—–

7) TX: Whataburger fans question validity of study that named In-N-Out state’s favorite burger joint
Source: Fox News

“Twitter users from Texas are confused (and perhaps a bit upset) after learning the results of a 2017 study that named In-N-Out as the state’s favorite fast-food restaurant. The study, which was originally conducted by Foursquare and published by Business Insider in November 2017, claimed to have found every state’s favorite fast-food restaurant based on data collected by the Foursquare app. Those 2017 findings then began making the rounds again after Cheddar, a financial news network, shared them in a Twitter post on Friday, along with a caption reading, ‘Would you agree?’” (09/24/18)

http://www.foxnews.com/food-drink/2018/09/24/texans-whataburger-fans-question-validity-fast-food-study-that-named-in-n-out-states-favorite.html

—–

8) Trump tax increase hits Americans’ basic Internet access hardware
Source: The Star [Malaysia]

“US tariffs that hit [American buyers of] some US$200bil (RM827.10bil) worth of Chinese products on Sept 24 spare many high-profile consumer technology items such as ‘smart’ watches and speakers, but the less flashy home modems, routers and Internet gateways that make them work weren’t so lucky. Consumer tech industry officials and the US Customs and Border Protection agency say they expect billions of dollars worth of these products, including those designed for home use, will be subject to the 10% tariffs activated on Sept 24. The move will effectively create a two-tiered tariff structure for consumer internet, with many products, such as Fitbit fitness trackers, Apple Inc’s watch and Amazon.com Inc’s Echo smart speaker being favored over routers and internet gateways from Arris International, Netgear, D-Link and others.” (09/24/18)

https://www.thestar.com.my/tech/tech-news/2018/09/24/home-modems-routers-hit-by-us-china-tariffs-as-smart-tech-goods-escape/

—–

9) Kenya: Obado charged over murder of pregnant girlfriend
Source: BBC News [UK state media]

“Kenyan governor Okoth Obado has been charged in court with aiding and abetting the brutal murder of his ex-girlfriend, a pregnant student. The married governor pleaded not guilty to the charge. Mr Obado’s arrest followed weeks of public anger after the body of Sharon Otieno, 26, was found in a forest. A post-mortem revealed she had possibly been raped, and stabbed eight times in the neck, abdomen and back. She lost her unborn child during the attack. Mr Obado, the governor of Migori County, has been remanded in custody, pending the outcome of his bail application on Tuesday. Ms Otieno’s mother Melida Auma was tearful in court, and struggled to control her emotions, Kenya’s Standard newspaper reported.” (09/24/18)

https://www.bbc.com/news/world-africa-45624518

—–

10) Russia: Navalny released from jail, immediately re-abducted
Source: Deutsche Welle [Germany]

“After serving a 30-day jail sentence in Moscow, Kremlin critic Alexei Navalny was detained again while leaving jail, according to his aide. Navalny is once again being accused of violating protest laws. … The jail sentence Navalny had completed on Monday was over an unauthorized anti-government rally in January. While in jail, Navalny urged his supporters to come out against the unpopular pension reform on September 9, with the appeals being posted on his online accounts. The Monday arrest is apparently linked with the September rally.” (09/24/18)

https://www.dw.com/en/russian-opposition-leader-navalny-detained-upon-release-from-jail/a-45611813

—–

11) BART director going to Nashville despite ban on travel to anti-LGBTQ [sic] states
Source: San Francisco Chronicle

“BART just voted to ban district-funded travel to states with anti-LGBTQ laws, but with a start date that still allowed Director Debora Allen and two staffers to jet off to the Nashville Music City Center for a big transit con-fab that starts Monday.” [editor’s note: Tennessee is not “anti-LGBTQ;” its Assembly and Governor may not have passed and signed bills that promote those agendas, but it is NOT “anti” any of this crap – SAT] (09/24/18)

https://www.sfgate.com/bayarea/matier-ross/article/BART-director-going-to-Nashville-despite-ban-on-13248933.php?t=2818ed597c

—–

12) Hong Kong: Regime bans pro-independence party
Source: NBC News

“Authorities in Hong Kong on Monday took an unprecedented step against separatist voices by banning a political party that advocates independence for the southern Chinese territory on national security grounds. John Lee, the territory’s secretary for security, announced that the Hong Kong National Party will be prohibited from operation from Monday. Lee told reporters that the two-year-old group was prepared to use ‘all methods’ to forge independence, which posed a threat to national security and broke the Basic Law, the mini-constitution that governs Hong Kong’s relations with China.” (09/24/18)

https://www.nbcnews.com/news/china/hong-kong-bans-pro-independence-political-party-n912431

—–

13) Gene editing wipes out mosquitoes in the lab
Source: BBC News [UK state media]

“Researchers have used gene editing to completely eliminate populations of mosquitoes in the lab. The team tested their technique on the mosquito Anopheles gambiae, which transmits malaria. They altered part of a gene called doublesex, which determines whether an individual mosquito develops as a male or as a female. This allowed the Imperial College London scientists to block reproduction in the female mosquitoes. They want to see if the technology could one day be used to control mosquito populations in the wild. Writing in the journal Nature Biotechnology, Prof Andrea Crisanti and colleagues report that caged populations of Anopheles gambiae collapsed within 7-11 generations.” [editor’s note: Isn’t PETA up in arms over this? – SAT] (09/24/18)

https://www.bbc.com/news/science-environment-45628905

—–

14) Woods bashes Twitter after getting locked out
Source: Yahoo! News

“Actor James Woods has been locked out of his Twitter account over a tweet he sent out months ago that was found to be in violation of Twitter’s rules. The tweet was posted July 20 and includes a hoax meme that said it came from Democrats and encouraged men not to vote in the midterm elections. Woods got an email from Twitter on Thursday saying the tweet ‘has the potential to be misleading in a way that could impact an election.’ The email says Woods can use his account again if he deletes the tweet. In an exclusive interview with The Associated Press on Sunday, Woods said this means he’ll be allowed back on Twitter only if he decides to do what Twitter says. He says he won’t do that, and he won’t delete the tweet. ‘Free speech is free speech — it’s not Jack Dorsey’s version of free speech,’ Woods said, referring to Twitter Chief Executive Jack Dorsey.” (09/23/18)

https://www.yahoo.com/entertainment/actor-locked-twitter-over-tweet-202648585.html

—–

15) Venezuela: Regime says diplomats may be tied to assassination try
Source: San Francisco Chronicle

“Venezuela’s government said Monday that diplomats from three Latin American countries may have played a role in an attempt to assassinate President Nicolas Maduro, and it demanded the foreign governments investigate. Embassy staff from Colombia, Chile and Mexico working in Caracas either lent support or were willing to assist those carrying out the attack, Communications Minister Officials Jorge Rodriguez said. ‘We are ready to present confessions made by the detainees to the foreign ministers of Colombia, Chile and Mexico,’ Rodriguez said, urging them to investigate any role their diplomats may have had. Two drones loaded with explosives exploded nearby as Maduro spoke at an outdoor military ceremony on Aug. 4. Maduro was unhurt, but Venezuelan officials say the incident was an attempt to kill him.” (09/24/18)

https://www.sfgate.com/news/world/article/Venezuela-says-diplomats-may-be-tied-to-13253861.php

—–

16) PayPal 86es Alex Jones, Infowars
Source: KDRV 12 News

“Add PayPal to the list of companies cutting ties with conspiracy theorist Alex Jones and his website, Infowars. In a statement, PayPal says Infowars and its sister sites regularly promote hate and intolerance against certain communities and religions. The online payment service says that behavior runs counter to PayPal’s core value of inclusion.” (09/22/18)

http://www.kdrv.com/content/news/PayPal-Cuts-Ties-With-Alex-Jones-And-Infowars-494040701.html

—–

17) Love: “I take away (Dems) narrative”
Source: Fox News

“Rep. Mia Love said accusations that she collected campaign funds illegally are ‘baloney’ and a ‘coordinated effort’ to attack her campaign ahead of November’s midterm elections. Love (R-Utah) has been accused by progressive watchdog group Alliance for a Better Utah of collecting more than $1 million in campaign contributions for a ‘2018 Republican primary election that never happened.’ The group submitted a formal complaint to the Federal Election Commission last week, arguing that Love did not have a primary challenger, yet she raised money during the primary challenge period, and even an additional $372,000 after she secured the nomination. Love’s campaign has denied any claims of illegal action and said she would redesignate the $372,000 raised after the state convention and pay back about $10,000, but Alliance for a Better Utah says that is ‘completely inadequate under the requirements of the law.’ On ‘Fox & Friends’ Tuesday, Love said this is a political move by a leftist group that is essentially working on behalf of her Democratic opponent.” (09/24/18)

http://insider.foxnews.com/2018/09/24/mia-love-accused-campaign-fund-violation-progressive-group-alliance-better-utah

—–

18) ME: Protesters pressure Collins on upcoming Kavanaugh vote
Source: San Francisco Chronicle

“Shouting ‘Kava-NO, Kava-NO,’ a group of protesters in Portland is pressuring Republican Sen. Susan Collins on the Supreme Court nomination of Brett Kavanaugh. Dozens rallied Monday to urge Collins to believe Kavanaugh’s accusers and for there to be a full investigation into sexual misconduct allegations against Kavanaugh. Some told their personal stories of sexual assault. Then the group marched to the senator’s Portland office to deliver signatures of women asking her to reject the supreme court nominee. Collins said over the weekend that before she decides how she’s going to vote she wants to hear from Kavanaugh and a woman who accused him of assaulting her in high school. A second accuser says Kavanaugh exposed himself at a drunken party at Yale University.” [editor’s note: So Collins is actually going to look for “evidence” before deciding he’s guilty? How “sexist” and “anti-woman” is that? – SAT] (09/24/18)

https://www.sfgate.com/news/article/Protesters-pressure-Sen-Collins-on-upcoming-13253839.php

—–

19) Diaz-Canel makes first trip to US
Source: Aol News

“Cuba’s new president, Miguel Diaz-Canel, arrived in New York on Sunday for his first trip to the United States, where he will denounce the decades-old U.S. trade embargo on his country at the U.N. General Assembly, state-run media reported. Tensions have heightened between the Cold War foes after U.S. President Donald Trump tightened the embargo last year following the resumption of diplomatic relations under his predecessor, Barack Obama. Washington also alleged a series of health attacks had taken place on U.S. diplomats in Havana.” (09/23/18)

https://www.aol.com/article/news/2018/09/23/cubas-new-president-makes-first-trip-to-old-cold-war-foe-united-states/23539255/

—–

20) Iran: Revolutionary Guard vows to avenge Ahvaz attack
Source: Al Jazeera [Qatar state media]

“Iran’s Revolutionary Guard has vowed to revenge the attack on a military parade that killed 29 people, including the four attackers, and wounded 70 others. The Iranian elite force, in a statement on Sunday, said that those behind Saturday’s attack will face a ‘deadly and unforgiving revenge in the near future.’ Iranian officials blamed two Gulf states and the United States for the attack, accusing them of backing the Arab separatist al-Ahvaziya armed group which claimed responsibility for the attack.” (09/24/18)

https://www.aljazeera.com/news/2018/09/iran-revolutionary-guard-vows-avenge-ahvaz-attack-180923164701189.html

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

21) The rules of tribal politics
Source: Bleeding Heart Libertarians
by Jason Brennan

“Democracy is the rule of hooligans, and hooligans demand hooliganism from everyone else. Check Facebook, the news, the English department’s faculty meeting, or Twitter, and you’ll see that modern democracy is characterized by a tribalistic, neo-barbarian ethics. Here are the rules of the game. 1. You must take a side immediately. 2. You must believe what your side says on the flimsiest of evidence. 3. You must not question what your side says. 4. You must prove your loyalty by taking ever more extreme versions of your side’s view. 5. You must never notice hypocrisy on your side, but must find it everywhere on the other side. …” (09/24/18)

http://bleedingheartlibertarians.com/2018/09/the-rules-of-tribal-politics/

—–

22) Giving TSA facial recognition software isn’t worth a faster security line
Source: Cato Institute
by Matthew Feeney

“Earlier this month, officials at Washington Dulles International Airport unveiled a facial-recognition system designed to replace boarding passes. Travelers who loathe the long lines and waiting associated with airports may applaud the move; the scans take less than a second. Yet we shouldn’t be so quick to welcome timesaving face scanners. Facial-recognition technology poses a unique surveillance threat and is being deployed without adequate privacy protections. It should be kept far away from airports.” (09/24/18)

https://www.cato.org/publications/commentary/giving-tsa-facial-recognition-software-isnt-worth-faster-security-line

—–

23) Kavanaugh-Ford saga: Believe the facts, not necessarily the women
Source: USA Today
by Glenn Harlan Reynolds

“As I write this, I have no idea what will happen with Judge Brett Kavanaugh’s Supreme Court nomination. But I do have a few observations on what’s happened so far: ‘Believe the women’ is bunk, and nobody really means it anyway. We heard that mantra in two of the most famous fake-rape cases of recent years, the Duke lacrosse case and the University of Virginia/Rolling Stone case. In the former, the prosecutor who believed the woman in question wound up losing his law license; in the latter, Rolling Stone wound up facing millions in damages. In both cases, stereotypes about ‘privileged’ athletes and fraternity brothers encouraged many people to believe stories that were rather shaky, and to shame those who expressed doubts as rape-enablers. Only there was no rape; it was all made up. We’re now hearing the same kinds of things from opponents of Judge Kavanaugh. But a story is true or not based on its facts, not on who the accuser, or the accused, happens to be. To know what happened here, we need facts, not stereotypes.” (09/24/18)

https://www.usatoday.com/story/opinion/2018/09/24/kavanaugh-ford-supreme-court-facts-not-tribalism-stereotypes-column/1404258002

—–

24) Separating the journalism baby from the newspaper bathwater
Source: OpEdNews
by Rob Kall

“Newspapers are dying. Let them. There may have been people who wanted to rescue the buggy whip industry. But they were misguided. It was transportation they really cared about. We need to initiate dynamic, bottom-up approaches to support the ailing field of Journalism, not newspapers. The writing is on the web and the smart phone, not the wall, not the paper. Newspapers are dying because new generations with bottom-up brains marinated in the internet no longer read newspapers. Under 30s want text message and twitter tweet length reading material and they want video and podcasts, not dead tree long writing. Congress held hearings on the newspaper industry. There’s talk or allusion to the idea that newspapers will be ‘rescued’ by Obama, by congress. That’s a bad idea. They are rescuing the bathwater, not the baby.” (09/24/18)

https://www.opednews.com/articles/Separating-the-Journalism-by-Rob-Kall-Bottom-up_Investigative-Journalism_Newspapers_Top-down-Bottom-up-180924-580.html

—–

25) Democrats forget rights of the accused in Kavanaugh case
Source: Las Vegas Review-Journal
by Debra Saunders

“The Senate Judiciary Committee’s ranking Democrat, Sen. Dianne Feinstein of California, like others in her party, apparently has forgotten that in America, the burden of proof falls on the accuser, not the accused. Thus Feinstein played a starring role in her party’s efforts to slime the reputation of Brett Kavanaugh, an eminently qualified jurist nominated by President Donald Trump to fill a vacancy on the Supreme Court. On Sept. 13, Feinstein released a statement about an anonymous accuser’s unspecified ‘information’ on the judge, which the senator said she referred to federal authorities. Feinstein released the statement without even asking Kavanaugh about the charges. Feinstein had plenty of time to ask.” [editor’s note: There are no “charges.” SCOTUS confirmation hearings are not a criminal trial – TLK] (09/24/18)

https://www.reviewjournal.com/opinion/opinion-columns/debra-saunders/democrats-forget-rights-of-the-accused-in-kavanaugh-case-analysis

—–

26) Why Republicans are fighting so hard for Brett Kavanaugh
Source: The American Prospect
by Paul Waldman

“In an alternate universe, the White House, with the strong support of Republicans on Capitol Hill and everywhere else, has said to Brett Kavanaugh, ‘We’re sorry, Brett, but the accusation that you attempted to rape Christine Blasey Ford when you were both teenagers has made it impossible to proceed with your nomination to the Supreme Court. You’re going to have to step aside in favor of another candidate.’ That’s not what happening in this universe, however. And why not? We sometimes believe that people who work in politics are infinitely cynical, that there’s nothing they won’t do for political advantage and no goal that takes precedence over winning. While that may be true of a figure here or there (Mitch McConnell comes to mind), both parties regularly do politically questionable or even foolhardy things, because they think they’re in the right. Of course they’ll try to minimize the political damage, but even in the face of danger they will forge headlong into near-certain defeat if what’s at stake is important enough to them.” (09/23/18)

http://prospect.org/article/why-republicans-are-fighting-so-hard-brett-kavanaugh

—–

27) We are (mostly) all socialists now
Source: Future of Freedom Foundation
by Jacob G Hornberger

“There is a popular conception among some libertarians that the reason that we live under a massive welfare-warfare state is because government has a natural propensity to grow. The notion is a popular one among libertarians who promote anarchism, i.e., the total absence of government. The argument goes like this: The Constitution, which was supposed to keep government reined in, has proven to be a worthless document because government is a cancerous blob that inevitably grows of its own accord, rendering constitutional restraints meaningless. The cancerous blob argument, however, is fallacious. In fact, it is really just a way to avoid confronting a discomforting reality: that the reason that we live under a massive welfare-warfare state is not because government is a cancerous blob but rather because Americans of our time have chosen socialism. Unfortunately, that includes some libertarians.” (09/24/18)

https://www.fff.org/2018/09/24/we-are-mostly-all-socialists-now/

—–

28) Despite marijuana legalization successes, police keep arresting users
Source: Reason
by Scott Shackford

“We still arrest absurd numbers of Americans just for possessing marijuana, even as legalization trends march on. For proof, look at the FBI’s data on national crime trends for 2017, which the bureau released today. Most of the media attention will be on whether violent crime is up or down (it’s down). But there’s another important story in those numbers: The number one reason that people get arrested is drugs. In 2,017 there were 1.6 million arrests for ‘drug abuse violations.’ That’s more than were arrested for violent crimes (518,000) or property crimes (1.25 million). Drill down even further into the FBI stats and we see how absurdly lopsided drug-war enforcement is in the United States. Of those drug arrests, only 15 percent included charges of manufacturing and sales. Fully 85 percent of drug arrests were about simply having and/or using them.” (09/24/18)

https://reason.com/blog/2018/09/24/despite-marijuana-legalization-successes

—–

29) Brett Kavanaugh has already disqualified himself
Source: The New Republic
by Andrew Cohen

“Since the sexual assault allegations against him were made public earlier this month, can you think of a single thing Brett Kavanaugh has done or said that makes you more confident that he’ll be a judge of high integrity on the Supreme Court? I cannot. At every step of the way he has acted less like a potential justice and more like a partisan functionary, desperately clinging to the chance at the job of his lifetime. He has, in this way if not others, already disqualified himself for the job regardless of how the (now two) sexual assault allegations against him pan out. … Kavanaugh is not on trial for his life. He’s not a defendant in a court of law. … This notion that Kavanaugh can convince America that he is innocent by producing his calendar from 1982 is patently absurd in a process in which live witnesses are barred from providing their insight about what Kavanaugh’s life was like in those days. It wasn’t going to fly when Ford was the only accuser. It’s certainly not going to fly now that Ramirez has stepped forward.” (09/24/18)

https://newrepublic.com/article/151359/brett-kavanaugh-already-disqualified

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30) It’s impossible to have a comparative advantage in everything
Source: Cafe Hayek
by Don Boudreaux

“To have a comparative advantage at producing X implies a comparative disadvantage at producing Y. This reality is best seen with an example involving only two people (Ann and Bob) and two goods (fish and bananas). Suppose that the resources necessary for Ann to use to produce one banana are such that, were she instead to use these resources to catch fish, she’d catch two fish. Ann’s cost of producing one banana is, thus, two fish — which implies that Ann’s cost of catching one fish is one-half of a banana. As for Bob, suppose that the resources necessary for him to produce one banana are such that, were he instead to use these resources to catch fish, he’d catch one fish. Bob’s cost of producing one banana is, thus, one fish — which implies that Bob’s cost of catching one fish is one banana. Bob has a comparative advantage over Ann at producing bananas and Ann has a comparative advantage over Bob at catching fish.” (09/24/18)

https://cafehayek.com/2018/09/impossible-comparative-advantage-everything.html

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31) How to spot misleading statistics in the gun control debate
Source: Foundation for Economic Education
by Tim Hsiao

“The academic debate over gun control consists mainly of a war of statistics. New studies come out every few weeks, and as a result, both sides are constantly locking horns over the validity or invalidity of this-or-that study in this-or-that country. For those who aren’t formally trained in data analysis, this debate can seem impossible to navigate. How should untrained laypersons go about interpreting the findings of statistical studies?” (09/24/18)

https://fee.org/articles/how-to-spot-misleading-statistics-in-the-gun-control-debate/

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32) Echoes of Anita Hill in Kavanaugh hearings
Source: Reuters
by Scott Lemieux

“Christine Blasey Ford’s now-public allegations that she was the victim of an attempted sexual assault by Supreme Court nominee Brett Kavanaugh have had a striking and immediate political impact, with the Senate Judiciary Committee delaying its vote on Kavanaugh. Ford’s serious charges present a very close analogy with the allegations made by Anita Hill against her former employer Clarence Thomas during the latter’s Supreme Court confirmation hearings in 1991. In the era of #MeToo, a great deal has changed since then. But a great deal hasn’t, and it seems likely that the result will be the same as 1991: that is, the confirmation of Kavanaugh after a desultory and incomplete investigation.” [editor’s note: Comparing power abuse by a mature adult to what MAY have happened with two drunken teenagers is specious at best, but this would not be the first time Mr. Lemieux has played around with “facts” – SAT] (09/24/18)

https://www.reuters.com/article/us-lemieux-kavanaugh-commentary/commentary-echoes-of-anita-hill-in-kavanaugh-hearings-idUSKCN1M41SB

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33) Debt and war
Source: Mises Canada
by Bryce McBride

“Last week marked the tenth anniversary of the collapse of the Lehman Brothers investment bank and the subsequent onset of the global financial crisis. What caused the crisis, how was it addressed and how has it continued to affect us up to the present day? The 2008 crisis was caused by reckless lending. Low interest rates made mortgage payments more affordable and enabled people to borrow more money to buy homes. This increased borrowing in turn pushed up home prices. People on the sidelines who saw their neighbors growing rich through real estate price inflation jumped in and boosted prices even more. Banks, able to create credit from nothing, were happy to lend. Until, that is, it became apparent that some of the loans would never be repaid.” (09/24/18)

https://www.mises.ca/debt-and-war/

—–

34) A “Me-Too” externality?
Source: EconLog
by Pierre Lemieux

“If, in our externality story, we extend the concept of property to include somebody’s liberty or (more controversially) reputation, then anyone who falsely accuses another of sexual interference produces a negative externality for all those who have really been raped. When false or opportunistic accusations are suspected or become known, the real victims are less likely to be believed.” (09/24/18)

https://www.econlib.org/a-me-too-externality/

—–

35) The myth of authoritarian competence
Source: The Atlantic
by Vance Serchuk

“For nearly six months, one of the world’s top economies has been gripped by crisis, sparking fears of wider financial contagion. Since the spring, the Turkish currency has cratered while inflation has soared, rattling other emerging markets from Argentina and Indonesia. Yet the most important warning to draw from Turkey’s recent convulsions is less economic than political: namely, the danger of betting on strongman rule.” (09/24/18)

https://www.theatlantic.com/international/archive/2018/09/myth-authoritarian-competence-turkey-strongman/570514/

—–

36) Betsy DeVos fills swamp for for-profit schools
Source: Our Future
by Jeff Bryant

“The Democratic party has vowed to brand Republicans as the party of corruption in political campaigns for the upcoming midterm elections in November. Given the slew of scandal-ridden people that surround President Trump and the alleged crimes committed by Congressional Republicans who support the President, Democratic candidates have lots of fodder to stoke their messaging campaigns. Numerous current and former officials in Trump’s Cabinet have also been dogged by corruption accusations that have forced some to resign under a ‘cloud of ethics scandals.’ But perhaps one of the most corrupt cabinet officials still in office is Secretary of Education Betsy DeVos, and there are ample reasons Democrats should highlight her in their messaging campaign. The education secretary is often the most overlooked cabinet officer, but DeVos is the most unpopular official in the Trump team, and Democrats who plumb the depths of her shady actions will be rewarded with a trove of dark anecdotes.” (09/24/18)

https://ourfuture.org/20180924/betsy-devos-fills-the-swamp-for-for-profit-colleges

—–

37) Jesus would have voted socialist, says Germany’s left
Source: Ludwig von Mises Institute
by Kai Weiss

“There are many arguments to be made that Jesus was neither a socialist nor would have ever voted for them — and they have been made better than I ever could. Of course, socialism doesn’t lead to ‘more sharing’ — it leads to more taking forcefully from one to give it to others. It doesn’t lead to ‘more peace’ — it leads to destruction and death. And it doesn’t lead to ‘more brotherly love’ – it leads to distrust among one another. All the more, not even The Left’s official campaign slogan ‘more for the majority’ holds true — after all, it leads to less for everyone except a tiny elite.” [editor’s note: Was Jesus a socialist? I don’t know. But according to the Bible, the early church was certainly communist (Acts 2:44-45) with God acting as its Felix Dzerzhinsky (Acts 5:1-11) – TLK] (09/24/18)

https://mises.org/wire/jesus-would-have-voted-socialist-says-germany%E2%80%99s-left

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38) We may be witnessing a defining moment in Korea
Source: The American Spectator
by Bob Barr

“Late in his presidency, Ronald Reagan challenged his Soviet counterpart, Mikhail Gorbachev, to ‘tear down’ the Berlin Wall; a structure that had stood for more than a quarter century as a seeming permanent monument to the strength of the communist system. His critics, and even some in his own political Party, sloughed off Reagan’s challenge as nothing more than a catchy soundbite delivered by an eloquent but elderly president. A mere two years later, the Berlin Wall and the totalitarian regimes it personified, began crumbling. … Democrats — who saw their last President, Barack Obama, constantly showered with praise as a visionary world leader throughout his eight years in office (including receiving the Nobel Peace Prize during his very first year as President) — scoff at the notion that Trump is capable of accomplishing something truly noteworthy in international affairs. Were the metrics by which a leader is measured based on his or her rhetoric, Trump’s detractors would have a case to be made.” (09/24/18)

https://spectator.org/we-may-be-witness-to-a-defining-moment-in-korea/

—–

39) Trump war whore celebrates starvation of Iranian civilians at MEK rally
Source: Caitlin Johnstone Blog
by Caitlin Johnstone

“Just when you thought this administration couldn’t get more cartoonishly villainous, Trump lawyer and Simon Bar Sinister stunt double Rudy Giuliani takes to the stage and enthuses about how US sanctions are making Iranian citizens so desperate they are offering to sell their internal organs for $500 in order to stay alive. ‘Probably a fortune in Iran today. This is truly pitiful!’ he crowed triumphantly to the crowd at the Iran Uprising Summit in New York on Saturday, pleased as punch by the US government’s success in torturing everyday Iranians with starvation. Giuliani, who is basically what you’d get if necrophilia and racist police shootings had a baby, fumbled his way through a paid speech for the MEK terror cult with all the grace of a drunken creepy uncle MCing his way through a family wedding. In it he not only gloated over the starvation and severe impoverishment of Iranian civilians, but openly proclaimed that regime change was coming to Iran due to the actions of the Trump administration.” [editor’s note: This would be postable just for the humorous metaphors and similes – SAT] (09/24/18)

https://caitlinjohnstone.com/2018/09/24/trump-war-whore-celebrates-starvation-of-iranian-civilians-at-mek-rally

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40) A polarized America? Not quite
Source: Reason
by Steve Chapman

“Modern America is sharply polarized, battered by political furies, and divided as never before. Moderation is disappearing, we are told, as Americans increasingly shun people of different views. We are split between hostile groups, each with its own TV networks, fast-food chains and sporting apparel — Fox News vs. MSNBC, Chick-fil-A vs. Chipotle, Under Armour vs. Nike. Donald Trump exploits this growing political and cultural separation. Extreme, vocal ideologues are gaining ground on both the right and the left. One-third of likely voters, a poll found, think we are on the verge on civil war. Or maybe not. That’s one picture of the nation in 2018, which fits many surface indicators. But it’s an image from a fun-house mirror, composed of misleading distortions. The reality is reassuring.” (09/24/18)

https://reason.com/archives/2018/09/24/a-polarized-america-not-quite

—–

41) Quantum Vibe, 09/24/18
Source: Big Head Press
by Scott Bieser & Gus Mendes

Cartoon. (09/24/18)

https://www.quantumvibe.com/strip?page=1851

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42) Collusion against Kavanaugh
Source: Town Hall
by Rebecca Hagelin

“This past weekend my comments expressing support for Judge Brett Kavanaugh and my disgust at how the far left will stop at nothing to derail his confirmation to the U.S. Supreme Court were included in an article in the New York Times. Now I’m receiving emails from women who say they are rape victims, and are aghast that I don’t believe Christine Blasey Ford’s accusations. They further accuse me of not supporting rape victims in general — a charge that is both cruel and made in ignorance. Although they provide no reasons why they believe Dr. Ford is credible and that Judge Kavanaugh is not, my letters responding to them detail my position.” (09/24/18)

https://townhall.com/columnists/rebeccahagelin/2018/09/24/collusion-against-kavanaugh-n2522106

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43) Pot as political speech
Source: CounterPunch
by Barry Brown

“Is investment in the marijuana industry a form of protected political speech according to U.S. law? Can American border officials prohibit someone’s entry to the U.S. because they don’t like a person’s legal investment portfolio? Yes, they can. But is it constitutional?” (09/24/18)

https://www.counterpunch.org/2018/09/24/pot-as-political-speech/

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44) How unions can solve the housing crisis
Source: In These Times
by Erik Forman

“Dr. James Peter Warbasse opined in the journal Co-operation, ‘Once the people of New York City lived in their own houses, but those days have gone. … The houses are owned by landlords who conduct them, not for the purpose of domiciling the people in health and comfort, but for the single purpose of making money out of tenants.’ That was in 1919. A century later, things have gone from bad to worse. A quarter of U.S. households pay more than half their income in rent. In New York City, homelessness has hit record levels. Most activists can reel off a list of demands to address the housing crisis: rent control, community land trusts, affordable housing development. But one of the most effective strategies has been forgotten. A century ago, the labor movement in New York City planned and executed a bluntly practical solution to the problem of housing: Build it.” (09/24/18)

http://inthesetimes.com/features/unions-housing-crisis-labor-coop-apartments-new-york-homeless-rent-control.html

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45) Socialist saboteurs infiltrate
Source: Common Sense
by Paul Jacob

“Once upon a time, people who worried about communists infiltrating the government were often dismissed as paranoid. ‘Sure, commies under every bed! Right!’ Communists in the State Department or wherever generally weren’t caught on tape boasting that they were Soviet agents and part of the Resist Truman or Resist Eisenhower movement. Allen Funt did not expose Alger Hiss. But now we have this social-media thing happening. And we have members of the Democratic Socialists of America (DSA) caught on tape touting their illicit exploits as federal employees.” (09/24/18)

http://thisiscommonsense.com/2018/09/24/socialist-saboteurs/

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46) GOP better remind forgetful voters: Tax cuts are huge boost to middle class
Source: Investors Business Daily
by staff

“Congressional Republicans have one of the most potent re-election issues of recent decades: the unquestionable success of this year’s tax cuts. And yet, their own polling shows they’re not getting credit from voters. Toot your horn, folks. The Republican National Committee commissioned a survey by GOP pollster Public Opinion Strategies to gauge public opinion about President Trump’s tax cuts, which the GOP-led Congress passed late last year without a single Democratic vote. What they found was no doubt dispiriting: By a 61% to 30% margin, those who responded said the cuts benefit ‘large corporations and rich Americans’ over ‘middle-class families.’ Only Republicans embraced the cuts. Of particular concern for the GOP is that independents, by 63% to 27%, said the tax cuts favored the rich and big companies. They’re swing voters, and will decide the coming election.” [editor’s note: What tax cuts? Trump has just switched from income taxes to tariffs for his tax HIKES – TLK] (09/24/18)

https://www.investors.com/politics/editorials/gop-tax-cuts-middle-class

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47) Hong Kong and the road to recovery
Source: Cobden Centre
by Alasdair Macleod

“There is increasing awareness that another financial crisis is in the offing, and, of course, everyone has an opinion as to what will trigger it and what form it will take. But there is broad agreement that since the Lehman crisis ten years ago, instead of resolving the problems that led to that crisis, governments and their monetary authorities have allowed the underlying position to deteriorate.” (09/24/18)

https://www.cobdencentre.org/2018/09/hong-kong-and-the-road-to-recovery/

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48) The Pledge … for the children?
Source: The Price of Liberty
by Nathan Barton

“An Atlanta charter school announced that the Pledge of Allegiance would not be part of the morning ritual at the start of the school day. And people were upset. Notice when the ‘campus president’ changed the policy originally, it was to remove it from the daily general assembly when all students must be present together with their guards … excuse me, teachers and teachers’ aides. There are several terms for that, including ‘Roll Call,’ a term familiar to anyone imprisoned in a German POW camp. It is part of the regimen of being incarcerated in ‘public schools.’” (09/23/18)

https://thepriceofliberty.org/2018/09/23/the-pledge-for-the-children/

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49) How a new definition of “personality” wrecked a generation (or two)
Source: American Institute for Economic Research
by Jeffrey A Tucker

“In 1939, the idea of testing for personality was not known. By the late 1950s, it had swept through management circles, and tests were everywhere in government and high-end corporate culture. They were seen as the answer to how people could be placed, and place themselves, in a role that would lead to great happiness. What began to develop was a culture of deference to what is innate rather than a culture of aspiration to what anyone can become. Myers-Briggs was the most popular but it spawned a massive industry that flooded the world with personality tests, not with the goal of inspiring people to get better but with the ambition of pigeonholing everyone in a way that will maximize personal satisfaction. And now the corporate world is swimming in confusion about why young workers are so unadaptable, spoiled, undisciplined, and unambitious. It’s really no mystery: we told them that this is the right way to be: be only yourself and nothing more.” (09/23/18)

https://www.aier.org/article/how-new-definition-%E2%80%9Cpersonality%E2%80%9D-wrecked-generation-or-two

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50) What should young libertarians do?
Source: Notes On Liberty
by Bill Rein

“Our project at my group right now is getting good people elected. That requires doorknockers to talk to people. Where are all the young libertarians to get out the vote? Waiting in line for a policy job, it seems. This is not to reject division of labor and say that the academic side isn’t contributing to the success of liberty — we’re winning all the time, about as much as we’re losing. It’s to say that the kid in the classroom who’s always arguing, obnoxiously and persistently, the libertarian case, is suspiciously missing out in the field. The people who can quote Mises and Hayek ad nauseam aren’t prepared to help get a candidate elected who isn’t Mises or Hayek. They are prepared, however, to read more Mises and Hayek.” (09/23/18)

https://notesonliberty.com/2018/09/23/what-should-young-libertarians-do/

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

51) Declare Your Independence with Ernie Hancock, 09/24/18
Source: Freedom’s Phoenix

“Davi Barker (Pirates without Borders; The Muslim Agorist) is in studio to discuss the Letters of Marque; Re-cap of the Nexus Earth Conference last week, and all aspects of being a pirate, piracy, & MeToo Justice.” [MP3] (09/24/18)

https://www.freedomsphoenix.com/Media/248056-2018-09-24-09-24-18-davi-barker-in-studio-pirates-without-borders.htm

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52) Ron Paul Liberty Report, 09/24/18
Source: Ron Paul Liberty Report

“China’s ‘social credit’ system purports to rank citizens according to their behavior, trustworthiness, and adherence to the law. Political dissent results in a lower ‘social credit’ score and a reduction in privileges. The system is enforced by hundreds of millions of cameras throughout the country using facial recognition software. It’s thoroughly dystopian … but is a similar system to crush dissent being built here in the US under our noses?” (09/24/18)

http://www.ronpaullibertyreport.com/archives/chinas-digital-dictatorshipand-ours

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53) Scott Adams Says, 09/24/18
Source: Scott Adams Says

“Scott Adams talks about the Battle of the Sexes 2018.” [Flash video] (09/24/18)

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

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54) One Free Family, episode 32
Source: Pax Libertas Productions

“Talking about sex with our kids can feel uncomfortable, awkward, and even down-right scary. The alternative — one where our kids are ‘educated’ about sex by their peers, media of all forms, and their own guesses — is almost certainly scarier. In this episode, James and Taylor talk about their approach to talking about sex with their own kids, and recommend some resources that they have found very helpful in approaching these discussions.” [Flash audio] (09/24/18)

https://onefreefamily.com/lets-talk-about-sex-off032/

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55) Lions of Liberty Podcast, episode 367
Source: Lions of Liberty

“In today’s flagship Lions of Liberty podcast, Marc welcomes in Libertarian activist and recently announced Libertarian Party Presidential candidate, Kimberly Ruff! Kim breaks down how she became a Libertarian, why she decided to run for the LP POTUS nomination, how she plans to run her campaign, and just what the heck does a State Mine Inspector do?” [various formats] (09/24/18)

http://lionsofliberty.com/2018/09/24/kimberly-ruff-looks-to-shake-up-the-lp-potus-race/

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56) The Last Nighters, episode 38
Source: The Launch Pad Media

“Antoine Fuqua, Seven Samurai, the Magnificent Seven, Denzel Washington, Chris Pratt, Ethan Hawke, Akira Kurosawa, Yul Brynner, Steve McQueen, Charles Bronson, Toshiro Mifune, Non-state justice systems, the Principled Libertarian, the not so wild west, the myth of the robber barons.” [Flash audio or MP3] (09/24/18)

https://jrlp.podbean.com/e/the-magnificent-seven-the-last-nighters-episode-38/

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57) Foreign Policy Focus, episode 250
Source: Foreign Policy Focus

“On FPF #250, Will Porter returns to the show to evaluate how Trump’s foreign policy has achieved the goals set in the National Security Strategy. The Strategy called for the US to combat great powers, including Russia. Will breaks down the results of Trump’s policies in Poland, Ukraine, Syria, and Iran. Will and Kyle give analysis on US foreign policy has bolstered the influence of Russia.” [various formats] (09/24/18)

http://foreignpolicyfocus.libsyn.com/fpf-250-reviewing-the-national-security-strategy-guest-will-porter

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58) Punk Rock Libertarians Podcast, episode 179
Source: The Daily Liberator

“The Wrong House.” [various formats] (09/24/18)

https://www.thedailyliberator.com/prl-podcast-episode-179-the-wrong-house/

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59) Free Talk Live, 09/23/18
Source: Free Talk Live

“Man beat up for finding lost girl :: Man accused of pederasty for checking into motel with daughter :: Socialists can’t define socialism :: New accuser in Kavanaugh case :: Bureaucracy :: Mark and Darryl.” [Flash audio or MP3] (09/23/18)

https://www.freetalklive.com/podcast/2018-09-23

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60) Five Minutes Five Issues, episode 122
Source: Ron Paul Institute for Peace and Prosperity

“US Dollar, Reform, Poland Bases, Internal Poll, RPI Panel.” [Flash audio or MP3] (09/23/18)

http://www.ronpaulinstitute.org/archives/peace-and-prosperity/2018/september/23/five-minutes-five-issues-us-dollar-reform-poland-bases-internal-poll-rpi-panel/

*****
RATIONAL REVIEW NEWS DIGEST

Editors:
Thomas L. Knapp
Steve Trinward

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