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RATIONAL REVIEW NEWS DIGEST
The Freedom Movement’s Daily Newspaper

Volume XVII, Issue #4,142
Monday, December 31st, 2018
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In the News:

0) … and a Happy New Year!
1) Afghanistan: Taliban dismisses regime’s peace talk offer
2) Trump signs executive order canceling planned pay increase for federal employees
3) Russian ex-spy pressured Manafort over debts to oligarch
4) US regime submits sealed response to secret subpoena case
5) Russia: Regime builds 37-mile wall separating Crimea, Ukraine
6) Malware attack disrupts delivery of papers across the US
7) “I did the right thing”: Schaaf defends tipping off immigrants ahead of ICE gang raid
8) ME: Petulant LePage calls congressional election “stolen” while certifying result
9) FL: Palmetto city commissioner shoots intruder in self-defense, police say
10) Court: Mumia Abu-Jamal can reargue appeal in 1981 police slaying

Everybody Has An Opinion:

11) Dropouts built America
12) What kind of ice cream cone?
13) They fight economics, but economics always wins
14) A time for choosing, still
15) Eroding norms and political transformation: A new chance for liberty?
16) Open rebellion?
17) Red flag laws and predictive policing
18) Review: Guncrazy America
19) Capitalism and markets create mineral reserves — not God or geography
20) Universal Basic Income: More ineffective big government socialism

The Sound and the Fury:

21) Free Talk Live, 12/29/18
22) Ron Paul Liberty Report, 12/29/18
23) Free Man Beyond the Wall, episode 200
24) Foreign Policy Focus, episode 290
25) Free Thoughts Podcast, episode 272
26) Editor’s Break, episode 127
27) Reason Podcast, 12/28/18
28) Felony Friday, episode 156
29) This Week in Bitcoin, 12/27/18
30) So to Speak: The Free Speech Podcast, 12/27/18

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

0) … and a Happy New Year!

Hey, everyone …

This is the final 2018 edition of Rational Review News Digest / Freedom News Daily (10 news stories, 10 commentaries, 10 audio/video links). We’ll be back on Wednesday, returning to regular edition length if there’s enough content available. Here’s hoping all our readers had a wonderful 2018 and have an even better 2019!

Thanks to KA&PW, MM, and JS, whose contributions since Friday, totaling $48, bring our year-end fundraiser total to $2,519.50!

With ONE DAY REMAINING in the year, that gets us just past the halfway mark to our goal of $5,000. Unless we bring in $2,480.50 TODAY, we won’t make the goal. Put me down as down as doubtful that it’s going to happen, and as undecided what to do about that, but a big THANKS to all of you who have supported the freedom movement’s daily newspaper this year. The final ask of the year: Please go to …

http://rationalreview.com/support-rrnd

… and make your best contribution TODAY.

Yours in liberty,
Tom Knapp
Publisher
Rational Review News Digest / Freedom News Daily

—–

1) Afghanistan: Taliban dismisses regime’s peace talk offer
Source: Al Jazeera [Qatar state media]

“The Taliban has rejected Kabul’s offer of talks next month in Saudi Arabia where the armed group, fighting to restore strict Islamic law in Afghanistan, will meet the United States officials to further peace efforts, a Taliban leader said. Representatives from the Taliban, the US, Saudi Arabia, United Arab Emirates (UAE) and Pakistan met this month in the UAE for talks to end the 17-year war in Afghanistan. But the Taliban has refused to hold formal talks with the Western-backed Afghan government.” (12/30/18)

https://www.aljazeera.com/news/2018/12/taliban-dismisses-afghanistan-peace-talk-offer-181230082443475.html

—–

2) Trump signs executive order canceling planned pay increase for federal employees
Source: Business Insider

“President Donald Trump issued an executive order Friday that cancels a planned pay increase for federal [employees] in 2019. Trump previously called the raise, a 2.1% increase set to take effect in January, ‘inappropriate’ and an unrealistic burden on the federal budget. The order also cancels a yearly paycheck adjustment calculated in order with the region of the country where [employees] are posted.” [editor’s note: The story referred to the employees (people “employed by another usually for wages or salary” as “workers” (people who “work”). I consider the former term more universally applicable to the described group) – TLK] (12/29/18)

https://www.businessinsider.com/pay-freeze-trump-signs-executive-federal-workers-in-2019-2018-12

—–

3) Russian ex-spy pressured Manafort over debts to oligarch
Source: Time

“When the U.S. government put out its latest sanctions list on Dec. 19, the man named at the top did not seem especially important. Described in the document as a former Russian intelligence officer, he was accused of handling money and negotiations on behalf of a powerful Russian oligarch. The document did not mention that the man, Victor Boyarkin, had links to the 2016 campaign of President Donald Trump. A months-long investigation by TIME, however, found that Boyarkin, a former arms dealer with a high forehead and a very low profile, was a key link between a senior member of the Trump campaign and a powerful ally of Russian President Vladimir Putin. … When he joined the campaign in the spring of 2016, Manafort was nearly broke. The veteran political consultant had racked up bills worth millions of dollars in luxury real estate, clothing, cars and antiques. According to allegations contained in court records filed in the U.S. and the Cayman Islands, he was also deeply in debt to Boyarkin’s boss, the Russian billionaire Oleg Deripaska, who was demanding money from Manafort over a failed business deal in Ukraine and other ventures.” (12/29/18)

http://time.com/5490169/paul-manafort-victor-boyarkin-debts/

—–

4) US regime submits sealed response to secret subpoena case
Source: The Hill

“The federal government filed a sealed response Friday to the Supreme Court involving a mystery case with possible ties to special counsel Robert Mueller. CNN reports that the federal government has filed a response to a temporary pause the court put on an order holding an unnamed, foreign government-owned company in contempt. Supreme Court Chief Justice John Roberts halted the contempt order on Sunday after a lower court upheld the order earlier this month. It would be the first known challenge to a case apparently related to the Mueller probe to reach the Supreme Court, CNN noted.” [editor’s note: Secret subpoenas to unnamed parties should be considered void, period – TLK] (12/28/18)

https://thehill.com/homenews/administration/423169-federal-government-submits-sealed-response-to-supreme-court-over

—–

5) Russia: Regime builds 37-mile wall separating Crimea, Ukraine
Source: New York Post

“How do you say ‘build the wall’ in Russian? Russia has built a 37-mile fence between Ukraine and Crimea, the territory that [seceded from Ukraine and requested annexation by Russia] in 2014, according to Russian media. The move was necessary ‘to protect the local population from the crazy antics of the current Ukrainian government,’ claimed a spokesman for the de facto Crimean parliament. Ukrainian authorities are calling the move ‘mere propaganda.’” (12/29/18)

https://nypost.com/2018/12/29/russia-builds-37-mile-wall-around-annexed-crimea-territory/

—–

6) Malware attack disrupts delivery of papers across the US
Source: Los Angeles Times

“What first arose as a server outage was identified Saturday as a malware attack, which appears to have originated from outside the United States and hobbled computer systems and delayed weekend deliveries of the Los Angeles Times and other newspapers across the country. Technology teams worked feverishly to quarantine the computer virus, but it spread through Tribune Publishing’s network and reinfected systems crucial to the news production and printing process. Multiple newspapers around the country were affected because they share a production platform. … By Saturday afternoon, the company suspected the cyberattack originated from outside the United States, but officials said it was too soon to say whether it was carried out by a foreign state or some other entity, said a source with knowledge of the situation.” (12/29/18)

https://www.latimes.com/local/lanow/la-me-ln-times-delivery-disruption-20181229-story.html

—–

7) “I did the right thing”: Schaaf defends tipping off immigrants ahead of ICE gang raid
Source: Newsweek

“A mayor who warned Northern California residents about an imminent Immigration and Customs Enforcement (ICE) raid said she did not regret her action. In February, Oakland Mayor Libby Schaaf was twice tipped off about an impending ICE raid and organized a meeting with immigrant advocates and religious leaders to warn the public about the operation. … Her decision was both praised and criticized and marked a pivotal juncture in the relationship between federal agencies and so-called sanctuary cities, which forbid cooperating with deportation efforts. … According to ICE, Schaaf’s warning resulted in 150 people [abducted] for violating [unconstitutional] U.S. immigration laws in the San Francisco Bay Area, while approximately 900 illegal immigrants were thought to have remained ‘at large in the community’ as they couldn’t be [abducted].” (12/28/18)

https://www.newsweek.com/i-did-right-thing-oakland-mayor-libby-schaaf-defends-tipping-immigrants-ahead-1273968

—–

8) ME: Petulant LePage calls congressional election “stolen” while certifying result
Source: CNN

“Gov. Paul LePage certified the election results for Maine’s 2nd Congressional District after a recount and legal battle dragged out the final result in the race for almost two months, cementing a Democratic victory. But, LePage — a Republican firebrand — made one last jab at the drawn-out process when certifying the election, writing the words ‘stolen election’ next to his signature. … November’s congressional election in Maine marked the first time in US history the ranked-choice voting system determined the outcome of a congressional race. The new state law mandates ranked-choice tabulation be applied in any federal race in which no candidate receives a majority of the vote.” (12/28/18)

https://www.cnn.com/2018/12/28/politics/maine-governor-certifies-congressional-election/index.html

—–

9) FL: Palmetto city commissioner shoots intruder in self-defense, police say
Source: Bradenton Herald

“At about 10p.m. Thursday, Palmetto police officers spotted [Avelino Misreal] Vasquez-Perez driving recklessly, thought he was impaired and attempted to pull him over, according to Chief of Police Scott Tyler. Instead, Vasquez-Perez sped off, only to crash a few blocks later into a home in the 600 block of Fourth Street West. … Vasquez-Perez and his passenger ran from the crash, but officers were able to quickly catch his passenger. As police set up a perimeter around the neighborhood looking for him, Vasquez-Perez climbed a fence into Palmetto Commissioner Brian Williams'[s] backyard and broke into the garage of his home in an apparent attempt to hide from police. Williams'[s] daughter, who lives next door, spotted Vasquez-Perez and called her dad. Williams armed himself, then heard Vasquez-Perez trying to get into the kitchen from the garage. Vasquez-Perez was then confronted by Williams at gunpoint. Vasquez-Perez attempted to push past and punch Williams, who then pushed Vasquez-Perez back and shot him twice, according to Tyler.” (12/28/18)

https://www.bradenton.com/news/local/crime/article223665980.html

—–

10) Court: Mumia Abu-Jamal can reargue appeal in 1981 police slaying
Source: Cherry Hill Courier Post

“A judge issued a split ruling Thursday that grants Mumia Abu-Jamal another chance to appeal his 1981 conviction in a Philadelphia police officer’s death. Abu-Jamal spent nearly three decades on death row before his sentence in the shooting death of Officer Daniel Faulkner was thrown out over flawed jury instructions. Prosecutors then agreed in 2011 to a sentence of life without parole. The Pennsylvania Supreme Court rejected his final appeal in 2012. But after the defense this year pushed to get more documents in the case, Philadelphia Judge Leon Tucker ruled Thursday that former Justice Ronald Castille should have recused himself because of statements he made as a prosecutor about police killers that suggest a potential bias.” (12/28/18)

https://www.courierpostonline.com/story/news/local/2018/12/28/mumia-abu-jamal-another-chance-appeal-conviction-1981-murder-philadelphia-police-daniel-faulkner/2430352002/

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

11) Dropouts built America
Source: Reason
by Jesse Walker

“We don’t know the location of the first European settlement in the land that would become the United States. We know that Spanish colonists founded it in 1526. We know that they called it San Miguel de Guadalupe. We’re pretty confident that the site was in either what is now South Carolina or what is now Georgia. But we don’t know the exact location, because the people who didn’t die there cleared out in less than a year. Disease and hunger ripped through the town, the leaders took to fighting among themselves, there was a clash with the local Indians, and the settlement’s slaves revolted. Hundreds of colonists were dead within a few months, and the remainder fled to Hispaniola. Well, some of the remainder fled to Hispaniola. The rebel slaves disappeared into the wilderness, where they are believed to have settled among the Indians. The formal colony failed; the underclass stuck around. The first arrivals from the Old World to stay here permanently were mutineers seizing that most essential of freedoms: the right to walk away.” (for publication 01/19)

https://reason.com/archives/2018/12/29/dropouts-built-america

—–

12) What kind of ice cream cone?
Source: Common Sense
by Paul Jacob

“When I wrote about the Donald’s change of troop positions abroad last week, it was less than completely clear that the US President aimed to withdraw troops from Afghanistan as well as Syria. But multiple reports on the day I posted ‘Strategic Disengagement’ make it clearer: about half of America’s 14,000 troops stationed there are scheduled to exit. Why not all? Well, you can see how entrenched foreign intervention is for American leaders. While most of the GOP policy establishment howled at Donald Trump’s betrayal of the cause (whatever that cause is, exactly), so, too, did many of the Democrats. And they seem awfully earnest.” (12/28/18)

http://thisiscommonsense.com/2018/12/28/what-kind-of-ice-cream-cone/

—–

13) They fight economics, but economics always wins
Source: American Institute for Economic Research
by Jeffrey A Tucker

“This year began with an audacious attempt to restore American industrial manufacturing by force of political will. The means toward that end were taxes on imports and a forced disruption of global supply chains supposedly to put America First. Among the results: factory closings, collapsed sales of American-made motorcycles, falling financials, double-digit increases in steel prices laying waste to corporate profits, higher prices and reduced incomes for American consumers, loss of export markets, higher (yes, higher) trade deficits, and a loss of regime stability so that global confidence in the US has taken a hit. Whoops. This was not supposed to happen. But it did. And why? Because economics.” (12/28/18)

https://www.aier.org/article/they-fight-economics-economics-always-wins

—–

14) A time for choosing, still
Source: National Review
by Kevin D Williamson

“In the 1990s, we came to believe, if only for a couple of years, that ‘the laws of nature and of nature’s God’ had been replaced by Moore’s Law, the observation that the computing power practically available doubles roughly every two years. Everything that Moore’s Law touched got better and cheaper every year — and it continues to do so. This has produced radical changes in how we live: Twelve years ago, there was no such thing as a smartphone, much less was there the omnipresence of handheld screens that distinguishes (and in part disfigures) life in the developed world in 2018. But Moore’s Law is not a force of nature, and it is not the case that our items of technology and our manufactured goods must get better, less expensive, and more widely available every year. They do, but they don’t just. The miracle of modern life — modern life itself, really — has one ultimate source: the division of labor.” (12/30/18)

https://www.nationalreview.com/2018/12/new-year-time-for-choosing-prosperity/

—–

15) Eroding norms and political transformation: A new chance for liberty?
Source: Notes On Liberty
by Alexander Albrecht

“Mutual tolerance describes the recognition of the political enemy as an opposed actor instead as an existential threat to the country. Contrary, forbearance means to restrain the urge of using every legal means to achieve a political end. It is certainly not too difficult to quantify the erosion of these two norms in America, specifically when one pays closer attention to the skyrocketing amount of ‘filibustering’ in the Congress or, as seen recently, to the increasing times of governmental shutdowns caused by a lack of agreement between Republicans and Democrats over the federal budget. We can see the effects of this abandonment of norms on a daily basis: The more hostile political environment, the lack of respect for other political opinions, the increasing difficulties for finding a compromise between parties. The political opposition is on the verge of drifting away from constructive criticism towards impeding the government in every possible way. In my opinion, there are two ways to react to this threat.” [editor’s note: He says “impeding the government in every possible way” like that’s a bad thing … – TLK] (12/29/18)

https://notesonliberty.com/2018/12/29/eroding-norms-and-political-transformation-a-new-chance-for-liberty/

—–

16) Open rebellion?
Source: The Price of Liberty
by Nathan Barton

“According to AmmoLand and World Net Daily, perhaps as many as one million residents of New Jersey have failed to turn in ‘high-capacity’ magazines by the statutory deadline of 11th of December, 2018. This requirement (turn-in or take out of state) is part of a law signed into law in June. The penalty for being found with a magazine with a capacity of greater than 10 rounds, regardless of caliber, is a fine of up to ten thousand dollars and up to eighteen months in jail. … Yet, according to anonymous sources in the State Police, not a single magazine has been turned in.” (12/27/18)

https://thepriceofliberty.org/2018/12/27/open-rebellion/

—–

17) Red flag laws and predictive policing
Source: Independent Institute
by Randall Holcombe

“Although we may be alarmed by things people say, citizens also have First Amendment rights to free speech, and we are on shaky ground if we say that people exercising their First Amendment rights should lose their Second Amendment rights. Lots of people say alarming things, and few of them actually engage in violent behavior. Red flag laws are a form of predictive policing. Their intent is to intervene before a crime is committed, based on evidence that suggests a person fits the profile of a criminal.” (12/28/18)

http://blog.independent.org/2018/12/28/red-flag-laws-and-predictive-policing/

—–

18) Review: Guncrazy America
Source: The Racinian
by Dave Kristopeit

“[Guncrazy]is 358 pages long but here is the interesting thing: there are only 264 pages of prose with the remaining 94 pages being index, bibliography, endnotes, and further reading suggestions. It appears at first glance to be a scholarly work. It is not. It is filled with misspellings, punctuation errors, and misidentifications. Some of the errors can be attributed to the apparent self publishing of this book. But I fault the author, a PhD in history, for not having hired a proof reader to check his manuscript. Without these corrections this seemingly scholarly work becomes nothing but a personal rant and bias against individual gun ownership.” (12/27/18)

https://racinian.wordpress.com/2018/12/27/gun-control-book-review/

—–

19) Capitalism and markets create mineral reserves — not God or geography
Source: Continental Telegraph
by Tim Worstall

“Yes, of course, geology has something to do with where mineral deposits and reserves are but it’s a much truer reflection of that real universe out there to insist that capitalism and markets create mineral reserves — far more so than anything else to do with continents floating around on the magma and all that. This also isn’t as weird nor perverse as it sounds. For a mineral reserve, just as with a mineral resource, is an economic concept to begin with.” (12/28/18)

https://www.continentaltelegraph.com/business/capitalism-and-markets-create-mineral-reserves-not-god-nor-geography/

—–

20) Universal Basic Income: More ineffective big government socialism
Source: PanAm Post
by David Unsworth

“It would be nice to think that a universal basic income program would allow human beings to fully realize their potential. Young people with few opportunities would now enjoy the economic freedom to become captains of industry, technological pioneers, inventors, perhaps learning how to code in their free time, developing software programs, and founding the next major social media platform to compete with Facebook. To say that this is a fanciful notion is an understatement.” (12/28/18)

https://panampost.com/david-unsworth/2018/12/28/universal-basic-income-more-ineffective-big-government-socialism/

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

21) Free Talk Live, 12/29/18
Source: Free Talk Live

“Pho Keene Great — New Business Stirs Controversy, Story Going Viral? :: Border Wall and Canada :: Big Government Welfare :: Wall Costs :: Sick Religious Man Says We’re Going to Hell :: Federal Debt :: Police State :: Jehovah’s Witness :: Good Christian :: Slavery :: Diseased Immigrant Fears :: Legal System :: HOSTS — Ian, Mark.” [Flash audio or MP3] (12/29/18)

https://www.freetalklive.com/podcast/2018-12-29

—–

22) Ron Paul Liberty Report, 12/29/18
Source: Ron Paul Liberty Report

“It’s been reported that (just) the interest payments on the U.S. government’s debt will be larger than Medicaid in less than 2 years, and larger than the military budget in 6 years. The math is finally catching up with the big government. Supply & Demand is finally catching up to The Federal Reserve. Change is coming, and believers in omnipotent government are in for a big surprise. Ron Paul discusses on today’s Liberty Report.” [Flash video] (12/29/18)

http://www.ronpaullibertyreport.com/archives/day-of-reckoning-approaches-the-math-is-finally-catching-up-to-big-government

—–

23) Free Man Beyond the Wall, episode 200
Source: Free Man Beyond the Wall

“Dr. Ron Paul Talks Liberty and the Economy.” [various formats] (12/28/18)

http://freemanbeyondthewall.libsyn.com/episode-200-dr-ron-paul-talks-liberty-and-the-economy

—–

24) Foreign Policy Focus, episode 290
Source: Foreign Policy Focus

“On FPF #290, I explain that the US Empire is operating as usual even though the mainstream media is focused on the shutdown. The US continues to slow the Korean Peace Process with sanctions. Defense Secretary James Mattis will be out on January 1st and weapon makers exec Patrick Shanahan will take over. I discuss the impact of the announced US troop withdrawal from Syria.”

http://foreignpolicyfocus.libsyn.com/fpf-290-the-empire-is-up-running

—–

25) Free Thoughts Podcast, episode 272
Source: Libertarianism.org

“The curve of human progress is a jagged one, explains Marian Tupy.” [various formats] (12/28/18)

https://www.libertarianism.org/podcasts/free-thoughts/world-is-getting-better

—–

26) Editor’s Break, episode 127
Source: Everything Voluntary

“Editor’s Break 127 has Skyler giving his commentary on the following topics: two articles, one he wrote in April of 2008 on the right to own firearms, and one he wrote in June of 2008 on delineating between justified and unjustified government action.” [various formats] (12/28/18)

https://everything-voluntary.com/the-guarantor-of-freedom-just-unjust-government-15m-editors-break-127

—–

27) Reason Podcast, 12/28/18
Source: Reason

“In the September 1968 issue of the newly created Reason magazine, founding editor Lanny Friedlander dreamed up a scenario of individualized telecommunications beyond just about anyone’s contemporary imaginations. … Forward-looking and occasionally prescient writing about the wonders of science is baked right into this magazine’s DNA. So it was altogether appropriate at our 50th anniversary celebration in November to convene a panel, which I [Matt Welch] was fortunate to moderate, on where the future is taking us. Giving us that glimpse were Science Correspondent Ronald Bailey, Reason TV Managing Editor Jim Epstein (who talked about blockchain), and legendary skeptic Michael Shermer.” [various formats] (12/28/18)

https://reason.com/blog/2018/12/28/the-future-of-science

—–

28) Felony Friday, episode 156
Source: Lions of Liberty

“Merry Christmas and Happy New Year! For today’s episode of Felony Friday John was joined by Electric Liberty Land host Brian McWilliams. Brian and John recap 2018 from a criminal justice standpoint, then get into some some criminal justice stories trending in the news. They cap the show off by playing ‘Is this a Crime?’” [various formats] (12/28/18)

http://lionsofliberty.com/2018/12/28/is-it-a-crime-with-brian-mcwilliams/

—–

29) This Week in Bitcoin, 12/27/18
Source: Bitcoin.com

“Reflections on 2018 and a look ahead to 2019 and what’s in store for bitcoin and cryptocurrencies.” [various formats] (12/27/18)

https://podcast.bitcoin.com/e637-Special-Bitcoin-Crypto-in-2019-Expert-Analysis-and-Predictions

—–

30) So to Speak: The Free Speech Podcast, 12/27/18
Source: Foundation for Individual Rights in Education

“On today’s episode of So to Speak: The Free Speech Podcast, we speak with Anthony Leaker. Earlier this year he wrote an essay for Cato Unbound called ‘Against ‘Free Speech,” in which he professes skepticism of the prevailing free speech narrative in the West and argues that it is often used as a Trojan Horse for far-right wing and fascist propaganda.” [various formats] (12/27/18)

https://www.thefire.org/so-to-speak-podcast-against-free-speech-with-anthony-leaker/

*****
RATIONAL REVIEW NEWS DIGEST

Editors:
Thomas L. Knapp
Steve Trinward

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