Saturday, June 30, 2007
Brown and his wife were convicted of 20 tax evasion-related felonies in January and sentenced to five years in prison and a $215,890 fine, according to the Boston Globe, for failing to pay the IRS $625,000.
Americans who pay federal income taxes in 2007 pay ten times more than the British government was demanding of the colonists in 1776. And this is only direct taxation. All consumers hand over nearly half of the amount of all their purchases to taxing authorities: buy a new mid-sized car for $25,000 and over $10,000 of the sticker price represents taxes levied on big-bad-businesses and passed on to you. So half of everything you earn is withheld as taxes, then half of every dollar left to you to spend goes for more taxes. You do the math (government school graduates are excused).
FOX News' Neil Cavuto, rumored by some to be a "conservative," interviewed Ron Paul, clearly with a view to hurt Dr. Paul's image, clearly with a view to buttress the moral authority of the IRS and our moral obligation to place our festal offerings at the feet of America's new Idol, the State, our Savior.
As we approach "Independence Day," we should reflect on the fact that the Browns are risking "our Lives, our Fortunes, and our sacred Honor," and probably have more of a right to celebrate the 4th of July than most Americans, who neither understand nor care about what that holiday commemorates.
Despite the fact that taxation is theft, "the power to tax is the power to destroy," and the practices of the IRS are both unconstitutional and immoral, we hope the Browns won't make the same mistake America's Founding Fathers made: using lethal force to prevent the unwarranted confiscation of property. The Bible says pay your taxes, don't kill the tax collector; a human being is worth more than Federal Reserve Notes.
Thursday, June 28, 2007
As we approach the anniversary of the Signing of the Declaration of Independence on July 4, 1776, we should ask some fundamental questions about our nation in 2007. "The shot heard 'round the world occurred in 1775. British troops (presumably) fired upon American colonists in what is now referred to as "The Battle of Lexington and Concord." A year later we declared our independence from that tyranny, even though at the time it was still "our government."
What if "our government" fires on non-Americans without justification? Would we be as quick to criticize "our government?" Will Grigg writes:
What effects on our system of government has the firing of shots in Baghdad had? Andrew Sullivan writes:
Given that the Iraq war was illegitimate from the beginning, the only suitable course of action would be for Congress to de-fund it, and order (yes, order) Bush to bring the troops home.
Were we the moral, Christian nation we advertise ourselves to be, after our troops were back Congress would issue a national apology to Iraq for the unprovoked, unjust war our government launched upon it, and order (yes, order) Bush and his handlers to travel to Baghdad to deliver it in person. It would then enact a measure providing reparations to Iraq, which is the duty of every nation that launches a war of aggression. (Reparations in this case would be a sum sufficient to repair the country's infrastructure and oil industry; this would make it economically viable once again, and would be far less expensive than continuing the war.)
There's new evidence that Donald Rumsfeld specifically
authorized the torture of John Walker Lindh, through his general counsel, William J. Haynes II. The biggest thing I glean from the Cheney series in the [Washington Post] is how early and decisively, Cheney and Rumsfeld decided that this war would be won by torture. No war ever has, but they knew better. More to the point: this issue was never seriously debated in an open and honest fashion in the White House. It was simply done - and done in a way that circumvented the law, the other responsible parties in the administration, and the constitution, under a philosophy that there are no constraints on executive power in wartime. Wartime, it's important to remember, is now permanent. The powers that Cheney has seized apply permanently and to anyone in the United States. There is no oversight and no law - just raw executive power. It is what America was founded to resist. And it is a sign of American decline that the American people have simply accepted the end
of their most basic liberty with a shrug of indifference.
Jason Kuznicki asks, Okay, What Now?
The articles on Cheney really are troubling (here are parts one,
two, and three).
Now, in the eyes of many conservatives, our current leaders are wise and restrained, and these conservatives will argue that the actual number of persons wronged has been few. They are right, at least on the last count, but the very fact that the administration has asserted these sweeping powers is dangerous enough.
Exactly. On June 20, 1785, Madison reflected on the recently-completed Revolution and warned:
[I]t is proper to take alarm at the first experiment on our liberties. We hold this prudent jealousy to be the first duty of citizens, and one of (the) noblest characteristics of the late Revolution. The freemen of America did not wait till usurped power had strengthened itself by exercise, and entangled the question in precedents. They saw all the consequences in the principle, and they avoided the consequences by denying the principle. We revere this lesson too much, soon to forget it.
The second "duty" would be that found in the Declaration of Independence: to abolish any government that tramples on our God-given rights.
But it is premature to ask what steps should be taken to abolish the government; to avoid the consequences of tyranny by denying the principle. Most Americans don't understand the principle. Most Americans, if grilled, could not explain why America's Founding Fathers were willing to take up arms against taxes which were only one-tenth as large as taxes today. Most Americans will be celebrating "Independence Day," but they wouldn't agree with it (if they understood it).
The first step must be to remind Americans of their rights, and cultivate an appreciation of them. But this will come only when we accept our duty not to infringe the rights of others, including foreigners. And acceptance of this duty will come only when we accept the duty of "our government" to acknowledge God who has endowed us with these rights.
Friday, June 22, 2007
Church/Organized Religion -- 46% have confidence
Banks -- 41%
U.S. Supreme Court -- 34%
Public Schools -- 33%
Medical System -- 31%
Presidency -- 25%
TV News -- 23%
Newspapers -- 22%
Criminal Justice System -- 19%
Organized Labor -- 19%
Big Business -- 18%
HMO's -- 15%
Congress -- 14%
It's actually a good thing for Americans to have no confidence in government. Some people criticize libertarians for not having enough trust in government. Especially as we approach "Independence Day," we should remember that America's Founding Fathers did not have confidence in government.
John Adams wrote in 1772:
Should libertarians have more confidence in their government? Thomas Jefferson, 1799:
There is danger from all men. The only maxim of a free government ought to be to trust no man living with power to endanger the public liberty."
Confidence is everywhere the parent of despotism. Free government is founded in jealousy, and not in confidence; it is jealousy, and not confidence, which prescribes limited constitutions to bind down those whom we are obliged to trust with power.… In questions of power, then, let no more be heard of confidence in man, but bind him down from mischief by the chains of the Constitution.
James Madison warned the people of Virginia (1799):
the nation which reposes on the pillow of political confidence, will sooner or later end its political existence in a deadly lethargy.
Madison added in Federalist No. 55,
[T]here is a degree of depravity in mankind which requires a certain degree of circumspection and distrust. . . .Trusting government, having "confidence in government," is un-American.
The American Heritage Dictionary defines "malaise" as
1. A vague feeling of bodily discomfort, as at the beginning of an illness.If America is ill, perhaps America needs a physician. Unfortunately, Americans have far more confidence in the healing powers of government than the Gallup poll might indicate (and certainly more than the Founders did). Here are the three institutions which a majority of Americans do trust:
2. A general sense of depression or unease: "One year after the crash, the markets remain mired in a deep malaise" (New York Times).
The Military - 69%
Small Business - 59%
The Police - 54%
A person's sense of confidence in his own health should not increase when he sees the paramedics show up and is told to get on the stretcher. Having confidence in the "military" and "police" is another way of saying Americans are expecting to fight a viral invasion of some sort.
Having confidence in "small business" (59%) but not "big business" (18%) could be a sign that those polled felt obligated to say something good about "capitalism" or "the free market" -- after all, this is America, and we're not commies -- but that too many Americans basically buy into the liberal criticisms of business, which apply to all businesses, but tend to fall more visibly on Walmart and a few other successful businesses. Many small businesses dream of getting their products on the shelves of Walmart. And 138 million Americans give a vote of confidence to Walmart every week.
But if Americans could take a crash course in capitalism, and come to have unbridled confidence in the Free Market, this would still be inadequate. The Free Market might work today, but what about tomorrow? In an impersonal, evolving universe, perhaps capitalism is outdated, and socialism is the wave of the future? Who can know?
America's Founding Fathers knew. America's Founders had confidence in the future because they had confidence in God. Undergirding the universe was the rational mind of God, and all their endeavors were undertaken "with a firm reliance on the Protection of Divine Providence," as the Declaration of Independence reminds us.
Every single Signer of the Constitution believed in "Providence." There was not a single atheist or deist among them. Not one of them believed that the Constitution they were signing gave the federal government the authority to remove the teaching of Providence or "the Laws of Nature and of Nature's God" (the Bible) from public schools.
Most Americans today cannot even define "Providence," and do not have a firm reliance on the goodness and trustworthiness of God. They believe the universe is ultimately chaotic, random, impersonal, and meaningless. Institutions which are built on this philosophy do not deserve anyone's confidence.
Sunday, June 17, 2007
I believe we should work on both at the same time: shrinking civil government and expanding self-government. Government should be shrunk even in the absence of any evidence at all of increasing self-government. This is because "the government" is a model of bad government. "The government" does not win the voluntary support of people: it taxes them and initiates force or threats of violence against people to accomplish its goals. It is inherently immoral.
Marketing guru Seth Godin might not agree with this "anti-government" viewpoint, but he provides a good argument for personal responsibility. Instead of asking the government to use force and coercion to compel advertisers to stop marketing products that we don't approve of, we should work to persuade the marketers to market something else.
Persuasion enlightens. Persuasion shows the errant marketer a higher way, and he voluntarily accepts it. The persuader adopts a higher path of social change.
Government coercion leaves everyone in darkness. Those who are coerced have not been enlightened, and those who hold the guns against their fellow Americans are in an even greater darkness.
Friday, June 15, 2007
Thanks for saying,
You did not endorse Jefferson’s recommended punishment for homosexuals, which was castration. Intellectual honesty demands that I retract what I wrote earlier.
I hope we can now start making even greater progress. The damage may not be correctable, but more on that later.
I think, then, that you implied an approval by disavowing the death Penalty and then mentioning Jefferson’s punishment with neither a disavowal nor a suggestion of what other punishment you thought was appropriate.
I made no such disavowal or suggestion because I don't think any "punishment" is appropriate. Certainly not from the State. I thought I had made clear my opposition to all "punishments," but I guess it was only clear in my own mind. All I was trying to emphasize was that I was more libertarian than Jefferson was, and that someone who thinks homosexuality is a crime is more dangerous to homosexuals than someone who thinks it should only be considered sin.
But whatever. Implications and inferences are tricky things. This stuff sometimes happens, and I can live with that, as long as we all figure out where everyone stands in the end.
I think it would have been better if you figured out where I stand before you went to press. And while I appreciate the progressively cordial tone of our conversation, we still have lessons to learn. I know in my life it's been easier to form stereotypes about one's opponent and then come out swinging. Or "slinging." As I said, I've been guilty of that way too much. "Ready, Fire, Aim!" What I'm trying to teach myself is the meaning of love:
Love does not keep a record of wrongs; finds no joy in unrighteousness, but rejoices in the truth; bears all things, believes all things, hopes all things, endures all things.
( 1 Corinthians 13:5-7)
I try to assume the best about my opponent, construing her statements in the best possible way. I try to assume that we agree somewhere, or will someday. Disagreement is only temporary, or a misunderstanding.
It's a difficult exercise sometimes.
In my "response" to you I provided links that should have helped you form an accurate judgment of my position. You should have noticed my opposition to all the state's violence, which results in my opposition to all penal sanctions, including capital punishment for murderers. All those links were in that "response." On my home page I have a drop-down menu with links to my position on just about every conceivable political issue. I think I'll move that to the top of the page. (I'm about as good a "webmaster" as I am a "political candidate.")
Now you quote from my "homophobia" page, which begins:
* “Hate” homosexuality and homosexuals
* Follow God’s Commandments with respect to them
and you say,
Now, if you are an anarchist — as you say that you are — then I trust that you would abolish Congress, not give it advice on whom to hate. I know quite a few anarchists. They never ask Congress to do anything — except go home.
I can't abolish Congress single-handedly. Even though I have no real chance of beating the third-most powerful Republican in Congress, who has $3 million in campaign funds, I'm actually trying to present myself as a realistic, credible candidate for Congress [!] and so I suggest how a non-libertarian Congress can still make steps in the right direction. (My campaign is obviously an educational effort. I'm a propagandist, not a politician.) Only a few of my webpages call for pushing Leonard Read's button (even though that's what I would do), and nearly every one of my pages has a step-by-step call for action for Congress (originally based -- I should say, "plagiarized" -- from CATO's Handbook for Congress). My homophobia page is no exception. After the "Congress should," I explain why the Bible says to "hate" sin, and then I explain what God's requirements are. In a word: love. Justice first, but then beyond that, works of mercy.
Surely you've read enough (or at least some) from anti-homosexual pro-execution Christians to get a hint that I'm not exactly one of them. Why not "hope all things," and imagine that I don't want to castrate, instead of assuming that I do? Everything I have written reads just as sensibly with that assumption.
In this context I note with interest a website of yours, one to which you still link, where you make it clear that “public stoning” was to your mind an appropriate punishment for certain crimes. Whether the stoning is decreed by Congress or by a private entity seems beside the point to me. The point, by the way, is the protection of life, liberty, and property — from threats governmental or private. In this sense you are no libertarian.
Well, I won't accuse you of deliberately making a false inference on this point. I have a strange sense of humor sometimes, and if a person of your intelligence didn't get it, then I need to change that webpage. (And by the way, anytime you're looking through my webpages and you find a URL with "members.aol.com," you might remember that I'm switching all my webpages to a new host. Replace "members.aol.com" with "VFTonline.org" and you'll have the latest edition of that page.) Please allow me to explain my program. You quoted these lines:
- Our number-one weapon to combat these destructive trends is prayer.
- Our number-two weapon is personal responsibility and virtue.
- Our number-three weapon is political vigilance and litigation, which results from standing against statism and ceremonial deism.
I italicized "zero" -- it means it's not on the list at all. That was my intended meaning, anyway. A large segment of my audience is pro-execution Christians. Did you check the linked pages? I'm sorry; I can see how just reading that line without looking at the linked pages might lead you to an erroneous inference. But the "public stoning" link goes to an anti-capital punishment page, and the "25-year prison term" link goes to an organization I volunteered with back in California, an anti-"3-strikes" group. Maybe nobody outside California is familiar with the idea of "3-strike" laws, so I should change that link to one like the page on my campaign site, where I try to make clear that I'm against prisons altogether.
But then, more recently, it seems you may have had a change of heart. You declare now that homosexuals and others whom your God dislikes shall be subject only to a boycott. You also declare, elsewhere in that jungle of broken links, that Christ’s execution should have been the last one on earth.
Here now an inference that I've "recently" changed my mind. Actually, I changed my mind on capital punishment before 1983, part of a major change in my thinking that got me excommunicated from the "Christian Reconstructionist" movement. The last thing I wrote that endorses capital punishment (I think it was the last) was published by Gary North in a series called Christianity and Civilization (volume 1, entitled "The Failure of the American Baptist Culture"). A non-pdf copy of my article is here. It was published in 1982, but written a year or two before that, originally for the Journal of Christian Reconstruction, but taken by Gary North when he left Chalcedon. I remember when it finally got published I was a little uneasy about being in print calling for capital punishment when I no longer upheld it.
Personally, I have no problem with any of this. I invite you to conduct your business and your family on your own property as you see fit, and I have a hard time seeing how the death penalty can be reconciled with the generally natural-rights and social-contractarian foundations that I find for government. I therefore incline against the death penalty in general.
All I can say is, this is my position since about 1982.
Yet you seem to have had a rather abrupt change of heart between these two positions, to say the very least, and I hope you will pardon me if I find it disconcerting, and for my troubles figuring out exactly where you stand.
(Mind you, I’m not losing any sleep over it, though, because frankly I’m not even sure you know where you stand.)
If you were passionately pro-capital punishment, and you wanted to make sure I was toeing the party line, I think you'd find my position clear -- and offensive. Certainly a lot of my ex-Reconstructionist friends have. I realize that "anarcho-theocracy" is a new concept for most people (!), but I think I'm ridiculously up front and clear for a political candidate on a lot of issues. I get flak from everyone, but usually based on accurate understandings of my position: Christians who don't like my anarchism, and secularists who don't like my Theocracy. You're the first person who has criticized me for endorsing castration!
And your characterization of me (based, regrettably, on an all-too-clear but politically unwise statement of mine) as wanting to let child molesters do their thing has resulted in more publicity in the blogosphere than I have ever received, all of it pathologically negative, which has fomented an organized movement among Libertarian Party bosses to deny me ballot access as a Libertarian in 2008. (In the last election, the LP denied ballot access to a white supremacist.) If I can't run as a Libertarian, my political "career" is toast. If I choose to run as an independent with no party support, I'll have to gather about 10,000 signatures across 7 counties where the largest city is only 150,000. That's more tanks of gas than someone who's as dirt poor as I am can afford.
Perhaps you'll be receiving a thank-you note from Roy Blunt. I'm sure I took thousands of votes away from him in 2006. I doubled my vote total over 2004, and I was planning on doubling it again in 2008.
Assemble a room full of your average Bible-believing Christians, and most of them will have an unfavorable reaction to libertarianism: "You want to legalize what?" Give me a few minutes to present the case from a Biblical perspective, and I absolutely guarantee a majority will have a favorable view of libertarianism. The more time we have for Q&A, the more favorable the view (just as continued conversation between us has, I think, been productive). I succeed because I do not attack their core values. They may not sign up, but seeds will be planted and they will be favorably open-minded from then on.
But it looks to me like the LP is going after the small "progressive, cosmopolitan" pro-homosexual demographic rather than the right-leaning Christian segment. I think it could have both, but it chooses to insult and reject the latter, a far larger demographic, sentencing the party to perpetual fringedom. Jason Kuznicki will be, I hope, an exception.
Thursday, June 14, 2007
This is one way to state Henry Hazlitt's "One Lesson" of economics.
It helps us understand the intersection of two big issues in our day: drugs and immigration. Neither of these two issues have been entrusted to the federal government by the Constitution. Whenever the government has attempted to solve problems in these areas, greater problems arise.
At least politicians in the early part of the 20th century understood this principle better than today's politicians. When teetotalers came to Washington D.C. seeking to impose their abstinence views on America, politicians said, rightly, that that Constitution had given them no authority to ban the sale of alcohol; the forces of temperance would have to amend the United States Constitution before Congress could take action.
What a bizarre theory of Constitutional interpretation! A strictly limited government of enumerated powers??
Well, that's what they thought back in the dark ages.
From an economic point of view, was it a good idea to amend the constitution and give the government the power to ban alcohol? No. Making alcohol illegal made it more profitable, and kept its distribution out of the hands of law-abiding people.
Johnny Torrio was Chicago's leading underworld figure in 1920 when alcohol became illegal. Torrio hired Al Capone to "persuade" vendors of illegal alcohol to buy only from Torrio. In 1925, a rival gang nearly rubbed out Torrio, who decided to get out of the criminal world while he was still alive. The Torrio "business" was handed over to Capone, who soon became extraordinarily rich and (therefore) extraordinarily powerful.
Capone could pay the police and politicians of Chicago more than the taxpayers could. It became difficult for the people to vote corrupt politicians out of office, because Capone's armed thugs were "poll-workers," "helping" Chicago's voters send the "right" candidates back to office.
By the 1930's, Americans were sick of all this, and took away from the federal government the power to make alcohol illegal (the 21st Amendment, repealing the 18th).
There were undoubtedly some people who were still saying, "But if we legalize alcohol, everyone will just be getting drunk all the time."
Fast-forward to Monday's Dallas Morning News: "Cartel's enforcers outpower their boss -- Zetas grow into paramilitary group now hitting Mexico's casinos." Drug Prohibition -- completely without Constitutional authority -- has created an army of Al Capones. Already controlling Mexico the way Capone controlled Chicago, paramilitary forces of this underworld empire are entering America as well. Their power will expand as long as drugs are illegal (and as long as the Christian worldview is banned from schools).
I have yet to see an article describing the intersection of drug profits and ballot box hackers, and the obvious lure of millions of potential Hispanic Democrats, but it requires no heightened powers of imagination to see the possibilities.
The solution to the terrifying prospects detailed in the DMN article above is as obvious as the end of Al Capone's reign: the government must end its unconstitutional "War on Drugs."
"But if we legalize drugs, everyone will just be getting stoned all the time."
Instead of following the Constitution, new additional unconstitutional powers are being proposed. Brian Farmer, who alerted me to the DMN article, continues to advocate a federal government-built Berlin Wall along the border. His article contains terrifying news of powerful drug-cartel forces, and this motivates him to join many others who advocate a more powerful federal Border Patrol, one which would ignore the rights described in the 4th Amendment not just for immigrants, but for all Americans. The problems he and other anti-immigration lobbyists cite as reasons for expanded government power would vanish if unconstitutional government would also vanish.
The Constitution gives the federal government power to decide who can become an American citizen ("naturalization"). It does not give that government power to regulate travel across borders, tell employers who they can hire, and search everyone's car without probable cause. The immigration-drug nexus is the excuse needed to create a totalitarian police state. The solution to all these problems is to return to the government that was created by the Constitution.
Wednesday, June 13, 2007
America truly is the bread-basket of the world. Not just in terms of agriculture, but in terms of a myriad of goods and services which raise the standard of living for billions of human beings.
What accounts for America's productivity? Historically it was the "protestant work ethic." But today, millions of Americans work only to accumulate "adult toys." And one has to wonder what percent of America's GDP consists of purely recreational items. Not that recreation is bad, but that the emphasis may have shifted from being of service to those in need, to a more selfish and short-term perspective.
In fact, the "work ethic" may have resulted in too much work, detracting from family and faith.
Finally, calculations of GDP may include government production and sales of weapons. Today America is the largest exporter of both pornography and tools of mass murder.
When the Puritans spoke of America as a "City upon a hill" they were quoting the Bible. When that same phrase is used today, it tends to shore up the idolatries of nationalism and materialism.
America is only as great as her God, and if America worships the creature rather than the Creator, then we endanger the prospects of passing on the blessings of liberty to our posterity. A high GDP cannot save us, nor the government that takes credit for it.
Tuesday, June 12, 2007
Whether he's lazy, a liar, or logically-challenged, Jason Kuznicki continues to attack me (see "The Latest Looniness"). Jason says I am "all in favor of letting child molesters go free." Either he's too lazy to inform himself of my views, hasn't studied enough logic to make good inferences, or just doesn't like libertarians.
I suspect Jason feels a sense of power by telling his readers how terrible "the bad guys" are. I know that feeling. The ability to "expose" error and denounce "heretics" was my stock in trade for many years. It was more important for me to be able to say Prof. X teaches very bad things and know that my devoted hearers would all shun Prof. X than it was for me to accurately represent Prov. X's position, or initiate a respectful dialogue in an attempt to win Prof. X to the truth. "Us vs. Them" is very powerful. I'm trying to get away from all that.
My purpose in this post is to correct misunderstandings of my own position (and preclude future misrepresentations), and not to say bad things about Jason. But since Jason is calling me a "loon," and I think this is unjustified, I'm unavoidably implying bad things about Jason's abilities to understand my position, or to report it fairly.
I received a call from Libertarian Party headquarters asking me to remove the statement that Jason quoted. I'm happy to comply, as the remark was foolishly provocative. "Bad publicity is better than no publicity at all," as I say several times on my website. I love making controversial statements to pique reader interest. LP HQ knows better in this case. Perhaps they thought that some unscrupulous statist journalist or a mudslinging staffer in Roy Blunt's campaign would dig up the remark and use it to discredit libertarians.
Alas, it was a libertarian who wants to discredit another libertarian.
Jason is intelligent enough to realize that I believe child molestation, besitality, and homosexuality are grossly sinful (the Bible calls them an "abomination") and should never be allowed to occur on this planet. This understanding is what prompted him to make his first comments about me, in which he accused me of advocating castration for homosexuals. It was Thomas Jefferson, not I, who advocated castration for homosexuals; I simply agreed with Jefferson that homosexuals should not be executed, which was then the practice in Virginia, based on the prevailing view of the Bible, the basis of American Law.
Jason said I "implied" that homosexuals should be castrated. Actually, Jason erroneously inferred that. Before attacking another libertarian, Jason should have checked out my position on the subject, which clearly opposes all violence against homosexuals, including "legal" violence initiated by the State:
As long as Christians are not rounded up for saying that homosexuality is a sin, I will continue to try to persuade my friends on the Religious Right not to initiate force or violence (in the form of criminal laws) against homosexuals.Nobody reading my webpage on homosexuality could fairly walk away saying, "I think he's implying that homosexuals should be castrated." Jason has an ax to grind.
The Old Testament says that homosexuality, bestiality and child molestation are worthy of death. I believe Christ's execution was the last execution. If he were here today, I would like to think that Jefferson -- who agrees with me on the issue of capital punishment for homosexuals -- would change his position and agree with me on the issue of castration.
I believe Jefferson would also agree with me that the Constitution did not give the federal government power to tell Virginia what to do with homosexuals. Jefferson would, I presume, agree that the Republican-appointed Justices on the U.S. Supreme Court made the wrong decision in Lawrence v. Texas, the staged murder-sodomy mystery in which the federal government asserted the power to re-write state laws on homosexuality.
The issue of homosexuality leads naturally to the issue of child molestation. Homosexual activist George Painter has surveyed the numerous legal challenges to anti-homosexuality laws in the various states, and his data reveals that nearly half of all the homosexuality cases that came before courts involved children. Man-child sex is too frequently a theme among homosexuals from ancient Rome to today. This is not to deny there are some homosexuals -- and if it's true, I'll say "many" -- who are repulsed by child-sex. I personally have never known any homosexual I've been acquainted with to engage in or approve of child molestation. But the court cases that eventually led to Lawrence v. Texas are numerous and grisly. Any society that legitimizes homosexuality is inviting more child molestation. If Jefferson would disagree with that position, I'm sure he would also be disagreeing with an overwhelming majority of America's Founding Fathers.
In our day, both homosexuality and child molestation are virtually legalized. The government has destroyed the market for morality. Child molestation is legalized because too many people will not do anything to stop it. Too many people know that "Aunt Fred" is homosexual, and too many people won't take action if the heterosexual stepfather next door is known to molest children. Too many people feel like "that's the government's job." "Maybe someday he'll get caught and go to jail." But they lack self-government.
The Bible says that if you know your ox has an inclination to gore people, and you don't keep your ox penned up, you share in the guilt if someone gets hurt by your ox. Society has a responsibility to keep child molesters from molesting children -- and when I say "society" I do not mean "the government"; I mean every individual. Voluntary associations need to be created in a Free Market to help individuals sequester child molesters, and these efforts need to be backed up by churches, schools, landlords, grocers, and the rest of "society."
Simply "punishing" a child molester after it happens is gross negligence, even if that's the "legal" remedy. Steps should be taken to prevent it from happening.
I spent quite some time describing these efforts in my post to Jason, with links to other sources, which made clear, I think, that I want to eliminate child molestation, bestiality, and homosexuality, but not by passively waiting for "the government" -- a well-governed society needs more government than "the government" provides. But Jason chose to characterize me as a looney libertarian who is "all in favor of letting child molesters go free." As if I think their behavior is morally acceptable. This will not enhance Jason's reputation as a trustworthy and reliable blogger, at least in my mind.
If the evil has been done and I am limited to the choice between executing them or castrating them, as a Christian I would be forced to let them go free, and hope it's still legal for me to persuade people to "quarantine" them and not to tolerate their "sexual orientation," and to create free-market institutions which pressure child molesters to stay "in the closet" and away from children, until they are freed from their sinful habits.
The most important plank in my congressional campaign may well be education. Education must be taken out of the hands of the federal government and returned to parents. Federally controlled education is imposing an anti-Christian worldview on America. The overwhelming majority of parents do not want their children taught that homosexuality is good. They know that children who are taught that homosexuality is OK grow up to be less successful than Americans who were taught Christian morality. I want to see restored the disgust, the revulsion, even the horror that Americans once had for child molestation, bestiality, and homosexuality, but restore this worldview without violence by "the government" or by individuals. When our society departs from Christian teachings regarding homosexuality, bestiality and "intergenerational sex," we lose the possibility of sustaining a free market economy and the rule of law. America's Founding Fathers recognized that Christian self-government is more important than "the government" in preserving liberty and order.
Sunday, June 10, 2007
I'd like to think that the criticisms leveled at me by Jason Kuznicki ("Kevin Craig’s Strange Libertarianism") and Steven Horwitz ("A 'Libertarian' Candidate for Congress") would not have been written had they read my "Response to Jason" first (Obviously that was not possible.)
Nevertheless, I'd like to respond to some specifics.
Tibor Machan leaves a comment on Jason's blog in which he calls me a "bigot." Technically this is correct. "Bigot" is defined as:
One who is strongly partial to one's own group, religion, race, or politics and is intolerant of those who differ.The greatest figures in all of history are "bigots" by this definition, and they are the people who are most admired for getting something done to diminish the power of religious and political movements which are agreed to be false or oppressive. If your own group is true, "bigotry" is the only rational position.
Bigotry against race is never rational. Tolerance (the opposite of bigotry) of evil is also insane.
The key word in the definition above is, of course, "intolerant."
Perhaps you know a parent who will not "tolerate" a child's messy room. The child will not get dessert, outside play, or time on the PlayStation until the room is brought to order. The child is not locked in a cell with a felon for 5-10 years, or executed.
Some people do not tolerate smoking. "Not inside my home, please." They do not levy fines which will be collected by armed marshals.
Libertarians are bigoted against Hitler and Keynes (though not necessarily for the latter's sexual preferences).
In all these examples, our bigoted intolerance is one of attitude, thought, or opinion, and does not extend to the initiation of force or violence. Nor does it permit misrepresentation of our opponent's beliefs or practices.
"Bigot," as used by most people, and regrettably even the esteemed Tibor Machen, is simply a slur, designed to engender an irrational emotional response. Its effect is to deter people from learning the facts and coming to a well-reasoned verdict. It is "preaching to the choir."
Prof. Horwitz says,
For someone like me, who thinks libertarians ought to be part of a broader, more cosmopolitan, progressive political movement, having LP candidates like Mr. Craig is enough to make me stop calling myself a libertarian.I have commented on this attitude elsewhere. It changes "libertarianism" from a political postion on government policies to a social ideology or morality. Its enemy is no longer the government's initiation of force, it is various "thought crimes" which are offensive to a generally non- or anti-Christian demographic. It's not enough that I advocate the complete repeal of all government restrictions or sanctions against homosexuality, I have to like it; I have to have a positive mental attitude toward it.
The "cosmopolitan, progressive" perspective is really just an anti-Christian bigotry.
Statistically speaking, I think it safe to say that for every "cosmopolitan, progressive" voter there are 8 voters who are more conservative, and are repulsed by a "progressive" "homosexual chic" worldview. These voters might be persuaded to eliminate homosexuality from the penal code, but only by someone who admits that it is immoral. They might eventually be willing to say homosexuality should not be a crime, as long as they are free to believe it is a sin.
My policies are more libertarian than Thomas Jefferson's, because I am calling for the complete de-criminalization of sodomy. But still, I am a "bigot" because I believe (along with the first 250 years of Americans) that homosexuality, bestiality, and pedophilia are all "sinful" actions, and violations of God's commandments, and I don't tolerate any of these "lifestyles" in any sphere of personal authority (family members in my home, employees in my business, comments on my blog, the classroom in which I teach, the pulpit from which I preach, the property I rent, and customers with whom I do business), and I try to persuade others to be non-violently intolerant of these "lifestyles" as well, on the grounds both of the Bible and the historical fact that they undermine civilization.
People who are bigoted against each other's moral views can still join arms and be bigoted against a common political enemy.
If the Libertarian Party refuses to appeal to Christians who are not "cosmopolitan" and "progressive," then government regulation will increase as the LP loses political strength. Libertarianism will be confused with libertinism or "cultural libertarianism." Conversely, if the "cosmopolitan, progressive" element of the LP will become less bigoted toward conservative Christian bigots like me, the ranks of the LP will grow immensely.
Saturday, June 09, 2007
I am running for U.S. Congress. Under the U.S. Constitution, which all Congressmen must take an oath to support, the federal government has no authority to repeal state anti-sodomy laws. Repeal of state laws must come from the bottom up, not the top down.
If you read my platform on homosexuality, which is linked on the blog post you commented on, you'll see that I oppose all government penal sanctions against homosexuality. As a libertarian, I consider such laws to be an unwarranted "initiation of force." I advocate the abolition of the federal government, and all federal laws concerning homosexuality, as well as abolition of the state governments, and their anti-sodomy laws.
I am, as you can see, a radical libertarian.
I believe America's Founding Fathers were radical libertarians as well. They said it is our duty to abolish any government which "becomes destructive" of the rights God has given us. Our government today is ten times more oppressive than the one they fought to abolish. I'm confident the Founders would agree with my agenda if they were here today.
They were also radical Christians (at least in the eyes of the ACLU) because they believed the State was "under God."
I believe no civil government belongs in the bedroom. Of course, Jason, you may agree with 99% of most Americans, who believe the civil government belongs in the bedroom if an adult is sexually molesting a child. Most people believe there should be SOME government in bedrooms.
[I edited a sentence out of this paragraph. Details here.] Whatever you do in your bedroom is no business of jackbooted thugs from Washington D.C. But I'm also a Christian, and as a Christian libertarian, I believe I have the right to evict a child molester if he's renting the bedroom from me. That could well be illegal under current "anti-discrimination" statutes, which prohibit landlords from "discrimination" against tenants based on "sexual preference."
As a Christian, I agree with every single person who signed the Constitution: homosexuality is a violation of "the Laws of Nature and of Nature's God." Americans should be free to "impose" their morality on themselves, their families, their businesses, and all other voluntary associations and organizations which they form or to which they belong. They should be able to form contracts which "discriminate" against homosexuals, and have those contracts enforced by Arbitration Associations agreed upon by both the Christian and the homosexual in advance.
You say "no government of any type belongs in the bedroom." I believe no government of the political/legal/civil type belongs anywhere. But I believe in self-government. America is a land of "Liberty Under God," which means freedom from State oppression, but America is also a land of self-government in terms of Christian morality. America's Founding Fathers believed limited civil government was possible only with self-government by people who had been raised with Christian morality.
Thus, I believe in "anarchy" as far as "the State" is concerned, and I believe in Christian "Theocracy" everywhere else. I oppose "the State" because it is the institutionalization of systematic violence. I believe in "Liberty UNDER GOD," as my campaign slogan recites.
Let me ask you a question, Jason: How libertarian are you really? Do you believe Christians should be free to discriminate against homosexuals in their own businesses or contractual relationships? Do you believe Christians should be free to publish negative information about homosexuality which is calculated to persuade people not to tolerate homosexuals in their business or contractual relationships? Would you be willing to repeal all government laws against "discrimination" (including "discrimination" based on "sexual preference") and grant these freedoms to Christians in exchange for the abolition of all government anti-sodomy laws? I believe government is on the side of homosexuals, and if government were cut back to libertarian standards, Christians would benefit more than homosexuals.
For a Biblical defense of anarchism and the abolition of all "government laws" against homosexuality and child molestation, see:
For an explanation of how libertarianism actually increases the amount of government we have (that is, "self-government"), and how libertarianism would increase opportunities for Christians to "impose" God's Law on our society, see:
In a Christian libertarian Theocracy, child molestation will be unacceptable. But violence will also be an unacceptable response to child molestation, which is why it will be "legal" -- that is, no government violence will be meted out against perpetrators. But segregation of child molesters and children will be acceptable, so there will be ways to accomplish this. Child molesters will be boycotted. Landlords will not rent to tenants who are child molesters, in order to make their apartments "family friendly." Grocers will not sell food to child molesters. Employers will not hire child molesters. Knowledge about who is and who is not a child molester is already publicly available. There will arise various Christian ministries which will contact these people, saying, "We understand you're a child molester. You're probably having trouble getting a job, a place to stay, and someone to sell things to you. Our ministry can help you overcome your sin, and once you graduate from our program and we accredit you, members of our network will hire you, rent to you, and sell to you."
In a Libertarian Theocracy, no "government" of a political type is involved, but there is obviously more "government" in terms of self-government, neighborhood government, workplace government, commercial government, etc. All voluntary. All non-violent This process would work to reduce crimes by theives, embezzlers, shoplifters (all of whom would be required to make resititution to their victims), murderers, abortionists, child molesters and homosexuals.
I believe crimes would be more infrequent when they are "legalized" by Christian Theocrats than they are when they are "criminalized" by government politicians.
And of course, all these ideas will not appear quite so bizarre when government no longer forces all schools to be secular, and parents can make sure their children are taught the ideas of America's Christian Founding Fathers.
I hope this helps explain how I harmonize radical libertarianism and radical Christianity.
Friday, June 08, 2007
In the 1970's, North was a staffer for Congressman Ron Paul, and North has a lot of inside info, including an admission by Larry McDonald, darling of the John Birch Society, that voting for the "lesser of two evils" can be a terrible mistake.
This reminds me of a website I put together before the 2000 elections, encouraging conservatives not to vote Republican by addressing the "I'll waste my vote if I don't vote for the 'winner'" syndrome:
I updated the page slightly before the 2004 elections, and I'm going to have to give it a make-over for 2008. I have secured a new domain for it:
Suggestions appreciated, as always.
Four general groups of conditions may be encountered in homosexually active men: classical sexually transmitted diseases (gonorrhea, infections with Chlamydia trachomatis, syphilis, herpes simplex infections, genital warts, pubic lice, scabies); enteric diseases (infections with Shigella species, Campylobacter jejuni, Entamoeba histolytica, Giardia lamblia, hepatitis A, hepatitis B, hepatitis non-A, non-B, and cytomegalovirus); trauma (fecal incontinence, hemorrhoids, anal fissure, foreign bodies, rectosigmoid tears, allergic proctitis, penile edema, chemical sinusitis, inhaled nitrite burns, and sexual assault of the male patient); and the acquired immunodeficiency syndrome (AIDS).Jason Kuznicki, drawing on an essay by Princeton University professor emeritus Harry Frankfurt, says Holsinger is full of "bullshit," by which he means a complete indifference to the truth or falsity of facts alleged, but simply a desire to scare people.
I, for one, am scared.
As Jefferson put it, "I tremble for my country when I reflect that God is just; (and) that His justice cannot sleep forever." I believe homosexuality is a sin, and under the U.S. Constitution, the states are free to make it a crime. I agree with Jefferson, that capital punishment is not appropriate for the crime of homosexuality (Jefferson advocated castration). But a society that tolerates homosexuality is headed away from civilization into barbarism.
Many Libertarians will write me (and Jefferson) off as hopelessly backward, or "homophobic." "Phobia" is completely inaccurate. To quote Prof. Frankfurt, it is "bullshit." This is not an emotional issue, or a "phobia," for me or for Jefferson. My position against homosexuality is rational and constitutional: Every single person who signed the Constitution believed that homosexuality was contrary to "the Laws of Nature and of Nature's God."
Kuznicki raises an excellent point, however, concerning the existence of "The Surgeon General." According to the government's website,
In 1798, Congress established the U.S. Marine Hospital Service—predecessor to today’s U.S. Public Health Service—to provide health care to sick and injured merchant seamen. In 1870, the Marine Hospital Service was reorganized as a national hospital system with centralized administration under a medical officer, the Supervising Surgeon, who was later give the title of Surgeon General.Conservatives against "sodomy" and libertines against "homophobia" will continue arguing, or labeling the arguments of the other as "BS." Kuznicki writes:
Perhaps we’re not actually going to agree on any of these issues. But adding a bureaucrat in a uniform — empowered to give “official” opinions — doesn’t do one thing to clarify the debate. It just makes you and I [sic] fight all the harder, in order to make our own opinion the official one.This is a position with which all libertarians can agree. The office and practice of the Surgeon General is beyond the authority delegated to the federal government by "We the People" in the Constitution.
All of which raises the question: Might we be better off without these political drama queens? Why don’t we just close down the theater, mothball that silly costume, and carry on with our plain old doctors?
Tuesday, June 05, 2007
As tens of thousands of protesters prepare for the G8 Summit in Germany, Bush is preparing to face tension over the issue of the environment from the other seven industrialized nations. Patrick J. Michaels, Senior Fellow at the CATO Institute, sums up the differences:
President Bush recently announced plans for a new international agreement limiting future carbon dioxide emissions. But Europeans insist that any post-Kyoto climate pact be formulated and administered by the United Nations -- this is not an insignificant difference.
The UN's track record on climate change is abysmal. The Kyoto Protocol is its only legacy. If every nation of the world abided by its emissions targets, there would be no detectable reduction in warming, even fifty years from now. But even the EU isn't going to hit its Kyoto targets. Given this history, it's fair to ask why the UN should even be asked to produce another climate treaty.
The U.S. wants emissions caps from China and India, as well as from the G8. It is unclear that the UN can accomplish this, even though China is likely to become the world's largest emitter by 2009. Any agreement that does not include them will most certainly have little effect on climate change.
It is important to remember these facts: Even if the demands of global warming propagandists were implemented, we will not stop global warming. There is agreement on this fact from virtually all sides. It is especially true that the vaunted Kyoto Protocol will not stop global warming, since the developing countries that are rapidly becoming the largest emitters of greenhouse gases are not covered.
Environmentalists want such restrictions on "Greenhouse gases" imposed even though it will not stop global warming because they want to force human beings to live a "sustainable lifestyle" (whatever that means). For a toxicly-high percentage of environmentalists, "sustainable lifestyle" means something like the Indians "enjoyed" before Columbus.
Forcing human beings to live a "natural" lifestyle is more important to environmentalists than global warming. If the only people on earth were environmentalists living a "sustainable lifestyle," and global warming were discovered, environmentalists would do absolutely nothing about it, because the climate change would be "natural." The goal of the global warming movement is to impose the morality of their "Gaia" religion on human behavior, not stop global warming.
Our foreign affairs should be based on the "essential principle of our government" (Jefferson), "the great rule of conduct for us" (Geo.Washington): "peace, commerce, and honest friendship with all nations, entangling alliances with none."
NATO is an "entangling alliance," and Buchanan notes that Bush's policies are "moving a U.S.-led military alliance into the front yard and onto the side porch of a country with thousands of nuclear weapons."
For each U.S. incursion into Eurasia, we should ask the question Buchanan asks: "Would we accept any commensurate Chinese or Russian move in the Caribbean?"
America should follow the example of Switzerland, and stop trying to be the policeman of the world.
Peace and Security Through Defense and Neutrality
An Interview With Stephen P. Halbrook
The Islamo-Fascist Rationale for Abandoning Liberty
Terrorism Comes With Empire
An Evening With Dr. Ron Paul
America should also follow the original vision of her Founders: to be a "City upon a Hill." This meant working on being a nation of virtue, not an international pit bull. When the nation's capitol was moved from Philadelphia to Washington D.C., President John Adams told Congress,
It would be unbecoming the representatives of this nation to assemble for the first time in this solemn temple without looking up to the Supreme Ruler of the Universe and imploring His blessing.Adams' pro-Christian remarks, and the official government endorsement of Christianity which was found in the Declaration of Independence and throughout Americas founding charters, are now "unconstitutional," and the U.S. now exports more pornography and weapons around the world than missionaries and Bibles. Jerry Falwell was correct to suggest that God had raised up terrorists to remind America that we have a log in our eye. Perhaps now Falwell sees the wisdom of not sending our military around the globe to deal with specks in the eyes of others.
May this territory be the residence of virtue and happiness! In this city may that piety and virtue, that wisdom and magnanimity, that constancy and self-government, which adorned the great character whose name it bears be forever held in veneration! Here and throughout our country may simple manners, pure morals, and true religion flourish forever!
"Simple Manners" is good domestic policy, and good foreign policy.
I have, however, been more interested in the Sibel Edmonds case.
This recent video makes the connection between Edmonds and Plame of which I was previously unaware.
Sunday, June 03, 2007
Jan Grzebski's Polish wife cared for him for 19 years while he was in a coma.
"For 19 years Mrs. Grzebska did the job of an experienced intensive care team, changing her comatose husband's position every hour to prevent bed-sore infections," Super Express reported Dr. Boguslaw Poniatowski as saying.
As a result, her husband awoke to see a new Poland, free of communism.
"When I went into a coma there was only tea and vinegar in the shops, meat was rationed and huge petrol lines were everywhere," Grzebski told TVN24, describing his recollections of the communist system's economic collapse.
"Now I see people on the streets with cell phones and there are so many goods in the shops it makes my head spin."
"The world is prettier now" than it was under communism, his wife Gertruda said Sunday.
But the real beauty here is not the cell phones and goods produced by a market economy, but the love of a spouse, day after day, for 19 years.
Friday, June 01, 2007
Josef Mengele was the Nazi "doctor" who allegedly performed "scientific" experiments on inmates at Auschwitz-Birkenau. He died in Brazil in 1979.
I meant "Jack Kevorkian," the Nazi "doctor" who wants to perform "scientific" experiments on inmates, the elderly, and the depressed.
How could I have gotten the two confused?
See "Dr. Death Returns," by Wesley J. Smith in today's National Review online. Additional links are provided by Marc Vander Maas in "Death With Dignity, Redux," on the Acton Institute PowerBlog. Smith writes:
In actuality, most of Kevorkian’s “patients” were not terminally ill, but disabled and depressed. Several weren’t even sick, according to their autopsies. Moreover, Kevorkian never attempted to treat any of the 130 or so persons who traveled to Michigan to be hooked up to his suicide machines to die either by drug overdose or carbon monoxide poisoning.Smith quotes the creepy Kevorkian:
And as for compassion — forget about it. Kevorkian was never in the killing business to alleviate unbearable suffering. Indeed, over the course of decades he repeatedly explained his ultimate goals in professional journals and in his 1991 book, Prescription Medicide. As Jack Kevorkian articulately expresses it himself, compassion had absolutely nothing to do with it.
I feel it is only decent and fair to explain my ultimate aim….It is not simply to help suffering and doomed persons kill themselves—that is merely the first step, an early distasteful professional obligation (now called medicide) that nobody in his or her right mind could savor. [W]hat I find most satisfying is the prospect of making possible the performance of invaluable experiments or other beneficial medical acts under conditions that this first unpleasant step can help establish—in a word obitiatry.Kevorkian's desires to engage in human experimentation that would lead to death ("obitiatry") were banned by the Nuremberg Tribunal.
The so-called Nuremberg Code and all its derivatives completely ignore the extraordinary opportunities for terminal experimentation on humans facing imminent and inevitable death...[including] the extraction of medical benefit from the process of judicial execution from those dying of irremediable illness or trauma and from suicide mandated by inflexible religious or philosophical principles or by irrevocable personal choice. Other potential subjects include comatose, brain dead, or totally incapacitated individuals as well as live fetuses in or out of the womb."Dang that Nuremburg Tribunal!"
(Kevorkian, writing in a 1986 edition of Medicine and Law.)
Kevorkian then concluded that euthanasia provided the biggest pool of subjects for human experimentation, so he went to the Netherlands to learn more about legalized euthanasia. Upon his return, “inspired by my visit to the Netherlands, I decided to take the risky step of assisting terminal patients in committing suicide.”
Don't expect CBS News' Mike Wallace to make the Nuremberg connections during his upcoming 60 Minutes interview with "Dr. Death," any more than the media exposes the killing of hundreds of thousands in Iraq as a part of the federal government's geo-political experimentation (democide).