Have nothing to do with the [evil] things that people do, things that belong to the darkness. Instead, bring them out to the light... [For] when all things are brought out into the light, then their true nature is clearly revealed...

-Ephesians 5:11-13

Tag Archives: Freedom

Simmering Greek Financial Crisis Explodes Once Again

This article appeared online at TheNewAmerican.com on Thursday, December 15, 2016:  

Under the terms of its last bailout, Athens (above) was required not only to continue to impose harsh austerity terms (higher taxes, less government spending, better accountability, and increased tax collection enforcement onto Greek citizens) but to inform the unelected “higher” European authorities of any change in those terms by Athens.

Last week Athens unilaterally

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Connecticut Democrat Pushes Electoral College to Vote for Hillary

This article appeared online at TheNewAmerican.com on Monday, December 12, 2016:  

Representative James Himes (D-Conn.), tweeted on Sunday night that Donald Trump is “completely unhinged” and that the Electoral College “must do what it was designed for”: vote for Hillary.

The following day CNN’s New Day interviewed the Connecticut congressman and asked him about his tweet. He responded: “What finally pushed me over the edge was when the president-elect of the United States criticized the CIA and the intelligence community.”  He urged the Electoral College, which meets on Monday, December 19, to vote for Clinton, even though such a vote would result in “an awful lot of litigation.”

And then the congressman unburdened himself of his understanding as to why the Founders provided for an Electoral College in Article II of the Constitution and pushed for its subsequent modification by the 12th Amendment, which was ratified on June 15, 1804:

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U.S. Steel Latest to Bring Jobs Back to the United States

This article appeared online at TheNewAmerican.com on Thursday, December 8, 2016:  

U.S. Steel

In an interview with CNBC on Wednesday, U.S. Steel’s CEO Mario Longhi said he’d like to bring back up to 10,000 jobs to the United States:

We’re already structured to do some things, but when you see in the near future improvements to the tax laws, improvements to regulation, those two things by themselves may be a significant driver to what we’re going to do….

 

I’d be more than happy to bring back the employees we’ve been forced to lay off during [the Great Recession].

His company used to employ 37,000 people but that dropped to just 21,000 as of last December, thanks not only to the Great Recession and its almost immeasurably small recovery but also due to excessive regulations:

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Fewer Americans Trust Mainstream Media

This article appeared online at TheNewAmerican.com on Friday, December 2, 2016:  

English: The New York Times building in New Yo...

When Michael Goodwin, a 10-year veteran writer for the New York Times, saw the extent of the bias displayed by the Times in its coverage of the recent presidential election, and by the mainstream media in general, he called it “shameful”:

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Trump Picks Elaine Chao for Transportation Secretary

This article appeared online at TheNewAmerican.com on Wednesday, November 30, 2016:  

Labor Secretary Elaine Chao.

President-elect Donald Trump picked Elaine Chao shown) for secretary of the U.S. Department of Transportation on Tuesday, raising concerns about her connections with the Republican establishment as well as China. Some of those concerns are balanced by her affiliations with pro-freedom and pro-free market organizations.

If confirmed, she will face a host of issues,

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Who Knew Mexico Had So Much Oil? Who Cared?

This article was published by The McAlvany Intelligence Advisor on Monday, November 28, 2016:  

According to the CIAs 2015 World Factbook, Mexico had less than 10 billion barrels of proven crude oil reserves as of last December. That placed the country at 17th position, just ahead of Angola and just behind Algeria. The fact that it had ten times more than that underground and under the Gulf of Mexico didnt matter. If you cant get to it, it doesnt count.

And ever since 1938 a succession of Mexican statist presidents made sure no one could get to it. When then-President Lazaro Cardenas consolidated all foreign oil producers by nationalizing their properties, he named the resulting company Pemex. And then he and future presidents milked it for all it was worth, funding various socialist projects, setting up retirement plans for their political cronies, and in general ignoring the untapped reserves lying just offshore.

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Obama Presents Presidential Medal of Freedom to DeGeneres, Others

This article appeared online at TheNewAmerican.com on Friday, November 25, 2016:  

President Obama awarded the Presidential Medal of Freedom on Tuesday to 21 individuals, telling them how impressive they are in their life experiences and adding: “These 21 individuals have helped push America forward, inspiring millions of people around the world along the way…. Everyone on this stage has touched me in a very powerful, personal way, in ways that they probably couldn’t imagine.”

The award is the highest civilian award offered by the United States and is supposed to recognize those who

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Four More Police Officers Shot Over the Weekend

This article appeared online at TheNewAmerican.com on Monday, November 21, 2016:  

The Naked Communist

The murders of five Dallas police officers in July were the worst record of police shootings since the terrorist attacks on the United States in September 2001, but since that time violence has continued against police at high rates. Between 11:45 a.m. and 10:30 p.m. Sunday, four law-enforcement officials were shot, one of them dying from his wounds.

The first shooting took place in San Antonio, Texas, when

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Trump Amplifies His Second Amendment Position

This article appeared online at TheNewAmerican.com on Sunday, November 13, 2016:  

On Friday Donald Trump posted an expanded version of his position on the Second Amendment, including his position on concealed carry permits. Earlier his vision statement “Constitution and Second Amendment” said simply that he would “defend the rights of law-abiding gun owners [including the] national right to carry [which] should be legal in all 50 states.” His expanded vision statement added this:

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Mass. Superior Court: State’s AG May Demand “Safety” Info From Glock, Remington

This article appeared online at TheNewAmerican.com on Wednesday, November 9, 2016:  

Back in July Massachusetts’ anti-gun Attorney General Maura Healey unilaterally rewrote the law on what constitutes an “assault” weapon and then banned them under her new definition.

At the same time, she issued imperious demands from Remington and Glock to provide her office with all manner of private company information relating to the “safety” of the companies’ ammunition and firearms.

Her anti-gun ideology was clear when she banned the newly defined assault weapons, saying,

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The Dumbing Down of America is NOT Complete

This article appeared online at TheNewAmerican.com on Friday, October 28, 2016:  

Rensselaer Polytechnic Institute

YouTube videos of interviews with college students showing their often abysmal ignorance on even basic issues have recently surfaced. One YouTube video, for instance, asks students, “Who won the Civil War?” Those quizzed didn’t know, or they didn’t know there was one, or if it occurred in 1965. Another YouTube video asks students attending George Mason University to identify a photograph of Vice President Joe Biden. None of them could, including one student majoring in political science.

Walter Williams added to the dismay by noting that

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Tom Hayden’s Passing: New York Times’ Eulogy Versus Reality

This article was published by The McAlvany Intelligence Advisor on Wednesday, October 26, 2016:  

English: Activist and author Tom Hayden (left)...

Activist and author Tom Hayden (left) with Mark Rudd. Hayden was promoting his book, “Ending The War In Iraq”

When Barbara Williams, Tom Hayden’s third wife, discovered that her husband, Tom Hayden, had died on Sunday, one of the first things she did was to let the New York Times know. He’d had a stroke last year but it didn’t incapacitate him severely enough to keep him from attending the Democratic Party’s national convention as a delegate in July. But it was enough to do him in. He fell ill while at the convention and never recovered.

Apparently she knew that the Times would treat his passing with all the dignity usually accorded one of their own:

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“I’m With Hillary” Letter Published at Medium.com was Written by a Clinton Staffer

This article was published by The McAlvany Intelligence Advisor on Monday, October 24, 2016:  

Medium.com claims to be “a community of readers and writers offering unique perspectives on ideas large and small.” Here are excerpts from one writer offering her perspectives on Hillary who was published on January 12 this year:

This week, President Obama announced that he’ll take new steps to take on gun violence in America – and not a moment too soon. Every day 88 Americans are shot and killed and hundreds more are injured with guns. We can’t go on like this.

 

My stepfather shot me when I was just a child 45 years ago and in the years since I’ve become an advocate for preventing both domestic abuse and gun violence. Tragically, those two things come together and end in tragedy with alarming regularity. In fact, 52 women are shot and killed every month by intimate partners.

Here is the part that might have been written by the author, one Clai Lasher:

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Claim of “Negligent Entrustment” Fails in Lawsuit Against Remington Arms

This article was published by The McAlvany Intelligence Advisor on Monday, October 17, 2016:  

Remington Arms

Lawyers decided to attempt to nullify a law passed by Congress a decade ago protecting the gun industry from frivolous (and costly) lawsuits. The law, the Protection of Lawful Commerce in Arms Act (PLCAA), signed into law by President George Bush in 2005, specifically and deliberately prohibits civil liability actions against any part of America’s gun industry for damages or injunctive or other relief resulting from the misuse – criminal or otherwise – of their products.

There’s an exception built into the law called “negligent entrustment” which

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Frederic Bastiat Wouldn’t Approve of Social Security

This article was published by The McAlvany Intelligence Advisor on Wednesday, October 12, 2016:  

Frédéric Bastiat

Frédéric Bastiat

Frederic Bastiat was a “classical liberal” who lived briefly in the first half of the 19th century in France. But his legacy, including his development of the fallacy of the broken window through his Parable of the Broken Window continues to resonate today. He is perhaps best known for his definition of “legal plunder”:

But how is this legal plunder to be identified? Quite simply. See if the law takes from some persons what belongs to them, and gives it to other persons to whom it does not belong. See if the law benefits one citizen at the expense of another by doing what the citizen himself cannot do without committing a crime.

When it was enforced at the point of a pistol by a government bureaucrat, Bastiat opposed it:

I do not dispute [politicians’] right to invent social combinations, to advertise them, to advocate them, and to try them upon themselves, at their own expense and risk. But I do dispute their right to impose these plans upon us by law – by force – and to compel us to pay for them with our taxes.

There’s little doubt, then, that Bastiat would support the philosophy of The Bastiat Society, founded a dozen years ago:

Capitalism is the only economic system to produce widespread peace and prosperity. But if those in the private sector do not understand the intellectual and cultural institutions that make entrepreneurship and peaceful trade possible, what chance do they have to withstand a steady series of attacks from those who desire to bring capitalism and personal freedom to an end?

One of the battles that freedom lost was Social Security. Enacted as part of FDR’s Great Society, it remains a fixture that appears to be immovable. Today the only conversation heard is how to keep it from going bankrupt.

All manner of “fixes” are proposed. Obama’s National Commission on Fiscal Responsibility and Reform came up with ten fixes while The Motley Fool proposed 15:

  1. Cut benefits across the board right now;
  2. Change the COLA;
  3. Raise the earnings cap;
  4. Allow beneficiaries to invest in the stock market;
  5. Do nothing and cut benefits when the [trust fund] is depleted;
  6. Do nothing and enact payroll tax hikes when the [trust fund] is depleted;
  7. Offer a buyout [to the wealthy, removing them from the program];
  8. Link life expectancies to benefit levels;
  9. Means-test [to qualify] for benefits;
  10. Raise the full retirement age;
  11. Use the Estate Tax to cover Social Security [shortfalls];
  12. Freeze the purchasing power of benefits [i.e., eliminate COLA altogether];
  13. Freeze the … benefits on a sliding scale;
  14. Transfer [some] costs to [the] government [now]; and/or
  15. Increase the payroll tax on everyone right now.

Social Security has the peculiar characteristics similar to Bernie Madoff’s Ponzi scheme: eventually it is exposed and it ends in bankruptcy. The difference is that Social Security is enforced by people with guns and badges: everyone must be covered and forced to support everyone else, or else.

No one questions the math: the program’s “trust fund” is slowly being liquidated to cover the annual shortfalls between revenues and benefits. Thanks to the Baby Boomers, the liquidation is increasing more rapidly: those Boomers have developed the nasty habit of living longer, far beyond the original mortality tables predicted back in the mid-1930s. There’s also the declining birth rate, which is reducing the number of new entrants into the system whose taxes are needed to support it.

It’s the ideology: freedom versus force. So-called conservatives want to fix it, as do liberals. Conservatives, when pressed, question the intergenerational conflict that requires young people to contribute to a plan paying benefits to seniors. They question the use of resources: tax and spend now, or save and invest for later. Conservatives even argue over who should control the money. They never question its morality.

Liberals think it’s a proper function of government, going along with the Supreme Court’s decision in Helvering v. Davis that the program is constitutional, the Tenth Amendment notwithstanding.

As economist Herb Stein noted: “If something cannot go on forever, it will stop.” With Social Security it will continue as long as it can be patched up with temporary fixes. Eventually the mathematics and the bond market will end it.

Court Upholds Freedom and the Fifth Amendment in Taxi Cartel Case

This article appeared online at TheNewAmerican.com on Monday, October 10, 2016:  

On the surface, Judge Richard Posner’s decisions, decided last Friday, appeared merely to expand the freedom of Uber, Lyft, and other ride-sharing services to operate more freely in Milwaukee and Chicago. Beneath the surface, however, Posner presents a refreshing and much-needed defense not only of freedom in general, but of the Fifth Amendment and the competitive free market as well.

Posner (shown above) is one of the most respected jurists in the country.

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The Background Check System is Working Well – at Keeping Guns Out of the Hands of Citizens Without Due Process

This article was published by the McAlvany Intelligence Advisor on Monday, October 10, 2016:

Seal of the United States Department of Justice

The Brady Campaign promised back in 1993 that a properly installed background check system, run by the ever-dependable and reliable FBI, would deny permission to criminals trying to buy a firearm. The latest report from the Inspector General of the Justice Department confirms that the system is working well: from 2008 to 2014, the NICS [National Instant Criminal Background Check System] denied approval of 556,000 requests for permission to purchase a firearm with an “accuracy rate that ranges from 99.3 percent to 99.8 percent.”

But buried on page four of the report was this:

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Maine Sheriffs Oppose Universal Background Check Ballot Initiative

This article appeared online at TheNewAmerican.com on Thursday, October 6, 2016:  

On the ballot in November in Maine will appear Question 3, requiring for the first time that a gun buyer and seller meet at a licensed gun dealer and go through a background check before transferring a firearm. If approved by Mainers, the requirement also will apply to those just lending a firearm to a friend.

On Tuesday, 12 of Maine’s 16 county sheriffs announced their formal opposition to the ballot initiative:

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Permitless Carry Passes in Missouri; Gun Sales Soar Nationwide

This article appeared online at TheNewAmerican.com on Wednesday, October 5, 2016:

Holster

Three weeks ago Missouri became the fourth state this year to allow “permitless” concealed carry of firearms by its citizens, its legislators voting to override Democrat Governor Jay Nixon’s veto of the bill. Missouri joins West Virginia, Mississippi, and Idaho in allowing its citizens this year to enjoy rights enshrined in the Second Amendment to the Constitution, bringing the total of such states to 12.

As Tim Schmidt, president of the U.S. Concealed Carry Association — which provides training and liability insurance coverage for its members — put it:

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The “Ratchet Effect” at Work Once Again, This Time Against Gunsmiths

This article was published by The McAlvany Intelligence Advisor on Monday, October 3, 2016:

English: This image is of economist Robert Higgs.

Robert Higgs

In interpersonal relations, the ratchet effect has been called “What’s mine is mine; what’s yours is negotiable.” In politics it’s been called “Two steps leftward, one step back.” Robert Higgs, a Senior Fellow in Political Economy at the Independent Institute for nearly a quarter century, described the effect much more elegantly: once a crisis that calls for more government has passed, state power usually recedes, but it rarely returns to its original levels; thus each emergency leaves the scope of government a little wider than before.

Thomas Jefferson put it this way: “The natural progress of things is for the government to gain ground and for liberty to yield.”

The latest example is the State Department, through its Directorate of Defense Trade Affairs (DDTC), expanding its definition of “gunsmithing” so that it is called “manufacturing,” thus allowing it to

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Many of the articles on Light from the Right first appeared on either The New American or the McAlvany Intelligence Advisor.