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: Socialism

What Liberties are We Actually Losing?

Washington DC - West Potomac Park: Thomas Jeff...

Washington DC – West Potomac Park: Thomas Jefferson Memorial (Photo credit: wallyg)

Russ Roberts received an interesting email that asks some important questions about the freedom fight:

You guys have been forecasting the arrival of universal serfdom for about as long as the left has been predicting the collapse of capitalism. Is the Road to Serfdom gridlocked? Did someone forget to gas the car? Has our dashboard GPS unit failed? Or our we just moving really slowly, the better to take in the scenery?

I mean, come on. I’m guessing that you, the readers of this blog are among the freest people in human history. You are free to go pretty much anywhere in the world you wish to go, free to buy pretty much anything that’s available for sale anywhere, free to think anything you want, say anything you want, read anything you want, watch anything you want on TV. And even after you’ve paid for all those dinners in nice restaurants, vacations in nice places, and homes in nice subdivisions, you still have enough left over to own shares of Apple or Google. You’re paying less in taxes than you have in decades. If you get really sick, or suffer a serious injury, you will receive top quality medical care than will not leave you penniless even though you might never be able to pay the full cost of your care yourself– thanks largely to the pre-eminently socialist institution known as “insurance.” And even if you’ve not made or saved lot of money in your lifetime, you will not be destitute in your old age, and you will not be allowed to die like a dog in the street. And so on.

Maybe I’ve missed something. But an itemized list of liberties of which you have been deprived, or that you are at risk of losing, might help me get up to speed.

What might such an “itemized list of liberties” look like if you got an email like this? Or if a skeptic asked you face-to-face?

Roberts fumbles around with

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Ann Coulter’s True Colors

English: Commentator and author at CPAC in .

English: Commentator and author at CPAC in . (Photo credit: Wikipedia)

For the most part I enjoy reading Ann Coulter’s columns. True, sometimes she is over the top with her vitriol, but most of the time her targets deserve it.

But her column today betrays her. She makes two mistakes immediately – two incorrect assumptions in my view – and comes out with the inevitable wrong conclusion: Romney is our man!

Assumption number one:

The single most important issue in this election is ending the national nightmare of Obamacare.

If Obamacare if not stopped, it will permanently change the political culture of this country. There will be no going back. America will become a less productive, less wealthy nation. What wealth remains will have to be plowed into Obamacare — to the delight only of the tens of thousands of government bureaucrats administering it.

Has she been away? There is credible persuasive evidence that the slide – the push – into socialism began in 1887 when President Cleveland signed into law the Interstate Commerce Act. Others say it began in earnest under

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George McGovern Wins Plaudits from a Conservative

English: head-and-shoulders portrait of Senato...

Senator George McGovern speaking into a microphone (Photo credit: Wikipedia)

Cal Thomas has been a fixture in the conservative landscape for years. A prolific writer and an activist, he was vice president of the Moral Majority from 1980 to 1985 and then wrote a book, Blinded by Might, explaining its failure to transform society through political action.

In preparation for an article I wrote for The New American on George McGovern, I found something entirely distasteful about him that no amount of gloss from Thomas can hide. Thomas said:

I will remember him for something other than his politics. George McGovern was a friend.

After his Senate re-election defeat in 1980, McGovern and I debated on college campuses and in other venues. These debates were always civil because McGovern was a gentleman. After one debate at Butler University in Indianapolis, a fellow conservative invited me to dinner.

“Thank you,” I said, “but George and I have dinner plans.”

“How can you eat with a man like that?” he said with an equal mix of surprise and disgust.

“Easy,” I said. “He’s a friend of mine.”

Here’s what I learned about McGovern that Thomas ignored (he must have known about it as well): McGovern was a fellow at

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Obama Honors Cesar Chavez, Naturally

Duncan West speaking with Cesar Chavez. The De...

Cesar Chavez (Photo credit: Wikipedia)

CNN reported that President Obama has dedicated a monument to Cesar Chavez:

Describing it as a “day that has been a long time coming,” President Barack Obama made modern history Monday by announcing the creation of a monument to honor the late labor and civil rights activist Cesar Chavez…

The president spoke at a ceremony in Keene, California, on land known as Nuestra Senora Reina de la Paz, where, from the 1970s until the early ’90s, Chavez lived and led his farm worker movement.

Decades ago, Obama said, when Chavez began his farm worker movement, “no one seemed to care about the invisible farm workers who picked the nation’s food — bent down in the beating sun, living in poverty, cheated by growers, abandoned in old age, unable to demand even the most basic rights.”

“Cesar cared,” the president said. “In his own peaceful and eloquent way he made other people care too.” Chavez’s organized labor marches and other protests, including a boycott of table grapes, led to “some of the first farm worker contracts in history,” Obama said. “Let us honor his memory, but most importantly let us live up to his example.”

Obama wasn’t alone in singing Chavez’ praises. Joining the chorus was Ken Salazar, Obama’s Secretary of the Interior and former Senator and State’s Attorney General from Colorado. Salazar called Chavez “one of the heroes of the 20th Century.”

Of course he would. Let’s look for a quick moment at Chavez’ background, courtesy of

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Guess Who Will Enforce Obamacare?

Admiral Ackbar #ObamaCare is a Tax!

Admiral Ackbar #ObamaCare is a Tax! (Photo credit: charlesfettinger)

Assuming that Obamacare stays in place – a pretty good bet – it will be enforced by the IRS, and in a very unnerving and dangerous way:

The nation’s widely reviled tax collector will also become its health care enforcer. Once the law goes fully into effect, all Americans will have to prove that they have “qualified” health coverage — and, of course, the government will decide what “qualified” health coverage is. If people don’t have coverage, and the IRS determines they have the ability to pay for it, the IRS will go after them.

And just how will they “go after them”?  By taking the penalties out of their refunds:

 The Obama administration has tried to downplay what the feds will do to collect the penalty for not buying coverage — a penalty that will range from $695 a year for lower-income people to $12,500 for a higher-income family. Administration officials and Democrats in Congress have stressed that Obamacare does not permit the IRS to garnish wages or seize cash and assets from taxpayers.

What they mention less frequently is that the IRS has another way to get the money. About three-quarters of U.S. taxpayers receive refunds after filing their returns each year, with the average refund nearly $3,000. After 2014, those people will discover the IRS can take the penalty out of their refunds.

Isn’t that nice? An arbitrary seizure based on some bureaucrat’s decision that they “owe” the penalty – not a tax, you understand – and then take it, by force, with no recourse. This is explained by an IRS spokesman:

“The IRS is prevented from issuing liens or levies or other enforcement action,” Nina Olson, who holds a job called the National Taxpayer Advocate at the IRS, told a House hearing in August. “It can collect that mandate through what we call ‘refund offset,’ where a taxpayer has a refund coming to them and we would offset that refund amount with the amount of the penalty.”

Question: if socialism works so well, why does it have to be forced onto us?

New Obama Campaign Slogan Reveals Communist Ties

For ?

For ? (Photo credit: Paul Wicks)

This article from the Washington Times just confirms what I and many other writers and researchers have confirmed: not only is Obama a confirmed socialist and communist, but he is determined to continue to promote his ideology in full view. His advisers, in other words, don’t care who knows – the path ahead is “forward”:

The Obama campaign apparently didn’t look backwards into history when selecting  its new campaign slogan, “Forward” — a word with a long and rich association with European Marxism.

Victor Morton, the WT writer, didn’t have to look very far to prove the point. He went to Wikipedia:

Wikipedia has an entire section called “Forward (generic name of socialist  publications).”

“The name Forward carries a special meaning in socialist political terminology. It has been frequently used as a name for socialist, communist and  other left-wing newspapers and publications,” the online encyclopedia  explains.

The slogan “Forward!” reflected the conviction of European Marxists and  radicals that their movements reflected the march of history, which would move  forward past capitalism and into socialism and communism.

That’s an interesting way of phrasing it: “move forward past capitalism.” Actually Obama intends to destroy capitalism and replace it with the form of socialism called

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Sowell Gives Obama Too Much Credit

Thomas Sowell – The Fallacy of Redistribution

The recently discovered tape on which Barack Obama said back in 1998 that he believes in redistribution is not really news. He said the same thing to Joe the Plumber four years ago. But the surfacing of this tape may serve a useful purpose if it gets people to thinking about what the consequences of redistribution are.

English: Barack Obama delivers a speech at the...

English: Barack Obama delivers a speech at the University of Southern California (Video of the speech) (Photo credit: Wikipedia)

Sowell is one of my favorite economists and expositors of the faith. Here he brings up a very good point: confiscation of present wealth always confiscates any future wealth that the individual might have created:

You can only confiscate the wealth that exists at a given moment. You cannot confiscate future wealth — and that future wealth is less likely to be produced when people see that it is going to be confiscated.

Farmers in the Soviet Union cut back on how much time and effort they invested in growing their crops when they realized that the government was going to take a big part of the harvest. They slaughtered and ate young farm animals that they would normally keep tending and feeding while raising them to maturity.

But then Sowell goes off in a direction that I disagree with: that’s it’s harder to steal in a democracy than in a dictatorship because so much “discussion” about the details of the theft has to take place first, giving the owners time to get out of Dodge:

A dictatorship can suddenly swoop down and grab whatever it wants. But a democracy must first have public discussions and debates. Those who are targeted for confiscation can see the handwriting on the wall, and act accordingly.

There are several problems here. First, this isn’t a democracy, it’s a republic, or at least that was the original idea. It’s been degraded into a democracy and is moving into a dictatorship. But regulators currently act like Russian czars – they’re even called czars here, amazingly enough, with little outcry from anyone, so far as I can tell – and they can, and do, issue confiscatory regulations with little public “discussion.”

Secondly, he assumes that, given enough advance warning, those with capital will employ “exit strategies” to preserve their wealth:

When successful people with much human capital leave the country, either voluntarily or because of hostile governments or hostile mobs whipped up by demagogues exploiting envy, lasting damage can be done to the economy they leave behind.

Fidel Castro’s confiscatory policies drove successful Cubans to flee to Florida, often leaving much of their physical wealth behind..

But where do wealthy people go when there are no places left?

But Sowell then engages in promoting the myth that the “redistributionists” are merely uninformed, and can be turned from their evil ways through education:

If the redistributionists were serious, what they would want to distribute is the ability to fish, or to be productive in other ways…

That would better serve the interests of the poor…

I can scarcely believe my eyes that he said he thinks that the redistributionists care a whit about the poor. They talk about the poor as justification for their theft, nothing more. Obama has relatives in Kenya, poor as church mice, whom he has refused to help in any way.

That’s Sowell’s blind spot: he gives the redistributionists more moral credit than they deserve. They are thieves, thugs and looters, and Sowell fails to grasp that.

GM: Trying to Please Too Many Masters

Michael Barone: GM Goes From Bad to Worse Despite Obama Bailout

Obama talks about the auto bailout frequently, since it’s one of the few things in his record that gets positive responses in the polls. But he’s probably wise to avoid probing questions, since the GM bailout is not at all the success he claims.

The New GM (Government Motors) Proudly Introdu...

The New GM (Government Motors) Proudly Introduces the 2011 Obummer (Photo credit: wstera2)

Aptly (and properly, in my opinion) called Government Motors, the old GM is still on life support, but of a different kind: trying to please too many masters is keeping the company from being as competitive as it might be, and will cost taxpayers—you and me—more and more money to keep it going.

Obama thinks otherwise, and why shouldn’t he? He is enamored with government and thinks everything should be run or controlled by government czars. After all, that’s what collectivists do: they collect!

His recent speech in Colorado illustrates this well:

When the American auto industry was on the brink of collapse, I said, let’s bet on America’s workers. And we got management and workers to come together, making cars better than ever, and now GM is No. 1 again and the American auto industry has come roaring back.

Of course he and his auto czars had to stiff bondholders by skirting, illegally, the usual bankruptcy process, but, hey, this is socialism: we can’t let niceties like contracts and the rule of law get in the way! And if you were a GM dealer who wasn’t connected to the Obama administration, well, sorry about that, you’ll have to go.

And how’s GM doing? Well, profits just dropped 41 percent, and its stock is at $21, down from $40 when it went public following the bailout. Government still owns some 500 million shares, which translates into a loss to taxpayers approaching $25 billion.

And according to Louis Woodhill, an auto analyst at Forbes, GM is likely headed for bankruptcy once again.

Government Motors indeed.

How to Answer Obama’s Claim That “You Didn’t Build That!”

Thomas J. DiLorenzo: Obama’s ‘You Didn’t Build It’ Canard

Barack Obama’s ignorant “you didn’t build it” remark did two things: First, it displayed remarkable economic ignorance; and second, it asserted exactly the opposite of the truth with regard to the role of government in the economy. In today’s world American businesses that are successful in the marketplace have become so despite government intervention, not because of it.

You didn't Build that, Obama Did.

You didn’t Build that, Obama Did. (Photo credit: scismgenie)

This article by economic historian Thomas DiLorenzo is one of the best I’ve seen in refuting Obama’s claim, and brings out several other good points as well. I’ve asserted that Obama is a Marxist in philosophy and in action. DiLorenzo quotes none other than Yuri Maltsev, a former advisor to Mikhail Gorbachev (who, as you will remember, was the General Secretary of the Communist Party of the Soviet Union from 1985 to 1991, a position that he obtained by being successfully more ruthless and murderous than those in his party), who said that Obama is a “Proud Marxist.” DiLorenzo says that Obama is “belligerently ignorant of economics and consequently is in denial of much of economic reality.”

All Obama is doing, then, is reiterating a position that he believes is true, that he must believe to be true in order to justify his continuing attack on private capitalism.

Says DiLorenzo:

As for the role of government, history proves that it has always been the mortal enemy of free voluntary exchange and the generation of prosperity through the free market. As Ludwig von Mises wrote in his 1956 book, The Anti-Capitalistic Mentality, “A nation is the more prosperous today the less it has tried to put obstacles in the way of the spirit of free enterprise and private initiative. The people of the United States are more prosperous than the inhabitants of all other countries [as of 1956] because their government embarked later than the governments in other parts of the world upon the policy of obstructing business.”

Government is the enemy, not the friend, of the free market, or of freedom itself. Therefore, Obama is an enemy of the free market, and of freedom itself.

Wealthy Conservatives Working to Unseat Obama, Take Back Senate

The red "GOP" logo used by the party...

Las Vegas casino magnate Sheldon Adelson announced his intention on Friday to give $10 million to political action committees controlled by Charles and David Koch who in turn are themselves giving substantial sums to unseat President Obama and turn control of the Senate back to the Republican Party.

Earlier this year, Adelson, the CEO of the Las Vegas Sands Corporation which owns and operates the Venetian Resort Hotel Casino and the Sands Expo and Convention Center, and who is reputedly worth $25 billion, attended a Koch brothers-sponsored gathering of super-wealthy conservatives in Palm Springs, and after listening to the action plans and strategies to influence the November elections, decided to support their efforts.

Adelson’s intentions are to give upwards of $100 million in support of conservative causes. He explained:

What scares me is the continuation of the socialist-style economy we’ve been experiencing for almost four years. That scares me because the redistribution of wealth is the path to more socialism, and to more of the government controlling people’s lives. What scares me is the lack of accountability that people would prefer to experience, just let the government take care of everything.

This is music to the ears of the Koch brothers, who have been providing support for conservative causes for years, starting with their father’s establishment of the Fred C. and Mary R. Koch Foundation in 1953. The senior Koch was an early member of The John Birch Society and noted in a speech in 1963 his concern about “a takeover” of the United States government by communists who would “infiltrate the highest offices of government in the U.S. until the president is a Communist, unknown to the rest of us.”

In a lengthy and controversial “exposé” of the Koch brothers in a 

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French Elections: Austerity, No! More Spending, Yes!

François Hollande à Saint-Cyr-sur-Loire

By a three-point margin, French citizens replaced President Nicolas Sarkozy with the Socialist and Radical Left Party candidate, Francois Hollande. Hollande, a former mayor of Tulle (pop. 15,000) and then president of Correze (pop. 242,000), beat Sarkozy 51.9% to 48.1%, resulting in the first Socialist president of France since Francois Mitterand left that office in 1995. With Socialist Party majorities in the upper house of parliament and two-thirds of all French towns, a win by the party in the upcoming June elections in the lower house would give the Socialist Party “more levers of power than ever in its 43-year modern history,” according to NewsMax.com.

With such control, Hollande knows exactly what he is going to do: apply what France is already suffering from, only more so. He wants to spend more money even in the face of the agreement recently signed with German Chancellor Angela Merkel to cut spending in order to save the banks and the euro. His campaign slogan, “Austerity is not inevitable,” Hollande is persuaded that he can do the impossible: spend more and balance the budget at the same time. He plans to:

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Senator Tom Coburn’s Annual “Wastebook” Released

"Dr. Coburn and Senator Obama look over t...

Senator Tom Coburn (R-Okla.) introduced his annual report, “2011 Wastebook,” noting, “This report details 100 of the countless unnecessary, duplicative, or just plain stupid projects spread throughout the federal government and paid for with your tax dollars this year.” He added, “Over the past 12 months, Washington politicians argued, debated and lamented about how to reign [sic] in the federal government’s out of control spending. All the while, Washington was on a shopping binge, spending money we do not have on things we do not need, like the $6.9 billion worth of examples provided in this report.”

Of the 100 projects covered, three are especially egregious, and reflect the “spend spend spend” mentality prevalent in the halls of Congress. “The Super Bridge to Nowhere” in Alaska is one of two projected bridges which became notorious during the 2008 presidential campaign.

The Knik Arm Bridge is designed to connect residents in the southern part of the Matanuska/Susitna Valley, or “MatSu,” with Anchorage, which would save them an hour’s driving time each way. The bridge would be 2.7 miles long and cost between $650 and $700 million (some estimates are much  higher). The only problem is that there are very few residents living in MatSu, hence the bridge is named in Coburn’s report. Corburn complained, “At least $15.3 million was spent on the project this year alone. In total, more than $65 million in federal taxpayer money has been directed to various aspects of the project, including $57,390 for a 14-minute video, ‘The Knik Arm Crossing: Bridge to Our Future.’ ”

And $1 million of that money was spent just for staff salaries to promote the project. 

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Trump Claims He was Blackmailed by Republicans

Donald Trump

Donald Trump’s announcement on YouTube on Tuesday night that he was cancelling the Republican presidential candidate debate scheduled for December 27 tried to pin the blame on the Republican Party. A lot of the candidates aren’t coming to his debate “because they think I’m going to run for political office, something I can’t do now…. But around the middle of May I’ll be able to do whatever I want and I could run as an Independent. The Republican Party doesn’t want me running as an Independent. So they’ve made this debate pretty impossible…”

Trump claims he wants to keep his options open just in case the Republicans pick the wrong person to run against President Obama: 

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Harvard Professor Calls OWS Protesters “Inchoate”

#OWS 3,000 strong to defend wall street

After being asked about the walkout of a few of his students from his Economics 10 class on November 2, Harvard professor Greg Mankiw responded with an open letter in the New York Times. The walkout involved only about 30 or 40 of the 750 students who usually attend, he noted. In addition, some other students entered his class as a “counter protest,” and at least one of the original protesters returned to his class because he didn’t want to miss his lecture.

His biggest disappointment, he said, was “at how poorly informed the…protesters seemed to be. As with much of the Occupy movement across the country, their complaints seemed to me to be a grab bag of anti-establishment platitudes without much hard-headed analysis or clear policy prescriptions.” He allowed that perhaps the protesters “were motivated by an inchoate feeling that standard economic theory is inherently slanted.” (Emphasis added.)

“Inchoate” is defined as “imperfectly formed or formulated.” And indeed that is the proper descriptor of the Occupy Wall Street movement. From its de facto website one learns such “anti-establishment platitudes” as

OWS is fighting back against the corrosive power of major banks and multinational corporations over the democratic process, and the role of Wall Street in creating an economic collapse that has caused the greatest recession in generations…. [OWS] aims to fight back against

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Steve Jobs’ Charitable Contributions: He Gave at the Office

Steve Jobs shows off iPhone 4 at the 2010 Worl...

Image via Wikipedia

Writing for the New York TimesAndrew Sorkin was puzzled that he couldn’t find any evidence that Steve Jobs, Apple’s founder, had given away any part of his significant $8.3 billion personal wealth. What he did find is that when Jobs returned to his old company in 1997, he canceled Apple’s philanthropic programs and they have remained dormant ever since.

Sorkin explained:

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Even Left Abandons Obama as Poll Numbers Decline

Obama Rushmore

Image by PIX-JOCKEY (Roberto Rizzato) via Flickr

For the first time in his presidency, Barack Obama’s poll numbers in heavily Democratic New York have gone negative, with 49 percent disapproving of his job performance compared to only 45 percent who approve. The Quinnipiac University poll last showed the President with a 57 percent approval rating in late June, a drop of 9 points in six weeks. Among Republicans, the poll showed disapproval ratings of 86 percent, up from 74 percent in June, while among Democrats his approval rating dropped from 82 percent to 75 percent. Among independents 58 percent expressed their disapproval, up from 45 percent in June. “The evidence continues to mount,” writes Dan Weil at Newsmax.com, “that

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Austerity Measures: Greek Entitlement Mentality Faces Reality

Support the greek resistance

Image by Libby via Flickr

The austerity measures being debated in the Greek parliament are being met with resistance not only by the opposition party but by those most directly affected: Greek workers. At least 20,000 people have begun a 48-hour general strike, bringing to a halt most airlines and public transportation. Even workers at the state-owned monopoly, Public Power Corp. SA, are forcing power outages around the country.

Prime Minister George Papandreou has just barely survived a

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Greek Austerity, Privatization Programs Won’t Be Enough

George Papandreou

Image by Parti socialiste via Flickr

In its efforts to avoid restructuring (i.e., defaulting on) its debt, Greece announced the sale of some of its assets to raise funds and to satisfy the austerity requirements imposed on the country last March. It is trying to raise $70 billion by 2015. Its efforts won’t be nearly enough.

For sale is the country’s 1/6th interest in OTE, Europe’s largest telecom company, its one-third interest in the Post Savings Bank, all of its interest in the country’s two largest port operators. It will also reduce its ownership shares significantly in

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Greece is Out of Options

Greek Flag

Image by Rupert Brun via Flickr

Writers for The Wall Street Journal’s lead article on Tuesday expressed surprise that Greece’s fiscal problems are “coming to the boil once more.” After all, when Greece went hat in hand to members of the eurozone last year, they were able to secure a $158 billion bailout whose strings attached required severe austerity measures on the Greek citizens to resolve the matter. The matter has obviously not been resolved, and Greece is back to the table, asking for more assistance. This time it’s a much tougher sell.

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Atlas Shrugged: the Movie

Atlas Shrugged

Image by eflon via Flickr

Something is terribly wrong. The Dow has dropped below 4,000, gasoline (when available) costs $37.50 a gallon, the nation’s infrastructure is deteriorating, businessmen are wearing sandwich boards asking for work. Government’s response to the enervated economy is to impose even more regulations and forced wealth-redistribution on already-highly regulated business and industry. A gray palpable pall hangs over the land. Meanwhile, the nation’s most productive citizens begin to disappear voluntarily, one by one. But why? The question is answered by another question as mysterious as the disappearances themselves: “Who is John Galt?”

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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.