Saturday, February 28, 2015

Rand Paul is no Libertarian . . .

Gary Johnson Disputes Rand Paul’s Libertarian Cred - Hit & Run : Reason.com - Scott Shackleford:

February 27, 2015 - "This morning we noted that former New Mexico Gov. Gary Johnson has made it official (actually, he already had announced last fall) that he would again run for the Libertarian Party’s nomination for president. He was also in attendance at the Conservative Political Action Conference (CPAC) yesterday, debating the legalization of marijuana on a panel. His applause line: 'Having a debate right now over whether or not to legalize marijuana is kind of like having a debate over whether the sun will come up tomorrow.' He also melodramatically keeled over when his debate opponent, former New York Rep. Ann Marie Buerkle, claimed that marijuana use dramatically increased people’s risks for heart attacks.

"He also took a moment to dismiss Sen. Rand Paul’s brand of libertarianism of not being very libertarian. Or so CNN says in a weirdly short post that could use a little more context or accompanying video:
While Paul may be the most libertarian-minded candidate in the field of prospective GOP presidential candidates, Johnson said, Paul doesn't fit the libertarian mold on a host of issues: from abortion to marriage equality to immigration and marijuana....

"Great, I mean terrific," Johnson said sarcastically. "I mean, the most libertarian candidate that Republicans may end up fielding."
"And then the item abruptly ends with this paragraph that does not appear to be a quote but rather the writer’s own analysis of Paul’s foreign policy:
Paul has even sidled away from his libertarian foreign policy views, ​shying away from his isolationist views in favor of a more nuanced foreign policy that would better fit the mold of a Republican primary....
"Johnson’s ability to match or exceed his vote total from 2012 (1.3 million votes, one percent of the vote total) will certainly be affected by who the Democrats and Republicans nominate. Paul has a much bigger chance to pull votes away from Johnson than somebody like Marco Rubio or Jeb Bush. So that 'more libertarian than thou' branding is going to continue as long as Paul is a viable contender. And wouldn’t that be an interesting debate to be having during [an] election year?"

'via Blog this'

. . . and neither is Stephen Harper

Today’s letters: Stephen Harper is no libertarian | National Post - John Shaw:

February 28 2015 - "Re: Tories Vs. Tories, Michael Den Tandt, Feb. 27:
"As a libertarian, I sprayed my cereal over much of the kitchen this morning when I read Michael Den Tandt’s statement, 'this PM has long been a libertarian.'

"Stephen Harper is a prime minister who has strongly increased spending each and every year, save 2010 (the printing presses and helicopters broke after his Keynesian splurge). This is the PM who on war, drugs, prostitution, civil liberties, free speech, the role of the Constitution and the Supreme Court of Canada, and virtually every piece of legislation, has consistently taken authoritarian positions and increasingly so since he gained a majority.

"In a significant keynote address to the Manning Institute several years ago, Mr. Harper dedicated much of his speech to his position on the libertarian idea. In summary, it was dangerously naive and people who supported it had no place in 'his party.'

John Shaw, Newmarket, Ont."

http://news.nationalpost.com/2015/02/28/todays-letters-stephen-harper-is-no-libertarian/
'via Blog this'

Friday, February 27, 2015

Top South Korean court strikes down adultery law

Cheaters Rejoice? Adultery Is No Longer A Crime In South Korea : LIFE : Tech Times - Rhodi Lee:

February 27, 2015 - "For more than 60 years, South Korea has criminalized extra-marital sex, punishing violators with jail time of up to two years. Now, the country's Constitutional Court has struck down this controversial adultery law on Thursday, Feb. 26.

"The nine-member bench ruled by a 7-2 decision that Article 241 of the criminal code was unconstitutional. The objective of the 1953 statute was to protect traditional family values, but Thursday's decision reflects a rising importance of personal choice over marital order in the country.

"'The article violates individuals' freedom to choose their sexual partners and their right to privacy,' five of the justices opined. 'Not only is the anti-adultery law gradually losing its place in the world, it no longer reflects our people's way of thinking.' The court likewise said that maintaining marriage and family should be based on a person's free will and love. It also pointed out that the law has frequently been misused for blackmail and divorce suits.

"Two of the justices said that family issues should not be criminalized or at least the severity of the penalty would depend on the intricacy of the matter. The two opposing justices on the other hand said that the law is needed to protect the institution of marriage and sexual ethics.

"Since 1953, about 100,000 South Koreans have been convicted of adultery but the number of convictions has dwindled over the years. Over the past five years, 5,466 individuals have been charged for engaging in adulterous relationships. With the abolition of the law, charges on these individuals have been annulled; those convicted are eligible to apply for retrials. Adulterers who were jailed can ask for compensation from the state."

Read more: http://www.techtimes.com/articles/35714/20150227/cheaters-rejoice-adultery-is-no-longer-a-crime-in-south-korea.htm
'via Blog this'

Thursday, February 26, 2015

Los Angeles RLC calls for immigration reform

Libertarian Republicans Split from National Party on Immigration - Rebeca Morla, PanAm Post:

February 26, 2015 - "The Los Angeles chapter of the Republican Liberty Caucus (RLC) has issued a stinging critique of immigration policy in the United States — targeting both the measures taken by President Barack Obama to address illegal immigrants, and the stance of the GOP itself.

"'When a staggering 52,000 kids (toddlers to teenagers) were detained by US Customs and Border Protection last summer, it was an unprecedented crisis in American history.... [Obama] actually gained popularity in his handling of the migrant/refugee situation. How could conservatives and Republicans drop the ball?' the briefing released on Sunday, February 22, asks lawmakers.

"The article, titled 'The Immigration Crisis Solved: A Liberty Republican View,' first appeared in Voices of Liberty, a media network promoted by former US Representative Ron Paul (R-TX). It states that 'not a single elected Republican voice of rationality offered the pro-liberty alternative,” and tasks liberty-conscious Republicans with “rais[ing] the level of the immigration crisis debate.'

"Preventing 'yet another unmanageable influx of migrants' should be a priority, the RLC chapter argues; but they reject policies such as the mass deportation of immigrants, or Obama’s 'irresponsible allusions to amnesty' without deeper reform....

"The RLC chapter assert that the US Constitution grants no specific authority to the central government to regulate immigration — although Article I Section 8 does note a uniform rule of naturalization — and that 'every single person now on American soil who isn’t a criminal ultimately has the right to life, liberty, and the pursuit of happiness — altogether that’s the right to work.'

"As a result, the group advocates for states taking the lead on proactive immigration reform, by offering residency and work permits to illegal immigrants."

Read more: http://panampost.com/rebeca-morla/2015/02/26/libertarian-republicans-split-from-national-party-on-immigration/
'via Blog this'

Wednesday, February 25, 2015

Alaska is third U.S. state to legalize marijuana use

Alaska becomes third US state to legalise recreational marijuana use | The Guardian - Reuters:

February 24, 2015 - "Alaska has made smoking, growing and owning small amounts of marijuana legal, becoming the third US state to decriminalise the recreational use of the drug.

"The Republican-leaning state, which narrowly passed the measure in November, on Tuesday followed similar moves by Colorado and Washington states, reflecting a rapidly shifting legal landscape for the drug. It remains illegal under federal law.

"Anyone aged 21 or older can now possess up to an ounce of marijuana in Alaska and can grow up to six marijuana plants, three of which can be flowering.

"Smoking in public and buying and selling the drug remains illegal – though private exchanges are allowed if money is not involved.

"Barack Obama’s justice department has cautiously allowed the experiments to proceed, saying it would look to prosecute a narrower range of marijuana-related crimes, such as sales to children....

"Alaskan officials, and the state’s alcohol regulatory board, which is due to meet on Tuesday, still have to fill a number of gaps in the legislation – for example a definition of the public places where people cannot light up.

"State regulators are still drafting rules covering the taxation and sale of marijuana, which must be adopted by 24 November. Applications for the first business licences will not be accepted until February 2016."

Read more: http://www.theguardian.com/society/2015/feb/24/alaska-becomes-third-us-state-to-legalise-recreational-marijuana-use
'via Blog this'

Tuesday, February 24, 2015

Libertarians challenge Arizona voter-registration law

Libertarians: Minority party registration law unfair - Yoohyun Jung, Arizona Daily Star:

January 29, 2015 - "The attorney for the Libertarian Party is asking a federal appeals court to overturn legislation he argued makes it harder to register to vote as a member of a minority political party.

"Attorney David Hardy said limiting the checkboxes on voter-registration forms to just Republicans and Democrats is a 'self-re-enforcing cycle' on the part of the two predominant parties.

"'A person registering to vote is essentially told that there are two real political parties, and some unnamed "other" ones,' Hardy said in his opening brief to a three-judge panel of the Ninth Circuit Court of Appeals, which conducted a special hearing Thursday at the University of Arizona James E. Rogers College of Law.

"The Arizona Libertarian Party, along with the Green Party, sued Arizona’s then-Secretary of State Ken Bennett in December 2011 after the Legislature passed an amendment to an election statute, changing how voters could identify their party of choice.

"The paper registration form created under the 2011 amendment offers an option of “other,” with what Hardy calls a 'tiny' line to fill out voters’ party preference for those registering as anything other than Republican or Democrat.

"Prior to that, the form provided a blank write-in for all party preferences....

"According to the state’s voter registration report, during the 2014 general election, about 1.1 million Arizonans registered as Republicans and about 940,000 as Democrats. About 27,000 people registered as Libertarians.

Read more: http://tucson.com/news/local/libertarians-minority-party-registration-law-unfair/article_7a1bc66c-aac7-53d7-976c-2cf9f56478c4.html
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Monday, February 23, 2015

The libertarian network behind Rand Paul

The Libertarian Network That Rand Paul Hasn’t Walked Away From And Can’t Totally Control - BuzzFeed News - Rosie Gray & Kate Nocera:

February 22, 2015 "Last month, Rand Paul greeted a crowd of like-minded supporters: gun-rights enthusiasts with a libertarian bent in New Hampshire, the state where the Republican senator seems most likely to chase presidential primary votes.

"Event organizers wouldn’t let press into the event, devoted to guns, but reporters were able to see Paul greeting supporters in a black letterman-style jacket bearing the letters “NAGR.”
The acronym stands for National Association for Gun Rights — an alternative group to the behemoth National Rifle Association, the group that NAGR says just isn’t committed enough to the Second Amendment.

"Paul routinely signs his name to their mailers. He’s helped fundraise for the group on conference calls. But NAGR is just one of the wide network of libertarian activist groups that Paul remains aligned with, even as he prepares for a presidential bid this year.

The informal network of groups — NAGR, the Campaign for Liberty, the National Pro-life Alliance, and the National League of Taxpayers — are something of a holdover from Paul’s more libertarian purist father. The groups operate independently from one another and from Paul, but their connections to the family run deep. Their activists provided a foundation of operative support for Ron Paul’s presidential campaigns. But they didn’t stop when the elder Paul retired: The groups fundraise aggressively and many have used Rand Paul’s name to solicit donations and raise their profile....

"Voters on their massive distribution lists get communications with Paul’s name or messages signed by him, gaining exposure and a fundraising base for him. An email from the National League of Taxpayers for example, will go out under Paul’s name and ask supporters to sign a petition supporting a balanced budget amendment and then say contributions to the group are “urgently needed.”

"Rand Paul’s connection to the network is no real secret — the libertarian groups were the subject of stories from reporters like David Weigel and others last year. The question in many of those stories was the same: If and when would the senator walk away from the groups.

"A year later, the answer seems clear: Rand Paul isn’t walking away from the groups, and they’ll continue to use his name on their promotional materials, even if he can’t control what they do."

Read more: http://www.buzzfeed.com/rosiegray/the-libertarian-network-that-rand-paul-hasnt-walked-away-fro
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Sunday, February 22, 2015

Salon interviews David Boaz

“That’s something that should make libertarians nervous”: Inside the tumultuous rise of an American ideology - Salon.com - Elias Isquith:

"'Libertarianism,' like its ideological cousin neoliberalism, is one of those words that people in the political world use a lot without establishing whether everyone agrees on its meaning.... But as support for libertarian-backed causes like marriage equality, opposition to the war on drugs, and resistance against the rise of mass incarceration become ever-greater parts of U.S. politics, the definition of libertarianism will matter more, too....

"Salon recently spoke over the phone with David Boaz, longtime member of the influential and Koch-founded Cato Institute think tank and author of Libertarianism: A Primer, which was just updated and rereleased as The Libertarian Mind: A Manifesto for Freedom. Our discussion touched on the big issues mentioned above, as well as Boaz’s thoughts on what liberals and conservatives misunderstand about libertarianism, and why he thinks his favored political philosophy’s future is so bright.... 

"If you had to pick one defining or differentiating characteristic of the libertarian mind, what would it be? 

"The first line of the book says that libertarianism is the philosophy of freedom, so what distinguishes libertarians is their commitment to freedom. That can manifest itself in lots of different issues, from marijuana and gay marriage to smaller government and lower taxes, but the fundamental idea of freedom as the proper political condition for society is the thing that unites libertarians....

"I do think that is a difference between libertarians and liberals or conservatives who value freedom but also value other things. Modern American liberals would say, I believe, that they value equality along with freedom. Libertarians would tend to respond, 'well, in the real world you get more equality when you have freedom and free markets', though libertarians certainly believe in equal rights and equal freedom. Some conservatives value doing God’s will or maintaining social order or maintaining tradition along with freedom.

"In that sense, I do think libertarians put freedom at the center of their political philosophy in a way that many liberals and conservatives do not."

"If you had to pick one thing about libertarianism that liberals misunderstand the most, what would it be? 

"I think there is first a misunderstanding that libertarians are conservatives — and I think that’s wrong. Libertarians are classical liberals. We trace our heritage back to, not the aristocracy or established church, but to the liberal thinkers and activists who challenged those institutions. 

"Secondarily, I think liberals overlook how many issues libertarians and liberals share even today: religious freedom, freedom of speech, First Amendment issues, concerns about surveillance, opposition to endless war, marriage equality, opposition to the drug war, etc. There are a whole lot of such issues and my sense is that a lot of American liberals don’t see those very specific connections between libertarian and liberal interests."

Read more: http://www.salon.com/2015/02/18/thats_something_that_should_make_libertarians_nervous_inside_the_tumultuous_rise_of_an_american_ideology/
'via Blog this'

Saturday, February 21, 2015

No link between marijuana use and car crashes found in landmark U.S. study

If Marijuana Causes Lots Of Crashes, Why Are They So Hard To Count? - Jacob Sullum, Forbes:

February 12, 2015 - "Last year, during a congressional hearing on the threat posed by stoned drivers, a representative of the National Highway Traffic Safety Administration (NHTSA) was asked how many crash fatalities are caused by marijuana each year. 'That’s difficult to say,' replied Jeff Michael, NHTSA’s associate administrator for research and program development. 'We don’t have a precise estimate.” The most he was willing to affirm was that the number is 'probably not' zero.

"Michael knows something that grandstanding politicians and anti-pot activists either do not understand or refuse to acknowledge: Although experiments show that marijuana impairs driving ability, the effects are not nearly as dramatic as those seen with alcohol, and measuring the real-world consequences has proven very difficult, as demonstrated by a landmark study that NHTSA released last Friday.

"In 'the first large-scale [crash risk] study in the United States to include drugs other than alcohol,' NHTSA found that, once the data were adjusted for confounding variables, cannabis consumption was not associated with an increased probability of getting into an accident....

"The NHTSA study included more than 3,000 drivers who were involved in crashes during a 20-month period in Virginia Beach, Virginia, plus 6,000 controls who drove in the same area during the same period but did not get into accidents.

"As usual, the study found that alcohol use was strongly correlated with crash risk. After adjustment for confounding, the crash risk for drivers with a blood-alcohol content (BAC) of 0.08 percent was twice the crash risk for sober drivers; it was six times as high for drivers with a BAC of 0.10 percent and 12 times as high at a BAC of 0.15 percent.

"But the picture for marijuana was quite different.

"Over all, drivers who tested positive for active THC were 25 percent more likely to be involved in crashes. But once the researchers took sex, age, and race/ethnicity into account, the risk ratio shrank from 1.25 to 1.05 and was no longer statistically significant...

"Further adjusting for alcohol consumption made the crash risk of cannabis consumers equal to that of drivers who tested negative for alcohol and all other drugs. In other words, the analysis, which NHTSA described as 'the most precisely controlled study of its kind yet conducted,' provides no evidence that marijuana use increases crash risk. That result, the authors note, is similar to what the best-designed previous studies have found: a small or nonexistent increase in crash risk."

Read more: http://www.forbes.com/sites/jacobsullum/2015/02/12/if-marijuana-causes-lots-of-crashes-why-are-they-so-hard-to-count/
'via Blog this'

Friday, February 20, 2015

The libertarians behind the Obamacare challenge

Libertarian group launched backup plan to Obamacare - - Joan Biskupic, Reuters:

February 20, 2015 - "The U.S. Supreme Court case that could shatter President Barack Obama’s healthcare law this year was launched as a backup plan by a libertarian group and a powerful Washington lawyer frustrated by the slow progress of their original lawsuit.

"Their success in persuading the court to take the ideologically driven case owes to a combination of canny legal tactics and the willingness of at least four justices to hear it in unusually swift time. Oral arguments are set for March 4....

"At stake now are the tax-credit subsidies that have allowed low- and moderate-income Americans to buy insurance. The plaintiffs say the government unlawfully extended credits to states that did not create local insurance exchanges.

"The plaintiffs’ lead lawyer, Michael Carvin, represented some of the challengers in 2012. He and the libertarian Competitive Enterprise Institute (CEI), bankrolling the current lawsuit, began planning the new attack soon after that bid failed....

"The new challenge originated at a conference by the conservative American Enterprise Institute in 2010, where an employee-benefits lawyer highlighted an ACA provision allowing tax credits through exchanges 'established by the state'....

"Carvin filed first in May 2013 in a District of Columbia federal jurisdiction, where the government is based and where the appeals court was dominated by Republican appointees.

"When four months passed without much action, Carvin tried a gambit that would become decisive. He turned to a Virginia federal judicial district nicknamed the “rocket docket” for its speed in moving cases....

"The Virginia district court judge sided with the government in February 2014 and an appeals court affirmed in July.

"By early 2014 the D.C. case was moving. A judge ruled for the government, but then a panel of the D.C. Circuit reversed the decision, on the same July day as the Virginia ruling. That split gave Carvin ammunition for the high court, which typically waits for a division in appeals courts before hearing a dispute....

"In November, over the objections of U.S. Solicitor General Donald Verrilli, the conservative-leaning Supreme Court granted Carvin’s Virginia appeal. It takes only four of the nine justices to agree to hear a case. The vote was in secret, and the justices, as is their practice, did not explain the order."

Read more: http://www.spyghana.com/libertarian-group-launched-backup-plan-to-ob/
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Thursday, February 19, 2015

Paul, Clinton in virtual tie in key swing states

Poll: 'Jeb Bush has a family problem' | WashingtonExaminer.com - Paul Bedard:

February 18,2015 - "Kentucky Sen. Rand Paul’s slow but steady presidential campaign appears to be paying off, as he is now poised as the GOP’s best challenger to Democrat Hillary Clinton in key swing states, including the first 2016 contest in Iowa, according to a new poll.

"The headline on the authoritative Quinnipiac Poll released Wednesday tells the story: 'It's Clinton V. Paul In Colorado, Iowa, Virginia.'

"Paul’s emergence comes as two challengers, former Florida Gov. Jeb Bush and current Wisconsin Gov. Scott Walker are making news, and reinforces claims from his supporters that he is making inroads in key swing and early primary states.

"While some polls focus on the GOP jockeying, the Quinnipiac Poll looks at the likely matchup against Clinton, currently the leader in the Democratic field by a mile. Here’s how those matchups look in Iowa, Virginia and Colorado, three states the poll focused on:
  • Colorado: Clinton 43 percent - Paul 41 percent.
  • Iowa: Clinton 45 - Paul 37.
  • Virginia: Clinton 44 - Paul 42.
"The poll finds good news for Bush and Mike Huckabee also, showing that Bush would do slightly better than Paul against Clinton in Virginia and Huckabee a step ahead of Paul in Iowa. But it’s Paul who is most consistent at or near the top of the poll."

Read more: http://www.washingtonexaminer.com/quinnipiac-rand-paul-the-best-to-beat-clinton-in-key-swing-states/article/2560355
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Wednesday, February 18, 2015

Marijuana legalization bill in Vermont senate

Vermont Could Be Next State To Legalize Recreational Marijuana - Matt Ferner, Huffington Post:

February 17, 2015 -"Vermont could become the first state in history to legalize recreational marijuana via state legislature with a new bill submitted Tuesday that aims to end prohibition of the plant.

"Senate Bill 95 would legalize the possession, use and sale of recreational marijuana in the state for those 21 and older. Adult residents could possess up to an ounce of marijuana and grow up to nine plants (two mature, seven immature) for personal use, including any additional marijuana produced by those plants. Personal cultivation would be limited to secure indoor facilities.

"Non-residents could also enjoy the new laws, legally purchasing up to one-quarter of an ounce of marijuana from a licensed retail shop.

"The bill also proposes an excise tax of $40 per ounce of marijuana flower, $15 per ounce of any other marijuana product and a $25 tax on each immature cannabis plant sold by a cultivator.

"Forty percent of revenue brought in through marijuana taxation would be earmarked for substance abuse treatment services; public education programs about the risks of using various drugs; law enforcement; and academic and medical research on the plant.

"Marijuana would remain banned from being smoked in public.

"A Marijuana Control Board would be established to oversee the state industry and enforce regulations....

"If the measure passes, it's likely that Vermont Gov. Peter Shumlin (D) would sign it into law.

"'My bias ... is toward legalization,' Shumlin said in January. 'Let’s remember, we have this conversation and we pretend that you can’t get marijuana now. In the real world, folks, if you want to get marijuana in Vermont, we’re in Lala Land if we’re pretending you can’t. The question is how do we move to a smarter approach that doesn’t promote addiction, that doesn’t promote abuse and really accepts the reality'."

Read more: http://www.huffingtonpost.com/2015/02/17/vermont-marijuana-legalization_n_6662426.html
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Tuesday, February 17, 2015

Canadian Libertarians oppose 'anti-terror' Bill C-51

Bill C-51 Under Scrutiny | Windsor Square - Tim Moen, Leader, Libertarian Party of Canada:

February 14, 2015 - "The Conservative government, with the support of the Liberal Party, is seeking to pass new anti-terror legislation with Bill C-51.

"The Libertarian Party of Canada opposes this legislation wholeheartedly. Although everyone wants to stop terrorism, this bill represents a huge step backwards. It is yet another example where Canadians are being forced to sacrifice privacy for what is being called security.

"The Bill will give Canada’s spy agencies more powers and more jurisdiction over the private information of innocent Canadian citizens, with no increase in civilian oversight. It also significantly increases the domestic powers of CSIS, and the ability to place people on a no fly list.

"What makes this Bill especially concerning is the fact that there is lots of room for interpretation. It significantly and arbitrarily limits free expression, subjects Canadians to ever increasing privacy breaches, and raises questions about foreign travel data, which is being shared with foreign surveillance agencies.

"Violent ideologies, such as Islamic extremism, are a threat to Canadians. That being said, US foreign policy over the last three decades has contributed to the rise of this threat and following their prescription is unlikely to do anything but make the problem worse."

http://www.windsorsquare.ca/archives/80179/bill-c-51-under-scrutiny/comment-page-1
'via Blog this'

Monday, February 16, 2015

GOP libertarian elected to Nebraska legislature

Laura Ebke a libertarian voice in Legislature : Politics - Don Walton, Lincoln Journal Star:

February 06, 2015 - "Laura Ebke is in the arena now.

"A political scientist who has taught American government classes at Southeast Community College and other institutions, Ebke was elected to the Legislature in November and is the student now.

"'It's a learning experience,' she said during an interview in her Capitol office....

"Ebke is a libertarian. 'Small "l",' she emphasizes, 'I'm a Republican and a conservative libertarian.'

"Ebke is state chairwoman of the Republican Liberty Caucus, which supported Ron Paul for president in 2012.

"Her legislative votes 'may fly in the face of the views of some traditional Republicans' at times, she said.

"For instance, Ebke is a co-sponsor of legislation to legalize the use of medical marijuana....

"A glimpse of Ebke's libertarian viewpoint is this assessment of proposed legislation to increase the fee for marriage licenses: 'I question whether we should ask the state's permission to get married. I'm not sure it's practical, but it would be better to just report the marriage after the fact for legal purposes.'

"Ebke has introduced a legislative resolution that calls for convening a U.S. constitutional convention confined to imposing fiscal restraints on the federal government, limiting federal power and requiring term limits for federal offices.... Ebke said, she became convinced that a convention with a limited mandate is needed and that the requirement for ratification of amendments by three-fourths of the states is a sufficient safeguard."

Read more: http://journalstar.com/legislature/laura-ebke-a-libertarian-voice-in-legislature/article_67877cbd-4ed5-5f1e-a103-d6876100985c.html

'via Blog this'

Sunday, February 15, 2015

Progressive vs. libertarian feminism

Carceral Feminism and the Libertarian Alternative | Libertarianism.org - Elizabeth Nolan Brown:

Janurary 28, 2015 - "Libertarian feminism is 'part of an honorable individualist tradition in America,' as Sharon Presley wrote here recently. But to many in 2015, it seems either an oxymoron or a lost cause. In part, this stems from the path popular feminism has taken through the latter part of the 20th century and on into this one; many now see feminism as an ideology demanding state action (an association that may have been true in recent practice but is far from natural or necessary). And, in part, this stems from a lack of awareness, promotion, or concern around gender issues in the modern libertarian tradition.

"Yet as ideologies and movements, libertarianism and feminism have a lot to offer one another. Not every libertarian matter is necessarily a feminist one, of course (and vice versa). Libertarianism can, however, provide a lens through which to view gender issues, and in doing so help counter the monopoly that a more coercive, carceral feminism has come to enjoy.

"'Carceral feminism' is a term that’s gaining popularity, and it’s in many ways synonymous with progressive feminism these days. Progressive feminists will identify gender-based concerns, then immediately look to the state for solutions — via strict regulation, at least, or criminalization and jail in many instances. Carceral feminism is the relatively small but incredibly vocal voice within millennial feminism that says due process can be sacrificed if it means catching a few more rapists, hate speech should come with a jail sentence, and images promoting 'unrealistic' female body standards should be banned by the government, among other things....

"Libertarian feminism seeks to provide an alternative way of viewing these issues, one that emphasizes the negative, unintended consequences of increased government intervention and policing power. It can provide a jumping-off point for considering less coercive, less reactionary, and less rights-infringing solutions; be a third-way between patriarchy-preserving social conservatism and the intolerant, illiberal feminists sometimes referred to as 'social justice warriors' these days.

"And for libertarians, a feminist perspective can enrich the scope of our battle to lessen government coercion and maximize liberty. Libertarian feminists bring overlooked or under-emphasized issues into the liberty movement, such as reproductive freedom (not just abortion but things like making birth control available over-the-counter, state coercion of pregnant women, surrogacy law, and the emerging legal issues surrounding things like IVF and artificial wombs), state overreach into parenting, the over-regulation of female-heavy occupations, how decriminalizing sex work fits into overall criminal-justice reform efforts, and the growth of women as a percentage of millennial libertarians....

"As more women are exposed to libertarian ideals — through the generally growing profile of libertarianism; their own increasing numbers in law, econ, and political science; Ron Paul and student activism; or however — the ranks of libertarian-identifying women are swelling. And as more women are assuming active roles in libertarian activism, writing, and scholarship, we’re starting to see more focus on gender issues in libertarian spaces and greater acceptance of these issues."

Read more: http://www.libertarianism.org/columns/carceral-feminism-libertarian-alternative
'via Blog this'

Saturday, February 14, 2015

Snowden and Ron Paul kick off ISFL conference

Edward Snowden and Ron Paul Kick Off Libertarian Student Conference With a Little Kerfuffle About Russia - Bloomberg Politics - David Wiegel:

February 12, 2015 - "'You're going to make me blush,' said Edward Snowden.

"It was a little after 6 p.m., and the NSA [National Security Agency] whistleblower's face and shoulders were gazing out, billboard-sized, at hundreds of cheering young libertarians. Snowden was beamed in to talk to the largest-ever International Students for Liberty conference, newly relocated to Washington's largest hotel. Snowden, whose highest degree was a GED, was honored as an honorary alumnus of the eight-year old organization. For 15 minutes he restated a case against the surveillance state that had no rebuttal in the room....

"As he honed in on his argument, Snowden tailored it to young libertarians – most of them college students. 'I think many of the people in this room take a more pro-liberty pro-rights perspective than others in the U.S. political agreement,' said Snowden. 'There’s an argument to be made that perfect enforcement of the law is not a good thing. In fact, it’s a very serious threat ... law is a lot like medicine. When you have too much it can be fatal.'

"In a small moment of irony, the Moscow-bound Snowden remembered how he'd talked to colleagues at the NSA, and found them quietly agreeing with his worries, but unready to expose the agency. 'We had more on Americans than we had on Russians, for example,' he said. 'Should we be focusing on ourselves more than we focus on our adversaries?'....

"After Snowden wrapped, a slightly smaller audience remained in chairs to hear former Texas Congressman Ron Paul chat with Fox News commentator Andrew Napolitano and Reason.com editor Nick Gillespie. 

"'You know, my name was connected to Edward Snowden,' said Paul. 'They really wanted to blackball him, to destroy him, so they said: "He donated to the Ron Paul campaign!"'

"Paul called Snowden a truth-teller, and asked why whistleblowers like him were demonized.

 "'They end up being called the evil people, they're evil,' he said. 'Edward Snowden can't even come back to this country. They say he's treasonous, because he's telling the truth. This is why organizations like this are successful.'"

Read more: http://www.bloomberg.com/politics/articles/2015-02-14/edward-snowden-and-ron-paul-kick-off-libertarian-student-conference-with-a-little-kerfuffle-about-russia
'via Blog this'

Friday, February 13, 2015

Actor Vince Vaughn talks libertarianism with Playboy

Vince Vaughn Talks Libertarianism With Playboy - Hit & Run : Reason.com - Ed Krayewski:

February 12, 2015 - "If you read Playboy for the articles, the latest issue features an interview with actor Vince Vaughn, someone that people are sometimes surprised is a libertarian, espousing some of his libertarian views.

"Vaughn [talks] about Ron Paul, who 'woke a lot of people up to the fact that government can’t handle everything for you,' his distrust of centralized power, and his preference for a system where people are left alone 'unless they commit fraud or physical force or take someone’s property.'  'So we should have lawyers running the country?' interviewer David Hochman asks in response. Laws, and courts, are important, Vaughn explains, otherwise 'you can’t leave your house, because you have to protect your stuff'....

"Some more excerpts....

"''Let’s say you’re a major corporation, and I’m the politician and I can write laws. I can say which race gets a benefit and which doesn’t. That could get me some votes. Or I write laws that help your business and limit other businesses from being able to compete with you because they can’t survive all the new programs I’m putting in place'....

"'You have to understand that America today is not capitalistic. The problem is corporatism. The government has too much authority, and it’s dangerous. It stifles productivity and freedom and prosperity and peace'....

"'The Patriot Act? Let’s get rid of it. Undeclared wars, doing away with personal liberties — let’s understand how that has worked out historically to see that it has led to some horrible things. Once our personal liberties are gone, when an American citizen can be pulled out of his house and detained for six months without a trial, where is our country? Once those rights are gone, how do you get them back? Once the government is allowed to listen to you, how do you get that privacy back?'"

Read more: http://reason.com/blog/2015/02/12/vince-vaughn-talks-libertarianism-with-p
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Thursday, February 12, 2015

Canada's Supreme Court voids assisted suicide ban

Supreme Court strikes down assisted suicide ban | Toronto Star - Tonda MacCharles:

February 6, 2015 - "A historic and far-reaching decision of the Supreme Court of Canada declaring desperately suffering patients have a constitutional right to doctor-assisted suicide is set to reshape the agenda of Parliament if not the election this fall.

"The Conservative government that vowed never to reopen the question of assisted suicide is seeking to buy time in the wake of the bombshell ruling. Unanimous and unequivocal, the ruling will go down in the history books as Carter vs. Canada.

"It set out circumstances where the country’s top court said assisted suicide is constitutional — under a physician’s care, for consenting adults who determine they cannot tolerate the physical or psychological suffering brought on by a severe, incurable illness, disease or disability — a stunning reversal of the court’s 21-year-old ruling in the Sue Rodriguez case....

In the 9-0 judgment, the court declared the Criminal Code’s absolute ban on assisted suicide goes too far. Its attempt to protect the lives of 'vulnerable people' also prevents competent, consenting adults suffering 'grievous and irremediable medical conditions' from making core decisions about how they live and die, and so breaches three of the most basic rights: to life, liberty and security of the person, all enshrined in Sec. 7 of the Charter, and is not justified in a free democratic society."

Read more: http://www.thestar.com/news/canada/2015/02/06/supreme-court-rules-strikes-down-assisted-suicide-ban.html
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Wednesday, February 11, 2015

Guatemalan Gloria Alvarez on populism

A Dazzling Libertarian Debut, on Univision - Gerardo Abascal, MRC Newsbusters:

February 10, 2015 - "Univision anchor Jorge Ramos recently invited to his Sunday talk show, Al Punto, an extraordinary young libertarian activist who is capturing the imagination of increasing numbers of people throughout Latin America, following a powerful speech she delivered that went viral. Her name is Gloria Alvarez, and she delivered a stemwinder of a speech at an Iberoamerican youth conference, in which she denounced the scourge of populist politics in Latin America....

"Ramos featured excerpts of Alvarez’s blockbuster speech, seen by more than one million viewers, in which she pointed out that populism begins by 'dismantling institutions little by little, rewriting constitutions to accommodate them to the whims of corrupt leaders' and later that 'populism loves the poor so much that it multiplies them ... in order to continue receiving their votes by providing any particular material object the people may need at a given time.'

"In her interview with Ramos, Alvarez located the origin of modern-day populism in the aftermath of the historic collapse of Communism in the early 1990s, and the Left’s resulting necessity to play the 'democratic game' in order to obtain and wield power. In this context, Alvarez explained, what populism does 'is to promise, and to manipulate, economic necessities and above all justice ... to come and say to people, "I’m going to help you get ahead. You’re bad[ly] off because someone’s well off, and I’m going to balance that out." It gives people a false sense because ... when they receive their material need…they feel like "well, at least I got something, at least this is mine"'....

"Alvarez maintains that, on the contrary, 'the Guatemalan has to have a sense of dignity, and has to see the government not as a father or a guarantor of economic objects, but rather as an arbitrer.' The same can be said of all inhabitants of the Americas, from Alaska to Patagonia, because, to quote Alvarez once again, 'the worst damage that populism does is that it robs people of their dignity, it takes away from people the sense that they can move their own lives forward.'

Read more: http://newsbusters.org/blogs/gerardo-abascal/2015/02/10/dazzling-libertarian-debut-univision#sthash.ZDTDxnnQ.dpuf
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Tuesday, February 10, 2015

9 Republicans form House Freedom Caucus

Will House Freedom Caucus Really Adhere to the Constitution? - Jack Kenny, New American:

January 28, 2015 -"A new congressional caucus, started by nine Republicans, promises to defend freedom in a hostile environment: the Congress of the United States.

"'We support open, accountable and limited government, the Constitution and the rule of law, and policies that promote the liberty, safety and prosperity of all Americans,' says the mission statement of the House Freedom Caucus, announced this week by its nine founding members as a group that will work to push the Republican majority in the House in a more conservative direction. The group intends to be an alternative to the 172-member Republican Study Committee, regarded for decades to be the conservative voice among House Republicans.

"The Freedom Caucus intends to be much smaller. Membership will be by invitation only and the goal is to attract around 30 members. Since the Republicans have 246 representatives in the House, 29 dissenting members will be enough to keep the Republican leadership from gaining the 218 votes needed to pass legislation without help from Democrats — which could drive away some Republican votes.

"Members of the new caucus are Scott Garrett of New Jersey, Jim Jordan of Ohio, John Fleming of Louisiana, Matt Salmon of Arizona, Justin Amash of Michigan, Raúl Labrador of Idaho, Mick Mulvaney of South Carolina, Ron DeSantis of Florida, and Mark Meadows of North Carolina.

"'We seek to ensure that the members of the House honor promises made to their constituents, to make the congressional leadership put the interests of the American people above inside-the-Beltway interests, and to advance positive reforms that reflect limited government principles,' DeSantis said."

Read more: http://www.thenewamerican.com/usnews/congress/item/20001-will-house-freedom-caucus-really-adhere-to-the-constitution
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Monday, February 9, 2015

Rand Paul embraces libertarian roots in Iowa trip

Rand Paul stakes out libertarian claim in Iowa visit - CNN.com - Ashley Killough:

February 8, 2015 - "Sen. Rand Paul embraced his libertarian roots in Iowa this weekend, speaking unapologetically about his apprehension about foreign intervention and stoking the fire in one of the libertarian movement's biggest crusades: auditing the Federal Reserve.

"In his first trip to Iowa this year, just under a year before the caucuses, the Kentucky Republican and potential presidential candidate ventured into familiar territory, rallying young voters and libertarian-minded supporters who turned out big for his father's presidential campaigns....

"You're going to get a choice on who the nominee is for the Republican Party. You're going to have nine, 10, 15, 20 who are eager to go and want troops on the ground,' he said at the 'Audit the Fed' rally Friday, which took place at a winery in Des Moines. 'They want 100,000 troops on the ground. Right now. In all the countries.'

"You're going to get a choice on who the nominee is for the Republican Party. You're going to have nine, 10, 15, 20 who are eager to go and want troops on the ground," he said at the "Audit the Fed" rally Friday, which took place at a winery in Des Moines. "They want 100,000 troops on the ground. Right now. In all the countries.

"'I can tell you there will be one loud voice in our party saying, think of the unintended consequence. Think about what we're going to accomplish and whether it will work before we go to war. I promise you that will always be something I take very, very seriously.'

"With so many Republican candidates likely to echo each other's talking points in the next year, Paul has tried to run in his own lane by shaping his libertarian foundation into a selling point that says he's best poised to expand the Republican base.

 "To stop the 'dismantling of the country,' Paul said it's going to take someone with a nontraditional approach.

"'It's not going to take a ho-hum, same-old, same-old, we'll-get-a-Republican-that's-a-little-bit-different-than-the-Democrats. It's going to take someone who can unite the country. Republican. Democrat. Working class. Business class. Rich. Poor. Black. White. You name it. When our party looks like the rest of America, we're going to win.'"

Read more: http://www.cnn.com/2015/02/07/politics/rand-paul-iowa-wrap/
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Sunday, February 8, 2015

Ayn Rand at 110

Ayn Rand at 110 | Cato Institute - David Boaz:

February 2, 2015 - "In the dark year of 1943, in the depths of World War II and the Holocaust, when the United States was allied with one totalitarian power to defeat another, three remarkable women published books that could be said to have given birth to the modern libertarian movement. Rose Wilder Lane, the daughter of Laura Ingalls Wilder, who had written Little House on the Prairie and other stories of American rugged individualism, published a passionate historical essay called The Discovery of Freedom. Isabel Paterson, a novelist and literary critic, produced The God of the Machine, which defended individualism as the source of progress in the world.

"The other great book of 1943 was The Fountainhead, a powerful novel about architecture and integrity by Ayn Rand. The book’s individualist theme did not fit the spirit of the age, and reviewers savaged it. But it found its intended readers. Its sales started slowly, then built and built. It was still on the New York Times bestseller list two full years later. Hundreds of thousands of people read it in the 1940s, millions eventually, some of them because of the 1949 film starring Gary Cooper and Patricia Neal, and many of them were inspired enough to seek more information about Ayn Rand’s ideas. Rand went on to write an even more successful novel, Atlas Shrugged, in 1957, and to found an association of people who shared her philosophy, which she called Objectivism....

"George Gilder called Atlas Shrugged 'the most important novel of ideas since War and Peace.' Writing in the Washington Post, he explained her impact on the world of ideas and especially the world of capitalist ideas: 'Rand flung her gigantic books into the teeth of an intelligentsia still intoxicated by state power, during an era when even Dwight Eisenhower maintained tax rates of 90 percent and confessed his inability to answer Nikita Khrushchev’s assertion that capitalism was immoral because it was based on greed.'

"Rand’s books first appeared when no one seemed to support freedom and capitalism, and when even capitalism’s greatest defenders seemed to emphasize its utility, not its morality. It was often said at the time that socialism is a good idea in theory, but human beings just aren’t good enough for socialism. It was Ayn Rand who said that socialism is not good enough for human beings.

"Her books garnered millions of readers because they presented a passionate philosophical case for individual rights and capitalism, and did so through the medium of vivid, can’t-put-it-down novels. The people who read Ayn Rand and got the point didn’t just become aware of costs and benefits, incentives and trade-offs. They became passionate advocates of liberty.

"Rand was an anomaly in the 1940s and 1950s, an advocate of reason and individualism in time of irrationality and conformity. But she was a shaper of the 1960s, the age of “do your own thing” and youth rebellion; the 1970s, pejoratively described as the “Me Decade” but perhaps better understood as an age of skepticism about institutions and a turn toward self-improvement and personal happiness; and the 1980s, the decade of tax cuts and entrepreneurship.

"Throughout those decades her books continued to sell — 30 million copies over the years, and they still move off the shelves. The financial crisis and Wall Street bailouts gave Atlas Shrugged a huge push. A Facebook group titled 'Read the news today? It’s like Atlas Shrugged is happening in real life' was formed. More than 50 years after publication, the book had its best sales year ever. And sales have remained high — more than a million copies of Rand’s books were sold in 2012."

Read more: http://www.cato.org/publications/commentary/ayn-rand-110
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Saturday, February 7, 2015

Libertarianism on verge of political breakout: TIME

Libertarianism Is on the Verge of a Political Breakout | TIME - David Boaz:

February 5, 2015 - "Rand Paul’s leadership in the Senate – on the budget, regulation, privacy, criminal justice, and foreign policy – and his likely presidential campaign are generating new attention for libertarian ideas.

"'Libertarianism is hot,' headlined the Washington Post in 2013. From an almost-forgotten part of American political culture, libertarianism has grown into a respected and much-discussed political faction and a compelling set of ideas that challenge the conventional wisdom. Tens of millions of Americans are fiscally conservative, socially tolerant, and skeptical of American military intervention.

"The growth of the libertarian movement is a product of two factors: the spread of libertarian ideas and sentiments, and the expansion of government during the Bush and Obama administrations, particularly the civil liberties abuses after 9/11 and the bailouts and out-of-control spending after the financial crisis. As one journalist noted in 2009, 'The Obama administration brought with it ambitions of a resurgence of FDR and LBJ’s active-state liberalism. And with it, Obama has revived the enduring American challenge to the state.'

"That libertarian revival manifested itself in several ways. Sales of books like Atlas Shrugged and The Road to Serfdom soared. 'Tea party' rallies against taxes, debt, bailouts, and Obamacare drew a million or more people to hundreds of protests. 'Crony capitalism' became a target for people across the political spectrum. Marijuana legalization and marriage equality made rapid progress. More people than ever told Gallup in 2013 that the federal government has too much power."

Read more: http://time.com/3695448/rand-paul-libertarianism-political-breakout/
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Friday, February 6, 2015

Bob Marley sang of and for freedom (video)

Songs of Freedom: The Music of Bob Marley - Peter Saint-Andre, Full Context:

September 1993 - "The rock group Rush is the most famous libertarian band in the world, and justifiably so.... But there are other popular musicians who sing songs of freedom, one of the best of whom was the Jamaican reggae singer Bob Marley, who died in 1981. He was the most famous popular artist to come out of the Third World, and the most consistent in his celebration of freedom....

"Marley's music and thought is bound up with the religion of Rastafari. However, the essence of Rasta (which Marley once said means 'righteousness') is substantially political, so that the themes of Rasta and politics are often intertwined in Marley's music.

"Marley's earlier political songs are mostly protests against the system. Consider these lines from the song 'Slave Driver': 'Every time I hear the crack of a whip my blood runs cold / I remember on the slave ship how they brutalized the very souls / Today they say that we are free / Only to be chained in poverty'. Or these from 'Concrete Jungle', a song about life in a government housing project: 'Concrete jungle, where the living is hardest / Man, you've got to do your best / No chains around my feet but I'm not free / I know I am bound here in captivity'. Or these from 'Rebel Music (Three O'Clock Road Block)': 'Why can't we roam this open country / Why can't we be what we want to be / We want to be free'.

"Later in his career, Marley's songs became more than mere protest songs, and even evidenced an understanding of the causes of political problems. In 'Revolution', he sings: 'Never make a politician grant you a favor / They will always want to control you forever'. In 'War', he expounds on why the world is filled with conflict: 'Until the philosophy which holds one race superior and another inferior is finally and permanently discredited and abandoned / Until there are no longer first class and second class citizens of any nation / Until the color of a man's skin is of no more significance than the color of his eyes / Until the basic human rights are equally guaranteed to all without regard to race / There's war'. Yet Marley is not anti-Western in his denunciation of injustice – he explicitly mentions 'the ignoble and unhappy regimes that hold our brothers in Angola, in Mozambique, South Africa', which must be 'toppled' and 'utterly destroyed' if war is to vanish.

"One of my favorite Marley songs, and one expressing his belief in human rights for all, is 'Get Up Stand Up' (which Amnesty International uses as its unofficial anthem). What I like about it is its secularism, and at the same time its insistence that you demand your rights. Here are some representative lines: 'Most people think great god will come from the sky, take away everything and make everybody feel high / But if you know what life is worth you will look for yours on earth / And now when you see the light, stand up for your right / Get up stand up, stand up for your right / Get up stand up, don't give up the fight / Life is your right, so don't give up the fight'."

Read more: https://stpeter.im/writings/essays/marley.html
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Thursday, February 5, 2015

New libertarian think tank aims to "move legislation"

Libertarian Group Aims to Influence Immigration, Climate-Change Policies - Washington Wire - WSJ - Patrick O'Connor:

January 29, 2015 - "Libertarians are known more for their provocative ideas than their ability to get those ideas enacted into law.

"A new Washington-based think tank is trying to change that. The Niskanen Center was launched last year with the aim of influencing policy fights, not just authoring headline-grabbing proposals that go nowhere in Congress.

"'Our metric for success is that we have indeed been able to move legislation,' said Jerry Taylor, president of the Niskanen Center who previously worked at the Cato Institute, another libertarian think tank....

"Down the road, Mr. Taylor said the Niskanen Center will cultivate ideas for reforming the country’s entitlement programs and beefing up civil-liberties protections in the Patriot Act.

"One of the group’s most provocative proposals centers on an issue rarely viewed as a Republican priority: climate change. The Niskanen Center advocates a tax on carbon emissions that would replace existing environmental regulations. Prominent conservatives have long advocated a carbon tax as a way to let the market determine the cost of burning fossil fuels, but using it as a bargaining chip to limit environmental regulators is relatively new. Mr. Taylor admits this proposal faces little prospect of becoming law in the next Congress, but he said it will help set the stage for the environmental debate in the 2016 presidential race.

"The Center was named after the late Bill Niskanen, a former Cato chairman who served in the Reagan administration and once left Ford Motor Co. to protest its support of trade protection. Mr. Taylor said they picked the name because Mr. Niskanen was both principled and pragmatic."

Read more: http://blogs.wsj.com/washwire/2015/01/29/libertarian-group-aims-to-influence-immigration-climate-change-policies/
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Wednesday, February 4, 2015

From porn star to student libertarian organizer

Belle Knox Is Remaking Herself As A Libertarian - Business Insider - Hunter Walker:

January 28 2015 - "College sophomore Miriam Weeks found herself at the center of an international controversy last year when she became infamous as the 'Duke porn star'.

"Now, Weeks wants to make waves in the political world.

"She's working with a libertarian group on her campus and has a burgeoning public speaking career....

"'I think that my work and being in the porn industry definitely hits on so many libertarian themes like free speech, and censorship, and, you know, choice and autonomy over our bodies,' Weeks explained. 'So I think that I've really become passionate about libertarian issues because of the intersection.'

"Her public life began after a fellow student at Duke University revealed to their classmates that Weeks was performing in adult films using the alter ego 'Belle Knox.' Weeks took control of the situation and gave a series of interviews where she said she entered the porn industry to help pay for college and discussed the social stigma against sex workers. She also identified herself as a libertarian.... 'very socially liberal, but ... very economically conservative.'

"According to Weeks, a friend who saw these early interviews referred her to Students For Liberty, an organization that bills itself as 'the largest libertarian student organization in the world.' She joined the group last summer, in between her freshman and sophomore year, and participated in its training programs online and in Washington, D.C.

"Now, Weeks is the campus coordinator for Students for Liberty at Duke. In this capacity, Weeks said she brings speakers to campus, attends conferences and seminars, posts flyers, and maintains a presence for the group at school events. On the Students for Liberty website, Weeks identifies her 'favorite figures in liberty' as Ayn Rand, economist Milton Friedman, and two other activists whose careers have included both sex and politics: porn star Nina Hartley and former call girl Maggie McNeill."

Read more: http://www.businessinsider.com/belle-knox-is-remaking-herself-as-a-libertarian-2015-1
'via Blog this'

Tuesday, February 3, 2015

Chris Jewell Is LP of Canada candidate in Milton

Milton’s Jewell to run for Libertarian Party in federal election - Rachel Williams, InsideHalton.com:

January 20, 2015 - "With a party platform centered on putting power back in the hands of the middle class, Chris Jewell says he’s primed to make a difference in federal politics.

"A Milton resident, Jewell has been nominated by the Libertarian Party to run in the next federal election in the new riding of Milton....

"'I just want to make a difference. I can’t sit idly by anymore. It’s time that guys like me start stepping up and taking responsibility for our lives, our futures and our families,' he said.

"Jewell is a construction superintendent and a proud party advocate, calling the Libertarians the 'most egalitarian' when it comes to representation.

"The Libertarian Party platform supports a free market economy, deregulation in government, lowering of taxes, the legalization of marijuana, removing government controls over media outlets and promoting social equality.

"Jewell said the only role of government should be to 'protect life, liberty and property, not regulate every facet of life'."

Read more: http://www.insidehalton.com/news-story/5266297-milton-s-jewell-to-run-for-libertarian-party-in-federal-election/
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Monday, February 2, 2015

Scott Walker joins GOP anti-libertarian crusade

Scott Walker seeks to deflate the GOP’s libertarian streak « Hot Air - Noah Rothman:

February 1, 2015 - "One of the major takeaways from the Des Moines Register poll of the GOP primary electorate that found Wisconsin Gov. Scott Walker surging ahead of the pack in the Hawkeye State is his apparent appeal to both the Republican Party’s conservative and moderate wings....   In the process of appealing to these groups, however, Walker is alienating the GOP’s rising libertarian wing.

"On both the foreign affairs front and in regard to domestic policy, Walker is far from the ideal candidate to capture the support of younger voter who does not identify as Republican but is nevertheless increasingly suspicious of the government’s ability to effect positive change at home and abroad.

"In an appearance on ABC’s This Week on Sunday, Walker, buoyed by his performance in the latest DMR poll, adopted a hawkish position on ISIS that even many of the GOP’s stalwart interventionists are hesitant to adopt: A willingness to use American combat troops to destroy the Islamic State in Iraq and Syria....

"On the domestic policy front, too, Walker has embraced some approaches that make those who are most concerned about government overreach apprehensive. Some on the right have come to suspect that Walker’s commitment to shrinking local government might not extend well beyond curtailing the power of public sector unions to influence policy.

"In November, Walker backed a proposal to impose blanket drug testing on welfare beneficiaries in the Badger State – a proposal that sounded at the time to be almost certainly unconstitutional. Several court rulings have set the precedent that holds that “suspicionless” drug tests cannot be imposed on state residents merely because they intend to take advantage of existing government programs."

Read more: http://hotair.com/archives/2015/02/01/scott-walker-seeks-to-deflate-the-gops-libertarian-streak/
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Sunday, February 1, 2015

'Libertarian icons' Rush announce final major tour

Canadian progressive rock legend Rush to mark 40 years with last tour | Showbiz | Malay Mail Online:

January 23, 2015 - "Canadian progressive rock giants and libertarian icons Rush today announced concerts across North America in what the band said would be its last major tour.

"The tour, which comes 41 years after Rush released its self-titled debut album, will start May 8 in Tulsa, Oklahoma, and close on August 1 at the Los Angeles-area Forum.

"Rush’s three members in a statement said they wanted to 'celebrate with the most loyal fans in the world' by playing four decades worth of material on what 'will most likely be their last major tour of this magnitude.'

"Rush had its start in Toronto playing the hard guitar-driven sound that was then becoming popular but eventually became a major force in so-called progressive rock, which employed synthesizers and explored more complex song structures.

"The band’s lyrics, written by drummer Neil Peart, often examine the responsibility of the individual in society in songs inspired by science fiction and ancient mythology.

"The lyricism has made Rush the favorite band for many in the libertarian movement, which opposes a large role for government, although Peart and lead vocalist Geddy Lee have steered clear of identifying themselves directly with political groups.

"Peart, Lee and guitarist Alex Lifeson were the first rockers to be decorated with the Order of Canada, and Rush was inducted in 2013 into the Rock and Roll Hall of Fame."

http://www.themalaymailonline.com/showbiz/article/canadian-progressive-rock-legend-rush-to-mark-40-years-with-last-final-tour
'via Blog this'

For more information, go to: http://www.rush.com/