LRC Blog

Failure of the European Union

The European Union has not formed a stable political amalgam or federation out of the component European countries, states and peoples. It won’t be able to do that, at least peacefully, for a very good reason, which is that it cannot create one European people out of many peoples, each of which has its own cultural, economic and political aspirations.

Independent peoples have formed and disappeared in Europe for 3,000 years. Some idea of that shows up in the dynamic map of Europe (see here). It takes 5 minutes of your time to see the changing borders.

The intent of the EU is what its name suggests, a union of states, although its Treaty suggests otherwise. That had been attempted in the past by the Roman Empire and by the Third Reich, among others. It could not be done by force of arms. Could it be done by other means? That’s what the powers behind the EU had planned.

The recorded history of each country also depicts how powers attempted to extend realms and absorb peoples in places beyond their current reach. The EU’s attempt is as old as the hills, although its method was on a grand scale. Leaders with power almost always attempt to extend the territory under their control. They also always have a vital interest in further amalgamating the people under their control under the states they lead.

History also shows that within countries, within empires, and within aggregations of lands and peoples, there are always peoples who would like to separate and form their own states. Peoples form states under their leaders; leaders always arise who want to form them and who will make every effort to do so. A majority of interested people, often far less than an outright majority of the whole people, legitimizes a state or lines up behind leaders because one’s state is viewed as the instrument linked to one’s particular culture, economy and politics. The EU ignores or hopes to overcome both these inter-state and intra-state centrifugal forces.

The EU attempted to erase the differences in peoples and lead them into becoming Europeans, rather than Brits, French, Hungarians, Germans, Spaniards, Greeks, etc. The Treaty on European Union (unamended; Maastricht 1992) may be read here, in all its 250-page glory. Its eventual failure is as clear as its unrealistic or utopian goals. It simply ignores the political, economic and cultural striving of individual peoples that has marked Europe for thousands of years.

3:32 pm on January 20, 2019

A Dagger Aimed and Thrust into the Dark Clotted Heart of the Deep State

Since 1947, the National Security State has waged a savage, brutal, and unrelenting war against the American people. On the occasion of Martin Luther King Jr. Day, a group of over 60 prominent American citizens who call themselves the Truth and Reconciliation Committee, are calling upon Congress to reopen the investigations into the assassinations of President John F. KennedyMalcolm XMartin Luther King Jr., and Senator Robert F. Kennedy. This investigatory action is absolutely imperative to uncovering and revealing to the world the full extent of the extra-constitutional seizure of control and covert implementation of the deep state Coup d’état’s manipulation of the mechanism of governance in America.

2:32 pm on January 20, 2019

Ex-FBI Director: How U.S. Government Became Fully Controlled by Big Tech

Terrific interview (on the planned topic) with good insights toward the end.

2:18 pm on January 20, 2019

Rejecting Theft is the New “Theft”

My husband made this meme and posted it on his Facebook page, where it gained some traction. Someone responded with a comment: “Actually, taking advantage of society’s benefits without contributing your fair share of the costs is theft, Piglet.”

Surely, those advantageous “benefits” being forced upon me without my consent are the government’s murderous wars and occupation of some 100+ countries while enriching the war profiteers; its punishing police state tasering, beating up, and murdering citizens and shooting dogs to ‘protect and serve’ me; the establishment of a drug warrior industry and incarceration nation; the regulation and licensure requirements of everything; a total, give-away welfare state; a Federal Reserve that presides over a monetary redistribution mechanism that continually makes the average American poorer; a Spy State that has obliterated privacy and individual rights; a Security State that brands me a terrorist should I resist its dominance; etc., etc. And all while holding a gun to my head.

But the left-wing, pro-tax warrior considers the rejection of confiscation for these purposes + the desire to hold onto one’s own wealth to be “theft.” If it is so virtuous to be a taxpayer feeding the politicians and their public trough, why aren’t these folks “donating” above and beyond their required payment? Hell, they can put it on their credit card.

10:35 am on January 20, 2019

Making America Stupid Again

This script of the native American drummer “being harassed” has gone overboard.

I cannot believe how many people believe every false narrative they see on social media, especially when it is one of those well-edited videos accompanied by a graphic overlay of “what happened” that is meant to indict one party while drawing sympathy for the other party that is deemed to be the “victim.” These videos, always, are designed to lock you into the point of view of the presenter without daring to question it, because to do so would be so politically incorrect that you’d be too ashamed and too intimidated to be the one non-believing outlier that stands out in front of your friends on social media. Opining on the side of the so-called “victim” without having an understanding of the framework and context is virtue-signaling for the sake of winning approvals.

The “what happened” should immediately be objectively questioned rather than forming a spontaneous emotional reaction and making an uninformed comment. What happened with the native American drummer is not what the MSM has presented to us. Folks should have suspected that without ever having to see this full-footage video. What all happened is still up for grabs, but what is known is that the MAGA youths were approached and/or harassed by the drummer and others in the crowd because of they way they looked, and what they were wearing. And here’s another video showing the MAGA youths being approached.

Questions, people, ask the questions first. Howard Stern was right when he said social media is going to kill all of us.

7:38 am on January 20, 2019

Dan Bongino: Bogus Buzzfeed Story Was Likely a “Canary Trap”

Meanwhile, the e-zine (which specializes in goofy cat videos) doubles down on the original story.

9:17 pm on January 19, 2019

Denationalization of Money’s confutation

From: N
Sent: Thursday, September 13, 2018 9:55 AM
To: wblock@loyno.edu
Subject: Denationalization of Money’s confutation

Dear Professor Walter Block,

I’m writing to you because I’m looking for the best confutation available on the market of the Hayek’s monetary proposal exposed in his 1976 book “Denationalization of Money”.

I’ve read Rothbard’s beautiful https://mises.org/library/case-genuine-gold-dollar, and Hoppe’s https://mises.org/sites/default/files/rae7_2_3_3.pdf , but I’m wondering if there are some other articles that you consider just as much effective that I’m missing direct on Hayek’s theory of “ducats”.

Thank you very much for any of your advice.

My best regards,

N

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3:15 pm on January 19, 2019

“Social Justice” = Slavery

Reading about all the young ignorant, uneducated, “millennials” who proudly label themselves “socialists” or “social justice warriors” (same thing) reminded me of a question posed by my old friend Professor Walter E. Williams in a speech he gave at my university several years ago.  The question is:  What would you call a system that used force, violence, coercion, and intimidation to compel one person to work for the benefit of another person or persons?  Whenever I ask this of one of my undergraduate classes it usually takes about five seconds for someone to blurt out, “slavery!”  Exactly.  The class then becomes very uncomfortable and unhappy looking when I ask if there is any different between this and the welfare state or the “social justice” that so many of them have been indoctrinated into celebrating.

11:28 am on January 19, 2019

Breaking: Mueller Shoots Down “Rock Solid” Buzzfeed Report Claiming Trump Ordered Cohen to Commit Perjury

Hilarious.  Buzzfeed reporter Jason Leopold never actually saw the documents supposedly proving the crime.  All day today CNN and NBC had Trump all but resigning in disgrace by Monday.  It’s a wonder how any of these outlets have any viewers/readers left.

Clarification (10:30 ET): Leopold claims that he saw some documents.  However, his co-author Anthony Cormier claims that neither he nor Leopold ever saw any texts, e-mails, or other documents.

8:32 pm on January 18, 2019

Ocasio-Cortez Delivers A Message: Should We Care?

3:02 pm on January 18, 2019

Thoughts on the Farmer Dilemma

From: R
Sent: Friday, February 05, 2016 12:41 AM
To: Walter Block
Cc: 
Subject: Re: Thoughts on the Farmer Dilemma

Walter,

Thank you so much for tackling this with us!  I’d be interested in a discussion of another part of this dilemma- one that I hope will help clarify a few things:  

Bionic includes a quote from Rothbard involving a very similar situation of a merchant who is seeking the death penalty for the crime of bubble gum theft.  But, there are a few differences:–He refers to the assailant as being “convicted” of the crime.  This means the shop owner is out a piece of bubblegum which the assailant stole- these are established facts of history.  Rothbard’s analysis of proportionality in punishment of crimes is presented as being considered as someone analyzing a historical event.

However, the landowner at the time of trespass is in a different situation altogether.  There is no way the landowner can look into the future to see what is to occur for certain.  This is supported by your analysis regarding the libertarian “flagpole dilemma” when you say that “The owner of the flagpole is totally within his rights to defend his property, both the flagpole and his apartment.”1.  Do you see a distinction between the Rothbardian scenario of shoplifting and the Blockian flagpole scenario?

2.  Although you said children “must be treated differently than adults, in terms not only of punishment theory after the fact, but even in defense of property during this criminal behavior.”, you have also defended the absolute right of the homeowner to use lethal force in defense of property from trespass.  Can you explain why the libertarian qua libertarian is to “treat children differently than adults…”?  If it is a child on the flagpole, is the apartment owner required to acquiesce to the child?

–Another difference between the Rothbardian shoplifter and the trespasser is the scene of the crime(s).  The bubble gum monger is inviting people onto the property- as many as he can possibly receive, whereas the orchard owner is excluding all except those who are contributing to production of apples.  Have you written or lectured on that concept of exclusion vs. eager inclusion of outsiders (strangers) on private property?

Thanks again, Dr. Block!

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12:33 pm on January 18, 2019

GIs Freed North America from Nazis? Pompeo

The Haaretz transcript of Pompeo’s speech at the American University that I used read “In World War II, American GIs helped free North America from Nazi occupation.”

Two sharp observers noticed this. One thought Pompeo erred. Another suggested it may be a typo. Double-checking the U.S. Department of State transcript, we find this: “In World War II, American GIs helped free North America[i] from Nazi occupation.”

The footnote [i] reads “North Africa”. This makes sense because Pompeo gave the speech in Egypt. However, he must have said “America” instead of Africa in delivering his remarks. Interpret that error as you may.

I will quote additional incisive remarks by one of these correspondents.

“Other than that [error], where does one begin with this jackass, and how is it possible that such a complete idiot wields significant political power, in the U.S. or anywhere on Earth?

“Pompeo says, ‘I keep a Bible open on my desk to remind me of God and His Word, and The Truth.’

“Here’s a tip, MP [Mike Pompeo]: be sure to take your Bible next time you visit your buddy MoBS [Mohammed bin Salman] in Riyadh.

“Quote it profusely at every opportunity, and brandish it for every photo op. You might consider a crucifix tie tack for better effect.

“Good luck with that in the KSA [Kingdom of Saudi Arabia], although you could likely do it without repercussion in Tehran, since the IRA [Republic of Iran] tolerates all religions which predate the Prophet.

“In the KSA, displaying symbols of any religion except Islam is apostasy.

“The penalty for apostasy in the KSA is death by decapitation, and very swiftly.

“Iran, Islamic Republic of

(which has an elected Parliament)

Saudi Arabia, KINGDOM of

(where the KING wields absolute power)

“Now tell us, MP, which nation is ‘tyrannical?'”

8:57 am on January 18, 2019

Men: Don’t Shave. Buy a Watch.

A response to Gillette from Egard watches.

8:12 am on January 18, 2019

Gillette: “Versions of … a man”

More from Gillette at TheBestaManCanBe.org:

It’s time we acknowledge that brands, like ours, play a role in influencing culture. And as a company that encourages men to be their best, we have a responsibility to make sure we are promoting positive, attainable, inclusive and healthy versions of what it means to be a man.

“Influencing culture.” “Encourages.” And… “versions of what it means to be a man.”

“Influencing culture,” of course, means to play a heavy hand in changing the course of what is acceptable, in men, according to the latest politicized pronouncements in the War on Men. And then, “versions”? Whose version(s) of a man? The emasculated, obedient version demanded by the latest Leftist wave of man-blamers and man-haters? Or the version decided upon by each unique individual? We know it’s not the latter.

Gillette also scolds that men need to make changes to catch up with a “new era of masculinity.” And libertarians consistently screech at me that this kind of propaganda is “the free market,” and to oppose this kind of Influencing and special interest propagandizing is un-libertarian. BS. Just look at who is in control of the propaganda bandwagon. Here’s the quote from Edward Bernays, from the book “Propaganda,” that applies to more than just corporate marketing and public relations:

The conscious and intelligent manipulation of the organized habits and opinions of the masses is an important element in democratic society. Those who manipulate this unseen mechanism of society constitute an invisible government which is the true ruling power of our country. We are governed, our minds are molded, our tastes formed, our ideas suggested, largely by men we have never heard of.

7:47 am on January 18, 2019

Punishment

From: N
Sent: Monday, February 15, 2016 9:22 PM
To: walter block
Subject: punishment

Say the average person lives 75 years, and person A of age 50 kills person B of age 70.

Shouldn’t we punish A for a theft of life of 5 years, and therefore punish A by a prison sentence of 10 years instead of execution?

On the other hand if A kills another 50 year old he should not only be executed for the theft of 25 years, but he should also be tortured in order to double the severity of his punishment in relation to his crime. Thanks, N

Dear N:

We never know, for sure, how long anyone will live, so this is hardly feasible. I don’t think it is just, either. I think killing a baby, aged, 1, is just as much a rights violation as killing his father, aged 35, and equally a rights violation killing his grandfather, aged 70. Call me an egalitarian, for at least on this issue I am indeed one. Thanks for posing an interesting question.

Best regards,

Walter

1:41 am on January 18, 2019

If You Feel Sorry for the Rich Washington Ruling-Class Bureaucracy . . .

. . . then you are a chump and a sucker.

8:30 pm on January 17, 2019

Attention Lobbyists!

A new bribery opportunity has just opened up for you!  President Trump has informed Nancy Pelosi that she will not be able to use a “free” military jet for her planned European vacation.  He informed her while she and her entourage were literally on their way to the airforce base according to news reports.  She’ll have to find alternative means of transportation, Washington lobbyists. Time to pony up!  The CNN reporterettes’ heads are exploding today over this latest toxic masculinity outrage.

2:49 pm on January 17, 2019

What A Coincidence! After Syria Attack, Will We Have To Stay?

12:33 pm on January 17, 2019

Good Example of “Toxic Masculinity” in Defense of Women

Former NFL player beats the crap out of a piece of human garbage he finds peeping into the bedroom window of his 14-year-old daughter with his pants down around his ankles.  (The man-hating Marxist/feminists who now apparently run Gillette would have us believe that most men are more like the pervert here than the heroic father).

10:31 am on January 17, 2019

Kamala Harris Leads the Pack

Kamala Harris is at 19 cents on Predictit in the 2020 Democratic nominee contest. Beto has slipped to second place at 18 cents. He’s been making a fool of himself. Harris has kept quiet, which avoids making mistakes.

Such a small move up, so unsure a status and so early in the process, one may wonder why to mention it. It’s because Harris has a number of things going for her within Democratic circles. She’s female. Her mother is Tamil Indian, her father Jamaican. She’s a senator from California. Before that she was in law enforcement as Attorney General and District Attorney. Her positions are progressive and socialist; they’ll satisfy Democrats.

Unless Harris blunders, she stands a good chance of securing the nomination. This is why she has consistently been placing second in the Predictit race right behind Beto and now leads.

9:41 am on January 17, 2019

Pompeo’s Imperative

Until he resigns, Mike Pompeo is Secretary of State, a powerful position from which to make or influence foreign policy. He gave a speech on January 10, 2019 at American University in Cairo. It tells us where he wants to lead America. But why has he chosen the anti-Iran direction that he has?

His philosophy assumes first that “America is a force for good in the Middle East.” The opposite has been true.
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9:00 am on January 17, 2019

Coase Is A Bitter Enemy Of Private Property Rights

From: R
Sent: Sunday
To: Walter Block
Subject: Inquiry about research

Hello Dr. Block!

We’ve corresponded a couple of years ago following the Ron Paul convention. I appreciated the reading material that you provided for me at that time on your theory of “eviction” instead of abortion. However, I’m currently researching information on an article I’m about to write for my blog, “The Blue Collar Economist” and subsequently as an op-ed for Epic Times, about the Flint Michigan water scandal.

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1:30 am on January 17, 2019

Are Women Catty?

I raise this question because it crossed my mind, and then it seemed like a good way to be politically incorrect.

I suggest that you search on “are women catty”. You will find reputable articles not only saying that they are catty but explaining why they are catty as an evolutionary matter.

I haven’t done the research, so I present the matter as a question. Cattiness would have to be defined and measured. It would have to be compared to male cattiness.

What prompted the question? I got wondering whether or not a male Speaker of the House in Nancy Pelosi’s shoes would be saying the kinds of things she’s saying and doing the kinds of things she’s doing. Disinviting Trump from appearing before the Congress to present the State of the Union address is spiteful, it seems to me. It also builds out her desire to be treated as an equal. Frankly, I cannot imagine a male Speaker feeling he has to show equality with the president, or a traditional Democrat male Speaker disinviting the president, except maybe if Schumer were in the House and Speaker. He’s that petty and vicious. Would Sam Rayburn or Tip O’Neill have done such a thing? Pat Buchanan can answer that better than I can. Americans expect to hear this address, and it’s petty to tie it into the ongoing conflict.

Several of the female freshman Democratic class are coming off as quite nasty, foul-mouthed and power-hungry. Cattiness looks like the least of their possible defects of character.

Hillary Clinton is known to be nasty in private. In public her cattiness has come out in all sorts of excuses for losing the election. She attempts to look and sound diplomatic and reasonable. The facade is often shattered, as when she gloated over Gaddafi’s murder. It has been far from joyful to hear the string of U.S. female representatives to the U.N. To me they’ve seemed very catty, whether Democrats or Republicans.

It should be understood that we are talking about a statistical distribution of a characteristic. The hypothesis is about the average (mean), as compared with the male of the species. Even if the mean is higher for females, there may be huge numbers of females below the mean for males. This will depend on the size of any difference in means. Donald Trump by himself seems capable of raising the male mean of cattiness. The same goes for Obama, who always sneaks nasty zingers into his statements.

I can imagine that some day we will be presented with mature candidates who have some wisdom, sense, understanding and integrity, and who can control the 21st century tendency for nasty remarks. It seems that rap, comedy, and movies are all raising the level of crudity, nastiness and immaturity. It’s been so long since mature candidates have appeared, male or female, that it’s hard to maintain this fond hope. The theory that the worst people, the shallow demagogues, rise to the top in a democratic system seems to have legs. The level of the top is also sinking lower and lower.

9:17 pm on January 16, 2019

NATO Has Been Obsolete for 28 Years, But Don’t Ask Why It Still Exists

Plus more coverage of the organized attempt to wreck Tulsi Gabbard.  Guest: former State Department official Christian Whiton.

8:32 pm on January 16, 2019

Two More Defamation Suits Filed Against the Soviet Poverty Lie Center (SPLC)

For doing what the SPLC specializes in:  libeling those who disagree with the extreme far left of the Democrat Party on any and all issues as a “racist,” “Nazi,” “white supremacist,” etc., etc.  These two lawsuits are by people who favor a public debate over immigration policy, something the American Enterprise Institute did several years ago and was, of course, then accused of “mainstreaming hate” by the SPLC.  One lawsuit is a racketeering lawsuit by the Center for Immigration Studies and the other is by a Missouri businessman.

7:20 pm on January 16, 2019

Sensitivity Training Led the Way

One of the hallmarks of total control in Orwell’s 1984 is indoctrination or instilling of beliefs. Diversity training, classes and workshops do this. They inculcate ideas, such as ideas about power, privilege, racism, power, equity, inclusion, etc. Search on “diversity workshop” to find details.

This leftist totalitarian device links back to sensitivity training. That began in 1946. Business schools joined this parade. I cannot hardly convey with what low esteem business school departments specializing in human resources, psychology and organizational behavior were held, because of their lack of scientific basis. MBA students widely regarded their required courses as junk and a waste of valuable time and effort.

Sensitivity training blossomed and peaked in the 60s and 70s as part of human resource management. It’s now passé and subject to criticism. Nonetheless, it did the damage of leading the way to today’s indoctrination methods.

Any person who has matured doesn’t need any of this kind of stuff, doesn’t want to go through the pain of sitting through it, and automatically rebels against its propaganda.

5:43 pm on January 16, 2019

The Gillette Creed. By Feminists, for Feminists.

The Gillette ad runs on like a public service announcement. Those who don’t see anything wrong with this thing haven’t figured it out.

The central theme of the ad is this: ‘jump on the bandwagon’ of the collective attack on men and maleness, employing the same propaganda/terminology/visuals that have been used by the hate-all-men psychopaths on the left. The ad is scripted to tell men how they need to “not behave,” thereby assuming that men, in general, are pigs. The ad is therefore collectively stamping “guilty” upon all men, and asking them to consider leaving the guilty camp for a guilt-free existence in spite of the ‘inherent horrors’ of their testosterone. There’s no place for ‘innocent until proven guilty’ in a time and place where men are always and everywhere the enemy.

The purpose of the ad is to indoctrinate. And we know darn well what comes out of this indoctrination underwritten by government, institutions, special interests, and now, in this case, private companies marching in line with the flavor-of-the-moment. This Gillette man-shaming is all of the same-old, same-old contrived attack mechanisms rolled into one ad.

And, if this article at the Daily Mail isn’t fake news, it turns out that this ad was spun by a known creator of toxic feminism.

3:21 pm on January 16, 2019

The New White Privilege

It seems that ‘white privilege’ may be an equal opportunity privilege.

During a guest radio appearance, a CNN legal analyst said the show’s host, who is black, has benefited from “white privilege.”

The segment aired Tuesday during a SiriusXM show hosted by David Webb, who is also a contributor at Fox News. His guest during the segment was Areva Martin, a civil rights attorney and CNN legal analyst.

“Well, David, that’s a whole ‘nother long conversation about white privilege, the things that you have the privilege of doing that people of color don’t have the privilege of,” said Martin.

When Webb asks how he benefits, Martin said it’s “by virtue of being a white male.”

“Areva, I hate to break it to you, but you should’ve been better prepped. I’m black,” said Webb.

3:03 pm on January 16, 2019

Silver Lining In The Government Shutdown

12:29 pm on January 16, 2019

Paying the Hands that Molest You

In response to Kissing the Hands that Molest You, Dave writes:

a couple of days ago, my airline station manager came into our aircraft line maintenance office and asked the three of us that were on duty at the time if we’d sign a “thank you/sympathy” card to give to the airport terminal TSA manager. I said “NO WAY”! Another one of my workmates said “absolutely not”! He just looked at me with an open mouth and walked out…the perfect example of “lickspittle” and “bootlicker.”

Meanwhile, would you believe one of the TSA’s deviants was brazen enough to “[create] a GoFundMe page on Jan. 4[,] … a week before he and his wife, also a TSA agent, would miss their first paychecks”? Of course you would: this is the TSA we’re talking about. Let’s rephrase the question: would you believe that the serfs are actually moronic enough to send this sponge their pre-tax dollars? Yep, 74 of them “as of Monday morning” “donat[ed] … more than $3,300.”

I don’t want to start a witch-hunt or anything, but at least one of those contributors seems to read LRC:

A person who donated $5 —  the minimum amount that allows you to post a comment on the fundraising page … had harsh words for the TSA: “Entitled government workers. Really, quit your job and get to work there are about 100000 available jobs in Vermont right now and instead you’re whining on godundme for $5 hand outs. Shame on you.”

Amen!

11:24 am on January 16, 2019