Happy 210th Birthday Frédéric Bastiat!

Last year, Don Boudreaux wrote:

209 years ago today, in southwestern France, a man who Joseph Schumpeter was later to call “the most brilliant economic journalist who ever lived” was born: Bastiat.  Sadly, this gifted writer and unmatched communicator of economics died of tuberculosis only 49 years later.

To learn more about Bastiat, you can do no better than to read Sheldon Richman’s “Annotated Biography of Frederic Bastiat.”


Happy 210th, Fred!


Ah, Texas. Such an easy target for mockery. So willing to stand up and say its piece when it believes in something. In today’s world, it must be considered an “extremist state full of extremists”. And it stood up against the US Federal government’s invasive and demeaning Transit Security Agency’s “enhanced security” measures.

‘the Texas House of Representatives unanimously passed “Restrain-the-TSA” legislation, which would make invasive pat-downs a crime at Texas airports… The Texas legislation [PDF] proposes to charge TSA agents with a misdemeanor crime, face a $4,000 fine, and one year in jail for any airport inspection that “touched the anus, sexual organ, buttocks, or breast of another person, including touching through clothing; or touched the other person in a manner that would be offensive to a reasonable person.’ Ms. Smith, NetworkWorld.com, May 22, 2011

Here a state is actually standing up against the United States’ ongoing degradation of personal liberties. Well done, Texas.

More fascinating to me, though, was the above article’s very brief expose on President Obama’s Science and Technology Advisor John P. Holdren.

‘Holdren has some “disturbing beliefs about America, capitalism and humanity,” according to the Examiner.

‘Long before becoming “science czar,” Holdren co-authored “Ecoscience: Population, Resources, Environment.” In this “environmental text book,” according to Stop Austin Scanners, Dr. Holdren promoted mass depopulation measures, advocating the “population at large could be sterilized by infertility drugs intentionally put into the nation’s drinking water or in food (pp. 787/788).” Additionally, on pages 917, 942/943, Holdren wrote that a “transnational ‘Planetary Regime’ should assume control” which could “dictate the most intimate details of Americans’ lives – using an armed international police force.”

‘As the article points out, Science Czar Dr. Holdren is the “ultimate authority on science/technological issues” for the White House. So is this push of “safe” backscatter and full-body scanners at airports, stadiums, mass transit and elsewhere, part of Holdren’s vision from his book for the American way of life to include an armed police force?’ Ms. Smith, NetworkWorld.com, May 22, 2011

Apparently, Mr Holden has refuted these beliefs before attaining his current role. Still, Holden is (or was) an advocate for “coercive fertility control”, forced sterilization, and other crime against humanity — and who worries about “pronatalist attitudes” in the unenlightened.

“Pronatalist” would, presumably, be his preferred perjorative for “people who like babies”.

How on earth is Holden not considered not considered an insane extremist, while Ron Paul is considered crazy and extreme for advocating sound currency, an end to American invasions and occupations, holding the federal government to obey its own Constitution?


Canada: Refuse the TSA’s Example


Alex Atemenanko, MLA for BC Southern Interior atamaa1@parl.gc.ca
Chuck Strahl, Minister of Transportation ottawa@chuckstrahl.com
Stephen Harper, Prime Minister of Canada pm@pm.gc.ca
Dennis Bevington, NDP Transportation Critic BevinD@parl.gc.ca
Joe Volpe, Liberal Transportation Critic Volpej@parl.gc.ca
Michael Ignatieff, Liberal Leader Ignatieff.M@parl.gc.ca


Jason Friesen
xxxxxxxx, BC Vxx xxx

Honourable Ministers:

I am writing to express my great concern about the “enhanced” security procedures Canada is beginning to implement at airports, following the example of the American TSA.

These procedures are an unacceptable breach of civil liberties and basic human rights everywhere they are implemented.
Continue reading Canada: Refuse the TSA’s Example

Dear Record Executives

A big fat thanks to record execs

Thank you for fighting the good fight against Internet MP3 file-swapping. Because of you, millions of kids will stop wasting time listening to new music and seeking out new bands. No more spreading the word to complete strangers about your artists. No more harmful exposure to thousands of bands via Internet radio either. With any luck they won’t talk about music at all. You probably knew you’d make millions by embracing the technology. After all, the kids swapping were like ten times more likely to buy CD’s, making your cause all the more admirable. It must have cost a bundle in future revenue, but don’t worry—computers are just a fad anyway, and the Internet is just plain stupid.

Rolling Stone

More Welfare for Corporations

A protester holds a stone during clashes with police in Tehran June 13, 2009. Thousands of people clashed with police on Saturday after the disputed election victory of President Mahmoud Ahmadinejad sparked the biggest protests in Tehran since the 1979 Islamic revolution. (REUTERS/Ahmed Jadalla)
A protester holds a stone during clashes with police in Tehran June 13, 2009. Thousands of people clashed with police on Saturday after the disputed election victory of President Mahmoud Ahmadinejad sparked the biggest protests in Tehran since the 1979 Islamic revolution. (REUTERS/Ahmed Jadalla)
Free-market, laissez-faire capitalism has a “risk and rewards” flavour. One gambles capital (money) in the hopes of a profitable gain. The greater the risk, the greater the reward. One might gain immense wealth, or one might lose one’s proverbial shirt.

The government bailouts for corporations and huge bonuses for the already overpaid muck-de-mucks that bankrupted them is an example of the diametric opposite of capitalism.
Continue reading More Welfare for Corporations

Social media empowering dictatorship?

UPI.com reports :

National Defense University researchers are encouraging the U.S. Defense Department to develop a strategy to use social media to strengthen national security.

Translation: to support government surveillance of citizens. This is supported by:

[Mark Drapeau, National Defense University associate research fellow] has called on the Defense Department to develop a comprehensive strategy for utilizing social-media technologies to support U.S. government strategic security objectives.

As if they haven’t already, get ready for government employees to be following your twitter feed…
Social media tools could support security