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Fearless Philosophy For Free Minds: August 2005

Wednesday, August 31, 2005

Fearless Philosophy Blog Post of the Month (August 2005)

August turned out to be a very busy month for news and commentary. Scanning the blogosphere, I found so many great posts on so many different topics. The Carnival of Liberty once again turned out to be a great resoruce in selecting The Fearless Philosophy Blog Post of the Month. I failed to link the last carnival, Carnival of Liberty VIII hosted by Dan Melson of Searchlight Crusade. The latest edition, Carnival of Liberty IX is now up at Resistance is Futile! with the site’s founder Gullyborg hosting. OK, now that I have that all taken care of, let’s take a look at my picks for this month.

Third Place goes to Chris Byrne of The Anarchangel with his post: Wal-Mart and the free market. Much of people’s complaints against Wal-Mart are unfounded in my opinion. Chris does a great job of explaining how Wal-Mart participates in the free market in this post. Chris explains this the best in the following excerpt toward the end of his post:

“If you don't provide better service, and better selection; then yes, Wal-mart is going to put you out of business; and I don't see how that's a bad thing.”

To people who do not understand capitalism and free markets, that statement might sound very cold but isn’t that what competition is all about: giving people what they want?

Second Place goes to Kevin Boyd the Louisiana Libertarian (this is completely off topic, but if you’re out there Kevin, let us know you got yourself out of the hurricane okay if/when you read this post). Turns out that Pat Robertson isn’t the only leader of the Christian Right to say something stupid this month (is anyone really surprised ?) What Robertson said pales in comparison to what Dr. James Dobson said according to Kevin’s post: James Dobson compares embryonic stem cell to Nazi Germany. Can we go one week without someone making some reckless comparison to Hitler, The Third Reich, or the Nazis? Kevin made the following point:

These remarks are outrageous to say the least. It trivalizes the Holocaust and the crimes of Nazi Germany. In addition, it makes Dobson look as moronic as the left-wing bloggers who constantly compare Bush to Hitler. But then again, these remarks should not come as a surprise to those of us who see the religious right as nothing more than the counterparts to Daily Kos's commenters and the Democratic underground on the left.

I couldn’t agree more! I do not care how you feel about embryonic stem cell research; comparing this possibly life-saving research to that of Nazi experiments on the Jews is beyond the pale. Furthermore, this notion that a clump of cells has a life which is equal to my wife’s, my children’s, my family’s, my friends’, or my own cheapens the idea of what life is in my judgement. Thanks for calling Mr. Dobson out on this one Kevin.

And the winner is…

The Fearless Philosophy Blogpost of the Month goes to Kid Various of The Idiom with a post titled: Why Casey Sheehan Died. Please don’t be fooled by the title, like you I am very tired of hearing about Cindy Sheehan’s protest in Crawford. She has made her point and her 15 minutes are up. The focus of the Kid’s post isn’t about Casey Sheehan per se, but more of a reminder of why we are fighting this war on terror to begin with (much like I did in my snarky post titled: Peace on the Enemy’s Terms). Here is one of the nuggets of pure gold from this month’s winning post:

Historically speaking, there have been only two restraints on the use of nuclear weapons. The first restraint is the feasibility of separating out enough fissile material and other technical requirements needed to actually construct a working weapon.

The second is the fact that, even taking into account the beneficial effects of deterrence throughout the Cold War, nuclear weapon states have never actually used them because of a deeply held moral restraint. Neither the U.S. (in Vietnam or Korea) or the Soviet Union (in Afghanistan) used nuclear weapons, even when such use would cause little fear of a retaliatory strike. Similarly, Israel has not used nuclear weapons against her Arab adversaries, nor had India during the nearly 25 years in which it had a nuclear monopoly vis a vis Pakistan.

After the events of September 11th, it is clear that we cannot rely on restraint number 2 to protect us from the enemy.
Congrats to all of this month’s winners!

Previous Winners:
July 2005
June 2005
May 2005
April 2005
March 2005
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Friday, August 26, 2005

Bob Has a Blog, Lookout!

A former co-worker of mine by the name of Bob Walters has just entered the blogosphere with a blog he calls General Stupidity. Bob moved from Chicago to Scottsdale, AZ in 2003. We use to get into some interesting conversations and debates around the ol’ water cooler back in the day. I would describe Bob as a slightly Left-of-center independent and all around nice guy. Go visit his blog and tell him his ol’ bud Steve sent ya.
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Thursday, August 25, 2005


Say Uncle asks the following question:

By some bizarre set of circumstances, you are the president as of now. Name the first 5 things you’d do. Level of difficulty: it must actually be stuff the president is constitutionally allowed to do.”

Anyone who follows politics and has strong opinions has at one time or another thought about what he or she would do as president. I’m no exception, so I thought I would play along this time. Here is my list.

1. My very fist act as president would be to pardon all persons convicted of consensual crimes (a.k.a. victimless crimes). All nonviolent drug offenders, prostitutes/Johns, gamblers and others who committed no crimes against anyone other than themselves or against any ‘non-consenting other’ would be immediately released from prison. This pardon would stay in effect for the duration of my presidency (which would effectively end the war on drugs at least temporarily). My policy would be that there would be no prison time for persons who do not threaten other persons’ life, liberty, or property through force or fraud.

2. I would recommend to congress for the money saved from the release of the pardoned ‘criminals’ to be spent securing the boarders and the various ports of entry into the United States.

3. I would put congress on a diet by vetoing any budget which contained pork. Sure, my veto would likely be overridden at some point, but my name would not be attached to any wasteful spending.

4. Un-nominate John Roberts to SCOTUS and nominate Janice Rodgers Brown. Roberts is probably OK but JRB would be a much better selection.

5. Cabinent and high-level advisors:
Economics advisor: Walter E. Williams
Secretary of Defense: Eric Cowperthwaite
Press Secretary: John Stossel (I would just love hearing him telling reporters “Give me a break!” when they ask stupid questions)
Attorney General: Larry Elder
Solicitor General: Neal Boortz
Secretary of State: Thomas Sowell
Surgeon General: Drew Penski (of Loveline fame)
U.N. Ambassador: Brad Warbainy (he did such a great job representing us in Europe : )

I’ll have to give some additional thought to the rest of my cabinet and advisors; I’ll update the list as they come to me.

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Tuesday, August 23, 2005

End Success-Based Taxation

Neal Boortz made an interesting point yesterday about much of the opposition to The Fair Tax bill. Boortz suggested that most of the opposition to the plan has nothing to do with whether or not The Fair Tax is ‘fair’ and would seamlessly fund the federal government as it is now, but the notion that the rich are not punished under this system. He pointed out that a number of people hate the rich so much that they are willing to tax the rich at a higher rate even if it means raising their own tax rate. It’s the old ‘haves and have nots’ debate that comes around every election cycle. As a matter of fact, it is this class envy debate that brought about the income tax in the first place with the passage of the Sixteenth Amendment.

The Fair Tax authors recognize that the individual has the right to the fruits of his labors. As Americans, we do not pay taxes; the federal government TAKES a percentage of our money (property) based on how much we earn. Those who work the smartest (not necessarily hardest though hard work is more often than not part of it) and achieve the most are punished while those who do not work as smart and in many cases, as hard are rewarded. Is that fair? Absolutely not! Individuals who pursue their rational selfish desires in life not only benefit themselves, but society as a whole by providing better jobs, better products, and better services competing against others with similar rational selfish desires.

By punishing the ‘rich’ we only hurt ourselves. Savvy businesspersons base many of their decisions on their bottom line. Can we blame them for that? The same people who are angry that so many corporations are going overseas are usually the same people who want to stick it to the rich. Why do you think these corporations go overseas? Could it be that doing business in the U.S. is too expensive due to government regulations and punitive tax policies? The Fair Tax would reduce expenses tremendously by making the United States the biggest tax shelter in the world, creating an incentive to move businesses here.

Hopefully more Americans will start rewarding achievers rather than punishing them. Neal Boortz’s Fair Tax Book is currently #1 on The New York Times Best Seller List. Could his book’s success translate into retiring the punitive income tax code we have now? We can only hope.

Related Posts:
We Can Make April 15th Just Another Day
The Virtue of Selfishness
What I Have Learned from Air America: Part IV

Brad Warbainy of The Unrepentant Individual has written a two-part series on the Fair Tax and tax policy in general (Part I, Part II,). Go check it out!
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Thursday, August 18, 2005

A Religious Litmus Test?

Certain social conservatives, Catholics, and Evangelicals are concerned that the current Supreme Court nominee, John Roberts, will be discriminated against because he is a practicing Catholic. Senate Democrats may attempt to block Roberts on the theory that he will base his rulings on the edicts of the Pope. Would this be a legitimate reason to block Roberts from the Supreme Court?

The Constitution is very vague in some areas. Legal scholars disagree on such things as whether or not the founders intended there to be a separation of church and state in what is known as the establishment clause of the First Amendment, whether the right to bear arms found in the Second Amendment is an individual right or a collective right (it is clearly an individual right), and whether or not a right to privacy exists. While there is room for thoughtful, intelligent debate for all these controversies, the Constitution is very clear on the issue of religious tests for office holders.

Article VI, Clause 3:

The Senators and Representatives before mentioned, and the Members of the several State Legislatures, and all executive and judicial Officers, both of the United States and of the several States, shall be bound by Oath or Affirmation, to support this Constitution; but no religious Test shall ever be required as a Qualification to any Office or public Trust under the United States.

This clause seems to bolster the argument for a separation of church and state but clearly does not bar anyone from holding office based on his or her religious beliefs. Prior to the passage of the U.S. Constitution, some states required representatives to be members of a certain church or denomination (this was the case for many of the delegates to the constitutional convention). James Madison and other delegates recognized that continuing to have this restriction could cause much more harm than good over the long term based on Europe’s bloody history. Instead, Madison et al wanted to make certain that all men would be treated equally under the law, recognizing the individual has the right to his freedom of conscious. If individuals were to retain this right, allowing office holders to have a free conscious was also necessary.

If this is the case, how can we guard against an individual who would sacrifice the Constitution on the basis of his or her religion? Notice the first part of the last sentence of this clause: “…shall be bound by Oath or Affirmation, to support this Constitution...”

The first requirement of an office holder in the United States is to uphold the Constitution, regardless of his or her religious beliefs (or any other beliefs for that matter) which may be to the contrary. If Judge Roberts can agree to do just that and prove before the Senate that his allegiance is to the Constitution rather than the Vatican, his Catholicism should not be an issue.
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Tuesday, August 16, 2005

Carnival of Liberty VII is Ready

The Carnival of Liberty this week is hosted by Eric Cowperthwaite at Eric’s Grumbles Before the Grave. The subject of the carnival’s prologue is the advances which have taken place in the cause of liberty around the world. Eric writes:

I think one of the things we forget, as we survey all of today's assault on liberty and freedom, is just how far we have come, just how much of the world has changed in the past 60 years. The bid of the German, Japanese and Italian fascists for European and East Asian hegemony was defeated, and the horror that was the Nazi Final solution brought to an end. The Soviet Union, and its enslavement of half a billion humans came to a close only a short four and a half decades later. As much as we may detest the Chinese government, the truth is that there has been slow progress there too. Apartheid in South Africa is a thing of the past. Let's take a moment to celebrate all of the triumphs of liberty and freedom. And then recognize that there is much more to accomplish.

Eric has a great point. If we want to fight for liberty, we need to remember what was required to secure liberty in the past. These historical examples and countless others of the defeat of tyranny around the world can guide us in how to fight both militarily and philosophically to free more minds and create a better world.

As always, the Carnival of Liberty has some great posts from members of the Life, Liberty, and Property community and others who value these rights. Be sure to check it out, you won’t be disappointed.

Past carnivals:
Carnival of Liberty I hosted by Brad Warbainy of The Unrepentant Individual
Carnival of Liberty II hosted by Searchlight Crusade
Carnival of Liberty III hosted by Eric Cowperthwaite of Eric’s Grumbles
Carnival of Liberty IV hosted by Eric Cowperthwaite of Eric’s Grumbles
Carnival of Liberty V hosted by Owlish of Owlish Mutterings
Carnival of Liberty VI hosted by Stephen Littau of Fearless Philosophy for Free Minds
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Friday, August 12, 2005

Peace on the Enemy’s Terms

Anyone who has read this blog for any length of time knows I have been an unapologetic supporter on the war on terror. Like many Americans, however, as the daily news reports of casualties pour in each day, I am starting to rethink my position. Innocent people are all too often killed by errant bombs and bullets. As I have written before, war is messy. How many more fathers and mothers will have a soldier knock on their door to deliver the tragic news that their son or daughter was killed in Iraq, Afghanistan, or elsewhere before this war on terror is over? How many wives will lose their husbands? How many more children will lose their fathers and mothers? Is the cost of human life worth the price? Are the war protesters right when they say ‘war is not the answer’? If war is not the answer, what is? Whether we support the war on terror or not we must ask ourselves these important questions.

Maybe I have been wrong all this time; maybe my belief that using overwhelming force against the enemy is not the way to stop terrorism. Maybe it is time to extend the olive branch to the enemies of our country. After all, if it were not for the policies of the United States and its support of Israel, these oppressed people would leave us alone…right?

Antiwar advocates seem to believe that if the U.S. pulled out all its troops in the Middle East, Bin Laden and Co. would stop killing innocent Americans. I do not think their solution goes far enough. If we seriously want our enemies to stop attacking us by using appeasement, pulling out of the Middle East and ending our support for Israel is only a first step. If we started to withdraw from Iraq and Afghanistan, the terrorists might hold off on attacking America for awhile, but in the long term, we must do more. We have to understand why they wish to kill us.

Why is America such a threat to militant Islamists? Our very existence is a threat. Perhaps we should try to live the way they would want us to. After we pull all troops out of the Middle East, we must convert to Islam (the Al Qaeda version) as a nation. Separation of church and state shall become a thing of the past as we burn the U.S. Constitution and replace it with Islamic law.

The new Islamic law will require dissolving the three branches of government and all the state governments. Representative government is against the will of Allah, therefore, all power will be vested in a Muslim Cleric who will be chosen by Allah. Those who choose to disobey the cleric’s laws will be promptly executed.

The rights of Life, Liberty, and Property shall be a thing of the past. Life can be taken away from any person at any time for any reason the Cleric sees fit. Americans will no doubt have to do a great deal of repenting for their past transgressions against Allah. The day may come when you are asked to strap a bomb to yourself or your child in order to kill as many infidels as you can (there will undoubtedly be some Americans who will want to revive the former constitutional republic). The only ‘liberty’ that shall be allowed in this new government is to live in accordance to the Quran as there is no liberty without Allah. All property which is repugnant to Allah shall be destroyed and be cleansed with the blood of the infidels and replaced with a mosque. The only limited property rights this government will allow is for men have property rights over women, because women shall have no rights whatsoever.

No longer will women be allowed to walk the streets, drive, or be seen in public without a male relative escorting them. If a woman must be in public, she must cover every inch of her skin so that men will not be tempted by her charms. Any woman who is caught or rumored of engaging in sex (consensual or not) with any person other than her spouse shall be executed by her family.

These reforms would be a good start to keep the terrorists from killing us but there is still more we must do. All art, music, dance, literature, scientific research not approved by the Cleric must be destroyed. Human expression of any kind not in accordance with the Quran or the Cleric is strictly forbidden. All scientific research which is contrary to the TRUTH of Islam must not be taught under any circumstances.

All these sacrifices will be hard for most of us to come to terms with. Though most of us won’t truthfully believe in their imaginary friend (oops, I mean god; old habits die hard), we can all pretend along with them and no one will be the wiser. If we agree with the enemy’s terms for ‘peace,’ will they hold up their end of the deal? It is worth a shot I suppose. Our way of life, our liberties, and our culture are not THAT important are they; worth dying for? What is war good for? Absolutely NOTHING! Right?
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Tuesday, August 09, 2005

Carnival of Liberty VI

Welcome to Fearless Philosophy for Free Minds, home of Carnival of Liberty VI. Before I get started, I would like to thank Eric Cowperthwaite of Eric’s Grumbles Before the Grave (who will be hosting the next carnival, Carnival of Liberty VII) for allowing me this opportunity and assistance in presenting the crème de la crème posts from some of the most talented writers in the blogosphere. Most of the carnival’s entries are from liberty-minded bloggers which can be read daily on the Life, Liberty, and Property Group Blog and the Life, Liberty, and Property Community Homepage hosted by The Truth Laid Bear. I would also like to thank Brad Warbainy of The Unrepentant Individual for helping me with the technical side of hosting this carnival and everyone out there who promoted this carnival on their sites.

I find the term ‘carnival’ very appropriate for this alliance of bloggers known as LLP.’s definition of carnival is as follows:

  1. often Carnival The period of merrymaking and feasting celebrated just before Lent.
  2. A traveling amusement show usually including rides, games, and sideshows.
  3. A festival or revel: winter carnival.

I think the second definition fits best when I think of The Carnival of Liberty. As with the second definition, The Carnival of Liberty travels from one blog to the next to promote the host’s blog and the LLP community as a whole. The posts are very amusing and many of these posts take the readers for a ride, challenging the readers to think of the world in a different way. Sometimes the authors play games with our minds playing devil’s advocate to challenge us even more.

My favorite part of the second definition: sideshows. As Democrats and Republicans continue to blame each other (there is plenty of blame to go around fellas) for the ills of the government and advance little or no ideas of any substance, those of us in the LLP community write about big ideas which promote the individual’s right to life, liberty, and property (in Jefferson’s words in The Declaration of Independence, “the pursuit of happiness”). Yes, we are the sideshows of the national debate who actually believe the plain language of the United States Constitution says what it means and means what it says. We believe the Constitution was written for the common man to understand.

Unfortunately, ‘law experts’ with agendas from both the Left and the Right have obscured the meaning to fit their political ends. It’s up to we, the liberty-loving people everywhere to re-educate others about what the Constitution actually says. With that, I will present my 2 February posts to this, the sixth edition of the Carnival of Liberty: The First Amendment Explained Part 1: Establishment and Free Exercise Clauses and The First Amendment Explained Part 2: Free Speech.

Next up, David V. Gulliver presents to us the results of his non-scientific poll he has been conducting on his blog Resistance is Futile to find out who his readers think should be the nominee for the Republican presidential ticket in 2008. In a field of 9 candidates and the choice of ‘other’ the overwhelming favorite among David’s readers is Secretary of State Condoleezza Rice with 43%. The second highest choice is George Allen with 12%. What does this all mean? Go read David’s post where he offers his analysis.

Angry in T.O. of Angry in the Great White North (that would be Canada for us Yankees) writes a post called Kelo Decision: The march to take your property begins in the US. I think his fears are valid; if property rights are no longer safe in the U.S.A, where would they be?

David Gross of The Picket Line summarizes his carnival submission as follows:

Some liberty-minded folks suggest tax resistance as a way of battling the state, or at least reducing complicity with it. But critics - ranging from objectivists like Greg Swann to pacifist tax resisters like A.J. Muste and M.K. Gandhi -note that it is easy to take a tax resistance stand that amounts to merely a "vanity" protest and that does more to restrict than to advance liberty.

Eric Cowperthwaite of Eric’s Grumbles Before the Grave sent in 2 submissions. His first responds to a comment at a meeting in Washington D.C. concerning the District’s strict gun laws. A pastor at the meeting said: “You can’t be pro-God, pro-family, and pro-gun.” Eric skillfully tears this fallacy to shreds in his post simply titled: Really?

In Eric’s second post: A Response to Dan Melson: My Right to Property, Eric explains why there is no ‘right to privacy’ as privacy is a constructed right.

Speaking of Dan Melson of Searchlight Crusade, Melson checks in with 2 posts of his own. His first post is On Liberty and Regulation; Theory and Practicality.

Melson’s second post is an economics lesson about The Housing Bubble.

T.F. Stern of T.F. Stern’s Rantings opines about his thoughts on “rent assisted” housing units. Prior to reading Stern’s post I was unfamiliar with this term. Basically what “rent assisted” means is that the government will pay 80% of the rent on a housing unit if the renter pays the other 20%, thus explaining why he titled his post 80/20. Sounds like a sweet deal huh? Maybe to those who have no problem picking the pocket of his fellow citizen to live above their means. Stern explains:

There is something terribly wrong with a system of government when it rewards those who aspire to lower levels by rewarding them with homes paid for with tax money from their equals or barely above the same arbitrarily derived qualification level income. I have no issue with helping those “less fortunate” via my voluntary contributions at church or through other voluntary means; however, I am more than vehemently perturbed to hear that some folks are getting a free ride at my expense.

Greg of Rhymes with Right writes about President Bush’s controversial recess appointment to the U.N.- John Bolton in his post Bolton Installed; Dems Angry -- The Solution. While Democrats want Americans to believe the president bypassed the Constitutional process by not allowing the Senate to have its say, Greg correctly points out that if the Democrats had not prevented Bolton from having an up or down vote, the recess appointment would not be necessary because he would have likely been confirmed.

Kevin Boyd, the Louisiana Libertarian comments on California’s assault on freedom of association in a post titled: California courts expand “rights” for gay couples. Kevin explains that gay and straight couples should be treated equally under the law, however, he believes the court decision went beyond that writing:

I think this is a horrible decision. It uses the power of the California state government to force private businesses to give benefits to people the businesses do not want to give benefits to. A business has the right to decide how it wants to serve its customers. It happens that in this case businesses defined marriage as between one man and one woman and refused to give that same treatment to gay couples. That's their right and the government has no business telling them otherwise.

Ogre submits an informative post about Jury Nullification. Have you ever wondered if jurors are really required to follow the judge’s directions? In a word, the answer is no. Ogre explains:

“…you can quite literally make any decision you want when on a jury, and you CANNOT be punished for it. If you ever get selected for jury service, know this and get informed!”

Mark A. Rayner of The Skwib submits a humorous post to the Carnival of Liberty titled: Unfrozen caveman lawyer defends Marc Emery. Ah, the Unfrozen Caveman Lawyer, that was one of my favorite SNL skits by Phil Hartman.

“Your Honour, I’m just a caveman. I fell in a crevasse, froze, and later got thawed out by some of your scientists. Your world frightens and confuses me!”

Who needs F. Lee Bailey with a legal defense like that? It’s a great post for a quick laugh.

Jacqueline Passey chose to pass on an article by Walter E. Williams rather than submit an article of her own. Williams’ article titled Human vs. Property Rights is an excellent example of what the Life, Liberty, and Property group is all about in my opinion. This excerpt from the article sums up the main idea of his article:

… it's bogus to make a distinction between human, civil and property rights can be seen in another way. In a free society, each person is his own private property; I own myself and you own yourself. That's why it's immoral to rape or murder. It violates a person's property rights.

The fact of self-ownership also helps explain why theft is immoral. For self-ownership to be meaningful, a person must have ownership rights to what he produces or earns. A good working description of slavery is that it is a condition where a person does not own what he produces. What he produces belongs to someone else.

Thanks for sharing that wonderful article with us Jaqueline!

Jay of Stop the ACLU wonders why the ACLU seems to be less than interested in protecting the civil rights of gun owners and the Second Amendment in a post titled: ACLU and The Second Amendment. Jay writes:

One would think that an organization that claims it’s purpose is to protect our Constitutional rights would readily defend our second amendment. Sadly, this is not the case. The ACLU is completely absent in defending this right, and while it has not become active in fighting it, its policy clearly shows why they don’t defend it….they don’t believe in it!

I have often wondered what the ACLU’s position on the Second Amendment was myself Jay. Thanks for clarifying that for us.

John Henke of QandO Blog presents his post Taxonomy of Liberal Blogs. Henke critiques 16 blogs from the Left side of the political spectrum in as fair of a way he knows how.

Dan Morgan of No Speed Bumps offers his submission to the carnival: Nanny Disapproves of Your Old Car. Safety standards of automobiles continue to evolve...could your vehicle someday become legally obsolete? If you are a vintage car collector, you especially need to take a look at this post.

KJ of No Government Cheese presents a post called Smoking Bans—Property Rights. The cheesemiester writes:

The problem with laws like this is not that they violate smoker's rights. Nor that they favor one group like me -- people who prefer non-smoking environments (except for about 12 times a year I want a cigar in a public place). I admit that I benefit by having more places to take my whole family.

No, I don't really care about the smoker/non-smoker war of exchangeable rudeness. I do care about the true liberty denied by these unnecessary and unjust laws. These laws unfairly regulate the property/business owner. As such, they should be vetoed by any property and freedom respecting governor.

Matt Barr, the New World Man gives us his views on property rights in a post titled: Broken Windows and Liberty.

Brad Warbainy of The Unrepentant Individual uses sarcasm in his post: NCAA to end use of “Boilermaker” nickname. The NCAA recently decided to ban offensive nicknames and mascots (mostly Native American) for tournament and championship play. The Unrepentant Individual and his band of free radicals are not too pleased.

Will Franklin of brings the Social Security debate to the carnival with his post: Hayek on Social Security. Will writes:

It is really no wonder, then, that the American personal savings rate is so low. People who are perfectly able to save for their own retirement are consciously deciding to save less (or nothing at all), because the government, in theory, is already taking about 1/8 of every dollar earned and setting it aside in a savings account, to be returned with compounded interest at retirement. Unfortunately, that's not how it works. At all.

Individ brings a post to the carnival titled: The Constant Assaults on America, by Amerika. What the heck does that mean? You’ll have to read it to find out.

Anyone remember a little movie called Porky’s? Robert Bell of Libertopia does. Robert has an updated version called Porky’s 2005. Unfortunately, Robert’s version is the true story of a GOP run congress which wastes the people’s money much like their hormone-driven, beer guzzling, skirt chasing, fraternity brothers in the original Porky’s. Sorry Robert, I think I prefer the original : )

Richard G. Combs of Combs Spouts Off in this post spouts off about Drawing the line on privately-owned weapons.

The final ‘sideshow’ of this Carnival of Liberty is Perry Eidelbus of Eidelblog with his post Thomas Friedman on the energy bill.

Thanks to everyone who submitted a post to this carnival. Great posts all around!

This Carnival of Liberty can also be found at The Truth Laid Bear's UberCarnival

UPDATE: The link for R.G. Combs' article has been fixed. My appologies to Mr. Combs. Thank you for pointing out the error Owlish. If anyone has trouble reaching any of the posts, please leave a comment and I'll fix it.

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Friday, August 05, 2005

Fearless Philosophy Blog Post of the Month (July 2005)

The Carnival of Liberty turned out some outstanding posts in the month of July. I decided to choose from the carnivals to make my selections for July’s Fearless Philosophy Blogpost of the Month. For those of you who are new to my blog, click here for the criteria I’m looking for in a winning post. Because my resources are limited, I figured the carnivals would be a great place to start. Bloggers submit the posts to the carnival posts that they are particularly proud of. Three posts stood out above the rest covering three entirely different topics. Here are this month’s results.

Third Place goes to Shamalama of Common Folk Using Common Sense with a post titled: Will Someone Please Explain This To Me? Shamalama wants someone to logically explain the grounds Brady Center to Prevent Gun Violence could use to sue a gun store owner for selling a gun that was later used in a violent crime. According to the article, the original gun store owner did all of the proper background checks but afterwards was bought and sold several times over on the black market until finally it found its way in the hands of a teenage boy who accidentally shot his friend with it. The victim’s family and the gun store owner reached an $850,000 settlement. Shamalama does a great job of explaining the absurdity of this logic. Rather than lift any excerpts from this short but effective article, go read it for yourself and you may also want someone to explain this to you.

Second Place goes to R.G. Combs of Combs Spouts Off with his article Why the Left Blames Us. I’m guessing that by ‘us’ he means America and the civilized world. Combs explains:

Liberals and leftists are determinists. Fundamentally, they're not comfortable with the concept of moral agency -- the idea that individuals are autonomous, that we control our own lives by choices that we make. To most liberals and leftists, human beings are rats in a Skinner box. Our actions are determined by the external stimuli to which we're exposed.

According to Combs, Leftists tend not to believe that the individual is ever responsible for his or her own actions; this is apparent in many of the positions the Left holds today. Combs might be on to something here.

And the winner is…

The Fearless Philosophy Blog Post of the Month of July goes to Brad Warbainy of The Unrepentant Individual with his post America: The Ideal. Brad has just returned home from his European vacation; rather than conquering France, he decided to come back home and reflect on what the ideal of America is. So often, those of us who love liberty find it very easy to look at the negative aspects of life in America. At times we would like to throw up our hands and say ‘I give up.’ If you are in this mode of thinking now or would like to read something truly inspiring, I highly encourage you to read this post. Here is just a sample:

“The American Dream” is more than three little words. It is the idea that if you put your mind to something, the only thing that will cause your success or failure is the strength of your idea and your work. The government, ‘the man’, isn’t going to keep you down. The American Dream is an expression of the triumph of human potential. It is, in three little words, the idea that you can be all that you desire and more.

It only gets better from there folks, so what are you waiting for? Read this post and it will remind you why America and its ideals are worth fighting for.

Past Winners:
June 2005
May 2005
April 2005
March 2005
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Monday, August 01, 2005

Upcoming Carnival of Liberty VI

I am very pleased to announce my debut hosting the Carnival of Liberty for Tuesday, August 9, 2005. I have looked forward to hosting the carnival since the formation of the Life, Liberty, and Property Group Blog and community back in June. The current Carnival of Liberty V is hosted by Owlish Mutterings.

The carnivals have recently received the attention of high profile bloggers such as Instapundit and Michelle Malkin. The Carnival of Liberty is a great way to showcase your blog. The LLP Group is currently 52 members strong and growing by the week.

We want entries from anyone on the topic of right to liberty, life, or property (or all three). Here’s the guidelines:

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