Post Office - Andrew Napolitano - Unable To Deliver
BÓNUS: Nick Gillespie Discusses the Broken U.S. Postal Service with Judge Napolitano
Diz NÃO à liberdade que te oferecem, se ela é só a liberdade dos que ta querem oferecer. Porque a liberdade que é tua não passa pelo decreto arbitrário dos outros.
Diz NÃO à ordem das ruas, se ela é só a ordem do terror. Porque ela tem de nascer de ti, da paz da tua consciência, e não há ordem mais perfeita do que a ordem dos cemitérios.
Diz NÃO à cultura com que queiram promover-te, se a cultura for apenas um prolongamento da polícia. Porque a cultura não tem que ver com a ordem policial mas com a inteira liberdade de ti, não é um modo de se descer mas de se subir, não é um luxo de «elitismo», mas um modo de seres humano em toda a tua plenitude.
Diz NÃO até ao pão com que pretendem alimentar-te, se tiveres de pagá-lo com a renúncia de ti mesmo. Porque não há uma só forma de to negarem negando-to, mas infligindo-te como preço a tua humilhação.
Diz NÃO à justiça com que queiram redimir-te, se ela é apenas um modo de se redimir o redentor. Porque ela não passa nunca por um código, antes de passar pela certeza do que tu sabes ser justo.
Diz NÃO à verdade que te pregam, se ela é a mentira com que te ilude o pregador. Porque a verdade tem a face do Sol e não há noite nenhuma que prevaleça enfim contra ela.
Diz NÃO à unidade que te impõem, se ela é apenas essa imposição. Porque a unidade é apenas a necessidade irreprimível de nos reconhecermos irmãos.
Diz NÃO a todo o partido que te queiram pregar, se ele é apenas a promoção de uma ordem de rebanho. Porque sermos todos irmãos não é ordenanmo-nos em gado sob o comando de um pastor.
Diz NÃO ao ódio e à violência com que te queiram legitimar uma luta fratricida. Porque a justiça há-de nascer de uma consciência iluminada para a verdade e o amor, e o que se semeia no ódio é ódio até ao fim e só dá frutos de sangue.
Diz NÃO mesmo à igualdade, se ela é apenas um modo de te nivelarem pelo mais baixo e não pelo mais alto que existe também em ti. Porque ser igual na miséria e em toda a espécie de degradação não é ser promovido a homem mas despromovido a animal.
E é do NÃO ao que te limita e degrada que tu hás-de construir o SIM da tua dignidade.
Referism is a political philosophy which states that, in the relationship between the British people and their governments, the people should be in control. The state is the servant not the master. Control is primarily achieved by submitting annual state budgets to the people for approval, via referendums. The catchphrase is: "it's our money and we decide". Governments are thereby forced to refer to the people for their funding, hence the term "referism".
The means by which must be achieved is through the ballot box, with an annual referendum. The budget must, each year, be submitted to the people for approval, and comes into force only once approved. The politicians must make their case, put their arguments, and then ask us for the money ... and they have to say please. We, the people, decide whether they get it. We, the people, have the power to say no.
Consider that there are entire industries with some of the most brilliant minds on the planet dedicated to making the military more ‘powerful’, i.e. deadly.
In reality, there’s nothing romantic about this; the ability to kill efficiently should not be a source of pride. And the fact that a small group of elites has the power to send thousands of people to fight, die, and kill, as well as cajole an entire society into tacit support, is a total aberration of humanity.
Our descendents will surely look back on this time and wonder how we could have been so foolish– to let these people rob our freedoms; destroy our economies; kill foreigners on their home soil; and shower themselves with Peace Prize medals… all while keeping society quietly subdued with games, tricks, and bombastic patriotism.
They tell us to wave the flag, to buy yellow ribbon bumper stickers, and to remember the fallen on days like today. Truthfully, though, the memories of the fallen would be much better honored if the government quit making more of them… and stopped destroying the freedom that they supposedly died to defend.
En tiempos de estatolatría, cuestionar la legitimidad del Estado es considerado una herejía. Hoy nos vemos atosigados por burócratas y políticos que no contentos con saquear nuestros bolsillos por medio de impuestos se encuentran en una eterna cruzada para “mejorar” nuestras vidas y convertirnos en “hombres nuevos”. Y con esto último no me refiero a los comunistas sino a los políticos en general.
.. entre las grandes teorías del establecimiento del Estado nos cuentan una y otra vez que es la comunidad mediante un contrato social implícito la que establece que debemos acatar un cierto orden establecido. Tan social es este contrato que es invisible y no tiene firmas. Nadie en su sano juicio lo firmaría ya que implica expropiaciones a nuestra propiedad privada (impuestos), esclavitud (servicio militar), asesinato (guerras), privilegios a ricos (proteccionismo) y parasitismo (burócratas, estado de bienestar).
El Estado no es mas que el bandido estacionario. Cuentan que cansados de saquear y luego tener que buscar otro sitio para volverlo hacer; los bandidos tuvieron la brillante idea de establecerse en un mismo sitio e imponer impuestos a sus habitantes .. El nacimiento del Estado tiene más que ver con los mafiosos que entran a pequeños locales a pedir dinero a cambio de “protección”
En resumen el Estado es la institución humana que mayor muerte y sufrimiento ha causado, basta con ver como llenaron de sangre el siglo XX los comunistas, fascistas y socialdemócratas a cargo de sus Estados-nación. Ahora lo quieren maquillar diciendo que es el pueblo el que gobierna (democracia)
Intellectuals are the last people to realise their own sea of ignorance surrounding the small island of their knowledge. That is why they are so dangerous.
It’s easy to be outraged, but outrage that isn’t tempered by careful economic analysis creates policies that, in a bit of cruel irony, oppress the very people they are alleged to help ..
Consider sweatshops in developing countries .. what we call “sweatshops” are the best of a lot of bad situations .. many sweatshops offered higher standards of living than many alternatives ... a lot of anti-sweatshop initiatives are (perversely) likely to hurt workers in poor countries ..
Thomas Sowell said it well: “I don’t have faith in the market; I have evidence.” The evidence on sweatshops and immigration is pretty clear. More capital invested in poor countries means higher incomes for workers in those countries. More immigrants in rich countries means higher incomes not only for the migrants, but also for native workers in those countries. If advocates for the world’s poor really want to do something that actually helps the world’s poor, they should quit protesting sweatshops and start working to eliminate barriers to free trade and free immigration.
Libertarians value freedom as a hard core without which morally significant human action is simply not possible, but while libertarianism as such has nothing to say beyond asserting and defending individual liberty, this is not at all the same as thinking that libertarians in living out their lives are concerned with nothing other than liberty. This would be as absurd as to think that someone who insisted on the absolute necessity of water for human survival should be taken to assert that water was the only thing needed for a rich and interesting diet. As if to contradict Nisbet, Murray Rothbard, whose credentials as a libertarian none can doubt, remarked that "Only an imbecile could ever hold that freedom is the highest or indeed the only principle or end of life," and he agreed with Lord Acton's dictum that "freedom is the highest political end, not the highest end of man per se."
Libertarianism has one and only one basic principle – that all should be free to do whatever they wish to do provided only that in so doing they do not aggress against others. This principle is both simple and initially attractive; what is not quite so simple or attractive (at least to the conservative) are its consequences. When conservatives realize what these consequences are they tend to have second thoughts about the principle.
Es increíblemente curioso y por cierto muy paradójico que la gente sea explotada miserablemente por intervencionismos estatales inmisericordes y, simultáneamente, las víctimas pidan más de lo mismo.
Por ejemplo, legislaciones sindicales compulsivas, aberrantes sistemas de inseguridad social, inauditos gastos gubernamentales, astronómicas deudas públicas, críticas situaciones del esquema educativo estatal, disposiciones laborales que bloquean las posibilidades de trabajar, deterioro del signo monetario. También los seudoempresarios en cópula permanente con los gobiernos, los controles directos o indirectos de precios, la pesada burocracia que obstaculiza actividades lícitas, los impuestos confiscatorios, las regulaciones bancarias que colocan a las entidades financieras en estado de insolvencia permanente, las ayudas a corporaciones industriales, comerciales y financieras con recursos detraídos de los contribuyentes, las reglamentaciones contraproducentes para el comercio exterior, las corrupciones alarmantes, la burla grotesca a la democracia como mecanismo de respeto a los derechos de las minorías, y, en definitiva, promesas extravagantes y fantasiosas que sólo se llevan a cabo para ganar elecciones.
A pesar de todo esto, los dirigentes de lo que en España se ha dado en llamar "la revolución de los indignados" .. protestan contra un capitalismo inexistente y demandan más intromisión del aparato estatal en todos los niveles concebibles.
The current financial crisis is a textbook example of the destructive nature of interventionist government policy. A case in point is the present state of Ireland. It suffers from extreme overgovernance. In particular, a horrendously bloated public sector weighs down the Irish economy, stifling entrepreneurship, and building a welfare state.
These massive government services and programs have resulted in enormous taxation, disproportionately distributed. The wealthiest in the society pay an uneven amount of taxes.
The recent downturn has thrown the Irish economy into a tailspin, as years of surpluses and gluttonous government spending has dried up, leaving a gaping deficit. The Irish government has followed the majority of nations and begun a massive stimulus package in an attempt to jumpstart its economy.
Evidently, the strategy of the Irish government is to increase its own involvement in the economic sphere, a mere intensification of the very strategy that has brought about the volatile business cycle and the current recession. The government's only remedy seems to be even further government involvement in the economy.
When legislators, after having ruined men by war and taxes...they say to themselves, 'If the people suffer, it is because there is not money enough. We must make some...We will make fictitious money, nothing is more easy, and then every citizen will have his pocket-book full of it, and they will all be rich.'
I suspect that one of the secrets to doing something big is not to attempt to move the levers of history by yourself. Instead, jump onto an existing trend, where powerful historical forces are pushing somewhat in the direction you want, and help shape them. This is the case for competitive government, where the coming bankruptcy (literally) of 20th century government, the trends towards more experimentation (try lots, fail fast for tech startups, self-experimentation on health & happiness for individuals), the commoditization of sovereignty, and our increasingly mobile & interconnected world, each help push the government industry towards being more competitive.
The results of democracy are manifest - constant increases in spending, with anti-spending movements being flash-in-the-pan spoiler operations .. and they most certainly will not since the incentives of democracy are against it, as are many of the beneficiaries of democracy-enabled theft.
One should place democracy in the same ideological zone as communism, because the underlying assumption of democracy IS communism, because it assumes things are already communally owned and thus can be voted on. If they weren’t communally owned, if an individual really owned what is called “his home” and “his money”, then you couldn’t just vote to take any of it away to give it to people who don’t have value.
.. democracy will be remembered as a form of communism, and just as we wonder how the USSR lasted as long as it did under the impossible regime of explicit communism, people will marvel at how the USA lasted as long as it did under a regime of implicit communism ..
Imagine a country in which the right to a welfare check is vigorously protected — but where the government can destroy legitimate businesses and professions with impunity.
Is it China? Russia? Cuba? A socialist utopia dreamed up by the likes of George Orwell?
No: It’s the United States, supposedly the beacon of enterprise for the entire world. Governments at every level — not to mention unelected regulatory agencies — regularly deny individuals the basic freedom of enterprise that is every American’s birthright. Often they do so not to protect public health or safety, but to protect established businesses from competition.
How did this happen? The emergence of the regulatory state is well-chronicled, but the acquiescence to it by the judiciary (including many conservative judges) is decidedly less so.
Real-world consequences of this judicial abdication abound, nowhere more perniciously than at the bottom of the economic ladder.
It has been duly noted by scholars that the two great totalitarian philosophies of the 20th century, communism and fascism, had similar methodologies and similar goals, so to speak. Certainly, denigrating the importance of the individual and subsuming his or her personal interests to the greater goals of the national movement were integral to both those horrific philosophies. Yet this underlying anti-individualist, collectivist theme continues, and not just on the left, in today's political environment.
"Citizenship, after all, is built on an awareness that we are not all that special but are, instead, enmeshed in a common enterprise. Our lives are given meaning by the service we supply to the nation. I wonder if Americans are unwilling to support the sacrifices that will be required to avert fiscal catastrophe in part because they are less conscious of themselves as components of a national project."
One is reminded that the slogan of the totalitarians running the dystopia depicted in the dark, futuristic movie Brazil was "We're all in this together."
Let’s parse Mr. da Silva’s remarks. He starts by accusing Merkel of colonialism, but he never explains why refusing to write more blank checks means the German Chancellor is a colonialist.
Mr. da Silva then says Merkel is failing to show “solidarity.” But this assumes that German taxpayers have a moral obligation to support fiscally reckless politicians and interest groups in Portugal and other nations.
Last but not least, Mr. da Silva claims Merkel is promoting a system that allows the rich to exploit the poor. This accusation actually is true, but not in the way Mr. da Silva means .. the bailouts are mostly for the purpose of bailing out the big European banks that foolishly bought bonds from irresponsible governments ..
The nurture and protection of your children isn’t limited to monitoring their dietary needs, their educational needs, their emotional and spiritual well-being. I speak out because I don’t want my children saddled with debt. I don’t want my children’s generation to be the first generation that comes out of the gate with a lower standard of living because of our recklessness. I don’t want my children’s future squandered on entitlement and things non-essential to the operation of our basic Article 1 Section 8 government. I don’t want my children robbed of their ability to have effect in their communities because the power was sucked up and centralized at the federal level. I don’t want them to be demonized because they reject the socialist and humanist ideology which preaches against self-sufficiency and criminalizes faith and ambition in popular culture.
We’ve taken position against the reckless spending of our children’s future, against the many attempts by the establishment government to assume more parental rights and position our children as wards of the state in education, medicine, faith, diet, and wage. We reject the ideal that the government can be all and provide all because no government can be all, provide all and still reflect a free people. We reject the cultural vehicles through which this ideology is distributed ..
1. Os direitos pertencem a indivíduos – não a grupos; os direitos provêm da nossa própria natureza e não podem ser cedidos nem retirados pelo governo.
10. O governo tem que obedecer às leis que exige que os seus cidadãos sigam; e portanto nunca poderá usar a força para impor comportamentos; manipular interações sociais; gerir a economia; ou dizer a outros países como é que se devem comportar.
People that disapprove of free markets often use health care as an example in a vain attempt to support their beliefs. They say that without government intervention a large number of people will be left to die on the streets. They use this fallacy in an attempt to justify the use of extortion to subsidise health care.
This doesn’t mean there would be a complete absence of those who can’t afford health care but there are reasons for why a free market society would create universal health care. There doesn’t need to be any aggression involved.
First, there is charity .. With the large amount of wealth created in a proper free market, only a tiny amount of money would relatively be required by medical charities ..
Second, it may make sense for businesses to use discriminatory pricing with health care. Why would a business turn away a customer when they can arrange a price above break-even? ..
Third, health care could be provided at a loss. Some businesses may wish to improve their image by participating in charitable acts. ..
Forth, hospitals would treat all emergency cases .. What do you think would happen if hospitals required proof of purchase before providing emergency care?
There are people who say the US health care system is a example of how a free market would fail. It should be made absolutely clear that this is not the case. The US system is highly regulated and will only get worse as more regulation is added. It is only when markets are completely free from state intervention, can the price mechanism work and competition and innovation take hold.
May 1 marks the 30 years since Chile became the first nation to privatize its social security system. By turning workers into investors, the move solved an entitlement crisis much like the one America faces today.
"I like symbols, so I chose May Day as the birth date of Chile's 'ownership society' that allowed every worker to become a small capitalist," wrote Jose Pinera, former secretary of labor and social security and the architect of this pension revolution.
Um exemplo ilustrativo de como o mercado pode fornecer certificação sem qualquer intervenção do Estado (quer no estabelecimento de critérios, quer no próprio processo) é o das agências de certificação de produtos Kosher. Estas agências inspeccionam inúmeros produtos e certificam-nos de forma a que o consumidor saiba que determinado produto está em conformidade com as leis dietárias judaicas. Este exemplo é particularmente importante porque as leis dietárias judaicas são especialmente rígidas. A certificação é, pois, bastante útil (senão mesmo necessária) para o consumidor kosher, dada a enorme variedade de produtos e produtores que se encontram no mercado e os processos, relativamente desconhecidos pelo consumidor comum, de preparação.
Libertarianism has one and only one basic principle—that all should be free to do whatever they wish to do provided only that in so doing they do not aggress against others. This principle is both simple and initially attractive; what is not quite so simple or attractive (at least to the conservative) are its consequences. When conservatives realize what these consequences are they tend to have second thoughts about the principle. H. L. Mencken thought that liberty was too strong a drink for many people and that what they really wanted was security. What tends to divide libertarians from conservatives is the conservatives’ failure to realize, or their unwillingness to concede, that toleration is not equivalent to endorsement.
The fundamental axiom of libertarian theory is that no one may threaten or commit violence ("aggress") against another man's person or property. Violence may be employed only against the man who commits such violence; that is, only defensively against the aggressive violence of another. In short, no violence may be employed against a nonaggressor. Here is the fundamental rule from which can be deduced the entire corpus of libertarian theory.
Remember that the rule prohibiting violence against the persons or property of innocent men is absolute: it holds regardless of the subjective motives for the aggression. It is wrong and criminal to violate the property or person of another, even if one is a Robin Hood, or starving, or is doing it to save one's relatives, or is defending oneself against a third man's attack. We may understand and sympathize with the motives in many of these cases and extreme situations. We may later mitigate the guilt if the criminal comes to trial for punishment, but we cannot evade the judgment that this aggression is still a criminal act, and one which the victim has every right to repel, by violence if necessary.
The libertarian's basic attitude toward war must then be: It is legitimate to use violence against criminals in defense of one's rights of person and property; it is completely impermissible to violate the rights of other innocent people. War, then, is only proper when the exercise of violence is rigorously limited to the individual criminals.
It is also ironic that Prince Charles begins his speech noting that we will have to dramatically increase agricultural productivity over the coming decades to keep apace with population growth. Unfortunately, because organic crops generate lower yields, shifting away from conventional production will make it more difficult to reach this goal.
The sane among us recognize that in a free society, income is neither taken nor distributed; for the most part, it is earned. Income is earned by pleasing one's fellow man. The greater one's ability to please his fellow man, the greater is his claim on what his fellow man produces. Those claims are represented by the number of dollars received from his fellow man.
Contrast the morality of having to serve one's fellow man in order to have a claim on what he produces with congressional handouts. In effect, Congress says, "You don't have to serve your fellow man in order to have a claim on what he produces. We'll take what he produces and give it to you. Just vote for me."
If anyone is obliged to give something back, they are the thieves and recipients of legalized theft, namely people who've used Congress, including America's corporate welfare queens, to live at the expense of others. When a nation vilifies the productive and makes mascots of the unproductive, it doesn't bode well for its future.
En un sentido estricto, el término democracia, si bien significa "gobierno del pueblo", tan sólo se trata de un mero sistema –uno más– para seleccionar y elegir gobernantes, sólo que a través del voto.
Así pues, la democracia se centra en responder a una única pregunta, "¿quién debe gobernar?", dejando en el más absoluto olvido la cuestión crucial que debería preocupar a todo individuo amante de su libertad: "¿Cómo se debe gobernar?".
Lo cierto es que por mucho que Chávez o Hitler hayan llegado al poder a través de mecanismos democráticos, es evidente que los individuos gozan de mayor libertad bajo la monarquía de Tailandia, los minúsculos principados de Mónaco y Liechtenstein o la excolonia británica de Hong Kong.
En los últimos días se viene sucediendo un intenso debate acerca de si el movimiento cívico Democracia Real YA ... La lectura de sus propuestas concretas no deja lugar a dudas: más socialismo, más Estado, más intervención pública y, por tanto, menos mercado y libertad. Es decir, esta "democracia real" tan sólo nos depararía lo mismo, sólo que mucho peor.
Those of us who think deregulation and increased competition are good do so not because we want to enrich the firms in those markets, but because we want to see the benefits of competition available to everyone, especially the poor for whom lower prices matter most. Specifically, I support Walmart’s right to open a store in an urban area not because I think it’s good for Walmart, but because I want its low prices and above-minimum-wage jobs to be available to the residents of those neighborhoods. Competition is a positive-sum game: If Walmart profits, it’s because they better served consumers.
The left needs to realize that corporations often support more regulation, not less. Never forget Horwitz’s First Law of Political Economy: “No one hates capitalism more than capitalists.” Real competition makes firms work hard and earn every penny; where competition is restricted, firms can frequently profit much more easily.
Jobs, food, clothing, recreation(!), homes, medical care, education, etc., do not grow in nature. These are man-made values—goods and services produced by men. Who is to provide them?
If some men are entitled by right to the products of the work of others, it means that those others are deprived of rights and condemned to slave labor.
Any alleged “right” of one man, which necessitates the violation of the rights of another, is not and cannot be a right.
No man can have a right to impose an unchosen obligation, an unrewarded duty or an involuntary servitude on another man. There can be no such thing as “the right to enslave.”
A right does not include the material implementation of that right by other men; it includes only the freedom to earn that implementation by one’s own effort.
.. el mercado político se convierte en campo abonado para el socialismo de todos los partidos, que pugnan por el voto de una ciudadanía dependiente de las prebendas que estos ofrecen. Al iniciar este camino cuesta abajo, el crecimiento del Estado se vuelve incontenible y, prácticamente, irreversible, la red clientelar sustituye los esfuerzos y méritos individuales para convertir la iniciativa emprendedora en sujeto paciente a la espera de las concesiones distribuidas por los gobiernos.
El propio sistema se cierra sobre sí mismo y a ningún partido ni a ninguno de los ciudadanos-beneficiarios les interesa poner coto a esa escalada, pues el coste aparece diluido entre toda la sociedad donde la ausencia de precios libres nos impide valorarlo en su dimensión real. Los políticos pasan a ser la casta que controla los mecanismos de poder mientras que los ciudadanos son receptores de renta, ya sea en forma de estudiantes eternos, pensionistas que nunca cotizaron, padres que tienen hijos u organizaciones subvencionadas de todo tipo.
En mayor o menor medida, a ninguno le interesa parar la vorágine de explotación del contribuyente pues todos aspiran a beneficiarse de forma que el saldo de lo que aportan les resulte favorable, aunque jamás lo podrán llegar a comprobar.
When one says people have a “right” to something, one is saying that they may justifiably compel others via force to provide it. Thus, the only authentic rights (from a libertarian or anti-slavery perspective, anyway) are those to what’s called “negative liberty“, which ask only that one be provided with tolerance by the exercise of forebearance, rather than provided with material goods and services. Otherwise, one is contending that one may justifiably use force to compel others to provide one with goods and services. That’s slavery and taking note of that is not so much a point of ideology so much as just straightforward semantics.
Capitalismo viene de capital. Si falla o se engarrota lo segundo, falla o se engarrota lo primero. Inexorable destino de quien consume y no repone, de quien saquea el presente sin proveer para el futuro.
A riesgo de simplificar, pocos elementos ilustran mejor esa desatada ofensiva contra el ahorro y esa desacomplejada promoción del endeudamiento que el definitivo abandono del patrón oro por parte de Estados Unidos.
If a few giant, state-subsidized and -protected farms, and wholesalers, and retailers can unilaterally command supply, they can demand in payment whatever capricious price they determine. This propensity — ever more cartelized industry with ever fewer “competitors” — is endemic to state capitalism, but it is not a feature of genuine free markets.
Free markets, on the contrary, divide and moderate market power by denying special protection and privilege and opening competition to a wide assortment of both entrants and methods. Only where potential threats to corporate monopolization are precluded by force of law — through, among other impediments, “safety” and “consumer protection” standards — can today’s “captains of industry” ascend to market dominance.
Rather than painting some utopian paradise, market anarchists argue that, without state-created scarcities for rich rent-seekers, people around the world be able to provide good food for their families with a fraction of their labor today. We can look to elite members of the political class to “fix” a problem that they created, or we can allow cooperation and genuine free trade on a human scale to fulfill people’s needs.
We’ve seen the way that political solutions work. Now it’s time for society to get out from under the stranglehold of the state.
.. el Estado es el principal foco de pobreza. No es la solución a nuestras penas. Solo hay un camino para la prosperidad: menos dependencia del Estado. Que se ahogue en sus deudas y junto a sus lobbies. Cuando una solución es injusta, se ha de combatir por las buenas o por las malas. No le están dando otra solución al pueblo. Declara tu particular guerra al Estado: insumisión fiscal y mercado negro. Ese va a ser el futuro de España. De hecho, la economía sumergida ya es el mayor "sector" de nuestro país con más de un 20% del PIB. E irá en aumento.Bulgarian minister: 'Better a black economy than none':
Bulgaria's Economy Minister Traicho Traykov said on public television that for his country, it was "better to have a black economy than none". The comment triggered astonishment nationwide not because of its substance, but due to the fact that it came from a government minister ..
Speaking on national channel bTV, Traykov, who is also energy minister, said that "black or not, the economy exists and creates gross domestic product"
.. Think back to a previous time when a Senate committee said that "speculative activity causes severe and unwarranted fluctuations in the price. ..." That was in 1958, when people got upset about the price of onions. Fools in Congress addressed that problem by banning speculation on onion prices.
The result? A Financial Times analysis found that the ban made prices less stable. This year, the retail price of onions rose more than the price of gasoline — 36 versus 24 percent. Most years, the price of onions fluctuates more than other goods.
No mystery there. Speculators help keep prices stable. When they foresee a future oil shortage — that is, when prices are lower than anticipated in the future — speculators buy lots of it, store it and then sell it when the shortage hits. They know they can charge more when there's relatively little oil on the market. But their selling during the shortage brings prices down from what they would have been had speculators not acted.
Speculators are like the ants in Aesop's "Ants and the Grasshopper" fable: They save resources for lean times. Everyone benefits because everyone has a chance to buy from them in those lean times.
In the marketplace of ideas, classical liberals should never shy away from representing their arguments as clearly and as forcefully as they warrant. You are what you write in intellectual affairs. In fact, attempting to "hide" you perspective is an ultimate sign of disrespect to both the ideas and your intellectual exchange partners. You are, in essence, lying to yourself and to your intellectual exchange partners.
I simply do not believe that any employer would discriminate against holding intellectual conversations about economic thinkers --- be it Marx, be it Keynes, be it Friedman, be it Hayek, be it Rothbard. Unless, of course, you are not supposed to be having any intellectual discourse at a blog when you are supposed to actually be working for what you get paid to do.
Truth tracking requires assigning accountability to your positions. Ideas need to be represented by people.
Free and unrestrained competition demanded a continuing resiliency in responding to market changes. The innovation in products, services, and business methods that made economic life creative and vibrant came to be seen as a threat to the survival of firms unable or unwilling to respond. Concerns for security and stability began to take priority over autonomy and spontaneity in the thinking of most business leaders.
Because "collectivism" reflects conservative, status quo sentiments, its underlying premises were consistent with business efforts to resist change. Industries organized themselves through the machinery of the trade associations and began the task of altering the attitudes, belief systems, and practices that represented the old order. Business decision making that emphasized the well-being of the individual firm was to be eschewed in favor of attitudes that stressed the collective interests of the industry itself. Individual profit maximizing was to be de-emphasized when confronted by the "greater interests of the group"; independence and self-centeredness were to be put aside in favor of a more "cooperative" form of "friendly competition."
When voluntary approaches failed to produce the desired stability, many businessmen .. sought to effectuate this spirit of "cooperation" through politically backed programs designed to fashion a greater degree of centralized business decision-making. Characterizing their proposals as "industrial self-regulation," business spokesmen and trade associations worked to secure for themselves a diluted competitive environment that would not be threatening to their interests.
That is a big part of the problem. It is not politically possible for either the Federal Reserve or the Obama administration to leave the economy alone and let it recover on its own.
Both are under pressure to "do something." If one thing doesn't work, then they have to try something else. And if that doesn't work, they have to come up with yet another gimmick.
During the first hundred years of the United States, there was no Federal Reserve. During the first one hundred and fifty years, the federal government did not engage in massive intervention when the economy turned down.
No economic downturn in all those years ever lasted as long as the Great Depression of the 1930s, when both the Federal Reserve and the administrations of Hoover and of FDR intervened.
The myth that has come down to us says that the government had to intervene when there was mass unemployment in the 1930s. But the hard data show that there was no mass unemployment until after the federal government intervened. Yet, once having intervened, it was politically impossible to stop and let the economy recover on its own. That was the fundamental problem then – and now.
Here's a non-rocket science question: If you expect a reduced harvest of wheat, corn, rice or any other commodity some time in the future, what would be the wise thing to do about your consumption today? I bet that the average person would answer: Consume less now so that more will be available in the future.
But how in the world can people be encouraged to consume less now? Enter the futures market, which consists of a worldwide group of millions upon millions of traders, often called speculators. Speculators, betting on a future shortage, buy up wheat, corn and rice today in the hopes of making money selling it for a higher price when the bad harvest hits. As speculators buy more and more wheat, corn and rice, they drive up today's prices. As today's price gets higher, people consume less, but more importantly, people do the intelligent thing without bureaucratic edicts. The vital role of the futures trader, or speculator, is to allocate goods over different time periods. And, it's not just wheat, corn and rice that must be allocated over time but all commodities including oil.
If we don't like commodity speculation, we could easily outlaw it. That way, for example, even though there might be every indication of a reduced fall wheat harvest, today's price of wheat wouldn't rise. We could consume wheat today and not fret about fall.Faltou escrever que sem "especulação" seria impossível manter o nível de produção e consumo que gozamos actualmente, o que tornaria as nossas sociedades mais pobres, a levaria outras à absoluta miséria - décadas se não séculos de retrocesso, precisamente o que aconteceu na União Soviética.
Let’s be clear on something: Those who call this abomination a “free trade agreement” are liars. It’s like calling the Nuremberg Laws a civil rights act. The people in the drug industry and their lackeys in Washington and Brussels heap coals of fire on their own heads every time the words “free trade” come out of their filthy, lying mouths.
Those who claim that drug patents are necessary to recoup the expenses of developing drugs are wrong. The patent system skews R&D toward gaming the patent system rather than developing the most effective drugs.
The words “intellectual property” should be emblazoned on the standards of two horsemen of the apocalypse: Pestilence and famine.
Violating copyright and patent claims is sometimes called “theft” by apologists for IP. The exact opposite is true: “Intellectual property” is theft. But more than that, it’s murder.
“For over two decades, Kenobi has been the Jedi rebellion’s leader and symbol,” the Lord of the Sith said in a statement broadcast across the galaxy via HoloNet. “The death of Kenobi marks the most significant achievement to date in our empire’s effort to defeat the rebel alliance. But his death does not mark the end of our effort. There’s no doubt that the rebellion will continue to pursue attacks against us. We must and we will remain vigilant at home and abroad.”
When the end came for Kenobi, he was found not in the remote uncharted areas of Wild Space and the Unknown Regions, where he has long been presumed to be sheltered, but in a massive compound about an hour’s drive west from the Tatooine capital of Bestine. He had been living under the alias "Ben" Kenobi for some time.
Kenobi and a group of his followers were eventually captured while fleeing the system, and taken aboard the Death Star, which was in the midst of surveying the recent environmental disaster on Alderaan ..
“No Stormtroopers were seriously harmed,” Lord Vader said. “They took care to avoid civilian casualties. After a firefight, I defeated my former master and took custody of his body.” Jedi tradition requires burial within 24 hours, but by doing it in deep space, Imperial authorities presumably were trying to avoid creating a shrine for his followers.
A capitalist system is not egalitarian. You cannot achieve excellence and progress unless you have inequality and diversity. Division of labor and specialization are natural outcomes of the multiplicity of natural conditions. Economic progress requires the freedom of individuals to use the diverse talents and localized information that only they can possess. Our material abundance and opportunities for fulfilling work are largely the result of the productivity and creativity of our competitive economic system, despite the existence of many bureaucratic barriers.
Progress is difference and change. If individuals were not free to try new things, then we would never have any improvements. In order to have progress, there must be freedom to attempt new advances. Progress is impossible unless people are free to be different. Regulation and controls stifle innovation and experimentation. Bureaucracy gets in the way of change. Capitalism has made advances possible, not solely in providing life's necessities, but in science, technology, and knowledge of all types upon which human society depends.
Would you sign a contract that enabled the other party to change the terms of that contract at will, while you could neither stop him nor make any changes of your own? Probably not. Yet that is exactly what happens when you pay money into Social Security.
No matter what you were promised or at what age you were supposed to get it, the government can always pass a new law that changes all of that. But you still have to pay into the system.
.. Social Security has been run like a pyramid scheme, where the first people to pay in get money back from the second wave of people who pay in, and the second wave get money back from the third wave, etc. This is so risky that pyramid schemes are illegal -- except when the government does it.
They have gotten away with this thus far because the first generation covered by Social Security was an unusually small generation that was followed by the unusually large "baby boomer" generation. But when the baby boomers retire, the pyramid scheme will no longer bring in enough money to pay for their pensions.
Nothing is more risky than depending on politicians.
The Right to the Pursuit of Happiness means man’s right to live for himself, to choose what constitutes his own private, personal, individual happiness and to work for its achievement, so long as he respects the same right in others. It means that man cannot be forced to devote his life to the happiness of another man nor of any number of other men. It means that the collective cannot decide what is to be the purpose of a man’s existence nor prescribe his choice of happiness.
Observe, in this context, the intellectual precision of the Founding Fathers: they spoke of the right to the pursuit of happiness—not of the right to happiness. It means that a man has the right to take the actions he deems necessary to achieve his happiness; it does not mean that others must make him happy.
Just as I support my life, neither by robbery nor alms, but by my own effort, so I do not seek to derive my happiness from the injury or the favor of others, but earn it by my own achievement.
Then Argentina defaulted on its foreign debt and cut loose from the dollar. Most economists and the business press predicted that years of disaster would ensue. But the economy shrank for just one more quarter after the devaluation and default; it then grew 63 percent over the next six years. More than 11 million people, in a nation of 39 million, were pulled out of poverty.
Within three years Argentina was back to its pre-recession level of output, despite losing more than twice as much of its gross domestic product as Greece has lost in its current recession. By contrast, in Greece, even if things go well, the I.M.F. projects that the economy will take eight years to reach its pre-crisis G.D.P. But this is likely optimistic — the I.M.F. has repeatedly lowered its near-term growth projections for Greece since the crisis began.
The main reason for Argentina’s rapid recovery was that it was finally freed from adhering to fiscal and monetary policies that stifled growth. The same would be true for Greece if it were to drop the euro.
I will say, then, that I am not, nor ever have been, in favor of bringing about in any way the social and political equality of the white and black races--that I am not nor ever have been in favor of making voters or jurors of negroes, nor of qualifying them to hold office, nor to intermarry with white people.
The free enterprise system is the greatest generator of human well-being for all classes in society, Sirico says. Yet, when comparing wealth creation by entrepreneurs to the welfare state, the "moral high ground" is occupied entirely by "defenders of welfare redistribution" on the questionable "premise that Christian charity and coercive wealth transfers are morally identical," he writes in "The Moral Basis for Economic Liberty."
As a priest, Sirico has met many entrepreneurs "who are disenfranchised and alienated from their churches," with often little understanding by church leaders of the "vocation called entrepreneurship, of what it requires in the way of personal sacrifice, and of what it contributes to society."
This lack of understanding, he believes, is due to the collection basket economic model which "tends to foster a view of the economic world as a pie that needs to be divided." The entrepreneur, instead, engages in producing wealth, not redistributing it.
"Entrepreneurs create jobs, reduce human suffering, discover and apply new cures, bring food to those without, and help dreams become realities," he says.
In contrast, "the welfare state is too often thought of in morally favorable terms, but its social consequences, however well-intended, can be largely damaging."
The official wisdom is that Greece, Ireland and Portugal have been hit by a liquidity crisis, so they needed a momentary infusion of capital, after which everything would return to normal. But this official version is a lie, one that takes the ordinary people of Europe for idiots. They deserve better from politics and their leaders.
To understand the real nature and purpose of the bailouts, we first have to understand who really benefits from them. Let's follow the money.
At the risk of being accused of populism, we'll begin with the obvious: It is not the little guy that benefits. He is being milked and lied to in order to keep the insolvent system running. He is paid less and taxed more to provide the money needed to keep this Ponzi scheme going. Meanwhile, a kind of deadly symbiosis has developed between politicians and banks: Our political leaders borrow ever more money to pay off the banks, which return the favor by lending ever-more money back to our governments, keeping the scheme afloat.
In a true market economy, bad choices get penalized. Not here.
With some technologies, the cheapening happens almost immediately. The Post-it note springs to mind. With others, the cheapening takes a surprisingly long time: Lasers remained the preserve of labs for five decades before suddenly showing up in consumer goods. With some technologies, like helicopters, the cheapening has never happened at all.
Most of us consider the original idea rare and noble, the later cheapening inevitable and dull. Who would imagine today that Napoleon III of France reserved his newfangled aluminum cutlery for only his most honored guests, leaving commoner folk to eat with silver?
We also disrespect the people who achieve the cheapening. The robber barons of the late 19th century generally made their fortunes by drastically cheapening new technologies, grabbing market share by undercutting rivals—and ending up with terrible reputations. Cornelius Vanderbilt cut the price of rail freight 90%, Andrew Carnegie slashed steel prices 75% and John D. Rockefeller cut oil prices 80% between 1870 and 1900. Malcom McLean, Sam Walton and Michael Dell did roughly the same for container shipping, discount retailing and home computing a century later, and were also unloved for it.
.. As our money is severed from our pocket books, all we see is a government full of crony capitalists, only willing to spend to their hearts delight. We watch as billions and trillions of dollars wrung from the toil of our everyday rigors, evaporate, just like that. An enlarging government such as ours thinks that its only solution is to spend more money, even when we don’t have it. So, it’s no surprise when they just throw some more taxpayer dollars at a failing public educational system. A public school system that seems more concerned about enhancing ideologies, such as globalism, than it is about teaching our youth what they need to survive in the real world.
Our children are indebted from birth, then more of our money is funneled to actually keep them just around or below mediocre. Then they are tethered to ideologies of men who have been proven suspect regarding the facts. Ideologies that often detach them from responsibilities that would otherwise fortify their character. ..
We see our God given and constitutional rights being eroded everyday with policies and laws often written to evade those very protections. They wonder why a people rooted and nurtured in freedom would begin or continue to resist such demands. Demands that insist we should be sacrificing and mortgaging our nation, children, and lives, to a government that couldn’t care less.
Is the libertarian conception of freedom “indistinguishable from selfishness”? Of course not. Libertarians want to live in what Adam Smith called the Great Society, the complex and productive society made possible by social interaction .. “cooperation is as much a part of the system as competition.” In fact, we consider cooperation so essential to human flourishing that we don’t just want to talk about it; we want to create social institutions that make it possible. That is what property rights, limited government, and the rule of law are all about.
The market is an essential element of civil society. The market arises from two facts: that human beings can accomplish more in cooperation with others than alone and that we can recognize this .. Without the possibility of mutual benefit from cooperation and the division of labor, neither feelings of sympathy and friendship nor the market order itself could arise.
The real issue is not compassion but coercion. Is it compassionate to take from some by force in order to give to others? No, it’s compassionate to give of yourself, and coercive to take from others ..
The American, and libertarian, belief in freedom is not a “mania,” nor is it “selfishness.” It’s a philosophy of individual rights, the rule of law, and the institutions necessary for social cooperation. Read Locke, Hume, Smith, Tocqueville, Hayek—and yes, Rand—if you seriously believe that the philosophy of freedom can be summed up as “selfishness.”
…if any one euro zone country were to start exiting the euro, there would be bank runs on the other fiscally ailing countries. The richer European Union nations know this, and so they are toiling to keep everyone on board. But that conciliatory approach creates a new set of problems because any nation with an exit strategy suddenly has enormous leverage. Ireland or Portugal [or Greece!] need only imply that without more aid it will be forced to leave the euro zone and bring down the proverbial house of cards. In both countries, aid agreements already are seen as a “work in progress,” and it’s not clear that the subsequent renegotiations have any end in sight, because an ailing country can always ask for a better deal the following year.
This deficit spending is legalized plunder. It transfers wealth from producers to takers and burdens unborn children with todays obligations. It has been funded by Mr. Obamas print-and-borrow monetary policy, which has devalued the dollar, causing imports to be more expensive. It is partially behind the skyrocketing of gasoline prices and is shrinking the purchasing power and savings of every citizen. It is looting - and therefore morally repulsive.
In 1850, French economist Frederic Bastiat defined legalized plunder as forcibly taking the property of another through legislation so beneficiaries could live at the expense of others. Since mans nature is to avoid pain - and it is in the nature of some men to avoid labor by resorting to plunder - government should use its collective force to stop this fatal tendency. But Bastiat failed to see that it is man who runs government and it is mans nature to want to expand his power.
Our current administration and swarms of socialists for decades before it have repeated the dogma that the rich get rich on the backs of the poor. This fallacy deserves no place in genuine political discourse. In fact, the opposite will be true given the policies that come from such a premise – all of society will get poor on the backs of the ‘rich’ chained by government.
First off, if a rich person can only get rich by bilking the poor person, this implies that there is a finite amount of wealth in an economy. This defies all logic. There is an infinite amount of wealth because there are an infinite amount of ideas that can be converted into goods and services, the competition of which increases quality, decreases cost and spreads the wealth to all of society. The imagination of the entrepreneur is boundless, and the transformation of ideas to tangible wealth can only be constrained by taxes, regulations and the economic uncertainty generated by a political class responding to constituents who seek to use the law to benefit themselves at the cost of others.
Underlying all discussions of wealth and its redistribution however have at their base the notion that we are our brother’s keeper — that it is morally right that someone else have a claim on our wealth before we earn it. We believe that government can provide services such as healthcare in a more equitable way than a free market economy, and that it is the proper role of government to determine how we plan our lives with respect to things like education and retirement. We are sowing the seeds of our own destruction by adhering to such a morally bankrupt and bankrupting philosophy.
A fiction has been allowed to emerge that bailing-out those individual eurozone countries which have been particularly egregious in spending vast sums of public money and thereby racking up colossal debts is necessary in order to either prevent these countries from leaving the euro or even save the euro currency altogether .. The truth is that the wisest course of action would be to let those countries which face a debt crisis to default on that debt.
The immediate consequences of this would not necessarily be pleasant, but they would be considerably less dangerous than the current apparent strategy of grand, centralised plans to parcel up the debts of individual member states and to send them round and round in circles through an impenetrably complex series of bailout mechanisms.
Politicians and bureaucrats fear that this will make it harder for governments to borrow money in future. Gone will be the guarantee that money lent to even the most reckless of European governments will be repaid in full. Undermining this guarantee may, however, be the best mechanism for ensuring that governments act more responsibly with regard to the state of the public finances in future. Even the stronger areas of the eurozone are in need of considerable structural reform, radical deregulation, lower spending and lower taxes. This is especially true of those countries tinkering on the brink of financial meltdown.
The Easter Islanders have the word tingo, which means to borrow items one by one from your friend's house until there is nothing left. It's kind of odd that this happens enough there that they need a special word to describe it. We're picturing a whole island full of people living out the Homer Simpson and Ned Flanders' relationship.Em Portugal, o Homer Simpson é um Backpfeifengesicht que está em S. Bento, exercitando o seu Tatemae/Honne sem o mínimo de Nunchi, e somos todos Ned Flanders. Shlimazl happens.
Otra razón por la que “necesitamos” al estado —la lucha contra las drogas, contra el terrorismo, contra la pobreza— es para los problemas que el propio estado ha creado. Nunca ha existido una cultura de la violencia contra las drogas antes que el estado empezara su cruzada para prevenir a la gente del pecado. El terrorismo es lo que es hoy día gracias a la intervención del estado y puede ser combatido más eficientemente mediante organizaciones privadas. Y la pobreza podría ser erradicada mucho antes si el estado dejase de crearla. Dense cuenta que los países con más libertad tienen menos pobreza que los otros.
El mercado funciona como por arte de magia ofreciendo grandes recompensas a aquellos que hacen cosas con valor para otros .. La justicia, las carteras, y defensa son cosas que nosotros valoramos, los empresarios estarán encantados de ofrecernos estos servicios. Y no se crea nada sobre “las imperfecciones del mercado” porque el término no tiene sentido: éste fue inventado hace mucho tiempo cuando el estado entró en escena, y fue inventado para justificar la existencia del estado post hoc.
No hay nada que el estado haga bien; el estado comete injusticias a través de la imposición de la fuerza; el mercado provee cualquier cosa que necesitemos gracias a la figura del empresario, y cada participante en el mercado vigila voluntariamente al resto de participantes cuyo comportamiento, a la vez, está relacionado con su calidad de vida. Por lo tanto, cuando digo “_____ sería mejor sin estado”, eso es realmente lo que quiero decir. Y eso es cierto.
As long as there have been colleges, there’s been an individualist, anti-college strain in American culture—an affinity for the bootstrap. But it is hard to think of a time when skepticism of the value of higher education has been more prominent than it is right now.
But if college is neither a luxury good nor an investment, what is it? For Thiel, the commodity college most closely resembles is the humble insurance policy. Americans have become terrified, he says, of what will happen to their children if they don’t send them to college. The recession, widening income inequality, growing job insecurity, the uncertain future of the welfare state, the increasing costs of health care—all have deepened the anxieties that made college such an attractive option for a rising middle class in the first place. “I think that’s the way probably a lot of parents think about it. It’s a way for their kids to be safe, to be protected from the chaos. You’re paying for college because it’s an insurance policy against falling out of the middle class.” The larger question this raises, he says, is, “Why are we spending ten times as much for insurance as we were 30 years ago? And does that tell us something has gone really badly wrong with our country?”
In every other facet of life, whether in business or when a personal relationship is no longer working and cannot be salvaged, options such as closing the doors or filing for divorce provide an opportunity for both parties to start over. However, despite the ever-climbing deficit and that the great deck chair reshuffling of 2010 has shown to bear little fruit, we as Americans are supposed to continue accepting the beatings and infidelity to the Constitution ad infinitum with no recourse to separate ourselves from an abusive central authority in Washington.BÓNUS: podcast
The federal government acts as if this union of states is akin to a fifteenth century arranged marriage wedded to it with no hope for salvation. Nevertheless, and despite its verbal abuse to the contrary, there indeed exists a path to salvation from the tyrannical overlords on Capitol Hill.
That solution is plain; we must immediately file for a divorce from this worn weary union and secede. This will afford our posterity and us the ability to try yet again to secure the blessings of debt free liberty. Wholly free from the odious debt levied upon us by the FEDERAL RESERVE to the sole benefit of the corporatists and political class.
Keynesianism has conquered the hearts and minds of politicians and ordinary people alike because it provides a theoretical justification for irresponsible behaviour. Medical science has established that one or two glasses of wine per day are good for your long-term health, but no doctor would recommend a recovering alcoholic to follow this prescription. Unfortunately, Keynesian economists do exactly this. They tell politicians, who are addicted to spending our money, that government expenditures are good. And they tell consumers, who are affected by severe spending problems, that consuming is good, while saving is bad. In medicine, such behaviour would get you expelled from the medical profession; in economics, it gives you a job in Washington.
First, I dislike the whole idea of “the greatness of our country.” Countries cannot be great. They are abstractions and, as such, they are incapable of acting for good or for evil. Individual residents of a country may be great, and many Americans are great, because, to borrow Forrest Gump’s construction, “greatness is as greatness does.”
The caretakers who comfort the sick and dying are often great. The priests and friends who revive the will to live in those who have lost hope are great. The entrepreneurs who establish successful businesses that better satisfy consumer demands for faster communication, safer travel, fresher food, and countless other goods and services are great. The scientists and inventors who peer deeper into the nature of the universe and devise technologies to accomplish humane, heretofore impossible feats are great. The artists who elevate the souls of those who hear their music and view their paintings are great.
But mere killing is never great ..
.. The whole spectacle is profoundly disgusting. Yet we can see that many Americans have enthusiastically fallen for this trick, dancing in the streets in celebration of a man’s death in faraway Pakistan. Such unseemly behavior is not the stuff of which true greatness is made.
.. these results indicate that unemployment duration increases very closely with the maximum UB [unemployment benefits] length.
Let us not confuse the political lobbying of governments and its results with free effort. It matters not how many were involved in the lobbying — be it one person, or a handful, or thousands or millions or billions, though special interest groups always have leaders — or how much the overall configuration of the state was designed by any number of them. The particular controls each group seeks to impose on society are designed by them.
So no, Hayek’s insight does not apply to libertarians. We do not seek to impose centralized controls on “society” but rather to remove them! We do not seek to impose our preferences on “society” by force but rather to prevent certain members of society from imposing theirs on us by force!