A Journal for Western Man :  Issue LXXVIII

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Economics

 

The Law (1850):

Claude Frédéric Bastiat

November 15, 2006:

This is the classic treatise on political economy by Claude Frédéric Bastiat (1801-1850), a French classical liberal thinker, free-trade activist, and delegate to the French National Assembly. In The Law, Bastiat argues against various government interventions with the economy, religion, morals, and education as mere forms of "legalized plunder."

 

Europe: Don't Vote with Your Feet:

Valentin Petkantchin

November 15, 2006:

If you are fed up with paying taxes, you will certainly like the idea of tax competition. It gives the opportunity to escape fiscal pressure from your own government by eventually "voting with your feet" to other jurisdictions with more favorable tax regimes. And it gives strong incentives for governments elsewhere to lower their own taxes. Luxembourg, for example, is considered as a "tax heaven" in the heart of Europe, benefiting not only European but also world taxpayers. But some governments are trying, through the European Commission, to impose tax harmonization across Europe. Valentin Petkantchin argues against tax harmonization and its stifling effects for economic freedom and prosperity.

 

Filosofy

 

Atheists! Who Are These People?:

Alan Caruba

November 11, 2006:

Alan Caruba dispels irrational fears and worries which many on the Right harbor about atheists. Mr. Caruba uses rational argumentation and recent studies to show that Conservative and Libertarian political values, smaller and less intrusive government, fiscal prudence, laissez-faire capitalism, and individualism would seem to suit most, but not all, atheists better than some form of socialism or one-world government philosophy. American atheists are more likely to object to abuses of power by government than most people, and they will staunchly resist the Islamist fanatics' attempts to coercively impose their religion on the world.

 

Historical Analysis

 

Frédéric Bastiat on Self-Interest:

G. Stolyarov II

November 15, 2006:

An intricate and multifaceted understanding of the role of self-interest in economic behavior underpins the economic writings of Claude Frédéric Bastiat (1801-1850), a French classical liberal thinker, free-trade activist, and delegate to the French National Assembly. Bastiat saw the self-interest motive as central to human nature but capable of leading to diametrically opposite consequences depending on whether this motive was employed in peaceful production and voluntary exchange or in the plundering of others through crime or through the enshrinement of plunder in the law. Mr. Stolyarov examines Bastiat’s view of self-interest’s dual tendencies and the societies each of them leads to. In free markets where property is secure, self-interest results in prosperity, peace, harmony, and morality. In a redistributive state, however, man is pitted against man in perpetually recurring “legal plunder,” which is reinforced by the self-interest of politicians, special interest groups (rent-seekers), and the plundered classes who wish to enter government and remake the law to make themselves the plunderers. 

 

Politics

 

Bidding Iraq Farewell:

Alan Caruba

November 11, 2006:

When the President decided to bring about regime change in Iraq, Alan Caruba thought it was a good idea. Saddam Hussein was among one of the world’s worst dictators, widely credited with slaughtering large numbers of Iraqis and using chemical warfare against both the Kurds of northern Iraq and during his eight-year war in the 1980s against Iran. But Mr. Caruba thinks that the Bush Administration has mismanaged the Iraq occupation and has used conventional military methods against an unconventional enemy-- a task at which American military operations have failed time and again. Mr. Caruba thinks Iraq is likely to join a growing list of American military disappointments and defeats. How fast and how soon we can adjust to the learning curve of such failures will say much about the world in which we live in the decades ahead.

 

It's Your Party, and You'll Cry If You Want To?:

Selwyn Duke

November 11, 2006:

Selwyn Duke cautions against the mentality that there might come political improvements with a Democrat-controlled legislature. If conservatives and libertarians do not trust Bush, as he has betrayed his base's principle, why, argues Mr. Duke, should they trust him to stand firm against an aggressive, relentless Democrat legislative branch bent on effecting leftist policies? Mr. Duke warns us of some of the statist measures a Democratic Congress will try to implement in the near future.

 

Dear Brother Pastor: Dare to Be a Micaiah:

Dr. Chuck Baldwin

November 15, 2006:

Dr. Chuck Baldwin urges his fellow pastors to cease automatically condoning those in power simply because they belong to the Republican Party. Rather, he advises them to do as the profet Micaiah did in standing up to what he perceived to be royal error.

 

A Muslim Manifesto for America?:

Alan Caruba

November 15, 2006:

Alan Caruba examines a recent fashion article by an American Muslim-- an article surprisingly riddled with exhortations to jihad and an insistence that a Muslim cannot be Western. Mr. Caruba thinks that if America, the lone superpower, does not hold out against the march of Islam, it will fall into the Dark Ages of Muslim control, a place where born-and-bred Americans like the fashion designer will determine what American women will wear and other Muslims will impose the Sharia law of Islam upon all of us.

 

Science

 

Delaying Technology Can Be Deadly:

Paul Driessen

November 15, 2006:

Countless people can thank previous generations of researchers and test groups for vaccines, antibiotics, and medical treatments that have saved many of us and our children from polio, infections, and once-fatal diseases. Today’s researchers are developing new generations of miracle drugs to prevent or cure acute diarrhea, cancer, heart, and liver disease, and a host of other maladies – often by employing biotechnology to produce new drugs in plants. But they are often attacked by radical groups that use exaggerations and fear-mongering to keep these life-savers off the market. Paul Driessen writes that we owe it to ourselves, our children and grandchildren, and especially people in poor developing countries – to challenge these groups and ensure that medical progress continues.

 

The Real Climate Change Catastrophe:

Paul Driessen

November 15, 2006:

Thousands of activists, journalists, bureaucrats, politicians and scientists are preparing to fly CO2-emitting jetliners to Kenya for the upcoming climate summit. Meanwhile, Africa continues to be battered by abject poverty, malnutrition, lung and intestinal diseases, and a near-absence of jobs. A principal reason is that some 95% of Africans do not have access to electricity – for homes, hospitals, schools, offices, factories and countless basic technologies. Without abundant, reliable, affordable electricity, there is simply no way to bring health, industry or prosperity to the continent. Unfortunately, climate change is being advanced as a primary reason for denying them access to electricity from fossil fuels. Other environmental concerns prevent them from using hydroelectric and nuclear power. As this timely and thought-provoking commentary by Paul Driessen suggests, this is the real climate change catastrophe: that abject, lethal poverty will be perpetuated in the name of preventing a climate problem that extensive evidence indicates is manageable and primarily natural in origin.
 

"People are beginning to realize that the apparatus of government is costly. But what they do not know is that the burden falls inevitably on them."

 

~ Frederic Bastiat

 

 

 

 

 

 

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