A Journal for Western Man :  Issue LXXXII

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Culture

 

Psychoanalysis as a Weapon (1980):

Dr. Murray N. Rothbard

December 14, 2006:

Dr. Murray Rothbard argues against the use of psychoanalysis as a weapon to dismiss and dehumanize people, ideas, and groups that the analyst doesn't happen to like. Rather than criticize or grapple with the ideas or actions of people on their own terms, as correct or incorrect, right or wrong, good or bad, they are explained away by the analyst as caused by some form of neurosis. They are the ideas or actions of neurotic, or "sick," people: so if the people themselves are not to be incarcerated in institutions as "mentally ill," then their ideas or attitudes may be treated in the same manner.

 

Economics

 

The Hermeneutical Invasion of Philosophy and Economics (1989):

Dr. Murray N. Rothbard

December 12, 2006:

Dr. Murray Rothbard criticizes the recent permeation of the philosophical and economic disciplines by the abstruse doctrine of hermeneutics. The essential message of deconstructionism and hermeneutics can be variously summed up as nihilism, relativism, and solipsism. That is, either there is no objective truth or, if there is, we can never discover it. With each person being bound to his own subjective views, feelings, history, and so on, there is no method of discovering objective truth. In literature, the most elemental procedure of literary criticism (that is, trying to figure out what a given author meant to say) becomes impossible. Communication between writer and reader similarly becomes hopeless; furthermore, not only can no reader ever figure out what an author meant to say, but even the author does not know or understand what he himself meant to say, so fragmented, confused, and driven is each particular individual. This approach, understandably, is destructive to any discipline whose aim is to advance genuine human knowledge.

 

The Social Function of Call and Put Options:

Dr. Robert P. Murphy

December 14, 2006:

In two previous articles, Dr. Robert Murphy examined the "social function" of stock speculation and futures contracts. Rounding out the trilogy, he discusses the beneficial effects of a free market  in call and put options. By providing a standardized yet flexible method of reconfiguring financial exposure, calls and puts (as well as more exotic options) allow people in real markets to approach the theoretical ideal of economically efficient decision-making more closely. The result is a more efficient use of society's resources to satisfy consumer desires.

 

Filosofy

 

Natural Rights as Derived from Ethical Egoism: Tibor R. Machan's Randian Approach:

Dr. Edward W. Younkins

December 14, 2006:

Unlike Douglas Rasmussen and Douglas Den Uyl, prominent philosopher of human flourishing, Tibor R. Machan, approaches the derivation of natural rights by way of ethical egoism. For Machan, rights are a moral concept rather than a metanormative one. His strong case for natural rights and the legitimacy of the minimal state rests on a classical egoist account of morality. Building upon the thought of Ayn Rand and Aristotle, Machan argues in a series of books that each person should pursue his rational self-interest as a matter of his primary moral responsibility. He explains that it is from this responsibility that every other moral principle, including the principle of natural rights, gains its justification. Rights are identified by an understanding of human nature as having a moral dimension. Dr. Edward Younkins describes Dr. Machan's position in this essay.

 

Politics

 

Is England a "Dead Loss"?:

Tom DeWeese

December 12, 2006:

Tom DeWeese writes about the massive regulatory intrusions into the most private aspects of people's lives that British citizens are about to face; he warns Americans that the same fate might befall them five years in the future if they are not vigilant against encroaching government power.

 

The Zen of Suicide Bombing:

Alan Caruba

December 12, 2006:

As you might imagine, suicide bombers are very angry people. To those of us in the West, the idea of killing oneself for the purpose of killing others and doing so for the goal of driving them from one’s country, is utterly foreign to our moral and ethical values.  It is, however, a very effective weapon of the weak. It works. Alan Caruba delves into the psychology of the suicide bomber and its implications for the direction of desirable American foreign policy.

 

From Hate Crimes to Hate Speech: The Road to Perdition:

Selwyn Duke

December 12, 2006:

Selwyn Duke explains how the criminalization of certain unpopular and "politically incorrect" speech will necessarily follow from current "hate-crime" laws and warns of the dangers of such a slippery slope.

 

Military Commissions Act: A Precursor to Tyranny?:

Dr. Chuck Baldwin

December 12, 2006:

In an interview with nationally syndicated radio talk show host Alex Jones, Rep. Ron Paul of Texas recently discussed President Bush's support for the Military Commissions Act. During the interview, Paul said that "the law officially allows for citizen concentration camp facilities." Paul also warned that "the Military Commissions Act and the Defense Authorization Act . . . essentially wipes out Habeas Corpus." Couple the implementation of the Military Commissions Act with the already-passed USA Patriot Act, and-- writes Dr. Chuck Baldwin-- all the legalities necessary to completely eviscerate America's constitutionally-protected liberties are in place.

 

Is It Ignorance or Misplaced Trust?:

Dr. Chuck Baldwin

December 14, 2006:

Dr. Chuck Baldwin thinks it is time today's Christian leaders learned an elementary truth: distrust of government is healthy. As our first President, George Washington, said, "Government is not reason; it is not eloquence; it is force! Like fire, it is a dangerous servant and a fearful master." For Dr. Baldwin, it is difficult, even exasperating, to understand how his fellow Christian ministers can excuse and condone the un-American and un-Christian actions and policies of modern politicians. He wishes that these ministers ceased naively trusting politicians and would instead independently advocate the principles of liberty.

 

Climate McCarthyism and Eco-Inquisitions:

Paul Driessen

December 14, 2006:

Two centuries years ago, Voltaire proclaimed, “I disapprove of what you say, but I will defend to the death your right to say it.” Today, our free speech traditions are under assault. Colleges prohibit “offensive” or “politically incorrect” speech. Radical Islamists threaten to kill scholars, artists, and even popes who “disrespect” the Prophet. And when we desperately need unfettered scientific debate, intolerant eco-activists have ushered in an era of climate McCarthyism and eco-Inquisitions. The Catholic Church’s dogmatic Earth-centered-universe theology has been replaced by a far more intolerant Church of Gaia catechism of cataclysm. But the problem goes well beyond that, well beyond constitutional rights and traditions of open, robust debate being trampled by newspapers and politicians duty-bound to uphold them. It is, above all, an unprecedented power grab by activists, politicians, and bureaucrats who want to be the final arbiters of every energy and economic decision – while reducing energy use and economic growth. Paul Driessen urges all those who love truth and liberty to have the courage to actively resist the environmentalist doom-mongers' wanton and totalitarian subversions of both.

 

"Governments never learn. Only people learn."

 

~ Milton Friedman

 

 

 

 

 

 

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