Issue CLVII 

May 25-27, 2008

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Culture
The Crime of Being White:
Selwyn Duke

May 27, 2008
Just recently Selwyn Duke wrote a piece about Keith John Sampson, a college student who was charged with “racial harassment” for reading an anti-Ku Klux Klan book. Not surprisingly, the article evoked a great response, including emails from those with their own stories to tell about persecution inspired by what Mr. Duke calls caucaphobia. A couple of these accounts are so compelling – compared to one, even Sampson’s problems pale – that Mr. Duke decided to publish them in this piece. These are the stories the mainstream media won’t tell, straight from the front lines of the culture war. They give voice to a persecution whose name most dare not utter.

Economics
The Problems of Central Bank Planning:
Robert P. Murphy

May 26, 2008
With day after day of bleak news regarding the credit crunch — and in particular, articles that constantly remind us that the Fed's recent actions haven't been tried since the Great Depression — the average American is understandably perplexed. And although what Robert Murphy is about to admit may not surprise many readers, it nonetheless may worry them further: Most economists don't have a clue what's going on, either. Regardless of how this crisis ultimately unfolds, the one thing we can conclude with certainty is that none of this would have happened had the politicians left money and banking to the private sector.

The Government's Statistical Whopper of the Year:
Robert P. Murphy

May 27, 2008
Consumers shell-shocked by ever higher records for oil and gasoline prices may have been surprised by the mild Producer Price Index (PPI) update recently issued. But something is amiss with how this data was reported in the press. Despite the official figures, Dr. Robert Murphy was pretty sure gasoline prices went up from March to April; they certainly didn't fall 4.6 percent! He had to get to the bottom of this mystery.

Utilitarian Free-Market Economics:
Murray N. Rothbard

May 27, 2008
Murray Rothbard analyzes certain attempts to use a utilitarian ethic to provide a defensible groundwork for a libertarian or laissez-faire ideology. His criticisms concentrate on utilitarianism insofar as it has been used as a groundwork for a libertarian, or quasi-libertarian, political philosophy. Rothbard argues that utilitarianism is inadequate at making a case for free markets.

Fiction
Setback! Further Adventures in a Teaching Hospital:
James d'Acier

May 25, 2008
This short story by James d'Acier, the second in a series of three, describes the inanity of bureaucracy and its inability to deal with commonsense human considerations.

Historical Analysis
World War II: The Nadir of the Old Right:
Murray N. Rothbard

May 27, 2008
The advent of World War II brought the Old Right to its darkest days. Harassed, reviled, persecuted, the intellectuals and agitators of the Old Right, the libertarians and the isolationists, folded their tents and disappeared from view. Murray Rothbard describes the difficulties faced by those who opposed statism and collectivism during the Second World War.

The Postwar Renaissance I: Libertarianism:
Murray N. Rothbard

May 27, 2008
For a while the postwar ideological climate seemed to be the same as during the war: internationalism, statism, adulation of economic planning and the centralized state, were rampant everywhere. But the libertarian movement also began to form in the years after World War II, and Murray Rothbard describes its modest beginnings.

Politics
Mexico is Soon to be a Bigger Problem:
Alan Caruba

May 25, 2008
Alan Caruba writes that Mexico is having major problems maintaining an adequate output of oil, as the inefficiencies of state control over its oil industry become more apparent and burdensome, with few corrections in sight. This is likely to lead to a much more precarious economic and political situation in Mexico.

Salute to Veterans:
Ron Paul

May 27, 2008
Congress has considered several bills this past week that would affect veterans.  Many of the measures are very positive. What Rep. Ron Paul does not support, however, is inserting immoral, unconstitutional provisions into veterans’ bills.  For example, HR 6081 the Heroes Earnings Assistance and Relief Tax Act, in addition to providing important tax benefits for soldiers, sends the IRS after civilians who move overseas.  This method of funding is actually a slap in the face to our soldiers who vow to keep us free.

Toilet Seats and Journalism:
Fred Reed

May 27, 2008 
Fred Reed debunks common myths about wasteful military spending -- including the $640 toilet seat, the $7600 coffee-maker, and the $17 bolt. There are good reasons why the U. S. military might have paid so much for these items, and reporters seeking to criticize militarism need to find much more relevant targets for their attacks.

"When goods do not cross borders, soldiers will." 
~ Frederic Bastiat

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