April 12-16, 2011

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Conventional Education Will Go the Way of Farming
Douglas French

April 16, 2011
Food is vital for survival, yet less than 2 percent of America's population works in agriculture. That's a big change from 100 years ago, when over 40 percent of the workforce was toiling away on the farm.  In May 2009, 8,488,740 people were employed in education, training, and library occupations. So more than 20 times more people are needed to educate a small portion of the population than to grow food for everyone. Douglas French believes that, in the age of the Internet, this situation is unsustainable; we are living in the era of an education bubble.

Meet My Benefactor
Jeffrey A. Tucker

April 16, 2011
By pure luck, Jeffrey Tucker happened to sit down next to a man last week who has been Mr. Tucker's benefactor for Mr. Tucker's entire life and the large part of his own, and yet they had never met. In fact, though he has been serving Mr. Tucker faithfully for three decades, looking after Mr. Tucker 's well-being and trying to improve Mr. Tucker's standard of living, he didn't even know Mr. Tucker's name. Who is this mysterious benefactor? Mr. Tucker explains.

The US Federal Budget: Political Grandstanding versus Real Advances for Freedom
G. Stolyarov II

April 12, 2011
It is becoming more apparent every day that the US federal government is in need of urgent, radical budget cuts if the American people are to avoid a downward spiral into interminable indentured servitude. Americans are about to be condemned to generations of suffering due to colossal interest on the national debt, rising taxes, and what can only be called a true crime against humanity: inflation. The shift in the fiscal discussion in Congress from unquestioned massive spending increases to serious consideration of budget cuts is a positive development. However, writes Mr. Stolyarov, it leaves much to be desired in its actual conduct and implementation. Moreover, it should lead thoughtful advocates of liberty to consider what the best path toward achieving individual freedom and genuine limited government might be.

The UN on Libya and Iran: Making a Mockery of Human Rights
Bradley Doucet

April 12, 2011
On March 1, 2011, the United Nations General Assembly made a show of suspending Libya from its Human Rights Council. That august body expressed "its deep concern about the situation in that country in the wake of Muammar Al-Qadhafi's violent crackdown on anti-Government protestors." But just three days later, the UN appointed none other than Iran to its Commission for the Status of Women. In an added twist of bad timing, it did so just four days before the 100th anniversary of International Women's Day. The presence of such uncivilized, authoritarian regimes on the UN's councils and commissions is an insult to human dignity. What were they thinking? And who are "they" anyway?

The Fed Undermines Foreign Policy
Ron Paul

April 12, 2011
In light of recent world events, perhaps the most staggering recent revelation regarding the Federal Reserve is that quite a bit of the "emergency" money it lent out went to the Arab Banking Corp., in which the Libyan Central Bank owned about a third of its stock.  This occurred while Libya, a declared state sponsor of terrorism, was under strict economic sanctions!  How erratic the US must appear when we shower a dictator alternately with dollars and bombs!  Also, writes Rep. Ron Paul, we must consider the possibility that those loans are inadvertently financing weapons Gaddaffi is using against his own people and western militaries.   This would not be the first time the covert activities of the Fed have undermined not only our economy and the value of the dollar, but our foreign policy as well.

Morale to the Left, Morale to the Right, and Not a Stop to Think
Fred Reed

April 16, 2011
Ever wonder why the US military can’t win wars? Why a few ragtag guerillas could send it running out of Somalia (Black Hawk Down)? Why one guy with a truck bomb could chase the Marines out of Lebanon? Why the attempt to rescue the hostages in Iran was such a disaster? Why the world’s most expensive military can’t win its unending wars against peasants with rifles? How is this possible? Fred Reed ventures an answer.

Utah Recognizes Gold Coins to Be Money
Clifford F. Thies

April 16, 2011
The state of Utah has recently enacted a law by which the gold coins issued by the US Mint are to be considered money and, therefore, not subject to capital-gains taxation. The law does not apply to foreign-issued coins, such as South African Krugerrands, by far the most popular precious-metal coin in the world. Nor does the law apply to privately issued coins, such as the so-called Ron Paul Dollar. Capital gains on the US-issued coins would still be subject to federal taxation. Dr. Clifford Thies analyzes this new law and asks, "But what if this law in the state of Utah catches on?"

Power for the People
Paul Driessen

April 16, 2011
CFACT’s various conversations with climate change conference attendees and NY Times columnist Andy Revkin have compelled Paul Driessen to take another hard look at life in poor developing countries; the many ways reliable, affordable electricity can transform lives; and the hardships perpetuated by anti-energy activists who continue to oppose hydrocarbon, nuclear, and hydroelectric power generation, in favor of wind and solar systems. This article presents both human-interest angles, through the lives of people in South Africa, Rwanda and Zambia – and broader public-policy perspectives that US legislators, bureaucrats, judges, journalists, environmental activists and corporate ethics advocates need to ponder much more carefully.

Fears and Facts About Nuclear Power
Paul Driessen

April 16, 2011
Ongoing efforts to deal with fuel-rod and radiation problems at the three Fukushima reactors continue to overshadow what a far greater tragedy: the vast, almost unprecedented death and destruction from what some say is the biggest earthquake and tsunami in Japan’s history. That said, it is still crucial that we address public fears about nuclear safety – and respond to suggestions that America’s own nuclear power plants are at risk of a similar accident.
Paul Driessen addresses what happened at Fukushima, outlines what we might see in future generations of nuclear plants, and summarizes the many safeguards that are built into existing plants and those undergoing licensing and construction right now.

Objectivism - Strengths and Weaknesses
G. Stolyarov II

April 12, 2011

Mr. Stolyarov comments on the merits and shortcomings of Ayn Rand's philosophy of Objectivism and its contemporary incarnations. He considers himself an Objectivist in the broad sense, but not in the narrow sense, and a strong advocate for an open, evolving, interacting, and continually expanding philosophy of Objectivism.

Mr. Stolyarov suggests areas of improvement for objectivism in pursuing integrations with (i) economics, (ii) classical liberal thought, (iii) transhumanism, and (iv) the thoughts of creative, innovative Objectivists who are willing to take the philosophy into new territory.

Ayn Rand and the World She Made - Biography by Anne C. Heller 
* "David Kelley" - Wikipedia 
The Contested Legacy of Ayn Rand: Truth and Toleration - David C. Kelley 
* SENS Foundation - Advancing Rejuvenation Biotechnologies 
* "Aubrey de Grey" - Wikipedia 
* "Ray Kurzweil" - Wikipedia 
* Kurzweil Accelerating Intelligence 
* Articles by Dr. Edward W. Younkins 
* Mr. Stolyarov's reviews of books by Edward W. Younkins:
Flourishing and Happiness in a Free Society 
Philosophers of Capitalism 
* Essay by Edward Younkins: "Unity and Integration in Ayn Rand's Atlas Shrugged
* "Mozart Was a Red" - Satire by Murray Rothbard 
* Video of "Mozart Was a Red" 

 "From fanaticism to barbarism is only one step." 
~ Denis Diderot