Nemo Me Impune Lacessit

Tuesday, 15 May 2018

There Is No Central Plan for Winning Liberty, by Richard M. Ebeling

Filed under: Media, Networking, Organizing, Politics, Principles — Tags: , , — mikewb1971 @ 8:11 PM (20:11)

There Is No Central Plan for Winning Liberty

by Richard M. Ebeling

Published in The Freeman: Ideas on Liberty — January 2004

People who become enthusiastic supporters of the freedom philosophy often ask how the case for individual liberty, free markets, and constitutionally limited governments can be successfully spread across the land. How can it triumph over the prevailing system of governmental paternalism?

In frustration and despair they point out that the interventionist-welfare state has its advocates and indoctrinators everywhere in society. Whether they are in the government-run schools, or on the television news shows and in the pages of newspapers and mass-circulation magazines, or in the pulpits of too many of our churches, or in armies of special-interest groups feeding at the trough of government spending — no matter where we turn the supporters of intrusive, regulating, redistributive government dominate the arena of ideas and the battlefield of politics.

To defeat these forces of political coercion and control, it is sometimes said, we have to devise a strategy and plan of action to which all friends of freedom must apply themselves. In other words, it is implied that the proponents of limited government and the free-market society must design a central plan for winning liberty in which everyone must find his place, like a cog in the machinery advancing the cause of freedom. In fact, there is not, nor can there be, such a central plan for winning liberty.

We need to remember why socialist central planning was unworkable and inevitably bound to fail. During the heyday of collectivism in the first half of the twentieth century, free-market economists like Ludwig von Mises and F. A. Hayek swam against the intellectual and ideology currents of the time and showed that socialism lacked the ability to solve the most fundamental of economic problems. They explained that no matter how well-intentioned, knowledgeable, and wise we might assume the central planners to be, they could never have sufficient information and insight to know all they’d need to know to plan all the economic activities of all the people in any contemporary society.

Hayek, in particular, emphasized that in any society in which there is a division of labor there is, by necessity, a matching division informed, knowledgeable, and expert about, at most, handful of things, while remaining ignorant about all the other aspects of life on which our social, intellectual, and material well-being depends. The superiority of the free market is that it leaves each individual at liberty to apply his knowledge, abilities, and creativity as he sees fit, yet at the same time succeeds in coordinating all that everyone does through the incentives of profit and loss and the communication network of the competitively generated price system.

How, then, can we ever expect to win liberty through central planning? We would be handicapping all our efforts by subordinating them to the knowledge, wisdom, and insight of those who would construct the blueprint to which the rest of us would be required to more or less conform. The goal of establishing the free society can never be achieved through the application of such collectivist methods.

The methodology of winning freedom was a topic to which Leonard Read, the founder of FEE, devoted a lot of his attention over the decades. He reminded us that the one over whom we each have the most influence is oneself. To succeed in this battle of ideas we must begin with a process of self-education. Each of us, to the best of our abilities, must learn and master the meaning of freedom in its various social, economic, and political aspects. This also requires us to clearly comprehend the meaning of collectivism, regardless of whether it is called socialism, communism, fascism, interventionism, welfare-statism, the “middle way,” or “liberalism.”

Know What You’re Talking About

The more and better educated we are in the philosophies of freedom and collectivism, the more and better we can articulate the case for individual liberty and identify any proposal or policy that promulgates political paternalism. Furthermore, the greater our knowledge and power of articulation in these matters, the more we will seem the type of person that others may be interested in listening to and learning from. No one turns to someone who seems not to know what he is talking about, or who cannot persuasively explain the issues involved in any discussion.

Since none of us can become masters of everything, each of us must find that niche where our interest, inclination, and ability give us the greatest comparative dvantage. And where, precisely, is that niche? Each person must answer that for himself, sometimes discovering it only through trial and error.

We also need to appreciate that the same argument for freedom will not work equally on every person we talk to. There is no single button to push to get others to see the cogency of the freedom philosophy. Some will find persuasive an argument about the “fundamental rights of man.” Others may be more like the man from Missouri, who says “show me.” For such a person, a more “utilitarian” argument about the market’s ability to “deliver the goods” or handle various “social problems” better than any form of state intervention will carry greater persuasive force. Still others might be more easily reasoned with by historical examples of how free markets and free men have successfully operated in the past, compared to government control and regulation in more contemporary times.

In responding to people in discussion or debate, each of us must find that arena of ideas in which we feel most comfortable and knowledgeable. Likewise, each of us must find those people in our circle of friends, family members, co-workers, and associates who seem most likely to be open and receptive to what we have to say. Surely, no one can know this other than each of us as individuals in our respective corners of society.

Leonard Read also reminded us that no one likes it if it seems that something is being pushed down his throat. Our enthusiasm for making the case for freedom should be tempered with patience and appreciation that for many the full implications of freedom and responsibility take time to absorb and accept.

At the end of the day, if freedom is achieved it will be done by winning over enough people one person at a time through reason, persuasion, and example. It is not an easy task, but it is the only way that is consistent with the principles of freedom we hold so dear.

Richard M. Ebeling is BB&T Distinguished Professor of Ethics and Free Enterprise Leadership at The Citadel in Charleston, South Carolina. He was president of the Foundation for Economic Education (FEE) from 2003 to 2008.


NOTES

  1. Original article

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Saturday, 21 April 2018

Albuquerque Defend the Second Amendment Rally

Today I went to the Defend the Second Amendment Rally at the New Mexico Veterans Memorial (1100 Louisiana Blvd SE).

About 50-60 people attended the rally, which started at about 11:00 AM (we were congregating in the parking lot up to and a bit past 11:00).

Shawn Haufe and Jamie Fraser-Paige

Jamie Fraser-Paige and event organizer Shawn Haufe talked for about 45 minutes about various points of interest to Second Amendment supporters, including —

  • There were only 50-60 people attending today, versus several thousand at the recent victim disarmament rallies in New Mexico.
  • Most rank-and-file law enforcement officers are solid supporters of the right to keep and bear arms as an individual right.
  • The outspoken Democrats are almost in lockstep unison behind the victim disarmament agenda.
  • Properly secure your weapons when not using them or carrying them.
  • The lamestream snoozemedia is almost in lockstep unison in support of the victim disarmament agenda.
  • We don’t care if you’re black, white, Hispanic, gay, straight, Christian, Jew, whatever, just so long as you support liberty for everyone.

Republican candidate for Secretary of State JoHanna Cox attended. She told the audience that this is her first time running for public office, she’s an attorney by trade, and that one of the things she’s looking to do as Secretary of State is to help people who have completed their terms of parole or probation or been pardoned get their Second Amendment rights to own and carry weapons reinstated.

JoHanna Cox addressing the audience

(In a freer nation, once someone completes their probation and parole terms or is pardoned, THAT’S IT — their pre-existing civil, human, Constitutional right to own and carry weapons, as supposed to be protected from government infringement by the Second Amendment and Art.II Sec.6 of the New Mexico State Constitution, would once again be upheld and respected in full.)

The next rally is tentatively scheduled to be at Veterans Memorial Park in Rio Rancho (950 Pinetree Rd SE) on Saturday, 12 May 2018, at 11:00 AM. Check in with the Gun Owners of New Mexico pages (here and here) and group on Facebook for details and updates!


NOTES

  1. Reposted –
    1. Personal blogs and micro-blogs — Diaspora* / Ello / Facebook / Google Plus / Gab / Liberty.Me / Minds / Oneway / Tea Party Community / Twitter / VK
    2. Albuquerque Liberty Forum Facebook page
    3. KCUF Media Facebook page
    4. New Mexico Dissent and Expose Facebook page
    5. The Weekly Sedition Facebook page
    6. Vote Dumpster Fire Facebook page
    7. Vote the Air Facebook page
    8. Duke City Pink Pistols Facebook group
    9. Freedom Rally Point New Mexico Facebook group
    10. Gun Owners of New Mexico Facebook group
    11. Independent Insights Facebook group
    12. Pink Pistols – Albuquerque Facebook group
    13. New Mexico for Liberty Facebook group
    14. New Mexico Gun Rights Facebook group
    15. New Mexico Libertarians Facebook group
    16. New Mexico Lest We Forget (Voters Remorse) Facebook group
    17. The Libertarian Enterprise Facebook group

Sunday, 19 November 2017

[FPI] To Whom It May Concern: Is there a FPUSA?

Filed under: Networking, Organizing, Politics — Tags: , — mikewb1971 @ 7:00 AM (07:00)

Subject: Is there a FPUSA?
Local Time: November 12, 2017 6:36 PM
UTC Time: November 13, 2017 1:36 AM
From: Mike Blessing
To: feedback@freedomparty.org

To Whom It May Concern:

Does FPI[1] have currently any affiliate(s) in the United States?

Mike Blessing
https://mikewb1971.wordpress.com

Sent with ProtonMail Secure Email.


FOR FURTHER REFERENCE

  1. Freedom Party International

NOTES

  1. Blind-copied to the LPNM Popcorn Caucus
  2. Published in The Libertarian EntepriseNumber 949 – 19 November 2017
  3. Reposted –
    1. Personal blogs and micro-blogs – Facebook [page / profile] / Google Plus / Twitter / WordPress.com

Friday, 17 November 2017

Kokesh for Not-President Event in ABQ

Filed under: Events, Friends, Networking, Organizing, Politics — Tags: , , , , , — mikewb1971 @ 6:01 AM (06:01)

Last night (Thursday, 16 November 2017), I attended Adam Kokesh’s TaxationIsTheft — Albuquerque event at Cervantes Restaurant and Lounge (5801 Gibson SE) in Albuquerque, where he spelled out his campaign for “Not President” for 2020.

Also attending were Adam’s Not Campaign Manager Ben Farmer, along with local libertarian luminaries Bill Koehler, Frank Martin and Robert Kruger.

Click the picture to see the full-size version

Ben Farmer warming up the crowd

Click the picture to see the full-size version

Adam speaks!

For what it’s worth, I volunteered to be the New Mexico State Coordinator for the Not Campaign.

I first met Adam in June 2009 at a planning meeting for his campaign for New Mexico’s 3rd Congressional District, and have been impressed with him ever since.

Afterwards, we went to his new touring RV, which the team had decided to name “No Force One.” He seemed a bit disappointed when I told him that this wasn’t the first vehicle with the moniker (one of Harry Browne’s campaigns had access to a small aircraft with the same name).


USEFUL LINKS

Kokesh for Not-President site

Kokesh for Not-President Facebook page

Twitter / Instagram / YouTube channel / Steemit

Military for Kokesh Facebook group


NOTES

  1. Published in The Libertarian EntepriseNumber 949 – 19 November 2017
  2. Approximate reading level – 13.5
  3. Reposted –
    1. Personal blogs and micro-blogs – Diaspora* / Ello / Facebook [page / profile] / Gab / Google Plus / Liberty.me / Liberty Society / Minds / Twitter / VK
    2. Albuquerque Liberty Forum Facebook page
    3. KCUF Media Facebook page
    4. The Weekly Sedition Facebook page
    5. Freedom Rally Point New Mexico Facebook group
    6. New Mexico Lest We Forget (voters remorse) Facebook group
    7. New Mexico Libertarians Facebook group
    8. The Libertarian Enterprise Facebook group

Thursday, 12 October 2017

Clearing the Bench New Mexico

Filed under: Networking, Organizing, Politics, Principles, Resistance — Tags: , , , — mikewb1971 @ 11:56 PM (23:56)

Getting tired of judges who view the federal and State Constitutions as their personal Charmin rolls where your liberty and property are concerned?

In New Mexico, if a judge seeking to be retained during an election receives less than 57 % of the votes cast in his / her retention race, than the judge in question loses his / her spot on the bench, and returns to the private sector.

Q: What, exactly, did they do to need cleared?[1]

A: What have they done to warrant retention?

The burden of proof isn’t upon us, We The People, to prove that they warrant removal, it’s upon them to prove that they warrant retention.

The intent here with Clear the Bench New Mexico is to develop something along the lines of Clear the Bench Colorado (CTBC)

Facebook page for Clear the Bench New Mexico — feel free to share the page with friends, family, whoever!


NOTE — This is a TENTATIVE list being posted here:

State Supreme Court — Charles W. Daniels, Petra Jimenez Maes

NM Court of Appeals — Henry Bohnhoff, Emil J Kiehne, Stephen French

2nd Judicial District (Bernalillo), Division XXV, Albuquerque — Jane Levy

3rd Judicial District (Dona Ana), Division III, Las Cruces — Conrad F. Perea

5th Judicial District (Chaves, Eddy and Lea), Division X, Roswell — Dustin K. Hunter

6th Judicial District (Grant, Hidalgo & Luna), Division I, Silver City — Timothy Aldrich

7th Judicial District (Catron, Sierra, Socorro & Torrance), Division III, Estancia — Shannon Murdock

Reference: http://www.sos.state.nm.us/2017-state-of-new-mexico-roster-revised-09-27-17.pdf


NOTES

  1. Question originally posed by Jennifer Sensiba here
  2. Approximate reading level – 15.4
  3. Reposted –
    1. Personal blogs and micro-blogs – Diaspora* / Ello / Facebook [page / profile] / Gab / Google Plus / Liberty.me / Liberty Society / Minds / seen.life / Tea Party Community / Twitter / VK
    2. Albuquerque Liberty Forum Facebook page
    3. Wood Chipper Facebook page
    4. Vote the Air Facebook page
    5. Vote the Air NM Facebook page
    6. Vote Dumpster Fire Facebook page
    7. KCUF Media Facebook page
    8. Absurdist Discordian Party of New Mexico Facebook page
    9. The Weekly Sedition Facebook page
    10. New Mexico Dissent and Expose Facebook page

Monday, 25 September 2017

Freenet: The forgotten cryptopunk paradise, by “Draketo” / Arne Babenhauserheide

Freenet: The forgotten cryptopunk paradise

by “Draketo” / Arne Babenhauserheide

I planned to get this into a newspaper, but it was too technical for the Guardian and too non-practical for Linux Voice. Then my free time ran out. Today I saw Barret Brown report (freenet mirror) on his 5 years court sentence for quoting a Fox news commentator and sharing a public link. Welcome to Freenet: The forgotten cryptopunk paradise!

# Freenet: The forgotten cryptopunk paradise

A long time ago in a chatroom far away, select groups of crypto-anarchists gathered to discuss the death of privacy since the NSA could spy on all communications with ease. Among those who proposed technical solutions was a student going by the name sanity, and he published the widely regarded first paper on Freenet: A decentralized anonymous datastore which was meant to be a cryptopunk paradise: true censorship resistance, no central authority and long lifetime only for information in which people were actually interested.

Many years passed, two towers fell, the empire expanded its hunt for rebels all over the globe, and now, as the empire’s grip has become so horrid that even the most loyal servants of the emperors turn against them and expose their dark secrets to the masses, Freenet is still moving forward. Lost to the eye of the public, it shaped and reshaped itself — all the while maintaining its focus to provide true freedom of the press in the internet.

Table of Contents

A new old hope

Once only a way to anonymously publish one-shot websites into Freenet that other members of the group could see, it now provides its users with most services found in the normal internet, yet safe from the prying eyes of the empire. Its users communicate with each other using email which hides metadata, micro-blogging with real anonymity, forums on a wide number of topics — from politics to drug experiences — and websites with update notifications (howto) whose topics span from music and anime over religion and programming to life without a state and the deepest pits of depravity.

All these possibilities emerge from its decentralized datastore and the tools built on top of a practically immutable data structure, and all its goals emerge from providing real freedom of the press. Decentralization is required to avoid providing a central place for censorship. Anonymity is needed to protect people against censorship by threat of subsequent punishment, prominently used in China where it is only illegal to write something against the state if too many people should happen to read it. Private communication is needed to allow whistleblowers to contact journalists and also to discuss articles before publication, invisible access to information makes it hard to censor articles by making everyone a suspect who reads one of those articles, as practiced by the NSA which puts everyone on the watchlist who accesses Freenetproject.org (reported by German public TV program Panorama). And all this has to be convenient enough for journalists to actually use it during their quite stressful daily work. As a side effect it provides true online freedom, because if something is safe enough for a whistleblower, it is likely safe enough for most other communication too.

These goals pushed Freenet development into areas which other groups only touched much later — or not at all. And except for convenience, which is much harder to get right in a privacy-sensitive context than it seems, Freenet nowadays manages to fulfill these goals very well.

The empire strikes the web

The cloud was “invented” and found to be unsafe, yet Freenet already provided its users with a safe cloud. Email was found to spill all your secrets, while Freenet already provided its users with privacy preserving emails. Disaster control became all the rage after hurricane Katrina and researchers scrambled to find solutions for communicating on restricted routes, and Freenet already provided a globally connectable darknet on friend-to-friend connections. Blogs drowned in spam comments and most caved in and switched to centralized commenting solutions, making the fabled blogosphere into little more than a PR outlet for Facebook, but Freenet already provided spam resistance via an actually working web of trust — after seeing the non-spam-resistant forum system Frost burn when some trolls realized that true anonymity also means complete freedom to use spam bots. Censorship and total surveillance of user behavior on Facebook was exposed, G+ required users to use their real names and Twitter got blocked in many repressive regimes, whereas Freenet already provided hackers with convenient, decentralized, anonymous microblogging. Now websites are cracked by the minute and constant attacks have made it a chore for private webmasters simply to stay available, though Freenet already offers attack resistant hosting which stays online as long as people are interested in the content.

All these developments happened in a private microcosm, where new and strange ideas could form and hatch; an incubator where reality could be rethought and rewritten to reestablish privacy in the internet. The internet was hit hard, and Freenet evolved to provide a refuge for those who could use it.

The return of privacy

What started as a student’s idea was driven forward by about a dozen free time coders and one paid developer for more than a decade — funded by donations from countless individuals — and turned into a true forgotten cryptopunk paradise: actual working solutions to seemingly impossible problems, highly detailed documentation streams in a vast nothingness to be explored only by the initiated (where RTFS is a common answer: Read The Friendly Source), all this with plans and discussions about saving the world mixed in.

The practical capabilities of Freenet should be known to every cryptopunk. But a combination of mediocre user experience, bad communication and worse PR (and maybe something more sinister, if Poul-Henning Kamp should prove to be farsighted about project Orchestra) brought us to a world where a new, fancy, half finished, partially thought through, cash-cow searching project comes around and instead of being asked “how’s that different from Freenet?”, the next time I talk to a random crypto-loving stranger about Freenet I am asked “how is Freenet different from X which just made the news?” (the answer which fits every single time is: “Even if X should work, it would provide only half of Freenet, and none of the really important features — friend-to-friend darknet, access dependent content lifetime, decentralized spam resistance, stable pseudonyms, hosting without a server”).

Right now, many years of work have culminated in a big step forward for Freenet. It is time for Freenet to re-emerge from hiding and take its place as one of the few privacy tools actually proven to work — and as the single tool with the most ambitious goal: Reestablishing freedom of the press and freedom of speech in the internet.

Join in

If you do not have the time for large scale contribution, a good way to support freenet is to run and use it — and ask your friends to join in, ideally over darknet.

freenetproject.org

Since the focus of Freenet has been on the big goals, there are lots of low hanging fruit; small tasks which allow reaping the fruits of existing solutions to hard problems. For example my recent work on Freenet includes 4 hours of hacking the Python based site uploader in pyFreenet which sped up the load time of its sites by up to a factor of 4. If you are an interested software developer and want to join, come to #freenet @ freenode to chat, discuss with us in the freenet devl mailing list and check the github-project.

Welcome to Freenet, where no one can watch you read.


NOTES

  1. Original article [text-only version / PDF version]
  2. Reposted –
    1. Personal blogs and micro-blogs – Diaspora* / Ello / Facebook / Gab / Google Plus / Liberty.me / Liberty Society / Minds / seen.life / VK / WordPress.com
    2. Extropy UnboundFacebook / WordPress.com
    3. The Weekly SeditionFacebook / Google Plus / Twitter / WordPress.com
    4. New Mexico Libertarians Facebook group

Wednesday, 14 June 2017

Yours Truly Listed on LPedia

Filed under: Life, Networking, Organizing, Politics — Tags: , , — mikewb1971 @ 2:15 AM (02:15)

Click the picture to go to the page that screenshot was taken from


Copyright © 2017 Mike Blessing. All rights reserved.
Produced by KCUF Media, a division of Extropy Enterprises.
This blog entry created with Notepadqq.

Wednesday, 2 November 2016

Idiot of the Day for Wednesday, 2 November 2016

Filed under: Networking, Organizing, Politics — Tags: , , , , , , — mikewb1971 @ 10:39 PM (22:39)

The Idiot of the Day is one Bill Tallman.

While browsing Facebook, I received a notification that a picture had been posted —


I dunno about you guys, but this is probably the most compelling ad I’ve ever gotten in the mail during election season.. Only problem for the sender is that it makes me want to vote for the person they are attempting a hit piece on, lol.. Doesn’t it make her actually sound really great?! Might make Hannah register and vote for her.. Thought and opinions very welcome!

When I asked the guy who posted the picture (an an-cap sort) who sent it to him, he replied —

Bill Tallman, the Democrat opponent, strangely enough, clearly a confusion campaign aimed at confused Republicans

The he followed up with this —

He knocked on our door about a month ago, and I chatted him up for about 30 or 40 minutes. He’s completely oblivious about libertarian perspectives on issues. I gave him a copy of Bastiat’s The Law.

Furthermore, I as a partisan Libertarian have no problems endorsing Lisa Torraco for re-election to her State Senate seat (District 18 [1]).


NOTES

  1. I’m in District 26, a Democrat safe seat.
  2. Reposted –
    1. Personal blogs and micro-blogs – App.net / Diaspora* / Ello / Facebook [page / profile] / Gab / seen.life / Tea Party Community / VK / WordPress.com
    2. Albuquerque Liberty Forum Facebook page
    3. The Weekly Sedition Facebook page
    4. New Mexico Libertarians Facebook group

Copyright © 2016 Mike Blessing. All rights reserved.
Produced by KCUF Media, a division of Extropy Enterprises.
This blog entry created with medit and Notepad++.

Sunday, 16 October 2016

GPCGC 15 October 2016 Open Carry March

Filed under: Fun, Networking, Organizing, Politics, Preparedness, Principles, Self-Defense — Tags: , , , , , , — mikewb1971 @ 8:52 PM (20:52)

Yesterday, the Greater Philadelphia Chinese Gun Club held an open carry march in the middle of Downtown Philadelphia

Now the hoplophobes and victim disarmers will portray such events as death and mayhem just waiting to happen, especially when participants are carrying that “weapon of mass destruction” known as the dreaded AR-15 (cue the doom-and-gloom music at the point, OK?).

Hell, there are some who otherwise support the individual pre-existing right to own and carry weapons that decry open carry events for nonsensical reasons. I’ve even heard such inanity from some who call themselves “libertarians.”

The fact remains that open carry events like these are the gun rights movements’ version of the leatherboys in the LGBT Pride Rally. They’re not harming anyone by just being there. If you don’t like them, no one is forcing you to associate with them or even to look at them.

What they’re doing is saying with their mere presence, “I’m here, what are you going to do about it?”

But alas, the GPCGC disappointed them by NOT behaving like the rabid hyper-zombies as depicted in 28 Days Later

 

YES, there was a significant law-enforcement presence at the march, but the cops weren’t decked out in riot gear or SWAT gear –

 

 

Probably because the march participants were too busy waving signs and taking pictures of each other to be looting local stores and destroying cars?

I’m almost tempted to move back to the Philadelphia area.

H/T Jing Zheng


NOTES

  1. Approximate reading level – 11.8
  2. Reposted –
    1. Personal blogs and micro-blogs – App.net / Diaspora* / Ello / Facebook [page / profile] / Gab / Google Plus / Liberty.Me / seen.life / Tea Party Community / Twitter / VK / WordPress.com

Copyright © 2016 Mike Blessing. All rights reserved.
Produced by KCUF Media, a division of Extropy Enterprises.
This blog entry created with medit and Notepad++.

Friday, 30 September 2016

Web presence for CNM Libertarians

Filed under: Education, Networking, Organizing, Politics — Tags: , , , , , , , , — mikewb1971 @ 12:20 AM (00:20)

Central New Mexico Community College [CNM] Libertarians –

Blog

Facebook page

Facebook group


Copyright © 2016 Libertarian Party of New Mexico, Libertarian Party of Bernalillo County, New Mexico, Libertarian Party of Sandoval County, New Mexico and Mike Blessing. All rights reserved.
Produced by KCUF Media, a division of Extropy Enterprises.
This blog entry created with Notepad++.

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