When Vince Vaughn is not acting in or producing a movie, there is a good chance he is reading about, or otherwise giving some thought to, political ideas. Interviewed recently by host Tom Woods at the Tom Woods Show, Vaughn described his political views as tending toward constitutionalism and libertarianism and recounted that he learned about and ultimately met libertarian communicator and former United States House of Representatives member and presidential candidate Ron Paul due to looking into the Federal Reserve. Abolishing the Federal Reserve has long been a major part of Paul’s agenda.Continue reading
When President Donald Trump presented on August 5 a collection of proposals for government actions to counter mass shootings, advancing red flag laws was part of the package. Briefly describing such laws that operate in several states, Trump said, “we must make sure that those judged to pose a grave risk to public safety do not have access to firearms, and that, if they do, those firearms can be taken through rapid due process.” That description — taking guns only from people who “pose a grave risk to public safety” and only after a judgment has been made in accordance with due process — would make red flag laws sound to many people like a rather harmless means to protect the public from extreme harm. However, the truth is very different.Continue reading
After any mass shooting, you can expect many politicians to jump in front of reporters and voters to herald support for cracking down on the ability of people to obtain, keep, and carry guns. President Donald Trump fits that mold, expressing his continuing support for imposing red flag laws to deprive people of their guns in his Monday statement in response to killings over the weekend in El Paso, Texas, and Dayton, Ohio. He further trumpeted in the statement gun restriction actions he has taken as president, including directing the Department of Justice to ban bump stocks and approving legislation strengthening gun purchase background checks. Trump also noted the United States government last year prosecuted a record number of firearms offenses.
But, Trump’s policy response in his statement went far beyond praising his past and ongoing gun control efforts. He also presented a list of other objectives including quick capital punishment for people found guilty of hate crimes and mass murder and more involuntary confinement of mentally disturbed people. He proposed cracking down on the internet as well.Continue reading
Rep. Tulsi Gabbard (D-HI), in a Thursday interview with host Chris Cuomo at CNN, reacted to criticism from fellow Democratic presidential candidate Sen Kamala Harris (D-CA), after the candidates’ dust-up in a debate the day before, by stating, “the only response that I have heard her and her campaign give is to push out smear attacks on me, claim that I am somehow some kind of foreign agent or a traitor to my country, the country that I love, the country that I put my life on the line to serve, the country that I still serve today as a soldier in the Army National Guard.”
This statement from Gabbard is nonsense. Soldiers serving in the National Guard and other parts of the United States military in military interventions as has Gabbard are not serving their country. They are serving the exertion of power by the US government. Indeed, Gabbard in the interview expresses her opposition to the sending of the US military members “to fight in these wasteful, counterproductive regime change wars.”
Yes, the harassment travelers in American airports are forced to undergo for security, or, as some people call it, “security theater,” can become worse. Travelers already arrive early to stand in long lines before having their carry-on baggage inspected and their bodies scanned by machines of questionable safety. In some cases, travelers are frisked. All this despite there being no reason to suspect the particular travelers have committed or will commit a crime. “It’s all for your safety,” a Transportation Security Administration (TSA) employee may say if asked why the mass harassment occurs day in and day out.
Yet, there can always be more harassment added to the mix. Don’t be surprised if travelers in America one day are required to answer questions presented by a computer avatar before they can take a flight, or maybe a bus or train ride. Suppose the connected computer program determines some of your answers are not truthful, then no travel for you or, at least, no travel without you being subjected to additional scrutiny. That is the nature of a program now being tested in Europe.
It is a good rule of thumb that bill names in the United States Congress are misleading. A prominent example of that is the USA PATRIOT Act that, instead of supporting the freedom for which American patriots have fought, provides to the US government extensive means to infringe on that freedom.
On Thursday, though, House of Representatives members were offered in an amendment vote the opportunity to replace one such misleading bill name with a name that informs the American people what the bill is really about. Forty-seven House members voted for the change.Continue reading
During a United States House of Representatives Judiciary Committee subcommittee hearing earlier this month that appeared to signal the beginning of a move in the House to approve countrywide marijuana legalization legislation, Republican House member, and longtime proponent of rolling back marijuana prohibition, Tom McClintock (R-CA) warned that Democratic members’ apparent focus on weaving race-based policies and new government meddling into legalization legislation could sink support from Republicans.
Now it looks like House Democrats are moving forward with that plan against which McClintock warned. On Tuesday, Rep. Jerry Nadler (D-NY), who is chairman of the House Judiciary Committee with jurisdiction over marijuana legalization, introduced legalization legislation that includes race-based provisions tied together with marijuana business subsidies that just about ensure the bill will have little support from Republican House members.
In a new interview at RT, Ron Paul, who seeks to advance a noninterventionist foreign policy through his Ron Paul Institute for Peace and Prosperity, discussed the conflicting actions President Donald Trump is taking regarding Iran. On one side, Trump is engaging in conflict escalation and threats. On the other side, Trump is indicating support for conciliation, including by suggesting that Sen. Rand Paul (R-KY) — Ron Paul’s son and an advocate for improving United States relations with Iran — could help reduce tension with Iran by talking with the nation’s foreign minister.Continue reading
Before a packed house at the Ludwig von Mises Institute’s Mises University on Thursday, Mises Institute founder Lew Rockwell addressed an array of topics. On stage, Mark Thornton presented Rockwell with questions provided by attendees. Among the matters discussed during the Q and A, Rockwell explains why he believes there is reason for optimism in both the long term and the short term, discusses his time with the late influential libertarian writer Murray Rothbard who Rockwell says he still misses every day, and recounts some of the story of the early years of the Mises Institute.Continue reading
Back in a 2007 Republican presidential primary debate, then-presidential candidate Ron Paul sought to educate fellow presidential candidate Rudy Giuliani and the American people about the concept of blowback. Paul did so after Giuliani claimed during the debate to be shocked to hear Paul’s “absurd” argument that people would attack Americans, such as in the attacks of September 11, 2001, in reaction to the US government’s interventions abroad. As Paul noted in reply, blowback is understood and taught by the Central Intelligence Agency and has occurred through American history, including with the 1979 taking hostage of Americans in Iran.
In a speech Wednesday in Greenville, North Carolina, President Donald Trump showed that, like Giuliani, he could use some education in regard to blowback. Among a series of criticisms of Rep. Ilhan Omar (D-MN) that Trump stated in the speech was that “Representative Omar blamed the United States for the terrorist attacks on our country, saying that terrorism is a reaction to our involvement in other people’s affairs.”Continue reading