Center for a Stateless Society
A Left Market Anarchist Think Tank & Media Center
Commentary
“Jobs” as a Red Herring: The Dangers of Make-Work Bias
In the ongoing debate over the crony capitalist “Export-Import” bank, job statistics get thrown around a lot. On its website, the bank boasts that “Ex-Im Bank’s mission is American jobs,” claiming to have “supported 1.2 million private-sector, American jobs since 2009, supporting 205,000 jobs in 2013 alone.” Economist Veronique de Rugy points out that these job numbers…
Borderlands: What’s Happening to America?
A man, an American citizen, sits in his car as a U.S. Border Patrol agent insists that he roll down his window. He refuses. Agents use battering rams to smash the windows. Still, the driver refuses to leave his car, so he is hit with a Taser from two sides. He screams. It would be…
Your Gender Doesn’t Belong to the State
The gender identity of a large part of the population is not very surprising in social interactions, since it, for the most part, corresponds to their genders assigned at birth. But we should not forget that transgender communities continue to fight for self-determination of their own genders. Gender identity is not always correspondent to gender assigned…
Jaron Lanier, “Intellectual Property” and Parasitism on the System of Violence
Over-35s seem to love nothing more than being told that the Internet — and the rapid cultural developments that have paralleled it — have been a terrible mistake with huge downsides that will surely doom us. And there’s no end to the opportunistic hacks lining up to dress this generational reactionary spasm as the contrarian…
Israel’s War in Gaza: Don’t Look Behind the Curtain
A story I missed back in April just came to my attention today. It seems Fatah (the secular nationalist guerrilla organization that formed the single largest component of the PLO) and Hamas announced their reconciliation and plans to form a unity government – “a development that could see the Palestinian territories under a unified leadership for the…
Protesters, Preventive Detentions and the Kafkian Nightmare
Franz Kafka‘s The Trial follows the tribulations of Joseph K., a white-collar bank employee who finds himself amidst an incomprehensible penal system. He cannot figure out what he’s accused of, nor the steps of the trial, and his possibilities of defense are limited. A murky bureaucracy permeates everything and secrets reinforce the uncertainties of Joseph K.’s condition….
IP is a Hurdle to Self-Direction
Perhaps the most rewarding experience of education is self-direction. Here, the individual fully enjoys his or her own labor. Whatever one’s interests are, self-direction is achieved on one’s own terms. Self-directed education promotes initiative, creativity, co-operative/mutual labor and healthy academic competition in one’s field to cultivate a learning network. This is the very basis of the…
Gaza: Israel’s Chickens Come Home to Roost
One fact that gets little attention in the debate over Israel’s attack on Gaza is Israel’s role in the rise of Hamas. That’s right. Never mind that the rockets fired out of Gaza are amateurish things that could be crafted from hobby shop supplies, causing barely one percent as many casualties as Israeli reprisals. Never mind…
Reading Rainbow Soars Free
The extraordinary success of Reading Rainbow‘s Kickstarter campaign — with a record-breaking hundred thousand donors chipping in over $5 million for distributing Reading Rainbow‘s literacy material as widely as possible to children, particularly those in greatest financial need — demonstrates how crowdfunding may shape up as something more than what The New Republic dubs “the world’s No. 1 solver of…
Fracking: Poster Child for the Corporate Welfare State
Just about every week another story comes to my attention confirming the complete and total government-dependency of fracking — beloved of so many self-proclaimed “free market” advocates on the libertarian right. Something about eminent domain to build the pipelines, or liability caps for spills, or regulatory approval of unsafe pipelines superseding tort liability for negligence, and…
“Economic Patriotism”: The Last Refuge of a Tax Scoundrel
In mid-July, US Treasury Secretary Jack Lew proposed that Congress prohibit US-based companies from moving offshore in search of more favorable tax climates, citing an ostensible need for a “new sense of economic patriotism.” The resort to “patriotism” theater stands out as the most egregious aspect of legislation whose retroactive status would blatantly violate the…
ISIS: Yes, Mr. Blair, You Did Build This
Last month, in a tone which might best be called unlikely insistence, former British Prime Minister Tony Blair reassured the public that “we” — the UK and United States — “have to liberate ourselves from the notion that we caused” the destabilization of Iraq by the ISIS insurgency. Well, actually you did. Let’s go back…
Where’s Eric Garner’s Amargosa?
In the city of Amargosa in Brazil, citizens took to the streets after a stray bullet fire by a local police officer struck and killed a one-year-old girl. But they didn’t stay in the streets. They quickly took the police station, freeing prisoners, jacking state-owned weaponry and burning the station and police vehicles to the ground. In the end,…
The “Makers” and “Takers” — Not Who You Think
The old “53% vs. 47%” meme that got so much attention in the 2012 election resurfaced this week when it came out that Colorado gubernatorial candidate Bob Beauprez apparently first coined it at a 2010 Rotary Club speech. The 47% who pay no income tax, he said back then, are “dependent on the largesse of…
The Question is, Why Would ANYONE Trust the Government?
The drastic long-term drop in Americans’ trust for government since the 1950s periodically evokes pearl-clutching on the center-left. Liberal radio talk show host Leslie Marshall recently tweeted, as apparent cause for concern, a Pew Research poll finding the percentage of the public that trusts government to “do the right thing” most of the time or “pretty…
Cyber War: The Enemy is You
Bloomberg reports that “Wall Street’s biggest trade group has proposed a government-industry cyber war council,” led by a “senior White House official” and composed of representatives from the finance industry and no fewer than eight US federal agencies. The aforementioned “trade group,” the Securities Industry and Financial Markets Association, has already brought in former National…
Last Nail in the Coffin for the New Deal Labor Accord?
Although it was overshadowed by reaction to Monday’s ruling on Hobby Lobby’s health insurance coverage of contraception, the Supreme Court made a ruling the same day that otherwise would have received more attention in its own right. Harris vs. Quinn at first glance covers only very narrow ground. It involves the rights of home health…
Whose Land is It Anyway?
When the demolition of abandoned warehouses at the José Estelita Docks started in the city of Recife, Brazil, the ongoing mobilization since 2012 by the #OcupeEstelita movement proved its worth. On May 21, when real estate developer Moura Dubeux’s bulldozers got in position during the night to demolish the old sugar warehouses, several individuals, mobilized…
Culture War as State Hobby
The Supreme Court recently closed its term with a ruling in Burwell v. Hobby Lobby, concerning the government’s mandate for employer provided insurance to cover contraception. Voting 5-4 that closely held corporations could be exempt from the mandate if it violates the sincerely held religious beliefs of the owners, the decision has generated a lot…
How the Nanny State Kills
Since Katiele and her daughter made the news, we’ve had a little debate on the legalization of medical marijuana in Brazil. Katiele struggles to treat her daughter’s epilepsy with CBD (Cannabidiol), a substance extracted from marijuana. One could ask what’s Anvisa — Brazil’s equivalent to the U.S. Food and Drug Administration — position on the matter. How…