Tag: matrix reality
A Theoretically Incoherent Critique of the Free Market
As a libertarian masochist who keeps up with the regular by-the-numbers attacks on libertarianism at Alternet and Salon, I almost dared to hope for something at least marginally better from Robert Kuttner at The American Prospect (“The Libertarian Delusion,” Winter 2015). I was disappointed. “The stubborn appeal of the libertarian idea persists,” Kuttner writes, “despite…
Education and the “Progressive” Corporate State on Feed 44
C4SS Feed 44 presents Kevin Carson‘s “Education and the “Progressive” Corporate State” read by Ian Anderson and edited by Nick Ford. The official White House happy talk, predictably, takes the corporate state’s assumptions for granted: “In our growing global economy, Americans need to have more knowledge and more skills to compete — by 2020, an estimated 35 percent…
The Biggest Baddest Gang in Town on Feed 44
C4SS Feed 44 presents David S. D’Amato‘s “The Biggest Baddest Gang in Town” read by Ryan Calhoun and edited by Nick Ford. Police departments do exactly what monopolies always do — abuse and cheat consumers and, in the words of Benjamin Tucker, “furnish poison instead of nutriment.” As monopolies, police departments are exempt by law from any competitive…
Free Market Reforms and the Reduction of Statism
Objectivist scholar Chris Sciabarra, in his brilliant book Total Freedom, called for a “dialectical libertarianism.” By dialectical analysis, Sciabarra means to “grasp the nature of a part by viewing it systemically — that is, as an extension of the system within which it is embedded.” Individual parts receive their character from the whole of which…
A Modest Proposal: Mandatory Military Service for Congress
If it seems like only months ago that America’s warmongers were claiming there would be no need for US boots on the ground in the fight against the Islamic State (IS), that’s because it was. When the politicians initially decided to promote IS to the position of threat du jour, they promised that threat could be eliminated without sacrifice of American…
Selective Hearing in the War on Terror
Watching Fox News’s recent coverage of the Islamic State’s Twitter-hack left me shaking my head in disbelief, as usual. The latest act alleged to have been carried out by IS is the group’s takeover of several Twitter accounts belonging to the wives of US military servicemen. Among the threatening tweets issued by IS through the hacked…
“Homeland Security”: Please, Br’er Conservatives, Don’t Throw Us Into the Briar Patch!
“Hardline House GOP conservatives aren’t worried about a looming Department of Homeland Security shutdown,” reports Cristina Marcos at The Hill. They’d rather let DHS’s funding lapse than give up a provision in its new appropriation reversing president Barack Obama’s recent executive orders on immigration. Is it just me, or does this sound more like the promise of ice…
Reason Goes to Bat for the NPR Liberals
Usually when we see right-wing commentary on the upper-middle-class (“NPR/limousine/Whole Foods liberals,” “boho bougies,” or take your pick of other trendy labels), it’s a fake populist attack on their “cultural elite” tastes like brown mustard or wind-surfing, to divert attention from genuine populist attacks on the super-rich. So I guess it’s a sort of man-bites-dog…
At Alternet, Every Day is Liberal Self-Parody Day
How to write an Alternet criticism of libertarianism: 1) Cite an unpleasant aspect of Ayn Rand’s philosophy; 2) use the news topic of the day as an exemplar of that unpleasantness; and 3) treat it as somehow symbolic of the fundamental nature of the entire libertarian movement. In this case, I’m not so much interested in…
Down and Dirty Freedom
Thaddeus Russell A Renegade History of the United States Free Press, 2010 For Thaddeus Russell freedom doesn’t come from a political system, a social order, a station in life or any other such institutionalized relationship. It is the practical ability I have to do what I want in my daily life. To the extent that such freedom exists, it…
Preet Bharara v. Ross Ulbricht: Who’s the Real Dread Pirate Roberts?
On February 4, American media trumpeted the expected, “dog bites man” headline: “Ross Ulbricht Convicted” of being Dread Pirate Roberts, operator of the online Silk Road marketplace. Few expected an acquittal. From the moment US Attorney Preet Bharara announced Ulbricht’s indictment on seven charges, ranging from “money laundering” to “drug trafficking,” the prosecution ran on rails. A…
The New Oligarchs
If America has any characteristic that does not so much define it as it is, but defines it as it aspires to be, it’s offering upward mobility. Class struggle which gets anyone anywhere could be understood as meritocracy against a permanent oligarchy. Beginning with the rise of the merchant class and ending with the rise…
The Best Defense (for the Welfare State) is an Expensive Offense
In late January, the US military-industrial complex reported results for 2014’s fourth quarter and expectations for 2015. Good times! Northrop Grumman knocked down nearly $6 billion in Q4 2014 and expects 2015 sales of around $23.5 billion. Raytheon did about as well last fall and expects a big radar order from the Air Force this year. Meanwhile the…
The FBI is Great at Disrupting (Its Own) “Terror Plots”
On January 14 the US Department of Justice announced that the Joint Terrorism Task Force had disrupted the latest “domestic terrorism plot” — this time by “a Cincinnati-area man … to attack the U.S. Capital and kill government officials.” House Speaker  John Boehner immediately cited the disrupted plot as evidence that Congress should think carefully before refusing…
Wish You’d Stop Bein’ So Good To Me, Cap’n on Feed 44
C4SS Feed 44 presents Kevin Carson‘s “Wish You’d Stop Bein’ So Good To Me, Cap’n” read by Erick Vasconcelos and edited by Nick Ford. Some people might see an internal contradiction between Hoppe’s repeated use of the term “dominated” to describe the role of certain privileged segments of society, and the idea that “libertarian” ideas were formulated by…
Education and the “Progressive” Corporate State
Speaking in Knoxville, Tennessee on January 9 US president Barack Obama unveiled an initiative to provide two years of community college tuition-free, nationwide, to anyone meeting attendance and grade requirements. The idea, inspired by a similar program in Tennessee, aims to make two years of college as universal as high school is now. Obama’s proposal is in…
Lies, Damn Lies and Statistics on Feed 44
C4SS Feed 44 presents Kevin Carson‘s “Lies, Damn Lies and Statistics” read by Erick Vasconcelos and edited by Nick Ford. But treating either the payment of taxes or receipt of government money as a proxy for where one stands on the Producer-Parasite spectrum is ridiculous. Commenter Kirsten Tynan points out the sheer absurdity of asserting that the bottom…
Chi Ha Rubato il Domani di Ieri?
Arriva il 2015 e niente auto volanti. E la tranquillità, la sicurezza economica che, al di là dei balocchi, era la parte più seducente dell’anno 2015 in Ritorno al Futuro – Parte II? Perché mancano, così come mancano i fax e i CD? E perché, nel cinquantesimo anniversario della Fiera Internazionale del 1964-65, il futuro…
Who Stole Yesterday’s Tomorrow?
It’s 2015. Has anyone seen our flying cars? How about the tranquility and economic security that, beyond the cool gadgetry, created the appeal of the 2015 of Back to the Future Part II? Why do they seem as absent as its faxes and laserdiscs? And why, midway through the half-century anniversary of the 1964-1965 World’s Fair,…
Could Capitalism Reconstitute Itself with Private Armies?
On NAASN, an email list for anarchist academics, Wayne Price (whose review of my book I previously replied to here) responded to someone else’s  proposal to “abolish the state and see if capitalism survives until sunrise” as follows: [This is] what most people probably think anarchists advocate: society just as it is but with no…
Anarchy and Democracy
Fighting Fascism
Markets Not Capitalism
The Anatomy of Escape
Organization Theory