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TGIF: Get Rich Quicker!

“I have observed that not the man who hopes when others despair, but the man who despairs when others hope, is admired by a large class of persons as a sage.”John Stuart Mill, 1828

We mustn’t let the wrongdoing of politicians and bureaucrats blind us to the good things going on in the world. Outside the political realm, many things are doing pretty darn well. The long-term trends for many indicators have been positive for the last couple of centuries. Short-term disturbances, most often the result of political mischief, are temporary, and the progress resumes when the politicians loosen their grip or people find ways to ignore them. Regardless of the source, the data agree. This is not controversial stuff.

But make no mistake: this is not a recommendation for complacency. On the contrary, an outrageous number of people have been left out of the improvement, and that is a crime. We should want them to catch up. But, it has been wisely said, “You can’t fix what is wrong in the world if you don’t know what’s actually happening.

So what is actually happening? To begin with, wealth, real per capita income, per capita consumption, etc. have been expanding along with the world’s population. Poverty is vanishing. (While more people are a good thing, population growth has slowed, and as people get richer and have fewer kids, the population may well decrease a bit.) As Matt Ridley, “the rational optimist,” says, “Over the last 25 years 137,000 people have been lifted out of extreme poverty every day.” (See his video “Ten Global Trends Every Smart Person Should Know” and the book it draws on.)

According to the Guardian, “Global poverty has seen a spectacular decline since the 1960s – when about 80% of the world’s population lived in extreme poverty. Today that number has been reduced to nearer 10%, with hundreds of millions of people removed from the extremes of hardship.”

In other words, Ridley writes, “The rich get richer, but the poor do even better.”

Most people have no idea this has happened. In fact many think poverty is increasing. Young people are especially prone to this misconception.

Throughout the world, life expectancy is increasing, and infant/child mortality is falling. “Estimates suggest that in a pre-modern, poor world, life expectancy was around 30 years in all regions of the world…, according to Our World in Data. “Since 1900 the global average life expectancy has more than doubled and is now above 70 years. The inequality of life expectancy is still very large across and within countries. In 2019 the country with the lowest life expectancy is the Central African Republic with 53 years, in Japan life expectancy is 30 years longer…. The United Nations estimate a global average life expectancy of 72.6 years for 2019 – the global average today is higher than in any country back in 1950.”

As for kids: “Over the last two centuries all countries in the world have made very rapid progress against child mortality. From 1800 to 1950 global mortality has halved from around 43% to 22.5%. Since 1950 the mortality rate has declined five-fold to 4.5% in 2015. All countries in the world have benefitted from this progress.”

This is all great news, and many other positive trends could be cited, including consumption as compared with the number of hours worked, crop production, planetary greening, health, lessening violence, leisure time, resource abundance, the pace of innovation, and hospitableness of the planet.

Why is this happening? In a word, liberalization. (Of course I mean liberal in the classical Adam-Smith/Mises/Hayek/Rothbard sense.) Liberalism is far from complete anywhere, but in many places, including the developing world, people are freer, if not in political terms, then in earning-a-living terms, than they previously have been. That gives greater scope to entrepreneurship and ingenuity, which Julian Simon called “the ultimate resource.” (So-called natural resources are not natural at all.) The globalization of trade, even when governments tamper with it, is part of this. “The division of labor is limited by the extent of the market,” Adam Smith wrote in The Wealth of Nations. In other words, the more people around the world who, guided by market prices, are free (or freer) to choose their work and trade with others wherever they are, the better. Specialization and the market’s law of comparative advantage, which has been dubbed “the most elusive proposition,” make people better off.

This suggests why too many others have lagged behind. They lack essential liberty. And when people lack liberty, including private property, they will also lack significant and just economic growth, that is, growth without government privilege.

A couple of billion people in the developing world lack modern fuels and electricity. This kills such people prematurely, among other reasons, because they cook and heat their homes with wood and animal excrement, which create deadly indoor air pollution. They lack access to modern cheap, reliable, and potentially clean energy (that is, fossil fuels) because their governments create obstacles and arrogant Western politicians egged on by rich social activists block their access–without justification but much irony–in the name of protecting the planet.

That is a crime. So as I said at the start, the good things going on should not make us complacent. Today a large number of Westerners in effect tell the developing world: “Too bad for you, but we can’t allow you to reach our standard of living. We like just the way you are.” So they want to pull up the ladder.

Let us hope that the growing libertarian (that is, true liberal) movement will make a special effort to encourage the people of the developing world to tell the Western elites and their own rulers to get the hell out of the way. The people don’t need to get rich quick; they need to get rich quicker!

Mom Swarmed By Police, Beaten, and Her Child Kidnapped For Social Media Credit

As the Free Thought Project reported last October, the police shooting death of Walter Wallace Jr., a Philly man in a mental health crisis who charged officers with a knife, set off massive unrest in the city. On the first night of unrest, TFTP reported on multiple instances of police officers being attacked and actually retreating from rioters. On the second night, however, the cops appeared to be the ones rioting and an innocent mother and her toddler were caught in the middle of their violence.

In a video posted to Twitter, dozens of riot officers are seen swarming an SUV. For an unknown reason, they begin smashing in all the windows on all sides with a complete lack of concern for anyone inside.

When the driver’s side door is open, the driver is pulled from the vehicle as officers continue pummeling him with their batons. He is thrown to the ground and cops continue to beat him. The passenger, Rickia Young is also pulled from the vehicle and beaten.

It is a scene reminiscent of the Rodney King beating but worse, as there was a child involved. This week, the taxpayers of Philadelphia were put on notice they will be paying Young $2 million because of what the cops did to her that night.

On that fateful night, Young—who didn’t even know their were protests going on—turned down a blocked off street and was attempting to turn around when a massive gang of cops swarmed her car and began attacking her. Young and her 16-year-old nephew were dragged from the car for no reason and then savagely beaten. Young’s 2-year-old was asleep in his car seat in the back and was shaken out of his slumber by the sound of breaking glass.

The attack was captured on video by April Rice and it quickly went viral as Young and her nephew were left battered and bloody for no reason.

“Her face was bloodied and she looked like she had been beaten by a bunch of people on the street,” attorney Riley H. Ross III told The Washington Post.

After kidnapping Young, police then kidnapped her son and shamelessly used him for a fake PR story on social media. A picture of a female cop holding Young’s son was later posted on the National Fraternal Order of Police Facebook page, along with claims that officers found Young’s son “lost” and “wandering around barefoot” before asserting that officers are “the only thing standing between order and anarchy.”

This was all a lie.

“It’s propaganda,” Ross III told The Post at the time. “Using this kid in a way to say, ‘This kid was in danger and the police were only there to save him,’ when the police actually caused the danger. That little boy is terrified because of what the police did.”

Young was separated from her son for hours until the boy’s grandmother finally found him in a police cruiser miles away in Center City, with broken glass in his car seat, according to attorneys.

This is not a scene that should represent the supposed land of the free. This is a scene out of a war torn hell state.

The fact that officers felt comfortable enough to walk up to the vehicle and begin smashing out windows, indicates that they did not feel threatened from an armed occupant or a potential for being run over — nor were they worried about accountability. In other words, this massive gang of riot police carried out an act of violent aggression on a family trapped in the chaos and faced almost no consequences.

Though two officers were fired over the attack, and another 15 await internal disciplinary proceedings, not a single cop has been charged with a crime.

“The video to me is clear that more than two officers that were fired participated in the physical assault,” one of Young’s attorneys Kevin Mincey said. “I can’t understand how those people would be allowed to continue to wear the uniform of the Philadelphia Police Department.”

This article was originally featured at The Free Thought Project and is republished with permission.

The Irrepressible Myths of Whole Women’s Health v. Jackson

This month’s 5-4 Supreme Court ruling in Whole Women’s Health v. Jackson did not overrule Roe v. Wade or make any kind of decision on the scope of the right to abortion. But the Court did refuse to issue a preliminary injunction against the enforcement of S.B. 8.

There have been too many examples of both social conservative supporters of this bill and liberal detractors horribly misinterpreting and misapplying law, and using legally nonsensical arguments like getting angry with the Supreme Court because they expected the Court to do something they have no constitutional power to do. This suit was doomed to fail because of several procedural conflicts baked in as far as Whole Women’s Health v. Jackson was concerned.

But as always, whichever side comes out unsatisfied after a Supreme Court opinion that they didn’t personally like, they claim it was the Court playing politics. That doesn’t happen nearly as often as people think.

Anyone with any kind of strong political opinion and weak understanding of legal theory does this.

To start let’s get a clear summary about what this law actually does and then get a clear view of the Court’s opinion in the denial.

This bill bans abortions after the detection of a fetal heartbeat, which happens around the sixth week of pregnancy. What makes this law unique and interesting is its reliance on an obscure doctrine from the common law of torts that allows private attorneys to bring a suit in civil court, acting as what is called a private attorney general.

Private attorney general doctrine is an equitable principle that allows a party who brings a lawsuit that benefits a significant number of people or which has resulted in the enforcement of an important right affecting the public interest to recover the attorney fees. The purpose of the doctrine is to encourage suits of societal importance which private parties would not otherwise have an incentive to pursue.

The purpose of creating this cause of action by a private individual in a civil court case, rather than by the state bringing a criminal law case, was done entirely to make this bill much more difficult to challenge in court. This unique statute empowers private citizens to sue those who perform or facilitate abortions.

The civil liability scheme imposed by Texas’s S.B. 8 is likely unconstitutional. It’s inconsistent with the abortion rights recognized in Planned Parenthood v. Casey (1992) and the “undue burden” defense in the statute is likely too narrow to save it. Moreover, such state “private attorney general” laws that basically allow any person to sue over alleged illegal conduct are unfair to defendants.

It would also behoove the conservatives celebrating the passage of this bill as some clever, sneaky way to get around a Supreme Court ruling they don’t like to consider just how badly this could all go if Democrats get frustrated with trying to overturn the law and instead use it as precedent against constitutionally protected individual rights that conservatives hold as especially valuable, like the right to keep and bear arms.

President Biden confusingly muttered his disapproval of the Court’s decision, charging the conservative justices with following “procedural complexities” rather than using their supreme power to ensure justice. Biden is simply making things up. The Court has no majestic power to “ensure justice.” This is not unlike the myth that courts can “strike down laws,” as many people assume they can do.  The justices have a very limited ability to prevent specific government officials from enforcing laws against specific people. The judiciary cannot magically make laws disappear off the books. This notion that judicial review acts like an executive veto constitutes what is known as the writ-of-erasure fallacy. When the Court declares a statute unconstitutional or enjoins its enforcement this does not cancel or revoke the law. They have no authority to alter or annul the statute. Only the legislature can write, change or repeal statutes. That’s separation of powers 101. Judicial review allows a court to decline to enforce a statute and to enjoin the executive from enforcing that statute.

At least the majority in their Per Curiam Opinion demonstrated an understanding of the fallacy, which played a central role in their recent California v. Texas case.

The applicants now before us have raised serious questions regarding the constitutionality of the Texas law at issue. But their application also presents complex and novel antecedent procedural questions on which they have not carried their burden. For example, federal courts enjoy the power to enjoin individuals tasked with enforcing laws, not the laws themselves. California v. Texas, 593 U. S. ___, ___ (2021)

This proposition is foundational: courts enjoin individuals, and not laws.

And it is unclear whether the named defendants in this lawsuit can or will seek to enforce the Texas law against the applicants in a manner that might permit our intervention. The State has represented that neither it nor its executive employees possess the authority to enforce the Texas law either directly or indirectly.

This appeal was only lodged against a single state court judge and a single court clerk. The District Court had not yet certified a class. Mark Lee Dickson’s brief accurately explained the dynamics:

There is no certified class of state-court judges that can be enjoined, and there is no certified class of court clerks either, because the district court did not rule on class certification before the defendants appealed its jurisdictional ruling. The plaintiffs never address this problem, and they pretend as though their requested injunction can somehow extend beyond the named defendants to every other judge and court clerk in Texas—even though none of those individuals have ever been parties to this case.

Even if the applicants received all of the relief they sought, every other judge in the state could entertain suits under S.B. 8. This case was a terrible vehicle for emergency injunctive relief. The dissenters glossed over this problem.

This is precisely what makes S.B. 8 a very clever and canny move. When the government plays no role in enforcing the law, like is the case with S.B. 8, the Court cannot block that law from being put into effect. In future cases the courts can, and almost certainly will, assess the constitutionality of S.B. 8 when a case is brought that challenges the law on constitutional grounds. But in the case of Whole Women’s Health v. Jackson it was not the law’s constitutionality that was challenged. Had that been the case I’m quite sure this would be a non-issue. The law is facially unconstitutional. But what was being sought in the case the Court just rejected was part of their shadow docket brought by parties seeking emergency injunctive relief. For the moment the Court was correct to reject this premature challenge.

That doesn’t stop many people from saying, “The Court should have blocked S.B. 8.” This is a legal non-sequitur. The appeal, as it came to the Supreme Court, involved a single judge in Tyler, Texas. Nothing the Supreme Court could have done would have “blocked” the law. Used in this or a similar context, the term “blocked” is legal gibberish that bears no relation to any conceivable power or procedure that the Court had as any kind of option in regard to handling this case. If by “blocked” they actually mean the Court should have granted the injunctive relief the case was seeking (which to remind people was a request beyond the possible legal scope of the court), that wouldn’t have blocked anything anyway. Even an injunction against Judge Jackson would have been meaningless, as other judges in Tyler could have heard the cases. I still have not seen anyone explain how the Supreme Court could have “blocked” S.B. 8 given that there was only one named judge in the case. Had the District Court used a single opinion to deny the motion to dismiss, certify the class, and grant the injunction, I think the situation would have been very different. But the judge’s piecemeal approach allowed the government defendants to seek an interlocutory appeal based on the denial of sovereign immunity.

But wait, there’s more; because of this clever flip, S.B. 8 spiked Planned Parenthood’s playbook. It is now impossible to sue the Texas Attorney General, because the attorney general cannot enforce the law. The law can only be enforced by millions of Texans. And there is no way to know in advance who would sue which abortion providers. So Planned Parenthood tried a different strategy: it sued Judge Jackson of Tyler, Texas who might one day hear a case involving S.B. 8.

This suit never made any sense. Judges do not enforce laws. They can only adjudicate specific disputes between plaintiffs and defendants. If a Texan actually sued Planned Parenthood for performing a seven-week abortion, the judge would have to dismiss that suit. After all, S.B. 8 expressly stipulates that citizens’ suits must comply with Roe v. Wade. And you don’t sue a judge to stop him from hearing a case in the first place. You let him decide and then appeal, if need be.

The Supreme Court could not, as President Biden suggested, exercise “supreme authority to ensure justice could be fairly sought.” No such power exists. In this case, the Court could only enter an order against one state judge—and that judge had no role in actually enforcing the law. The justices were absolutely correct in declining to intervene.

One should never forget that despite its constitutional provenance and majestic grandeur, the Supreme Court of the United States is just a court. It operates like every other court does. Its judgements only bind the parties before the court, its precedents are not self-executing for non-parties.

It is important to be able to distinguish between the judgement of a court and the court’s precedent. When Smith sues Jones, there is no doubt that the decision binds Smith and Jones. This is the basic legal principle of estoppel procedure. But when Smith sues Jones, Bob cannot be bound by that case, as he was not a party to it. That would violate the basic rules of procedure and fairness. Yet when it come to the Supreme Court people flip that on its head. They say, “Well the Supreme Court has ruled and that makes it binding on everyone everywhere.”

That cannot be the case. But the Supreme Court’s precedents are controlling for all courts. So once a precedent is set, all such future cases allow others to enjoin the decision. But that additional step of converting a precedent to a judgment is very important, especially in civil rights litigation. This is why talk about “blocking the law” is nonsense.

This is also why, when you read the opinions that each of the four dissenting justices issued individually, not a single one could articulate a way they could have stopped the law had they been in the majority.

Indeed, this case should have been unanimous. Alas, it was not. Chief Justice John Roberts and the Court’s three progressives each wrote separate dissents. Chief Justice Roberts would have “grant[ed] preliminary relief to preserve the status quo ante.” But a remedy to preserve the status quo ante would be impossible in this case, which only concerned Judge Jackson. Roberts wrote that he would “preclude enforcement of S.B. 8 by” Judge Jackson. But, again, Judge Jackson cannot actually enforce the law in the first place. The chief justice, usually a stickler for procedure, was willing to invent new procedural rules to stop what he saw as an “unprecedented” law.

Justice Sonia Sotomayor made similar mistakes in her own dissent. She said the “Court should have stayed implementation of” S.B. 8.” But courts cannot block laws. Courts can only prevent specific parties from enforcing the law against specific litigants. None of the dissenters had any clue how to actually stop S.B. 8—not even Justice Elena Kagan, a brilliant former civil procedure professor. She had bupkus. Indeed, Chief Justice Roberts acknowledged that Texas “may be correct.”

Why, then, did the dissenters offer a remedy that simply could not be granted? This quartet endorsed President Biden’s mythical account of the Supreme Court. At least three of the four dissenters deeply felt that this law was substantively unjust, so there must be a way to stop it. But not every alleged wrong has a remedy in federal court. In time, actual Texans will file suit against abortion clinics, and those who fund the organizations. And the courts can then decide, at that time, if those suits are consistent with Roe v. Wade and its progeny.

So you see the problem. Let’s say you are okay with violating the Constitution by insisting the justices have an obligation to act, even if that action is facially unconstitutional because for you, preserving an individual right protected by the Constitution is too important to let the Constitution get in the way of the Constitution. You now need to sue every single judge in the state of Texas, one by one to enjoin them to the precedent that would have been created by Whole Women’s Health v Jackson.

When you look at it in that context I’m sure everyone can agree that had those in favor of injunctive relief won the case they still would be stuck with an unavoidably losing strategy.

None of that even begins to address the fact that there were numerous procedural reasons why the Court could not have ruled on the case as presented. And to reiterate, there will be future cases brought to assess the Constitutionality of S.B. 8. For now rejecting this premature challenge was the right call.

Cops Flip Car Over Speeding Ticket, Kill 12 Year Old Boy

As the Free Thought Project reports on a regular basis, police in the land of the free will go to violent and often deadly extremes to enforce even the most arbitrary “law.” If police claim to see you break one of these arbitrary laws like speeding, they claim the right to detain and extort you. If you choose to resist this extortion, police will then claim the right to kidnap you. And, as the following tragic case out of Georgia illustrates, if you resist this kidnapping, police will use deadly force like a pit maneuver, including against children.

Last week, Charlie Moore was driving his teen son, 14, and his friend 12-year-old Leden Boykins home from a job at which they cleaned up parking lots for extra cash. On the way home, police targeted Moore for revenue collection, claiming that he was driving too fast.

According to a Georgia State Patrol incident report, Moore was pulled over off of Highway 92 in Paulding County for “driving recklessly and at a high rate of speed,” and when ordered out of the car for a speeding ticket, he refused, saying he was scared since so many officers were present.

While pulled over, Moore called 911 to report the fact that multiple troopers were threatening him and that he was in fear for his life. And, as history shows us, he had every reason to be fearful.

“He told the 911 operator, he said, ‘I need for y’all to get a supervisor out here, there’s too many police cars and I’m in fear of my life,’” Leden’s mother, Toni Boykins said.

When a trooper on the scene began attempting to smash in Moore’s window, he fled the scene to preserve his life. During the chase, he stayed on the phone with 911, clearly indicating to them that he was not a threat and just wanted to be in a safer situation.

“I am afraid. I’m afraid for my life,” he told 911. “They need to get them off of me, right now, because I’m scared, I’ve got my kids with me, right now.”

Everyone involved, from the 911 operator to the troopers involved in the stop knew there were children in the car. They also knew who the car was registered to, knew the driver’s name and address, and easily could have gone to his home after this to enforce the penalties for fleeing a stop for speeding.

But that did not happen.

Instead of applying logic and reason and allowing Moore to simply drive home, drop off the children, and then safely arrest him later at his home, one state trooper decided to conduct a PIT Maneuver—on a car he knew was full of children—to flip Moore’s car over. For a speeding ticket.

On the 911 call, we can hear the trooper trying to flip the vehicle, despite Moore pleading with 911 that he has kids in the car.

“I’ve got my kids with me, man,” Moore told police over the phone. “Oh my God, no, they’re trying to flip my car, man.”

According to the 911 call, Moore remained connected to dispatch during the attack by the trooper and the car is heard rolling over before Moore shouts, “Leden! Leden! Leden! No!…” He knew Leden had been killed.

The official policy of PIT maneuvers is fairly specific on avoiding incidents involving children in the vehicle. Nevertheless, troopers decided the enforcement of a speeding ticket was more important than the lives of two children, and it was carried out.

Now, Moore has been charged with Leden’s murder, and while he certainly deserves to be held accountable for his role in the child’s demise, he was most assuredly not the one who killed him. Leden’s family agrees.

“He does bear some responsibility, that he was pulled over, and he had kids in the car,” Leden’s father, Anthony Boykins told 11 Alive. Adding that he wanted to know, “Why was he considered so dangerous that they had to flip that car with them kids in there? Why did he (the trooper) make that decision? Why did he decide to flip that car knowing there was kids in there?”

The trooper who caused the crash is under investigation, however, this is merely standard procedure and likely won’t amount to any accountability. For now, Leden’s parents are fighting to get back their son from the city, who has had his body since the crash.

This article was originally featured at The Free Thought Project and is republished with permission.

Taliban Forswears Attacks on Foreign Nations, Pledges Opposition to Outside Militants

Afghanistan’s acting foreign minister held his first news conference on Tuesday and reiterated a pledge from the Taliban that the new government would not allow militants inside Afghanistan to attack other countries.

“We will not allow anyone or any groups to use our soil against any other countries,” said Foreign Minister Amir Khan Muttaqi, a member of the Taliban since the 1990s.

Since the U.S. withdrawal, Western media has been full of stories conflating the Taliban with al-Qaeda and warning that al-Qaeda will gain a foothold in Afghanistan. But the Taliban have a clear interest in not giving the U.S. another pretext to invade Afghanistan.

The narrative that the Taliban will provide a “safe haven” to al-Qaeda ignores the fact that the Taliban offered to hand over Osama bin Laden to the Bush administration multiple times in 2001. Even before the September 11th attacks, the Taliban offered the U.S. to put bin Laden on trial.

Afghanistan just happens to be where bin Laden was at the time of the September 11th attacks. None of the hijackers were Afghans and much of the plot was planned in other countries, including the US and Germany.

Besides al-Qaeda, the U.S. is also concerned with the Afghan ISIS affiliate, known as ISIS-K, the group that took credit for the suicide bombing at the Kabul airport. But the Taliban and ISIS-K are sworn enemies. The U.S. has even provided air support to the Taliban in its fight against ISIS-K.

While the Taliban have said they don’t need any more help from the U.S. to fight ISIS-K or other groups, they do want relations with the U.S., something Muttaqi reiterated on Tuesday.

Muttaqi also called on the U.S. to release frozen Afghan funds since the Taliban cooperated on the evacuation. “We provided safe passage for U.S. soldiers to leave Afghanistan, but instead of thanking us the U.S. has frozen Afghanistan’s assets,” he said.

This article was originally featured at Antiwar.com and is republished with permission.

How I’m Going to Fight Biden’s Mandates

President Biden’s executive order forcing companies with 100 or more employees to require COVID vaccination or weekly testing has no basis in science, the Constitution, or the principles of a free society. It also sets a dangerous precedent that can and will be used to justify future federal mandates on businesses and their employees.

My Campaign for Liberty group will mobilize pro-liberty Americans to resist these mandates and other abuses of power in regard to COVID by authoritarian politicians and bureaucrats to expand their power and shrink our liberties.

This was originally featured at Campaign for Liberty and is republished with permission.

Abandoning the 1980s: A Strategy for the GOP

In 2022, the Republican Party has an opportunity to not just win back the House of Representatives but for the first time in a hundred years repudiate the constant creep of statism and Marxism eroding our liberties. But the GOP needs to drop its 40-year plus “game plan.” To be blunt, it is time to drop “cutting taxes,” “increasing defense” budgets, and giving lip service to federalism and limited government. The greatest threat to liberty, living standards, and our natural rights has been driven by deficit spending. We expect Democrats to continue with socialism and authoritarianism but Republicans, by essentially feeding the “beast,” have contributed as much to our current mess.

Recently, Paul Ryan, the epitome of the simplistic 1980s playbook, is back in the news. Media pundits are asking what path the GOP should take, a return to Paul Ryan or Kevin McCarthy? The former pushes pseudo “wonkism” and the latter just follows the fickle winds without any true course. Neither have a path that ensures our liberty or prosperity.

What needs to be done isn’t a return to the compassionate conservatism of Jack Kemp, because “supply side” economics had the same impact as “demand side” Keynesianism; large deficits, enrichment of the well-connected, constant growth of “complexes” (military, education, healthcare, financial, and now security), deindustrialization of America, and a profound loss of honesty, integrity, and finally, our liberty.

The objective for true change and a return to freedom must start with cutting, and eliminating deficit spending. Federal tax cuts cannot even be considered until surpluses are obtained.

Why is eliminating deficit spending the key objective?

  1. It destroys our industrial base. Federal deficits are primarily funded by the Federal Reserve printing money out of thin air. This would normally create inflation which impacts the average American’s standard of living. But with China as the off loader of our printed money, the federal government was able to launder the debt to a country which is fine “eating” our inflation as it continues to export trillions of dollars in goods. Flooding our markets with cheap goods devastated much of small-town America as factories closed by the tens of thousands. It was mutually beneficial; the Chinese communist government could round up those pesky rural peasants to factory towns to be well controlled and through currency manipulation provide American with cheap goods that Americans could buy with lots of credit (see Federal Reserve below).  Dollar stores replaced factories in small town America but the federal government enjoyed the Chinese buying just enough federal debt with their dollars to keep things from getting out of control. COVID-19 and the insane amount of money printing and spending has ended this short term pause on inflation. Real free trade is good for America but than means no subsidizes, no tariffs, and no pegging to the dollar.
  2. It allows for perpetual war. If the federal government had to raise taxes to pay for the idiotic wars since 2001, the tax “pain” would have forced their end before trillions were printed and spent and $80 billion in weapons were left for the Taliban.
  3. It subsidizes unprofitable industries and creates higher prices. The military-industrial complex, the educational complex, the healthcare complex, and security state are enriched through government privilege and protection from competition. The results are constantly rising prices and an opportunity cost of real growth benefiting real Americans.
  4. It drives wealth inequality. In a free-market, inequity is a sign of freedom but since 1971 (the year Nixon closed the gold window) the printing of money to fund big government and buy votes has primarily benefited the financial sector along with the other “regulated industries.”
  5. It feeds the growth of “wokism” which turns America into warring tribes.

The second target should be the enabler of all of this. Yes, the one who can’t be named: the Federal Reserve System. It is time to “End the Fed.” No more interest rate manipulation. No more money printing to directly buy federal debt. Credit can only come from savings, not thin air. There is no reason for the Federal Reserve to exist in 2021 (at least based on it’s supposed roles). Blockchain and changes to time and demand deposit rules would replace the need for the Fed.

Do these two things—end deficit spending by cutting government and shut down the central bank—and the Republican Party can turn back the tide of government growth. This is what the GOP stood for under Warren G. Harding, Calvin Coolidge, and even Dwight D. Eisenhower.

It’s time to move on from the 1980s playbook. And that time is now.

Mike Fedele is a college graduate with a BS in Chemistry and a Master of Business Administration, and works as a product manager for a medical device company. His personal claim to fame is developing FedEx’s “Hold at Location” service.

Teens Beg for Life as Cop Unloads (and Reloads) Pistol Into Car

When the entire dash cam footage was released, showing officer Allan Brown firing eleven shots into a vehicle—pausing only to reload—and firing another ten shots into the vehicle as the teens inside can be heard begging for their lives, the country was shocked. It is disturbing, to say the least. Yet despite the disturbing nature of the video, this week, in a split ruling by the 11th Circuit Court of Appeals, Brown was granted qualified immunity and he was exonerated.

Christian Redwine, 17, was killed in the shooting and passengers Hunter Tillis and Hanna Wuenschel, two other teens, suffered multiple gunshot wounds. It was the first volley, of the 21 total bullets, that struck Redwine in the head and heart that ended his young life, according to the Alabama Department of Forensic Sciences.

According to the ruling:

“The surviving passengers and Redwine’s grandmother sued Officer Brown for allegedly using excessive force during the encounter, as well as the police chief and the county for supervisory liability. Officer Brown moved for summary judgment based on qualified immunity. The district court granted the motion for Officer Brown as to the first round of shots but denied it as to the second. Because Officer Brown acted reasonably in firing both rounds of shots, we affirm in part, and we reverse in part and render a judgment in favor of Officer Brown, the police chief, and the county.”

Brown claimed that Redwine tried to use the car to run him over, which caused him fear for his life, and prompted the fatal shots—and apparently the 11 Circuit agreed. An attorney representing Wuenschel said Redwine was trying only to back out of a hole. The attorney said Redwine was shot seven times, Wuenschel two or three times, and Tillis at least twice.

Despite the clearly desperate pleas of mercy from the teens, as Brown unloaded two magazines into their vehicle, a Russell County grand jury found that Brown committed no criminal wrongdoing in the November 6, 2017 incident. Now, four years later and the family’s only chance for accountability has been ruined, yet again, thanks to qualified immunity. 

“We are not persuaded by the plaintiffs’ arguments that Officer Brown was indisputably out of harm’s way,” wrote Chief Judge William Pryor. “For the purposes of summary judgment, we accept the undisputed evidence that Officer Brown was positioned in the “V” between his police vehicle and its open driver’s door and that, as it turned out, the Pontiac drove straight back.” Viewing that evidence in the plaintiffs’ favor, it was not unreasonable for Officer Brown to conclude at the time he fired the shots that the Pontiac posed a serious danger. When an officer is on foot and standing in close proximity to a suspect’s moving vehicle, he need not be directly in the vehicle’s path to fear reasonably for his life. It is “obvious,” in this circumstance, that the suspect could quickly turn his steering wheel and swerve toward the officer.”

When watching the video, however, these claims ring hollow. Brown can be seen on dash cam video trailing two other police cars also in pursuit of Christian Redwine after reports of a stolen vehicle in Columbus.

As the teens attempt to take an exit at high speeds, Redwine loses control of the vehicle.

“We’re gonna be on Riverchase Road dispatch. He has wrecked out. Wrecked out. He is spinning. Start uh rescue,” Brown reports to dispatch.

With the wheels of the vehicle now spinning in reverse, Brown, who is now on foot, fires his weapon 11 times.

The passengers can be heard pleading for the officer to stop firing.

“No, stop! Please! I got shot! Please! Please! ”

Brown, instead, paused only to reload his weapon and fire 10 more times.

“Oh my God I‘m shot! My God. Please no. Please! Please!”

After shooting all three individuals, we can here Brown yelling at the unarmed teens to “get down on the f**king ground or I will f**king shoot you.”

Wuenschel’s cries continue, repeating “Oh my God!” and “Oh my God, sir, please call me an ambulance! Please!”

For several moments after the shooting, the teens are heard crying and begging for help.

By the time Brown had unloaded two magazines, Christian Redwine, 17, was dead, and the two others had both suffered gunshot wounds. In fact, a later investigation would reveal that all three teens had been shot in the initial barrage of gunfire.

When Brown went to trial for his crimes, the city brought in a bunch of police apologist “experts” to justify and propagandize the jury into believing that unloading an entire magazine into a car full of teens, then pausing to reload and drop another ten shots as they beg for their lives, was justified.

Now, years later and the system is once again protecting a cop who tried to murder a car full of teens.

This article was originally featured at The Free Thought Project and is republished with permission.

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