Freedom Updates: December 2, 2000
All Freedom Updates by Ari Armstrong unless otherwise noted.
DiLorenzo Touts Secession
The founders understood that democracy would inevitably evolve into a system of legalized plunder unless the plundered were given numerous escape routes and constitutional protections... The most important protection was the right of secession... (http://www.lewrockwell.com/orig/dilorenzo2.html)
The piece adds to a growing body of popular writings in the wake of the botched elections and close presidential race that focuses attention on a political strategy once considered a sacred right. DiLorenzo encapsulates some of the American history surrounding secession.
It is unfortunate that the last serious secessionist movement in this country was marred by the evils of slavery. I have never spent the time to learn the history of the Civil War in as much depth as I'd like. However, I've sometimes wondered what America would look like today had the old Southern states simply beat Lincoln to the punch to free the slaves. That the Northern victors engaged in revisionist history I have no doubt. But certainly the abhorrent practice of slavery made it easier to demonize the South.
America's first secession (from Britain) continues to spark the passions of our fellow citizens (note the success of the film The Patriot). For too long the concept of secession has been unjustly linked to the coincidence of slavery during the 1800s. It's time to put secession back on its noble pedestal. Even if we deem such action imprudent at present, it should remain always in our minds a course of last resort.
Bini Gets Probation
Incredibly, Bini wants his job back. He said, "I believe the way I can make amends for what has occurred would be to return to the department with a new passion and understanding" (Rocky Mountain News December 2). What, like the "understanding" that it's wrong to SWAT raid an innocent man's house and kill him?
Bini also said, "I will not live a day without remembering the consequences of my participation." Unfortunately, Mena's wife and nine children probably feel that sentiment rather more strongly. At a bare minimum, Bini should be immediately fired and forced to repay the $400,000 restitution funded by Denver taxpayers.
The Felon Vote
It's amazing to me how much ground we've gained on this issue just in my political lifetime. Ideas indeed have consequences. It might take awhile, but it's true.
As further evidence, Paul Campos wrote in the September 26 Rocky Mountain News, "The lessons of America's experience with Prohibition cannot be repeated often enough: To a large extent, our drug laws create the disease they are supposed to cure."
By the way, the Cato book can be purchased from Laissez Faire Books at the following web address:
No 'Guilt' for Activist
Score a partial victory for the good guys. However, even the fact that he had to plead "guilty" to a misdemeanor is abhorrent and a grave miscarriage of justice. There can be no "guilt" associated with gardening a medicinal plant. The only guilt lies with those who wrote the prohibitionist laws, those who arrested Poliac, and those who prosecuted him.
Note: Much of the material presented below deals with issues several weeks old. So if you only want breaking news, stop reading now.
Keep Reno Out of Paper Mergers
I think the merger will be bad for the community. My sympathies lie with the News, which seems to be getting the worse end of the deal. Probably the end-game will be a single paper called the Denver Rocky Mountain Post or some such.
However, my opinion is not relevant, either. The owners of the newspapers have the inalienable right to control their papers as they see fit, not as some fascist overseer demands.
Ultimately, freedom works best. Even though I think the mergers will have slightly negative consequences for readers in the short-term, upholding the principle of well-defined property rights is immeasurably more important to our well-being. Besides, with radio, television, and especially the internet, Coloradans can get timely news from around the world from a multitude of sources. Both the major Denver papers could disappear, and we would adjust swiftly. The most robust new medium, the internet, is also the least regulated by politicians and their bureaucratic minions. That's no accident.
More Review of Columbine Problems
A quote from an older paper describes another problem at Columbine: the police reaction during the crisis. The October 15 News quoted Adam Walinksy, who founded the military-style Police Corps: "You have to be staggered, stunned by the performance of the law enforcement people who were there -- standing around outside, dithering, trying to figure what the bureaucratic rules were while kids were bleeding to death in the halls."
Glass Takes on Clinton
The story in the Rocky Mountain News the next day shows that Glass' "in your face" strategy works well for some purposes. Glass was quoted in the paper: "Bill Clinton's administration has done more to diminish the concept of individual rights than any other in history... Instead of paying his respects to the brave young men and women who gave their lives for our freedom [in the Cole tragedy], he chose to come to Denver to fleece the flock."
Rosen a Real Champ
Notably, Rosen also took the libertarian position on medical marijuana and government waiting periods for abortion.