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Volume 19, Issue 18                              October 30, 2014
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"The Advocates are for real. Libertarians who want to get real should put into action what the Advocates teach."

— Russell Means (1939-2012)
American Indian activist, actor, author, libertarian
WELCOME to the Liberator Online!

In This Issue

PRESIDENT'S CORNER
Forbes Features Fascinating New Use of World's Smallest Political Quiz

INTELLECTUAL AMMUNITION
Libertarian Candidates Pledge: End the Failed and Immoral War on Drugs
VIDEO: "Obama's Taylor Swift Strategy: Shake It Off (Remy Remix)"
 New York Magazine: "A New Generation of Libertarians" 

THEY SAID IT: Businesses don't create jobs, sez Hillary Clinton.... Get ready to fight the un-American totalitarian military draft, warns Ron Paul.... Pat Buchanan asks why we borrow from Japan and Europe to defend them.... Uh-oh:  Fed head Janet Yellin is worrying about income inequality.... Economist Mark Perry on the awesome new power of consumer regulation.... 

PERSUASION POWER POINT #377 by Michael Cloud
Snarky or Sarcastic Put-downs Can Turn People Into Permanent Enemies

LIBERTY MINUTE by Sharon Harris
* Halloween: Share Some Scary Facts About… Government 

WHAT'S HAPPENING WITH THE ADVOCATES
* Upcoming: Advocates communication workshops and speeches
* FREE OPH KITS for libertarian student groups!
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President's Corner

by Sharon Harris







Forbes Features Fascinating New Use of World's Smallest Political Quiz

Dear friend,

"Have You Significantly Changed Your Political Views Since Age 18? If So, How?"

That the title of a fascinating article at Forbes.com featuring the World's Smallest Political Quiz. 

In it, economist Michael F. Cannon describes his intellectual journey from Big Government "socially conservative social democrat" in high school to socially conservative/free market-oriented university student… and finally, a few years later, to where he is today: a full-fledged libertarian, solidly in favor of civil liberties, free markets, and a non-interventionist foreign policy. 

Indeed, Cannon not only became a libertarian — he has become a remarkably influential one. He is director of health policy studies at the libertarian Cato Institute. Though not a Republican, he served as a domestic policy analyst for the U.S. Senate Republican Policy Committee, advising the Senate leadership on health, education, labor, welfare, and the Second Amendment. His work has been featured in many of America's most influential newspapers and magazines, and he has appeared ABC, CBS, CNN, CNBC, C-SPAN, Fox News Channel and NPR. 

To illustrate his personal ideological journey, Cannon uses… the World's Smallest Political Quiz. He draws different Quiz scores on the Quiz to indicate how he would have scored at different times in his life, thus creating the striking visual map of his political awakening that I've reprinted in this column. 

I've never seen this done before. But the Quiz is a perfect — and crystal-clear — way to document and illustrate this. Kudos to Cannon for thinking of this! 

I know over the past few decades, as libertarian ideas have spread, many millions of people have made intellectual journeys very similar to Cannon's. (And for millions of them, the Quiz itself has been an important part of their intellectual awakening.) Whether starting from the left or the right, more and more Americans are finding themselves drawn to the logic, consistency and compassion of libertarianism.

Check Cannon's article out — and consider using the Quiz to document and share the story of your own journey. 
 
In Liberty,

Sharon
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The purpose of the Liberator Online is to build a stronger movement for liberty. We do this by providing information about the libertarian movement and how to best communicate the ideas of liberty. Thank you for being a part of this!

Learn more about the Advocates and our work for liberty.

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Become a SUPER COMMUNICATOR for the ideas of liberty!

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Find out how you can get Sharon to speak at your organization. Email Sharon now, or call her at 770-386-8372.

Intellectual Ammunition

by James W. Harris 


 


Libertarian Candidates Pledge: End the Failed and Immoral War on Drugs 

Scores of Libertarian Party candidates for federal office have pledged to
downsize the bloated federal government â€” in these big and specific ways:

* Eliminate the federal income tax
* Abolish the NSA
* Cut military spending by 60%
* End the War on Drugs

We're exploring each of these pledges in detail, one per issue, because the Libertarian Party has done a great job of showing that these bold proposals are not only possible, but practical and enormously beneficial. (You can read about all four positions
here.)

Here's the final one:
End the failed War on Drugs

The candidates pledge: "If elected, I will sponsor legislation to end the War on Drugs, release all victimless drug 'criminals' from prison, abolish the federal Drug Enforcement Agency (DEA), and cut taxes accordingly."

Here is the Libertarian Party's case for ending the failed War on Drugs:

* The War on Drugs has proven far more deadly and destructive than drugs themselves.

* Just as alcohol prohibition prompted organized crime, consumption of stronger alcoholic drinks, and an epidemic of alcohol overdose deaths, drug prohibition has prompted the formation of deadly street gangs, use of stronger drugs, and an increase in drug overdose deaths.

* Because of the Drug War, the United States incarcerates more people than any country on earth. More than 500,000 Americans are now serving time in jail or prison for drug "offenses." They are peaceful citizens, separated from their children and families, who could be living productive lives. Instead, their incarceration has cost taxpayers more than $1 trillion since 1971.

* More than 658,000 people are arrested every year for mere possession of marijuana, diverting attention from where it should be: on violent criminals.

* Marijuana prohibition denies those suffering from cancer, AIDS, migraines, glaucoma, and other serious diseases their right to an effective treatment that both reduces suffering and saves lives.

When we end the War on Drugs: 

* Crime will go down dramatically, making our streets and homes safer.

* Law enforcement will focus more on finding and prosecuting murderers, rapists, and thieves.

.* People now in prison who never harmed another human being will be free to go home to their families. Their children will grow up with their mom or dad at home.

* Each taxpayer will get back hundreds of dollars — every year — that they now spend on today's failed prohibition. Money they can save, spend, or give away to others in need.

* People suffering from cancer, AIDS, and other serious diseases will have dignified and safe access to medical marijuana, giving them their best chance for a long and healthy life.

* Finally, ending the War on Drugs sends the right message to kids:

    Be personally responsible.
    Be just, be reasonable, and honor individual rights.
    Admit mistakes and get rid of bad laws that don't work.
    End unnecessary human suffering.


VIDEO: "Obama's Taylor Swift Strategy: Shake It Off (Remy Remix)" 

A new video by the liberty-minded comedian Remy is always a cause for celebration. 

In this one Remy rewrites the Taylor Swift hit "Shake It Off," turning it into a kind of Obama administration manifesto. So true that's it's downright scary. Also, of course, hilarious, with amazing performances by Remy.  

Scroll down to see the lyrics -- with links on the issues Remy raises in his parody rewrite -- here.  

From Reason TV. Approximately 2:15 minutes. Share it with friends! 

New York Magazine: "A New Generation of Libertarians" 

Are cutting-edge companies like Uber and Airbnb creating a new generation of libertarians?

Consider this fascinating snippet from New York Magazine's
interview with legendary Silicon Valley entrepreneur-provocateur (and self-described "McGovern libertarian") Marc Andreessen, in their October 20, 2014 issue. 

New York Magazine: Politicians like Rand Paul are seizing on young people's embrace of companies like Uber and Lyft and Airbnb that are disrupting heavily regulated industries and saying, "You know, if you're frustrated about Uber, let me tell you about these other regulations that are terrible." Are these companies breeding a new generation of libertarians?

Marc Andreessen: I guess I would say the following: If you have been in an Uber car and gotten pulled over and had the car seized out from under the driver when you were like in the middle of a trip that you were otherwise having a good time on, you might be a little bit radicalized. You might all of a sudden think, "Wait a minute, what just happened, and why did it happen?" And then you might discover what the taxi companies did over the last 50 years to wire up city governments and all the corruption that's taken place. And you might say, "Wait a minute."

There's this myth that government regulation is well-intentioned and benign, and implemented properly. That's the myth. And then when people actually run into this in the real world, they're, "Oh, f***, I didn't realize." 

New York Magazine: My mom is renting out my childhood room on Airbnb.

Marc Andreessen: There you go. She's one of the lawless libertarians.


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Intellectual Ammunition is written by Liberator Online editor James W. Harris. His articles have appeared in numerous magazines and newspapers, and he has been a Finalist for the Mencken Awards, given by the Free Press Association for "Outstanding Journalism in Support of Liberty.
THEY SAID IT...

HILLARY:  "Don't let anybody tell you that it's corporations and businesses that create jobs." — Hillary Clinton, speaking at a political rally in Massachusetts, Oct 24, 2014. (Clinton supporters claim she is quoted out of context; you can find their argument here.)

INSANITY: "We borrow from Japan and Europe to defend Japan and Europe, though World War II has been over for 70 years." — Pat Buchanan, "Things Fall Apart," syndicated column, Oct. 24, 2014. 

UH-OH: "The extent of and continuing increase in inequality in the United States greatly concern me. …I think it is appropriate to ask whether this trend is compatible with values rooted in our nation's history, among them the high value Americans have traditionally placed on equality of opportunity. …In such circumstances, society faces difficult questions of how best to fairly and justly promote equal opportunity." — Federal Reserve Chair Janet Yellin in a speech entitled "Perspectives on Inequality and Opportunity from the Survey of Consumer Finances," Oct. 17, 2014. 

THE NEW CONSUMER REGULATION: "It's important to remember that Uber drivers and Airbnb hosts are already very heavily regulated, and in some ways they are regulated even more intensely than traditional taxis or hotels by a very ruthless group of regulators — the consumers who use their services and can rate each driver after every Uber ride and rate each host after every Airbnb stay. And the regulation goes both ways — the Uber drivers rate their passengers and the Airbnb hosts rate their guests. So the issue really isn't a choice between government regulation and a completely unregulated sharing economy; the issue really is who is the primary regulator: a) government bureaucrats and legislators who are often captured by regulated industries like taxi cartels (Big Taxi), or b) the consumers." — Mark J. Perry, "In the battle between sharing economy entrepreneurs and regulators, I’ll bet on the entrepreneurs like Uber and Airbnb ," Carpe Diem blog, American Enterprise Institute, Oct. 23, 2014.
 
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"They Said It..." is compiled by Liberator Online editor James W. Harris.

Persuasion Power Point #378

by Michael Cloud





Snarky or Sarcastic Put-downs Can Turn People Into Permanent Enemies

Have you ever been in a political argument where the other person acted like you hadn't made a single valid point?

Ever debated morality or economics with someone who ignored everything you said?

Frustrating, isn't it?

Beware. This is the moment in many political conversations where you or I turn to put-downs: insults, rude remarks, or sarcasm. These remarks will stick and sting. They will hurt.

Instead of a forgettable political discussion, you will leave them with an unforgettable put-down. Perhaps one that's unforgivable.

People remember rudeness. They remember those who inflict it on them. And they tell their friends all about it.

Is this the way you want libertarianism and you to be talked about?

So, instead of lashing out — smile, thank them for an interesting discussion, say goodbye, and walk away.

Talk politics with someone else. A person who is receptive and responsive to libertarian economics or politics.

That's the way to win people to liberty.
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Michael Cloud's latest book Unlocking More Secrets of Libertarian Persuasion is available exclusively from the Advocates, along with his acclaimed earlier book Secrets of Libertarian Persuasion.

In 2000, Michael was honored with the Thomas Paine Award as the Most Persuasive Libertarian Communicator in America.

 

One-Minute Liberty Tip 

by Sharon Harris




Halloween: Share Some Scary Facts About… Government  

The scariest holiday of the year is fast approaching. Bloodsuckers, devils, demons and creeps will roam the streets, demanding we hand over our goodies — or face nasty consequences. 

No, not the elections — Halloween!

Holidays can be a great time to share libertarian ideas with family and friends. We recommend libertarians gather liberty-themed facts, figures and stories specific for each holiday and share them if and when appropriate. (We try to share such info in the Liberator Online as major holidays near.) 

Below is a fun and startling report from Americans for Tax Reform (ATR) that gives some genuinely shocking figures about how much government is adding to the cost of your family's Halloween celebration this year. 

Unfortunately, ATR first posted this in 2011, and they haven't updated it as we go to press. It's still very usable, though. Just point out the date by saying something like "as Americans for Tax Reform noted a few Halloweens back…")

So, if the opportunity arises, scare your family and friends with some of this truly terrifying information. You can share it online, too, by linking here.

You'll surely open some minds about the creepiest House of Horrors of them all — the federal government! Happy Halloween!
 
The Frightening Cost of Halloween — Thanks to Government
(from Americans for Tax Reform)

Think Halloween is scary? Ha! It's nothing compared to the Frightfest of taxes and hidden costs government adds to this beloved holiday. 

Each year, parents spend $1 billion on kid costumes for Halloween. On average, for the estimated 41 million trick-or-treaters, each kid wears a costume costing almost $25 — a hefty sum for parents who know this annual investment is only going to get a few hours of use. 

Taxes make up a shocking amount of that cost. 

Kids' costumes are almost all made of heavily taxed synthetic fibers. On top of the state sales tax paid at the register, the government increases the cost of buying these costumes by imposing a 17 percent tariff on many of these imported costumes. Businesses not only have to absorb these costs, but also those imposed by income taxes, payroll taxes, corporate taxes, property taxes, capital gains taxes, unemployment insurance taxes, workmen's compensation taxes, and other payments to federal, state, and local forms of government.  

When all is said and done, government taxes compose a terrifying 47.82 percent of the cost of the average kid's costume — $11.66 of the average price. Boo!

But the government's tricks don't end there. The Halloween season brings with it $2 billion in candy purchases. Due to excise taxation on sweets in addition to the burden of taxes placed on the confectionery industry, the government takes a 30.81 percent bite out of the average trick-or-treaters' candy haul. Ouch!

Altogether, the cost of celebrating our scariest holiday is made all the more frightening by the costs imposed by government: hidden taxes and other costs constitute 40.91 percent of your Halloween celebration. 

This amounts to a burden of $688 million — or $16.80 per kid. The remaining $1.3 billion of candy not distributed during trick-or-treating represents another $406 million in taxes. Finally, after including taxes on adults for decorations and costumes the total Halloween tax bite comes to… a bloody and bruising $2.7 billion.

And the cost is even higher if you attend a spooky party with alcoholic beverages. Wine, distilled spirits and beer are all subject to more hidden taxes. Going out to dinner instead of trick-or-treating also carries higher government costs. And if you have to drive your kids to trick-or-treat, the government bite of gasoline also takes a hefty bite out of your wallet…

Wherever you turn, wherever you go, you can't escape the bloodsucking horror of… the federal government. 

Hey, if you're still searching for a truly bone-chilling costume idea, here's one: dress up as... Uncle Sam.
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Sharon Harris is president of the Advocates for Self-Government.  

What's Happening with the Advocates


Upcoming workshops, speeches, and conferences
 
Nov. 1: Advocates Chairman of the Board Jim Lark will speak at the Students For Liberty regional conference, Salem College, Winston-Salem, North Carolina.

Nov. 15:  Advocates Chairman of the Board Jim Lark will speak at the European Students For Liberty conference, Reykjavik, Iceland.

October and November, Students for Liberty regional conferences: The Advocates will have booths at the Students For Liberty (SFL) regional conferences on November 1 in Winston-Salem, North Carolina and November 8 in Chicago, Ill. Come by and say hi! Free gifts!  
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