Sunday, July 10, 2011

Celebrating July 4th Properly, Post-4th Thoughts

I did a lot of complaining this year on the State of Utah recent lift of their ban on the private use of aerial fireworks. It, along with the everdepressing show of blind nationalism by everyone, kept me in a rather dreary mood all throughout the holiday (which in Utah, isn't over until after Pioneer Day, the 24th of July). In order to avoid this hard-heartedness next year, I've been thinking of ways that I can celebrate.

This got my thinking about why we celebrate the 4th of July. It's call'd Independence Day for a reason. What happen'd on the 4th of July? 200+ years ago, our American ancestors seced'd from the largest empire in the world, Great Britain. They claim'd their independence from a distant tyrant. So we could celebrate the 4th by studying that seemingly ancient history, OR we could celebrate the 4th by studying modern history. What do I mean by that?

What a better way to celebrate the 4th than by studying the growth and tyranny of the largest empire in the world, the United States?, than by studying the principles of nullification and secession, and how they are at work today, all over the country, and the world? I think that's what I'll do. I'll use this time each year to teach my family the history of the American State, of all the ways it has violat'd it's own Constitution, and violat'd the rights of it's citizens. I'll teach them about nullification, when it's been used successfully, where it's being used today, and where it should be used tomorrow. We'll explore current nullification movements. I'll teach them about secession. About Lincoln's tyranny, and shredding of the Constitution. I'll teach them about modern secessionist movements around the world, like South Sudan, Southern California, and Scotland.

Yes, I think that's how I'll be celebrating the 4th of July each year, in it's proper spirit!

Thursday, July 7, 2011

Full-body Cavity Searches For Everyone

That's it. What a scary revelation. Terrorists could be hiding bombs inside their bodies. I can't believe this. It is absolutely paramount that the TSA start conducting full-body cavity* searches on all passengers. If they don't do this, then how am I going to feel safe getting on an airplane? How am I going to feel secure that I won't be blown up by a terrorist hiding a bomb inside his body? The only way the TSA can guarantee my safety in light of this new information is to require a full body cavity search of every passenger. That's it. That's the only way. Nothing else will do. Terrorists are a serious threat to everyone, and the TSA should take that threat seriously. If the TSA is going to be trusted as having our security as their number one priority, they will immediately start full-body cavity searching every passenger on every flight. They can't be trusted otherwise.

* When I say "full-body cavity" search, this includes finding surgical incision marks, however old, and ripping them open to search inside. This is absolutely imperative!

Wednesday, July 6, 2011

Utah Gives License to Aggress

Emitting a loud noise can be an act of aggression. The test of whether or not you are committing aggression through your emission of loud noise was given by Rothbard:
Most of us think of homesteading unused resources in the old-fashioned sense of clearing a piece of unowned land and farming the soil. There are, however, more sophisticated and modern forms of homesteading, which should establish a property right. Suppose, for example, that an airport is established with a great deal of empty land around it. The airport exudes a noise level of, say, X decibels, with the sound waves traveling over the empty land. A housing development then buys land near the airport. Some time later, the homeowners sue the airport for excessive noise interfering with the use and quiet enjoyment of the houses.

Excessive noise can be considered a form of aggression but in this case the airport has already homesteaded X decibels worth of noise. By its prior claim, the airport now "owns the right" to emit X decibels of noise in the surrounding area. In legal terms, we can then say that the airport, through homesteading, has earned an easement right to creating X decibels of noise. This homesteaded easement is an example of the ancient legal concept of "prescription," in which a certain activity earns a prescriptive property right to the person engaging in the action.

On the other hand, if the airport starts to increase noise levels, then the homeowners could sue or enjoin the airport from its noise aggression for the extra decibels, which had not been homesteaded. Of course if a new airport is built and begins to send out noise of X decibels onto the existing surrounding homes, the airport becomes fully liable for the noise invasion.
When I purchased my home in Salt Lake City, aerial fireworks for private use were illegal 12 months out of the year. Fountain and lesser fireworks were legal during the month of July and end of December. Recently, Utah passed HB22, legalizing the sale and private use of aerial fireworks during July and the end of December. Because of this, the decibel level around my house has increased several-fold. So much so, that the week leading up to Independence Day, my son was unable to sleep until the noise subsided. He's always had sensitive hearing. He's never liked the noise emitted by aerial fireworks. I don't care for the extra "noise invasion" either. It's a nuisance.

It is my charge, based on Rothbard's theory above, that Utah, along with my neighbors, have now committed an act of aggression by legalizing the use of these louder fireworks. I usually applaud the legalizing of a formerly prohibited act, but those acts which violate the rights of others should remain prohibited by whatever legal authority that exists. That's supposedly government's job, to protect our rights, and in this instance the State of Utah has authorized and licensed the violation of our rights. It's no different than if the State of Utah allowed access to my home by the uninvited, during the months of July and end of December. It would be as much an act of aggressive invasion as what Utah has done by legalizing louder aerial fireworks.

Let me be clear. I don't care if you use aerial fireworks. I only care if they are done near my property, where I had the right to a certain level of noise, that which was established before I bought my home. Now the State of Utah has given my neighbors permission to exceed that level, thereby committing an act of aggression against all those who find the louder noise offensive. Shame on Utah. And shame on those who call themselves libertarians and fail to recognize what the State of Utah has done.

UPDATE: I realized that this same type of aggression happened when Salt Lake built their Triple-A baseball stadium, currently named Spring Mobile Ballpark, in the middle of a residential area. They have fireworks night once a month or so, and they are extremely loud. I've decided to boycott fireworks nights.

UPDATE 2: I must concede one thing, no, I should not be using monopoly government to do anything. Two wrongs don't make a right.

Tuesday, July 5, 2011

Do I Hate My Country?

I've several times been accused of hating my country with the accompanying suggestion to move, but this is plain and simply a false accusation. That people would infer as much by my opposition to my [many layers of] government is a testament to just how badly people have been educated regarding the state and society.

I want to be perfectly clear, I absolutely love my country. I love our genius and our ingenuity. I love our passion and our charity. I love most of everything there is to love about my country. HOWEVER, I don't confuse "my country" with "my government" or "my nation". In fact, I see, as Albert Jay Nock wrote, that the state is the greatest enemy of mankind. That is, my government is my country's public enemy number ONE.

I take Christ's commandment to love our neighbor as ourselves seriously, which is why I not only want bad government (though I repeat myself) out of my life, but also out of my neighbors'. I want liberty and freedom as much for my fellow countrymen as much as I want it for myself and my family. This is the very reason I am so open about what I believe, and try to share all I can via my website and social networking on the principles of liberty, so that my neighbors may understand as I do the face of our common enemy.

I love my country very much, but I don't make the dangerous mistake of confusing my country with my country's government.