Detroit’s Anarcho-Progressive Homesteaded Community Reply

By Karen De Coster

This is a fascinating video about a progressive-anarcho “grassroots movement” community in Detroit near 7 Mile and Woodward, called Fireweed Universal City. The “about” page reads:

Fireweed Universe-City is a grassroots, not-for-profit movement to transform a devastated, burned-out Detroit city neighborhood into a sustainable, eco-friendly, intentional community that will be the grounds for urban farming, residential and creative space for artists, healers, musicians, and like-minded, forward-thinking, progressive individuals, families, small businesses, and the surrounding community already in place.

It is a community of self-actualization where individuals are expected to contribute and live honestly, and those who don’t are eventually shunned. They live off the grid for the most part, with only minimal services. They homestead abandoned buildings, applying their love and labor to make the structures functional and livable. They do accept donations to help them rebuild the abandoned structures. They also run a neighborhood bicycle collective and use vacant lots for urban farming.


Rick Sanitarium Aims for the Destruction of the GOP 1

Nice job, Rick!

By Laura Clawson

U.S. Republican presidential candidate and former U.S. Senator Rick Santorum addresses his Michigan primary night rally in Grand Rapids, Michigan, February 28, 2012.  REUTERS/Jim Young (UNITED STATES  - Tags: POLITICS ELECTIONS)

Rick Santorum is angry with sellouts in his party. Their crime? Using the term “middle class.” Speaking in Iowa (where else), Santorum ranted and spat:

Don’t use the term the other side uses. Who does Barack Obama talk about all the time? The middle class. Since when in America do we have classes? Since when in America are people stuck in areas or defined places called a class? That’s Marxism talk. More…

The Farm Bill & ‘Libertarian Populism’: Can the GOP be pro-worker and anti-government? Reply

No, they can’t. But we can. It looks like some folks at The American Conservative have been reading AttacktheSystem.Com.

By W. James Antle III

One step forward, two steps back. The Republican Party is like an alcoholic in recovery, with periods of sobriety punctuated by long, destructive benders as it once again falls off the wagon.

In June, a critical mass of House conservatives helped vote down a nearly $1 trillion farm bill that merged all the protectionism and cronyism that dominates modern agriculture policy with the worst excesses of the food stamp program.

Republican leaders were reportedly very unhappy, but the sweetheart deals for the sugar industry and federal crop insurance program are two corporate welfare programs that are totally counterproductive for the taxpayer. Moreover, while it may make political sense to link food stamps and farm subsidies, the economic justification is less obvious.


Homosexuality, Hoppe, and Time Preferences 5

An interesting article by a gay libertarian on the alleged “homophobia” of Han Hermann-Hoppe

By Ludwig Von

As a gay person who considers himself a right-wing libertarian, the “problem” of time preferences among gays (as mentioned by Hans Hermann-Hoppe) has come up a few times, enough for it to bother me enough to present some counter-arguments.

I’ll let Hoppe put it in his own words, and for the record, I fully support his right to say such things in a university setting:

“In March of 2004, during a 75-minute lecture in my Money and Banking class on time preference, interest, and capital, I presented numerous examples designed to illustrate the concept of time preference (or in the terminology of the sociologist Edward Banfield of “present- and future-orientation”).  As one brief example, I referred to homosexuals as a group which, because they typically do not have children, tend to have a higher degree of time preference and are more present-oriented. I also noted–as have many other scholars–that J.M Keynes, whose economic theories were the subject of some upcoming lectures, had been a homosexual and that this might be useful to know when considering his short-run economic policy recommendation and his famous dictum “in the long run we are all dead.”

“My Battle With The Thought Police”, Mises Daily: Tuesday, April 12, 2005 


Some Thoughts on George Zimmerman and John T. Williams 8

From Lingit Latseen

John T Williams March - September 16, 2010
by Frank Hopper

As the not guilty verdict of George Zimmerman was announced on July 13 I couldn’t help thinking about a similar shooting here in Seattle that was also caused by racial profiling, the shooting of First Nations carver John T. Williams by Seattle Police officer Ian Birk on August 30, 2010. Both shootings were heartless attacks on unarmed minorities. Both were needless and unjustified, and both triggered understandable outrage from the communities where they occurred. But the response by the Native community in Seattle to John’s shooting was far different than the rage felt after Zimmerman’s verdict.

Malcolm X Grassroots Movement: Proposed Next Steps for the National Justice for Trayvon Martin Reply

From Malcolm X Grassroots Movement

Proposed Next Steps for the National Justice for Trayvon Martin Movement
Tuesday, July 16, 2013

Major Action
We call for a massive mobilization to shut down either Tallahassee or Sanford, Florida in August or September to: a) present a comprehensive set of structural demands and b) help congeal the broad social justice movements fighting for justice for Trayvon Martin to be able to develop and advance a comprehensive BDS (Boycott, Divestment and Sanctions) campaign.

Vermont Poised to Become 1st State to Enact Single-Payer Healthcare Reply

Democracy Now

Today Vermont is set to make history by becoming the first state in the nation to offer universal, single-payer healthcare when Gov. Peter Shumlin signs its healthcare reform bill into law. The Vermont plan, called the Patient Protection and Affordable Care Act, will attempt to stem rising medical care prices and provide universal coverage. We speak with Dr. Deb Richter, president of Vermont Health Care for All. She moved from Buffalo, New York, to Vermont in 1999 to advocate for a universal, single-payer healthcare system in the state. Gov. Shumlin calls her the “backbone” of the grassroots effort that helped persuade the Democratic-led state legislature to pass the bill this spring.


This is a rush transcript. Copy may not be in its final form.

JUAN GONZALEZ: Today, Vermont is set to become the first state in the nation to offer single-payer healthcare when Governor Peter Shumlin signs its healthcare reform bill into law. The cost of healthcare has risen sharply in Vermont in recent years, as it has everywhere in the country. The Vermont plan, called the Patient Protection and Affordable Care Act, will attempt to stem that rise and also provide universal coverage. Every Vermont resident will be eligible for coverage under the state-run health plan.


Japan: Living in an Internet Cafe Reply

Tadayuki Sakai moved to an Internet cafe in Tokyo shortly after leaving his job at a credit card company, where he worked for 20 years. Image by Shiho Fukada. Japan, 2012.

Shiho Fukada

Story by Brett Roegiers, CNN

Fumiya has learned to sleep with a blanket over his face to block out the fluorescent lights that stay on all night. Unable to afford an apartment in Tokyo, he has been living in an Internet cafe for nearly a year.

At 26, he is part of Japan’s struggling working class. Temporary workers with little job security now make up more than a third of the country’s labor force, according to government statistics.

People like Fumiya, who asked that his last name not be used to protect his privacy, have been hit hard by the recession in Japan.

His story illustrates the economic crisis photographer Shiho Fukada has been covering since 2009. A native of Tokyo, she had been living in New York for 10 years when she started a documentary project with funding from the Pulitzer Center on Crisis Reporting. More…

The 4 A.M. Temp Army Reply

By Michael Grabell, ProPublica

IMG_0113 (1).JPG
Temps pay to ride to work on a bus owned by a raitero, or local labor broker.

It’s 4:18 a.m., and the strip mall in Hanover Park, Ill., is deserted. But tucked in back, next to a closed-down video store, an employment agency is already filling up. Rosa Ramirez enters, as she has done nearly every morning for the past six months. She signs in, sits down in one of the 100 or so blue plastic chairs that fill the office, and waits. Over the next three hours, dispatchers will bark out the names of those who will work today.In cities across the country, workers stand on corners, line up in alleys or wait in a neon-lighted beauty salon for rickety vans to whisk them off to warehouses miles away. Workers say the 15-­passenger vans often carry 22 people. They sit on the wheel wells, in the trunk space or on milk crates or paint buckets. Female workers complain that they are forced to sit on the laps of strangers. Some workers must lie on the floor, other passengers’ feet on top of them.

This is not Mexico. It is not Guatemala or Honduras. This is Chicago, New Jersey, Boston. More…

The Supreme Court: Corporate America’s Employees of the Month Reply

Business Week

In its marquee cases on issues such as gay marriage and race relations, the Supreme Court wrestles with the meaning of majestic constitutional phrases—“equal protection of the laws” and that sort of thing. In the cases that matter the most to businesses, however, the justices address less-grand-sounding provisions such as Rule 23 of the Federal Rules of Civil Procedure, which governs class actions. It’s not terribly sexy stuff, but arcane rules and jurisdictional statutes often determine the course of global commerce, the terms of employment for millions of workers, and the very nature of justice for many in corporate America.


A Case Study in How the Poor Are Prosecuted for Being Poor Reply

Mike the Mad Biologist

Or perhaps I should write persecuted? Recently, I discussed how the poor are prosecuted simply for being poor. The story of Methodist pastor Lorenza Andrade-Smith, who, in ministering to the homeless, sold her belongings and renounced her health insurance, provides a shocking example of this (boldface mine):

On Aug. 3, 2011, she was cited for sleeping on a bench near the Alamo in San Antonio. The night before, she went to the Haven for Hope homeless shelter, where she had been sleeping….

At around ten o’clock the next morning, she was confronted by a police officer. “I apparently overslept,” she said. “The police officer suggested that I go to the haven, and gave me the ticket,” she recalled.


The Warrior State Reply

Militia members in Cuautepec, Guerrero, where they gathered to take an oath to defend their communities against organized crime. Photos by Carlos Alvarez Montero.

On January 5 in El Potrero, a small town in the Mexican state of Guerrero, a man named Eusebio García Alvarado was kidnapped by a local criminal syndicate. Kidnappings are fairly common in Guerrero—the state, just south of Mexico City, is one of the poorest in the country and the site of some of the worst violence in the ongoing battle between the drug cartels and Mexican authorities. Guerrero’s largest city, Acapulco, is known to Americans as a tourist hot spot. It’s also currently the second most dangerous city in the world, according to a study released by a Mexican think tank in February.


No State Steps Down Without a Fight Reply

Tom Woods answers with the obvious.

For some reason, the finger-waggers at Salon think they’ve got us stumped with this one: “If your approach is so great, why hasn’t any country in the world ever tried it?”

So this is the unanswerable question? What’s supposed to be so hard about it? Ninety percent of what libertarians write about answers it at least implicitly.

Let’s reword the question slightly, in order to draw out the answer. You’ll note that when stated correctly, the question contains an implicit non sequitur.

(1) “If your approach is so great, why doesn’t local law enforcement want to give up the money, supplies, and authority that come from the drug war?”

(2) “If your approach is so great, why don’t big financial firms prefer to stand or fall on their merits, and prefer bailouts instead?”


Why Hasn’t Any Country Tried Libertarianism? Reply

It looks like Salon.Com really has it in for libertarians these days.

By Michael Lind

The question libertarians just can't answer(Credit: AP/Charlie Riedel)

Why are there no libertarian countries? If libertarians are correct in claiming that they understand how best to organize a modern society, how is it that not a single country in the world in the early twenty-first century is organized along libertarian lines?


A Critique of Robert Nozick from the Left 1

Unfortunately, this writer is clueless as to the differences between neoliberalism and actual libertarianism and reacts with stereotypical left-wing hysteria when the welfare state is criticized. This article also fails to discuss what is most interesting about Nozick. Yet many of the criticisms of vulgar libertarianism are warranted


Recently, I overheard a fellow Amtraker back off a conversation on politics. “You know, it’s because I’m a libertarian,” he said, sounding like a vegetarian politely declining offal. Later that afternoon, in the otherwise quite groovy loft I sometimes crash at in SoHo, where one might once have expected,say, Of Grammatology or at least a back issue ofElle Decor, there sat not one but two copies of something called The Libertarian Reader. “Libertarianism” places one—so believes the libertarian—not on the political spectrum but slightly above it, and this accounts for its appeal to both the tricorne fringe and owners of premium real estate. More…

Big Government v Big Business: David McDonagh Replies to Keith Preston 1

Libertarian Alliance

I do not admire Keith Preston or his friend Kevin Carson. They seem to think in utterly unrealistic Romantic terms, such as class. Maybe the main one that I will criticism below is what seemed to be the most used term in the 80 minute talk that Keith Preston gave, a term I have long since loathed viz. pluralism.