Napolitano Indefinitely Suspended from Fox News for Trump “Wiretapping” Comments

Yesterday, Fox News announced their decision to indefinitely suspend Judge Andrew Napolitano’s airtime in response to Napolitano’s assertion that former President Obama conducted surveillance on Trump via British Intelligence.

By using British Intelligence to spy on then-candidate Trump, Obama could avoid leaving a paper trail that would lead to his administration. To prove the veracity of his claim, Napolitano cites various Fox News sources within the US intelligence community. Fox News vehemently denies these claims.

Since 2006, Napolitano has worked as a media commentator for Fox News hosting and appearing in liberty-oriented programming including Freedom Watch. Although Napolitano held the position of Senior Judicial Analyst, his current relationship with Fox News is unclear.

It would certainly make logical sense if Obama did, in fact, use British Intelligence to anonymously surveil then-candidate Trump. However, as both Ron Paul and James Corbett point out, Obama would not necessarily have to take this route, because there does not need to be a surveillance paper trail.

We have known for years that NSA routinely conducts warrantless spying on all Americans. It would be foolish to assume that the most politically powerful figures would be exempt from this surveillance. In fact, they are priority number one. The NSA was made for this activity. That is its purpose.

James Corbett and Ron Paul comment on the Trump “Wiretapping” scandal:

So we know that Trump almost certainly was surveilled as a candidate and that he is not the first to be the object of such surveillance. In fact, Obama himself was the object of NSA surveillance as far back as 2004 when he was running for Senate in Illinois. This fact was revealed by NSA whistleblower Russ Tice in 2013.

Moreover, anyone with any political clout is the subject of NSA surveillance. There does not need to be any kind of order to perform this surveillance, the NSA dragnet is already capturing everything.

When it comes to Napolitano’s allegations that British Intelligence tapped Trump’s phones, who knows? It certainly is plausible, but why  would Obama go through the trouble when the NSA already has everything?

While the above questions lack definite answers, one thing we can say with certainty is that Napolitano is a libertarian icon whose presence on Fox News will be missed. Perhaps this schism with Fox News will drive him to more worthwhile pursuits . . . perhaps with the Mises Institute? One may only hope.

Before I conclude today’s content, I wanted to bring the reader’s attention to the Orwellian doublespeak at play behind the very title of this political puppet show: “the Trump ‘Wiretapping’ Scandal.”

The use of the word “wiretapping” seeks to frame public thought by inserting the image of someone physically sneaking into Trump Tower with a written order from Obama to place a bug on Trump’s phone. This subliminal framing is complete garbage. We know that in the modern era of complete government surveillance, this is not at all necessary.

That is all for today! Thanks for stopping by Liberty Weekly. If you have not already, I would urge you to sign up for my email list and follow me on Steemit, Minds, Facebook, and Twitter!

Bitchute: The New Youtube?

As the mainstream media self-destructs, the alternative media  continues to seed the internet with decentralized, homegrown alternatives. To combat the rise of citizen journalism, social media giants like Reddit, Twitter, Facebook, and Youtube have cracked down on their users’ freedom of expression by censoring discussion of taboo topics and labeling alternative news outlets as “fake news.”

For example, in November, Reddit completely  banned r/pizzagate in an attempt to prevent discussion on the platform, citing excessive “witch hunting.”  As a result, much of r/pizzagate’s traffic migrated to alternatives such as Steemit, Youtube, and Minds.

Twitter has also made efforts to suppress unapproved speech by suspending accounts and preventing posts containing certain links and language. Infamously, this happened to alt-right provocateur Milo Yiannopoulos, but has been occurring more and more.

Recently, Twitter didn’t allow Tom Woods to tweet a link to his new Ebook:

In regards to censorship, Youtube has not been innocent, either. Within the past year, several prominent Youtubers have reported significant loss of traffic on videos that criticize government.

Enter BitChute: the decentralized peer-to-peer (P2P) video hosting platform!

BitChute–Homepage Screen capture taken 3/20/2017

Taken from the website’s FAQ page, site’s aim is to encapsulate a complex P2P torrenting system within a streamlined web browser format. By streamlining the format, the hope is that the site would then be ready for mass adoption.

By bringing the decentralized P2P format to video hosting/streaming, users would theoretically be free from arbitrary censorship that centralized platforms like Youtube impose.

BitChute is still under development, but many alternative media outlets like Newsbud, Media Monarchy, and the Corbett Report have already joined the site and are currently posting content regularly.

Once the site gets further developed regular users will be allowed to create their own channels and post videos. After this occurs, the site will be primed for mass adoption. Hopefully, users of other decentralized alternatives like Steemit and Minds will adopt the platform in lieu of Youtube.

Currently, BitChute is working to introduce a monetization platform, but details on their FAQ page are scarce in that regard.

My use of the website so far has been pretty great! Playback on any given video is smooth and not choppy. There is also a small satisfaction that comes with supporting a platform that has the potential to supplant Youtube. Hopefully more people can join in this excitement.

That is all today from Liberty Weekly! I would urge all of my readers check BitChute out and integrate its use into their daily internet routines. Follow me on Twitter to receive any BitChute updates that I come across.

If you haven’t already, give me a follow on Steemit at https://steemit.com/@libertyweekly.

This article was concurrently published on Steemit at: https://steemit.com/cryptocurrency/@libertyweekly/bitchute-the-new-youtube

Have a great week everyone!

“Civil Libertarianism” Isn’t A Thing

Hello again readers of Liberty Weekly!

After what has been a rough week, we are making a triumphant return to our regular content schedule, which I believe I’ve dialed in to about 3-5 articles per week.

In returning, I wanted to address an issue that I’ve run into both personally and professionally: “civil libertarianism.”

Often times in law school, you will encounter the civil libertarian. Whether it is an overly-political professor, a fellow student, or a law review article that bandies itself as a trendy, would-be radical defense of individual liberty.

Broadly speaking, a civil libertarian is one who ardently supports civil rights from government intrusion. One’s identity as a civil libertarian revolves around one’s definition of the terms “civil rights” and “liberty.”

Civil libertarians can come from all ends of the political spectrum, but usually have one thing in common: they do not have a coherent definition of the term “liberty.” Generally speaking, “civil libertarians” either don’t  support all liberties, or create their own “positive rights.”

While the baseline guide to personal liberty is the Non-Aggression Principle (the right to be free from the immoral, or aggressive, initiation of force), liberty can be broken up into three basic categories: personal liberty, political liberty, and economic liberty.

What civil libertarians, and those who do not consistently support freedom (“democratic” socialists), don’t realize is that liberty is a package deal. That is, one may not effectively exercise his personal liberty without economic liberty and vice versa.

Specifically, without the economic liberty to own yourself and the fruits of your labor, it is near impossible to have any semblance of personal liberty. Likewise, if you are unable to be secure in your home and possessions, then it is impossible to effectively run a business, accumulate wealth, or enjoy the fruits of your labor.

True political liberty, the most elusive of the three, is especially reliant on the other two. If one is unable to accumulate wealth or be secure in their home and possessions, it is effectively impossible to facilitate any meaningful political change.

In my experience, civil libertarians are basically just liberals who care a little more about NSA spying and police militarization. For all other intents and purposes, they are no different than anyone else and they certainly aren’t libertarians.

Thanks for stopping by for this short Saturday column! Hopefully this week will be a little less hectic so I can produce more content.

If you haven’t already, give me a follow on Steemit, where this article was concurrently published: https://steemit.com/freedom/@libertyweekly/civil-libertarianism-isn-t-a-thing

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

Trumpcare: What it is and Why it Won’t Work

This week, the Republicans finally revealed their new health care plan meant to replace the Affordable Care Act (ACA). Already branded “Trumpcare,” the new plan repeals some bad parts of the ACA, leaves the worst part, and replaces the bad parts with worse solutions.

Earlier this week, Peter Schiff released a podcast explaining the differences and offering scathing criticism of the plan, which he says, is just another big-government program with Republican wrapping paper. I will summarize his points here, attach his podcast below, and offer my commentary.

Under Trumpcare, the worst mechanism of the ACA, the prevention of discrimination based on pre-existing conditions, will remain. This prevention presents a significant moral hazard that completely undermines the point of selling insurance.

What if we allowed drivers to purchase car insurance to fix their car after they had been in an accident? What if we allowed customers to purchase and collect life insurance after they were already dead, or had contracted a life-threatening illness? Not only is this immoral, it is completely illogical. This extreme intervention in the free market is the main mechanism driving premiums up. Under Trumpcare, this blunder will remain.

The new plan will, however, remove the ACA’s individual mandate, which penalizes those who do not purchase insurance. The ACA attempted to force young, healthy people to buy insurance they didn’t need in order to subsidize older, more unhealthy consumers. Under the ACA, it was cheaper to pay the tax penalty than it was to buy health insurance, therefore preventing young, healthy people from buying insurance and making premiums rise for those who did buy insurance.

Under the new plan, neither individuals, nor companies will be forced to buy insurance. This is a step in the right direction. However, the Republicans aren’t just repealing this aspect and letting the free market work, they have to “fix” it with more government interventionism.

In order to try and “fix” the problem with the ACA’s individual mandate and encourage individuals to buy insurance, Trumpcare will force insurance companies to charge a 30% increase in premiums for any customer whose healthcare coverage has been allowed to lapse for a period greater than 63 days.

Again, because of the moral hazard inherent in preventing insurance companies from discriminating based on pre-exising conditions, premiums will be so high that it will be cheaper for young, healthy people not to buy insurance, and to pay the 30% increase on insurance after they get sick.

In fact, Peter Schiff jokes that, under Trumpcare, a new insurance product will develop in which customers will buy insurance to reimburse them for their healthcare insurance premiums once they get sick and have to pay the 30% increase, plus the high premiums from the moral hazard. They will basically be buying insurance for their insurance payments.

Additionally, Trumpcare will be removing Obama’s 3.9% tax on capital gains and dividends that were meant to help subsidize the ACA. As a replacement, Trumpcare offers an advance tax credit for purchasing health insurance. Peter Schiff explains that this really is just a welfare program, because you get the credit even if you don’t owe any taxes. He elaborates this point at 15:26 of his podcast:

So the government is giving out these welfare payments. This is a brand new entitlement, every American is entitled to get a check from the government that they can use to buy insurance. Now, one good part of it is,  if you don’t spend all the money, right, if you are a family of four and you get $14,000 to buy insurance–if you can find the insurance for $12,000 you can pocket the difference, you can put the $2,000 into a health savings account. So that, in theory, should help Americans to try to bargain for better insurance coverage, cause they can get the money they save . . . Of course these subsidies are only for people who do not get insurance through their employer.

You can listen to the rest of his podcast in the video below:

Now, there are many reasons that healthcare in America is so expensive, but explaining them all would divert from the purpose of this article. Suffice to say, pretty much all of them have to do with government intervention in the free market. We need to let the market function!

Until the idiots in Washington realize this, we are all in for a bad time. Thankfully, Rand Paul, Justin Amash, and Thomas Massie, are spearheading the Republican Liberty Caucus’ resistance to any and all big government healthcare proposals. Let’s hope they are successful.

Thanks for stopping by Liberty Weekly for today! I hope that you now have a better understanding of how Trumpcare and the ACA are working to make healthcare even more expensive for us all.

Follow Liberty Weekly on Steemit, Twitter, Facebook, and Minds!

 

Toughtcrime Thursdays: “The Moon is a Harsh Mistress” and Ideological Revolution

Hello, hello and welcome back for the third installment of Thoughtcrime Thursdays, the weekly column we explore the world of fictional dystopia as a critique on our current society! As mentioned in yesterday’s content, I have decided not to compare the Vault 7 Wikileaks to Orwell’s 1984 because the internet is currently awash with the topic.

So, instead, we will be taking a look at Heinlein’s classic novel of libertarian revolution: The Moon is a Harsh Mistress.

Heinlein’s 1966 novel chronicles the ideologically-driven rebellion of the Lunar Penal Colony, which is loosely governed from Earth by the Lunar Authority. Despite this governance, the lunar colony is semi-anarchic, with economic monopolies on certain infrastructure like water.

There is a virtual cornucopia of topics to discuss in regard to Heinlein’s Lunar society–far too much to talk about here. What I wanted to key into are the parallels between Heinlein’s revolution and the American Revolution.

Like the American Revolution, the movement for a free Luna is deeply ideologically rooted. While Luna’s rebellion is centralized in a hierarchical conspiracy consisting of hundreds of cells of three members (with a supercomputer at the top). The American Revolution was more decentralized, and without an singular driving force. Both however propagated their ideas through the distribution of pamphlets.

In his seminal work, The Ideological Origins of the American Revolution, Bernard Bailyn discusses the rampant pamphleteering that drove the rebellion. At the time, pamphlets were easy to make, flexible in format, and easy to distribute. The content ranged from vulgar jokes to serialized arguments between enlightened community figures and politicians. Similarly, in The Moon is a Harsh Mistress, the movement for a free Luna is driven by graffiti, pamphlets, and word of mouth.

The ideology of the American Revolution imbibed local governance in a way that is actually more complex than one learns in decaying public schools. Those that supported the American Revolution wanted more than just representation in Parliament (because they were represented), they wanted local representation.

At the time, even British citizens in Britain didn’t have local representatives, and were spoken for in Parliament at large. The colonists’ wanted to be represented by Americans–someone who was raised and had lived among those he represented.

The Movement for a Free Luna is more radical, but similarly rooted in a general principle that embodies anarchic rhetoric. To explain, I quote the book:

Under what circumstances is it moral for a group to do that which is not moral for a member of that group to do alone?

A rational anarchist believes that concepts such as ‘state’ and ‘society’ and ‘government’ have no existence save as physically exemplified in the acts of self-responsible individuals. He believes that it is impossible to shift blame, share blame, distribute blame . . . as blame, guilt, responsibility are matters taking place inside human beings singly and nowhere else. But, being rational, he knows that not all individuals hold his evaluations, so he tries to live perfectly in an imperfect world . . . aware that his effort will be less than perfect yet undismayed by self-knowledge of self-failure.

In terms of morals, there is no such thing as ‘state.’ Just men. Individuals. Each responsible for his own acts.

This rhetoric sounds like the foundation of the Non-aggression Principle that lays the foundation for voluntaryist ethics. It blew my mind to read this sentiment in a benign 1966 novel from the same author as Starship Troopers. It makes me wonder if Heinlein new of Murray Rothbard.

All in all, The Moon is a Harsh Mistress should be on your essential libertarian reading list. It is filled with wit and awesome sci-fi action. In fact, I would put it ahead of any works by Ayn Rand. But, that is just me. More on that next week, when I will tackle Ayn Rand’s influence on RUSH–the greatest progressive rock band of all time.

A closing note on the American Revolution: a significant thrust of the movement was motivated upon a conspiracy theory that the ruling elite in the Colonies were working with the British aristocracy to deny colonists the same rights that were afforded to free Englishmen. The belief in this conspiracy theory planted seeds of liberty in the minds of men across the colonies.

Thanks for stopping by for another installment of Thoughtcrime Thursdays if you want to pick up a copy of The Moon is a Harsh Mistress, please do so through my Amazon Associates links below. Help out a poor law student at no additional cost to you!

If you haven’t already, follow me on Steemit which is pretty much the blockchain future of social media! https://steemit.com/@libertyweekly
Have a great rest of your week.

 

The End of Dow 20,000?! A Boon for Gold and Cryptocurrencies?

Since President Trump’s inauguration, the markets have seen a massive glut of speculation, especially in regards to the Dow Jones Industrial Average, which rose to above 20,000 this January for the first time in world history.

For perspective, in 1994, before the Dot-com Bubble (when the era of bubble finance began in earnest), the Dow index was priced below 4,000. Since then, central bank policy has become more and more radical. While real growth has taken place since 1994, reckless monetary policy has encouraged asset price inflation.

As a candidate, Donald Trump lambasted the stock market as “one big fat, ugly bubble.” Since then, Trump has made an about-face and embraced the bubble, tweeting his approval on Jan. 25, 2017:

By embracing and not condemning it, the bubble is now Trump’s. He owns it.

The bull market began in earnest on the heels of Trump’s victory, when the markets decided that his “free market” reforms and spending stimulus would be a boon for the economy. But, the bubble is not Trump’s bubble. That is to say, he is not responsible for it. That honor belongs to Ben Bernake and Janet Yellen.

Even though he didn’t cause the bubble, Trump will not create any real grown without major pain. Economist Peter Schiff states that the the economy is like a heroin addict. It needs monetary stimulus to survive. Without it, the bubble will deflate, and we will all be in for rough times.

Because of artificially low interest rates, Americans have absolutely no savings. In order to wipe clear out the poor investments made by artificial interest rates, those investments need to be allowed to fail, interest rates need to be raised, and Americans need to start saving again so they can invest in business measures based on interest rates set by the free market and not the Federal Reserve. This is basic Austrian business cycle theory.

Just like a real heroin addict, the economy needs to kick the habit in order to make any real, meaningful recovery. If Yellen continues shooting the economy up with this “monetary heroin” (as Mr. Schiff calls it) we will eventually overdose, and hyper-inflate the dollar in a Wiemar Republic-style meltdown.

Despite that historical parallel, we are essentially in uncharted economic territory. Interest rates have been at, or near zero for longer than ever before in financial history. In many facets, our “recovery” from the 2008 financial collapse has been worse than the accompanying recession.

Despite the rosy picture painted by the mainstream media, Americans have been hurting, and they’ve been hurting bad. According to Zerohedge and USA Today, “7 in 10 Americans have less than 1,000 dollars in savings.” Throughout the “recovery,” cracks like these have shown through the stock market’s buying euphoria.

This week, the Dow has made its biggest losses since the post-election rally, falling a .9% total. Earlier today, Zerohedge dropped an article whose title speaks for itself: “Cudmore (Bloomberg) Calls it: The Correction Has Started.” 

Could this really be the correction that we’ve been waiting for? Could this decline signal the end of the markets’ irrational buying euphoria? Right now, that markets are built on hopes that Trump’s reforms will bring prosperity.

I’m sorry to say that this will not happen. When the markets realize that, or the Fed finally raises interest rates more than just .25%, hold onto your butts.

If the markets tank, what will that mean for gold, emerging markets, and other cryptocurrencies like Bitcoin, Steem, and Ethereum?

——————————————————————————-

Thanks for reading today’s content at Liberty Weekly!

Stop back in tomorrow for the third installment of Thoughtcrime Thursdays, which I promised would be about The Moon Is a Harsh Mistress, but in light of Wikileak’s Vault 7 release, I might talk about how Orwell’s 1984 is LITERALLY becoming our reality.

If you haven’t yet, you really need to check out Steemit.com! My mind has repeatedly been blown open with this platform’s potential. I have also decided to open an account on www.minds.com, which is another encrypted social media platform where you can openly talk about taboo political topics without being censored.

I’d implore you to follow me on Steemit at https://steemit.com/@libertyweekly. You can also find me on Minds.com at https://www.minds.com/libertyweekly.

Until tomorrow!

 

Arizona Bill Seeks to Make Gold and Silver Legal Tender

On Wednesday, the Arizona Senate Finance and Rules Committees will take a look at House Bill 2014 (HB 2014), a piece of legislation that will officially define gold, silver, and other precious metals as legal tender. Under the bill, transactions made in precious metals will be exempted from capital gains taxes. This bill could help to effectively end the dollar’s monopoly as legal tender in Arizona.
In 2011, Utah became the first state in over 80 years to create such legislation by passing the Utah Legal Tender Act, which enjoys its own–very scant–Wikipedia article. In furtherance of this policy, Utah Rep. Ken Ivory (R-West Jordan) introduced Utah House Bill 224 (HB 224) on January 27, 2017.
 
Specifically, HB224 would authorize the investment of public funds in specie legal tender held in a commercial specie repository. Under existing code, ‘specie legal tender’ means gold or silver coin and bullion. ‘Commercial specie repository’ means an institution that holds or receives deposits of specie legal tender that is located within the state. Practically speaking, passage would give the state the option to hold funds in gold and silver instead of Federal Reserve notes.
Why is this such a big deal? Because legalizing the use of gold, silver, and other precious metals evens the playing field for alternative forms of money to directly compete with the dollar–thus ending its legal monopoly on money. By pegging the dollar to precious metals, it effectively limits government’s ability to inflate the currency.
This Wednesday, Ron Paul will be in Arizona to support HB 2014. The former congressman and anti-Fed icon will speak to the Arizona Senate Finance Committee at 9:00 a.m. He will follow his testimony up with an anti-Fed rally at noon at the Arizona state capitol in Phoenix.
If HB 2014 passes, residents of Arizona will be able to enjoy a certain level of protection if the value of the dollar were to collapse. Upon its passage, it will be interesting to see if other states begin to follow suit as the economy continues to grind to a halt.
 
If you haven’t read yesterday’s article about Steemit, check it out here. I’ve been having several great experiences on the site. The community is full of liberty-minded people. 
If you haven’t already, follow me on Steemit at https://steemit.com/@libertyweekly. I add back!
Sources: 

Steemit–The Social Media Platform that Pays You

I have a confession to make–I am a complete newbie when it comes to cryptocurrencies.  What? A libertarian that does doesn’t use bitcoin!?  By now, readers might have gleaned that I’m an old-school gold bug (more on that later).

But, as of yesterday, I am a crypto-virgin no longer! Liberty Weekly has boldly embarked upon a great crusade into the cryptoverse with Steemit!

Steemit is a social media platform (like reddit) that is powered by Steem, a blockchain cryptocurrency like Bitcoin. There are three different forms that digital Steem takes within Steemit: Liquid Steem, Steem Power, and Steem Dollars.

By submitting and curating content, you earn  different kinds of Steem: Steem Power and Liquid Steem. Adding or subtracting from your Steem Power is called “Powering Up” and “Powering Down,” through this process, one can buy or sell their amount of influence in Steem.

Liquid Steem is an intermediary phase between Steem Power and Steem Dollars. It is the most liquid form of currency on Steemit.

Steem Power measures the amount of influence that any given user can wield on Steemit. The more Steem Power you have, the more influence you have in curating content on the site (and the more Steem you earn for doing so).

Steem Dollars are the actual blockchain, “market powered token” that is pegged to the US Dollar.

From what I understand, Liquid Steem can be sold on an internal market, or bought directly with bitcoins. Steem’s creators are currently working on a means for Steem to interact directly with fiat currencies. Since there is a rather steep learning curve to Steemit, I am still trying to figure out how this part works.

Steem and Steemit have been around for about a year now. Although it has seen growth and success, current challenges facing Steemit have been summed up in an article and comments made this morning titled: “What is Driving the Price of Steemit Downward? Answer Questions, EARN Steem!!!”

In the comments, Steemit user @lpfaust reasons:

Currently, the only real reason to purchase STEEM would be to power up STEEM Power (and by extension vote strength) in Steemit. The market has consistently been repricing the value of that utility lower with every passing day, and the velocity of STEEM as a currency is grinding to a halt because liquid STEEM is not being soaked up faster than it is getting dumped out of STEEM Power.

My understanding is that currently, Steemit has plateaued at about 120,000 users. In order to be successful, Steemit needs to start absorbing the user base of other platforms like Twitter and Facebook. It also needs to streamline the Steem investment process by allowing users to purchase Steem directly with fiat and not just Bitcoin. Currently, Steem is not a great monetary investment, but is interesting and exciting enough for low-level participation just to see where it goes.

When it comes to the whole blockchain vs gold debate, I do think that blockchain technology is awesome, and that cryptocurrencies have their place. But, to me, gold’s 8,000 year track record proves that it is currently a better means of preserving wealth. Ideally, gold and cryptocurrencies would be allowed to compete on the free market.

That being said, I would definitely urge anyone and everyone to check this out. Since Steemit is a decentralized block-chain social media site, the community has so far been very friendly and receptive to ancaps, voluntaryists, and libertarians. Some of the most active topics (think subreddits) are liberty related.

In fact, last night I republished my June 28, 2016 article “Starship Troopers” and Conditioned Killing on Steemit. As of this posting, my article has earned a total of $24.11 in Steem.

While there is a steep learning curve involved with Steemit, the concept is incredibly exciting. Could you imagine if a site like Reddit or Facebook adhered to the concept presented by Steemit?

Hopefully decentralized blockchain platforms are the future of social media. In the meantime, I suppose we will see.

For now, follow Liberty Weekly on Steemit!

Steemit FAQ; More Steemit FAQ; Steemit Beginner’s Guide

 

David Stockman: a “Fiscal Bloodbath” to Hit this Summer

Former Reagan White House Budget Director David Stockman is predicting a “fiscal bloodbath” to be unleashed upon the United States starting March 15th.

According to Stockman, March 15th, 2017 is when the debt ceiling holiday will freeze at $20 trillion. The expert reasons that, with such strong opposition to Donald Trump, there is no political energy in Washington to raise the debt ceiling any higher. Stockman has been ringing warning bells in several recent interviews.

After the debt ceiling freezes, the government will have to rely on Treasury reserves to fund its operation. According to Stockman, the Treasury currently holds about $200 billion in cash. Since the government spends $75 billion a month, our treasury reserves will run out over the summer.

Stockman claims that the Federal Reserve will have to raise interest rates on March 15th. There will be no more stimulus. Without any stimulus, the mountain of hope upon which the markets are perched will crumble into dust.

After the markets collapse and the Treasury runs out of money, Stockman says that Trump will receive the authority to allocate spending. This will set the stage for an immense political showdown that Stockman describes as a political “maelstrom.”

Personally, I don’t see the Federal Reserve just allowing this to happen. While David Stockman insists that the Fed will raise rates in March, it was unclear how much he thinks they will be raised. Currently, March rate hike odds are locked in at 90% for another small rate hike of 25 basis points.

While the FOMC could raise rates in March, it is too little, too late. Interest rates have been at or near zero for the past 100 months. If Congress is unable to raise the debt ceiling, I would predict that Yellen will step in with QE4. In fact, Deutsche Bank analysts have reported that the Fed has primed $1 trillion dollars for QE4 to be used during the next recession.

Additionally, I do not think Congress would fail to raise the debt ceiling. While establishment opposition to Trump is deep-seated, I don’t see the elites sinking the whole ship unless it is part of their plan. If sinking the ship is part of the grand plan, I think they would jack rates up substantially and let the asset bubble collapse once their investments have been protected.

While I am an amateur “Fed watcher,” and no financial expert, I remain skeptical of David Stockman’s predicted scenario. Since Janet Yellen just finished giving a speech on March’s expected rate hike, I assume that Peter Schiff will be coming out with a podcast episode later on this afternoon, which I will link here.

If you would like to watch David Stockman’s dire prediction, you may find his interview with USAwatchdog.com below:

David Stockman has most recently released a book: Trumped! A Nation on the Brink of Ruin…and How to Bring It Back. You can pick up a copy from my Amazon Affiliate link below.

 

Stockman also runs http://davidstockmanscontracorner.com/–a subscription blog which offers some free content.

That just about does it for today’s content. Have yourselves a great weekend. If Mr. Schiff releases a podcast later today, I will re-issue this article with a recap.

Thanks for stopping by Liberty Weekly. We’ll see you next time.

 

 

 

Thoughtcrime Thursdays: “We” by Yevgeny Zamyatin

Welcome to the second edition of Thoughtcrime Thursdays, the weekly column where we explore the world of fictional dystopia as a critique on our current society! As promised last week, we will be taking a look at the 1921 Russian dystopian novel We by Yevgeny Zamyatin.

First translated to English in 1924, We chronicles life in the One State, a communist regime which has ruled the world for the last thousand years. In order to spread its influence across the galaxy, the One State has commissioned the construction of a massive rocket, known as the Integral.

In order to celebrate the completion of the Integral, each citizen has been directed to create “treatises, epics, manifestos, odes, or any other composition addressing the beauty and majesty of the One State.” Upon the rocket’s  completion, the works are to be loaded onto the Integral and used to propagandize any aliens who may yet be living in the “savage state of freedom.” The text of the story itself is one such work, the journal of D-503, a space engineer tasked with constructing the Integral.

Like every other citizen of the One StateD-503 lives in a sprawling panoptic city made entirely of glass, which doesn’t allow for privacy. Every second of every day is governed by mathematical formulas, by which citizens march in step and perform their daily duties. Citizens do not live in familial units and are not allowed to refuse sexual relations with any other citizen. If a citizen desires another, they may make a formal request to visit them for sexual encounters.

My copy of the book, translated by Natasha Randall contains absolutely stunning prose, which caught my attention by the first two pages:

As I write this: I feel my cheeks burn. I suppose this resembles what a woman experiences when she first hears a new pulse within her–the pulse of a tiny, unseeing, mini-being. This text is me; and simultaneously not me. And it will feed for many months on my sap, my blood, and then, in anguish, it will be ripped from my self and placed at the foot of the One State.

But I am ready and willing, just as every one–or almost every one of us. I am ready.

Described by Randall as Zamyatin’s critique on “Russian enthusiasms which[] were entering a sort of singular Bolshevik utopian rigor mortis . . .  By 1923 . . . [t]he ‘greens’ (peasants), the ‘blacks’ (anarchists), and the Whites were being reduced to ashes while the only remaining ideology was forging the idea that man could be made mechanical.” Zamyatin plays with these ideas by taking them to literal absurdities in the book.

While reading the We, I was reminded of Peter Joseph and the Zeitgeist Movement, a movement which is basically “communism with computers.” Peter Joseph proposes that capitalism cannot work because corporations create scarcity in order to drive up profits. In order to deal with the socialist calculation problem asserted by Mises, Joseph proposes that money be abolished and resources be distributed by a cabal of super computers.

The Zeitgeist Movement is, of course, ridiculous and would be worthy of a We-style caricature. Without a profit motive, a supercomputer would only get junk data, thus producing junk data. Additionally, a completely centralized power structure manifested in a single computer network would be easily corrupted by whichever people controlled the computer. Additionally, post-scarcity is an economic impossibility.

The novella’s narrative style adds tremendously to the reading experience of what is a rather unique dystopian critique of mechanistic communism. Without being able to read the novella in its original Russian, Randall’s translation is probably the closest an English speaker can get to the original experience.  All in all,  Natasha Randall’s translation of We is a feast for the literary palate.

D-503’s life changes forever when he meets a strange woman who does not always operate by the mechanics of the One State. Will the Integral survive this encounter? Will the One State remain? Find out by grabbing Randall’s translation through my Amazon Affiliate link below:

That’s it for this week’s installment of Thoughtcrime Thursdays, thanks for stopping by Liberty Weekly! Join us next week for a review of Heinlein’s The Moon is A Harsh Mistress. 

This article was re-published via Steemit at https://steemit.com/life/@libertyweekly/book-review-we-by-yevgeny-zamyatin

Citation: Zamyatin, Yevgeny Ivanovich, and Natasha Randall. We. London: Vintage, 2016. Print.

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