I discovered The Shrugging Out Podcast a few months ago. I did not quite know what to make of it, I admit, until I went through and download several of the earlier episodes and listened to them in chronological order.
The site’s author / Podcaster Peter Farron (sp?) is extremely intelligent, sane, analytical and well thought out: The podcasts are obviously well-prepared in advance and – notwithstanding the intro music – an aesthetic pleasure to listen to.
The content of the shows centers on issues relating to self-sufficiency with a philosophical unpinning in libertarianism, and often draws premises from Ayn Rand’s writings. In his shows, however, Farron does not shy away from the less ethereal: He usually address current news issues, his own process of awakening and what he is doing about it in his dynamic transformation from ‘typical’ patriotic conservative to neo-patriotic libertarian survivalist (my half-assed and inadequate label, not his).
All in all, well worth the time and well worth spreading around to those with interests in libertarianism, survivalism and prepping, Ayn rand, current events, politics and the like.
I am through about 60 of his podcasts now, and will post a permalink to the blogroll. GE.
… Louis: People say money makes the world go around, and they are right. Or as I tell my students, there are two basic ways to motivate and coordinate human behavior on a large scale: coercion and persuasion. Government is the human institution based on coercion. The market is the one based on persuasion. Individuals can sometimes persuade others to do things for love, charity, or other reasons, but to coordinate voluntary cooperation society-wide, you need the price system of a profit-driven market economy.
Doug Casey: And that’s why it doesn’t matter how smart or well-intended politicians may be. Political solutions are always detrimental to society over the long run, because they are based on coercion. If governments lacked the power to compel obedience, they would cease to be governments. No matter how liberal, there’s always a point at which it comes down to force – especially if anyone tries to opt out and live by their own rules.
Even if people try that in the most peaceful and harmonious way with regard to their neighbors, the state cannot allow separatists to secede. The moment the state grants that right, every different religious, political, social, or even artistic group might move to form its own enclave, and the state disintegrates. That’s wonderful – for everybody but the parasites who rely on the state (which is why secession movements always become violent).
I’m actually mystified at why most people not only just tolerate the state but seem to love it. They’re enthusiastic about it. Sometimes that makes me pessimistic about the future…
via Doug Casey on the Morality of Money :: The Market Oracle
Many reasons have been given for the fall of the Roman Empire—greed and decadence, Christianity or the want of it, a decline in industriousness, lack of new territory to plunder, internal wars and over-reliance on the military and so forth. These are “civic virtue” arguments. More objectively, Tainter says the total cost of maintaining the empire exceeded the total return from the empire. The notion appears to confuse cause and effect if you squint and look at it just so. An automobile will eventually cost more in maintenance than the worth of its service justifies, but the deterioration itself isn’t due to the cost of maintenance. An asset has a trajectory apart from our mitigations of its effects. Continue reading