By Liberty Report Staff
It's well known that the United Kingdom is the number one surveillance state in the West. They recently passed a bill that was labelled as "the most sweeping surveillance powers in the western world." Virtually everything is monitored in the U.K.
Yet, despite this extraordinary surveillance, look at the tragedy that occurred in Manchester:
1) The UK police and intelligence services both knew about the suicide bomber.
2) Family members in the UK warned officials that he was dangerous.
3) He traveled to both Libya and Syria. These trips had to have been known to intelligence services.
4) The suicide bomber flew a terrorist flag from the roof of his house.
All individuals in the UK gave up their liberty for security, and as Ben Franklin warned, they ended up with neither.
Are we expected to believe that the number one surveillance state does not have enough surveillance powers? Or are we merely watching the same mistakes being repeated over and over again, while expecting a different result?
Foreign policy must be addressed and changed. Pre-emptive invasions and wars generate hatred and blowback. The answer is not give more power over to the government over our lives and privacy.
An electronic prison state, where every move is watched an monitored is not the solution. The Manchester tragedy just proves that point.
It's time to change foreign policy!
Ron Paul has said time and again that we should NEVER give up our liberty for the promise of safety from the government.
We are always less safe when we give up our liberties.
The Manchester bomber greatly benefitted from the chaos and Islamist extremism that resulted from the US/UK "liberation" of Libya and destabilization of Syria using proxy Islamist forces. He travelled to both countries and reportedly even trained in Syria. Blowback?
By Liberty Report Staff
Yesterday, President Trump held a telephone conversation with the president of the Philippines, Rodrigo Duterte.
Duterte’s government has been gunning down drug suspects in the streets, by the thousands.
No arrests. No trials.
While affairs in the Philippines are not the business of the U.S. federal government, it is nevertheless very degrading to us Americans to find out that our President actually heaps praise on such ruthless brutality.
According to a transcript of the call, Trump said that Duterte was doing:
“unbelievable job on the drug problem.”
Duterte’s policy, according to his own words, is as follows:
"More people will be killed, plenty will be killed until the last pusher is out of the streets. Until the (last) drug manufacturer is killed, we will continue and I will continue,"
Oh, and this one:
"Hitler massacred three million Jews ... there's three million drug addicts. There are. I'd be happy to slaughter them"
Actually, Hitler massacred six million Jews. But let’s not give Duterte any more ideas.
The war on drugs is a violent and direct assault on freedom and individual liberty.
Trump should heed the words of Ron Paul instead:
The use of government force to stop adults from putting certain substances into their bodies - whether marijuana, saturated fats, or raw milk - violates the nonaggression principle that is the bedrock of a free society. Therefore, all those who care about protecting individual liberty and limiting government power should support ending the drug war. Those with moral objections to drug use should realize that education and persuasion, carried out through voluntary institutions like churches and schools, is a more moral and effective way to discourage drug use than relying on government force.
By Daniel McAdams
Here's what the media and politicians don't want you to know about the Manchester, UK, suicide attack: Salman Abedi, the 22 year old who killed nearly two dozen concert-goers in Manchester, UK, was the product of the US and UK overthrow of Gaddafi in Libya and "regime change" policy in Syria. He was a radicalized Libyan whose family fled Gaddafi's secular Libya, and later he trained to be an armed "rebel" in Syria, fighting for the US and UK "regime change" policy toward the secular Assad government.
The suicide attacker was the direct product of US and UK interventions in the greater Middle East.
According to the London Telegraph, Abedi, a son of Libyan immigrants living in a radicalized Muslim neighborhood in Manchester had returned to Libya several times after the overthrow of Muamar Gaddafi, most recently just weeks ago. After the US/UK and allied "liberation" of Libya, all manner of previously outlawed and fiercely suppressed radical jihadist groups suddenly found they had free rein to operate in Libya. This is the Libya that Abedi returned to and where he likely prepared for his suicide attack on pop concert attendees. Before the US-led attack on Libya in 2011, there was no al-Qaeda, ISIS, or any other related terrorist organization operating (at least with impunity) on Libyan soil.
Gaddafi himself warned Europe in January 2011 that if they overthrew his government the result would be radical Islamist attacks on Europe, but European governments paid no heed to the warnings. Post-Gaddafi Libya became an incubator of Islamist terrorists and terrorism, including prime recruiting ground for extremists to fight jihad in Syria against the also-secular Bashar Assad.
In Salman Abedi we have the convergence of both these disastrous US/UK and allied interventions, however: it turns out that not only did Abedi make trips to Libya to radicalize and train for terror, but he also travelled to Syria to become one of the "Syria rebels" fighting on the same side as the US and UK to overthrow the Assad government. Was he perhaps even trained in a CIA program? We don't know, but it certainly is possible.
While the mainstream media and opportunistic politicians will argue that the only solution is more western intervention in the Middle East, the plain truth is that at least partial responsibility for this attack lies at the feet of those who pushed and pursued western intervention in Libya and Syria.
There would have been no jihadist training camps in Libya had Gaddafi not been overthrown by the US/UK and allies. There would have been no explosion of ISIS or al-Qaeda in Syria had it not been for the US/UK and allied policy of "regime change" in that country.
When thinking about Abedi's guilt for this heinous act of murder, do not forget those interventionists who lit the fuse that started this conflagration. The guilt rests squarely on their shoulders as well.
This article was originally published at The Ron Paul Institute for Peace & Prosperity.
By Liberty Report Staff
Undermining the Federal Reserve received a major boost yesterday. Arizona Governor Doug Ducey signed into law a bill that eliminates capital gains taxes on gold and silver, thus allowing Arizona residents to use precious metals as currency instead of Federal Reserve notes.
Currency competition against the monopolist Fed is starting to unfold. Let's hope that other states follow in Arizona's heroic footsteps. There's no reason to wait for another severe financial crisis to act.
Read Ron Paul's statement via The Campaign For Liberty below:
Campaign for Liberty Chairman Ron Paul and Campaign for Liberty President Norman Singleton issued the following statements regarding the Arizona Legislature's passage -- and Arizona Governor Doug Ducey's signing -- of HB 2014.
By Liberty Report Staff
George Washington said that "Government is not reason, it is not eloquence — it is force”.
Basic questions: What types of people do you think are attracted to such an institution? Those who believe in "live and let live"? Or those who have a lust to dominate others?
It's pretty self-evident.
The great economist F.A. Hayek once wrote an essay on why the worst rise to the top in government. You can read it here.
But for a more modern treatment of the subject, we can look to Jeff Thomas, who gives us the following thoughts:
In 1979, Saddam Hussein, having acceded to the presidency of Iraq, held a meeting of the Ba’ath party leadership. With hundreds of senior party delegates in the audience, he announced that some had been identified as being disloyal. One after the other, he pointed them out and, as each was named, was led off for execution. Those still in the room became more nervous with every removal, knowing that any one of them could be taken away. Did they condemn their leader? No, they began spontaneously standing up to praise the removals and to praise Saddam for the purge. At the end of the meeting, Saddam invited those who were most loyal to volunteer to become the executioners, thereby ensuring that they share the guilt of the purge.
In the ensuing years, stories were sometimes told of Saddam asking his top people who amongst them should become his successor. It became apparent that, if a name was put forward as someone who was favoured to be the next leader, he was certain to be executed. Thus he made it clear that there would be no pretenders to the throne.
Yesterday's tragedy at a Manchester, UK pop concert reminds us again that terrorism is alive and well. ISIS claimed responsibility and governments will respond. But will their response make future attacks more or less likely? Looking at the larger war in today's Liberty Report.
By Liberty Report Staff
Presidential budgets are pure hocus-pocus.
Government has teams of "economists" who, instead of pointing out that economic laws cannot be violated, concoct formulas that seek to justify government expansion.
That's really the only thing that bureaucrats care about ... expansion. The "economists" come up with the justifications, and thus get to keep their plush jobs of exonerating the state.
Because estimates don't hold the same importance that they do in the private sector, you can always count on government to underestimate expenses and overestimate tax revenues.
The politically-connected get their share of the loot, and the mainstream media gets to scream and shout about "cuts" that aren't really cuts at all.
Pull up a chart of government spending and debt. You'll see that the direction goes in one direction only --- UP!
Democrats, Republicans, people like Trump who call themselves "outsiders" --- UP it continues to go!
In the Washington D.C. fantasyland, a cut in the rate of increase from the previous year is considered an actual cut. Think about that...
Whenever government spends money, it crowds out productive spending (or saving) that would have occurred if taxpayers were able to keep their earnings. If individuals spent their own money, we'd see products, services, and jobs that they actually want would be created. That would be productive.
Government spending, on the other hand, is arbitrary, politically-motivated and non-productive.
Donald Trump, the supposed "businessman president," is proposing a budget that spends more next year than it does this year!
Trump took over a bankrupt government, and he's increasing its spending. What kind of business sense is that?
No doubt, his "economists" said that this was a good idea.
From a perspective of liberty, government should not perpetually expand, but should be cut....for real! That means someone needs to actually cut the size and scope of government.
Government doesn't even balance the budget, let alone consider cutting.
So where do you cut if you're actually interested in living in a land of the free?
As Murray Rothbard so eloquently answered such a question: "Anywhere and everywhere!"
President Trump was in Saudi Arabia over the weekend, where he signed the largest US arms sale ever, praised the country's history and record, and declared war on Iran, Syria...and possibly Russia. Some first foreign trip...
By Ron Paul
Last week Attorney General Jeff Sessions ordered federal prosecutors in drug cases to seek the maximum penalty authorized by federal mandatory minimum sentencing laws. Sessions’ order represents a setback to the progress made toward restoring compassion and common sense to the sentencing process over the past few years. Sessions’ action also guarantees that many nonviolent drug law offenders will continue spending more time in prison than murderers.
Sessions’ support for mandatory minimums is no surprise, as he has a history of fanatical devotion to the drug war. Sessions’ pro-drug war stance is at odds with the reality of the drug war’s failure. Over forty years after President Nixon declared war on drugs, the government cannot even keep drugs out of prisons!
As was the case with alcohol prohibition, the drug war has empowered criminal gangs and even terrorists to take advantage of the opportunity presented by prohibition to profit by meeting the continued demand for drugs. Drug prohibition enables these criminal enterprises to make profits far above the potential profits if drugs where legalized. Ironically, the so-called “law-and-order” politicians who support the drug war are helping enrich the very criminals they claim to oppose!
The war on drugs also makes street drugs more lethal by incentivizing the creation of more potent and, thus, more dangerous drugs. Of course, even as Sessions himself admits, the war on drugs also leads to increased violence, as drug dealers cannot go to the courts to settle disputes among themselves or with their customers.
Before 9/11, the war on drugs was the go-to excuse used to justify new infringements on liberty. For example, laws limiting our ability to withdraw, or even carry, large sums of cash and laws authorizing civil asset forfeiture were justified by the need to crack down on drug dealers and users. The war on drugs is also the root cause of the criminal justice system’s disparate treatment of minorities and the militarization of local police.
The war on drugs is a war on the Constitution as well. The Constitution does not give the federal government authority to regulate, much less ban, drugs. People who doubt this should ask themselves why it was necessary to amend the Constitution to allow the federal government to criminalize drinking alcohol but not necessary to amend the Constitution to criminalize drug use.
Today, a majority of states have legalized medical marijuana, and a growing number are legalizing recreational marijuana use. Enforcement of federal laws outlawing marijuana in those states is the type of federal interference with state laws that conservatives usually oppose. Hopefully, in this area the Trump administration will exercise restraint and respect state marijuana laws.
Sessions’ announcement was not the only pro-drug war announcement made by the administration this week. President Trump himself, in a meeting with the president of Columbia, promised to continue US intervention in South and Central America to eliminate drug cartels. President Trump, like his attorney general, seems to not understand that the rise of foreign drug cartels, like the rise of domestic drug gangs, is a consequence of US drug policy.
The use of government force to stop adults from putting certain substances into their bodies — whether marijuana, saturated fats, or raw milk — violates the nonaggression principle that is the bedrock of a free society. Therefore, all those who care about protecting individual liberty and limiting government power should support ending the drug war. Those with moral objections to drug use should realize that education and persuasion, carried out through voluntary institutions like churches and schools, is a more moral and effective way to discourage drug use than relying on government force.