I created the minimalist to meet my frequent traveling on airlines, both CONUS and OCONUS as a backup to the main components inside my bag. If, for whatever reason, I had to modularize my essentials into a larger bag, this would serve as a minimalist version of that. Since there are stringent airline restrictions nowadays, I’ve researched and tested what items can fly and assembled them into a small kit (left) that fits inside my Every Day Carry (EDC) Bag. The three main components making up The Minimalist, is the main compartment, an imitation Maxpedition Mini Pocket Organizer I picked up overseas, a spray-painted black Altoids tin, and a black Witz ID holder waterproof case. Closed, the Minimalist is packed tight as a drum, but stows nicely within my EDC. Opened, the Mini Pocket Organizer has tons of space to retain easily accessible items, as well as pockets for stowing items deep within. The layout (below) shows the basic components within the Minimalist. The David sling is a non-descript way of getting a small-game capability aboard an airline carry-on. I’ve used this since I was a boy and it requires skill to hit a rabbit or squirrel at 20 paces away. Along with snare line, these two methods will still be challenging, but supplemental to the mini-fishing kit inside the Altoids tin. I use the ID holder for small incidentals that can make living easier, instead of just surviving. Some meals require salt, pepper, herbs, or spices. There are Band-Aids, 2X2 Gauze pads, Alcohol prep pads, wet...

Publisher’s Note: Please keep in mind that in the broader sense that every war in history is about slavery; about who will own you and your resources. I have no dog in the fight in the War of Northern Aggression, both sides were government supremacists. My friend Joe Jarvis recently published a book I just read called Anarchy in New England. I posted a review at Amazon here. I highly recommend it. –BB
"A government that can at pleasure accuse, shoot, and hang men, as traitors, for the one general offence of refusing to surrender themselves and their property unreservedly to its arbitrary will, can practice any and all special and particular oppressions it pleases. The result -- and a natural one -- has been that we have had governments, State and national, devoted to nearly every grade and species of crime that governments have ever practised upon their victims; and these crimes have culminated in a war that has cost a million of lives; a war carried on, upon one side, for chattel slavery, and on the other for political slavery; upon neither for liberty, justice, or truth. And these crimes have been committed, and this war waged, by men, and the descendants of men, who, less than a hundred years ago, said that all men were equal, and could owe neither service to individuals, nor allegiance to governments, except with their own consent" - Lysander Spooner
Dylann Roof murders nine black folks in cold blood in their house of worship in South Carolina; an awful event that deserves the fiercest condemnation. If one of the congregants had been armed, fewer people would have been harmed. It just so happens that the pastor is a former government “representative” who opposed concealed carry. An enormously tragic event but the availability of guns didn’t cause the killings; an individual mindset intent on evil deeds did so. Inevitably, the usual political suspects dance on the graves of the barely cold corpses to call on the restrictions of weapons and in this case, Confederate regalia. Roof is seen in several photos wearing a jacket with both a Rhodesian flag and the flag of apartheid South Africa. By extension, he is a supporter of the Confederacy. In a span of weeks, this single private psychopath’s murderous rampage somehow led the governor and political apparatchiks in South Carolina to lower the Confederate flag that was flying over the capitol and retire it. There are many interesting trends to tease out of this reaction. We even hear rumors of large chains like Amazon and Wal-Mart being asked to remove the sale of any Confederate items from their shelves both virtual and brick and mortar. Roof’s actions are reprehensible and the government’s reaction is expected as they tend to fill their pants when non-badged gunmen mow down innocents like the state is wont to do against the MOVE headquarters in Philly, Ruby Ridge, Waco or the recent incident where the cops ran over several children during a high-speed chase. After every one of these incidents, no one clamored to remove the flag all of these miscreants flew under, Old Glory Like the currency in the US, the Federal government hates competition and turns an angry visage toward any killing that is not government approved and authorized. So suspend your history and logic and take a gander at the reaction of the politicos after the massacre at the church. The shooter is somehow connected to Confederate sympathies because he flies the flag that is flown by millions in the US and planet-wide. I have seen rebel flags of every variety flying in the Middle East. While in the Army when I commanded, I had a 3x5 Bonnie Blue proudly adorning the wall behind my desk despite the Army ban on Confederate regalia because I could depend on the historical ignorance of my colleagues that they would fail to recognize it. I am married to a woman who is a blood relative of Thomas “Stonewall” Jackson. I have done a fair amount of reading and while I am not a fan of what the Confederacy became over time during the Second American Revolution, I have every confidence they did the right thing in forcing a separation from Lincoln’s leviathan.
“You can chain me, you can torture me, you can even destroy this body, but you will never imprison my mind.” - Mahatma Gandhi “No conditions justify torture.” - Norman Finkelstein
Publisher's Note: Most of the monsters involved in the torture regime at the beginning of this new century have skirted justice and remain at large prospering and grasping at the levers of power as we speak. -BB America has formally endorsed torture since August 2002 and has practiced it as an extension of warfare at home and abroad for most of its history. Waterboarding originated in the Spanish=American War in the Philippines at the close of the 19th century when America was stretching its legs in its brutal colonization pogroms planet-wide after 1983. What is torture? Per the universally accepted definition of torture:
“For the purposes of this Convention, the term "torture" means any act by which severe pain or suffering, whether physical or mental, is intentionally inflicted on a person for such purposes as obtaining from him or a third person information or a confession, punishing him for an act he or a third person has committed or is suspected of having committed, or intimidating or coercing him or a third person, or for any reason based on discrimination of any kind, when such pain or suffering is inflicted by or at the instigation of or with the consent or acquiescence of a public official or other person acting in an official capacity. It does not include pain or suffering arising only from, inherent in or incidental to lawful sanctions.”
This “tortured” definition is typical of what a bureaucrat would come up with to describe the impossible philosophical calculus of the state that immoral means will yield moral ends. One will notice that the last sentence gives the official torture regime pardon planet-wide much like the state excuses its actions for terrorism. Terrorism is the employment of politically motivated violence against innocents and non-combatants. A reflective person would instantly apprehend that this is the cornerstone of the state’s power and that torture is merely a subset in the toolset that is the government maintenance effort for power and expansion thereof. The existence of private torture is certainly a reality. I in no way suggest that private malcontents and twisted psychopaths don’t ply their trade globally. There are ample lurid testimonials to this in the literature and the news splashed across the screens humans habitually stare at in the absence of reflection and cognition. But they hold no candle to the government’s ability to break human beings and stack up corpses like cordwood. Like the advocacy of abolitionism, the moral and consequential efficacy of torture is undisputed among those who have a virtuous compass. It doesn’t work but it does always transform the torturer and tortured into one twisted artifact of inhumanity. Per the efficacy of torture in divining accurate intelligence, Umberto Eco The Name of the Rose makes a succinct and powerful case:
“Under torture you are as if under the dominion of those grasses that produce visions. Everything you have heard told, everything you have read returns to your mind, as if you were being transported, not toward heaven, but toward hell. Under torture you say not only what the inquisitor wants, but also what you imagine might please him, because a bond (this, truly, diabolical) is established between you and him ... These things I know, Ubertino; I also have belonged to those groups of men who believe they can produce the truth with white-hot iron. Well, let me tell you, the white heat of truth comes from another flame.”
Like so many things the state does, it cannot help but be the warp and woof of everything it does everywhere. Everything the empire does abroad, it will do at home. The emerging evidence of a police state in all its ugliness in America is no accident. It’s simply a natural outgrowth of a barbarous and formerly sub rosa bundle of characteristics that have grown in the orchid hothouse of government expansion that is most American history. Politicians are merely violence brokers; nothing more and nothing less. The coin of the realm for the state is the threat and actual employment of violence. Either the lingering forms that would include torture or the sudden extinguishing of lives through minor and major pogroms outside of warfare. The US has a long and sordid history of employing official torture in the pursuit of its interests especially when on military expeditions as hundreds of thousands of corpses can attest to if they could speak of the unspeakable things done to them in the name of US dominion.
Publisher's Note:  Doug has graced the interwebs and my site with his poetic license and waxing eloquence as Mountain Top Patriot; I have urged him to start his own blog. He refuses. He did scribble this and I'm posting it here. Enjoy. -BB Liberty is about one thing: Self Determination, or to put it another way, people are the sovereign and it is we who decide what is good or not good for us. That is all there is to it. That is the nature of our sovereign power, It is what makes us sentient beings, and by default makes each of us the master of our individual destiny. If the state uses its force to deny any fraction of this sovereignty we are each born with, than why would you have elections and referendums, submit to extortion rackets like taxes and obeying any "law', but Gods primal fundamental laws of rightful Liberty you are bestowed with? What is the point really, unless you allow, permit, remember this is about choice, the state or any power but your sovereign power to determine what is good or not good for you? It is the most profound question of what came first, the chicken or the egg. What where you conceived with, liberty or slavery? What came first? Look at it from another logic. Abolition is the default state of being human. That I was created as a living Sovereign Entity. This state of life is Default by conception. Why is the creation of life so sacred if it where not the truth of us? Sound far fetched? Wait a second, give it a good think now. The implications are the greatest paradigm of our time. Here is my argument: Abolition is the absence of any power over my life that is not benign. Any application or imposition or intrusion in my affairs, use of force, coercion, extortion, threat, covert or overt, which limits my own choices, bars me from self determination in any fashion whatsoever, is artificial to my natural state of abolition. I was conceived and was born purely as pure can be in a natural state of abolition. This is primal. Any construct of control over me and my self determination comes after the fact. It is therefore by default also, artificial and inhibiting. An insipid construct of evil minds without moral compass. By this very definition, any power but my power which is employed to deny me my primal self determination is not legitimate. It is not even a right. It simply is the truth. That Truth is a beautiful thing indeed. So…is it so hard to believe, that abolition is not just possible, but it already exists? That it is the default state of existence? Think outside the box. Billions of people acquiesce to the power of the state, billions submit to the artifice of power over their self determination, every day, and they are enslaved by this power, ruled by this power, ruined by this power, inhibited in every facet of the spheres of their lives by this power, and they are maimed, suffer cruel unspeakable humiliations, indignity's, a universe of injustices, they are incarcerated, threatened with bodily harm if they refuse to comply, they are denied, they die, they are murdered by the millions exactly because they submitted in one way or another to this power. Is that a truth you can accept?
Publisher’s Note:  I took a stab at modifying the 1776 American Declaration of Independence to present standards of governance, moral malpractice and cowardice; I discovered that much would be left out on the cutting floor and severe alterations to verbiage would be necessary to keep the Homo Sovieticus Booboisie in America from filling their pants and gibbering in abject fear at the prospect of freedom with risks and costs not underwritten by their neighbors. I had to erase over half of it and wipe out any reference to any behavior absent government permission. So I had to move on to the more fitting document for human bondage and perpetual government, the Constitution. The Declaration of Independence continues to be a masterwork of brevity and directness in its promise to sever ties and formalize a divorce.  There is no sizable sector of America today that would even have the temerity to sign it much less live up to it. Well, maybe at an abolitionist meeting but I digress. So I scrapped that project and found a document more in keeping with the modern 21st century American mood. Now the Soviet Constitution is something that most Americans can cotton to with the slightest modification in verbiage.  I chose the latest of three variants from 1977.  I have included a link to the original text at the bottom.  All I changed were the descriptors and none of the prospective language. On another note, in a nation that has institutionalized theft and torture and turned it into rule and color of law, I figured the Supremes would get around to the codification of taxing inactivity, which is the secret sauce in the recent ruling.  On page 193 of the infamous  decision, Thomas says the most important observation in all the pages of painful and obtuse totalitarian apologia for ObamugabeCare: "As I have explained, the Court’s continued use of that test “has encouraged the Federal Government to persist in its view that the Commerce Clause has virtually no limits.” Morrison, supra, at 627. The Government’s unprecedented claim in this suit that it may regulate not only economic activity but also inactivity that substantially affects interstate commerce is a case in point." The latest Chief Justice Roberts Goebbels-gargling for the Offal Office to keep National Socialist healthcare afloat came out just a few weeks ago to make this 4th of July even more ridiculous if anyone still believes this is a free country. When Roberts isn’t teaching creative writing to the Executive Branch, he’s lording over the finer details of totalitarian architecture at the Supremes’ monster factory. In essence:
“In this instance, the context and structure of the act compel us to depart from what would otherwise be the most natural reading of the pertinent statutory phrase . . . Congress passed the Affordable Care Act to improve health insurance markets, not to destroy them. If at all possible, we must interpret the act in a way that is consistent with the former, and avoids the latter.”
You can’t make this up. Most of the ahistorical tax Helots automatically associate the 4th of July with the wretched Constitution anyway. Constitution Day is in September but why wait when the DI has been so famously and ingloriously betrayed in every aspect of its essence and message. The majority in that decision would applaud the Soviet Constitution not that the earlier American version was any shakes when it came to liberty. The Fourth of July is the same day in 1863 that the defeats at Vicksburg and Gettysburg snuffed out any hope of the South prevailing in its divorce proceedings during the Second American Revolution and the Lincolnian juggernaut would take the Constitution to its final stages of expanding and securing a place for the leviathan state in North America. Happy Dependence Day, comrades. -BB PREAMBLE to the 1977 Soviet Constitution slightly modified to American standards: The Great November Democratic Revolution, made by the workers and peasants of United States under the leadership of the US Government headed by its Presidents, overthrew capitalist and landowner rule, broke the fetters of oppression, established the dictatorship of the voter, and created the American state, a new type of state, the basic instrument for defending the gains of the revolution and for building government intervention and democracy. Humanity thereby began the epoch-making turn from capitalist to government intervention. After achieving victory in the elections and repulsing free market intervention, the American government carried through far-reaching social and economic transformations, and put an end once and for all to exploitation of man by man, antagonisms between classes, and strive between nationalities. The unification of the American Republics in the Union of American Democratic Republics multiplied the forces and opportunities of the peoples of the country in the building of government intervention. Social ownership of the means of production and genuine democracy for the working masses were established. For the first time in the history of mankind a democratic society was created. The strength of government intervention was vividly demonstrated by the immortal feat of the American people and their Armed Forces in achieving their historic victory in the Great Cold War. This victory consolidated the influence and international standing of the American Union and created new opportunities for growth of the forces of government intervention, national liberation, democracy, and peace throughout the world. Continuing their creative endeavors, the working people of the American Union have ensured rapid, all-round development of the country and steady improvement of the democratic system. They have consolidated the alliance of the working class, collective-farm peasantry, and people's intelligentsia, and friendship of the nations and nationalities of the US. Sociopolitical and ideological unity of American society, in which the middle class is the leading force, has been achieved. The aims of the dictatorship of the voter having been fulfilled, the American state has become a state of the whole people. The leading role of the US Government, the vanguard of all the people, has grown.
Publisher's Note:  Again, I'm pleased that John has provided yet another great narrative about the history of "state repellent" areas and regions in the USSA. This should serve as a reminder that state resistant regions like Zomia in SE Asia and other mountainous zones planet-wide can shuffle off the planetary impulse to govern every human transaction. If one wants to establish a redoubt, success will depend on interesting map lines. There is a rich history in the Appalachians of saying "nope" to any question that begins with "Should the government...?" John just did the wonderful account of MAJ Redmond. Our Southern Highlanders here. Providential that we would publish this as PorcFest is fired up in NH and the Orcs in Mordor pass more nonsense from their satraps in the Supremes.  -BB Mountain peoples have always had a knack for being free. Mountainous topography has historically acted as a talisman against over bearing authoritarianism. Rugged individualism in the Appalachian, Ozarks and Rocky Mountain chains in these united States is still rampant despite the usual suspects best efforts to squash it. Regions across the globe from Southeast Asia, to the Highlands of the Isles of Great Britain, to the Swiss Alps, demonstrate a similar allergy to despotism. Mountainous regions have long served resistance movements well from the Hindu Kush to Chechnya, the Sendero Illuminoso in Peru to everyone’s favorite counter-culture movie classic, Red Dawn set in the stereotypical Middle American small town at the foot of the Rockies. Buppert’s Law of Military Topography puts forth the idea that a people who live in a rifle culture in mountainous terrain, are rarely if ever, militarily defeated. Historically, there are very few examples where this is not the case. While I do not intend to analyze this theory on a world scale from a military perspective, I want to establish this as a baseline theory for study of general resistance to States in particular. The Irish Rebellion of 1916-1922, is unique in that it offers a sort of picture window analysis of a successful western European insurgency, where as most successful insurgencies involve peoples that are much different in ethnicity, religion and cultural values than what we have here in the Occupied States. Which is why the shining example of Appalachian Anti-Statism is a crucial looking glass to draw from. James C Scott in his writings on the stateless hill people of Southeast Asia has described that since the beginning, humans have sought out mountainous regions as retreats from the State. Whether it was evading conscription, slavery, taxation, rules, epidemics or wars. The retreat into the Appalachians represents the same phenomenon. The people seeking to be free in the America of a bygone era generally found themselves on the frontier. These regions were largely what Scott calls “non-state space” and areas where the State had difficulty establishing and maintaining its authority. If you throw in challenging terrain and obstacles, you further increase your odds of being left alone and state control being minimal. Appalachian Lineage There may be a genetic aversion to authority embedded in the various people who settled the eastern mountains. Stemming largely from Scots-Irish, English Borderers, Germanic (“Dutch” in the Highland Dixie lexicon) and French Huguenot backgrounds, the first settlers merely by the act of settling what became known as Appalachia were law-breakers. The British Monarch in an effort to improve Indian relations put forth a decree forbidding settlement west of the line he drew on a map. Many of these people found their way west of that line. Of particular interest to the liberty minded person is the specific culture of the Southern Appalachian region. Lucky for us, a marvelous first hand account exists of these people from before the old ways died off. Horace Kephart’s, “Our Southern Highlanders” does a wonderful job at detailing the radical individualism, anti-authoritarianism, traditions, and cultural nuisances inherent in this group of people. Much like a modern radical libertarian, the traditional mountain folk were severely skeptical of Power and granted government little if any moral legitimacy. The same way the modern advocate of a free society might argue that the fiction of Social Contract theory is nothing but a mythology of power used to explain why we have rulers, Kephart notes:
Our Highlanders have neither memory nor tradition of ever having been herded together, lorded over, persecuted or denied the privileges of freemen… they recognize no social compact.” (Kephart, 382-383)
The first settlers to the region may have largely been materially poor, but of a unique sort. Neither did they fit in with aristocratic society nor were the seaboard towns and cities fit for them. Kephart perfectly details the distinction:
“The Western piedmont and the mountains were settled neither by Cavaliers nor by poor whites, but by a radically distinct and even antagonistic people who are appropriately called the Roundheads of the South. These Roundheads had little or nothing to do with slavery, detested the state church, loathed tithes, and distrusted all authority save that of conspicuous merit and natural justice.” (Kephart, 439)
The Scots Irish mindset has historically been that of a defiant group of people. They have long been a fighting race and its no surprise when you transplant those mountain people to America, they keep up the same legacy. As Kephart further elaborates, “Thus we see that the townsman’s weapon against government was graft, and the mountaineer’s weapon was his gun.” (Kephart, 150) The Regulator Rebellion The frontier inhabitants were indeed not only theoretically opposed to being lorded over, they were willing to physically resist it. It is no surprise that some of the first and most interesting acts of resistance to British authority in America were on the frontier. One of the more interesting stories of the pre-revolutionary era was the antics of the North Carolina Regulators. Given that individualists gradually moved west escaping the tyranny of the Eastern governments, bureaucrats and crony-land holders, it comes as no surprise that when the government sought to establish counties and government apparatuses amongst the frontier dwellers, they didn’t take it very well. It really does come down to Ernest Hancock’s proverbial classification of two types of people; “the ones who just want to be left alone, and the ones who just wont leave you alone.”
Publisher’s Note: Day after day, one who pays attention knows that the imperial mandarins in Mordor on the Potomac have zero goodwill toward their charges in the zoo they have created in the USSA. The politicos and apparatchiks take their exsanguination program of the Helot in their pet vampire nation most seriously. The game is afoot and it is just a matter of time before the real unpleasantness starts with the descending Endarkenment sponsored by the Orcs in power. There is no cavalry on the horizon, you are on your own. On occasion, we will publish arcane or neglected lore and this happens to be one of them. I would urge you to give this a try. This would synchronize nicely with some the other forgotten skills like navigating with no tools other than you organic optics and intellect Harold Gatty died in the 1950s but his guide is quite useful. He studied the earlier cultures such as the Vikings, Polynesians, Portuguese, Native Americans and Aborigines to divine their wandering ways. I highly recommend it. The methods covered range from the usual -- such as stars, the sun and trees -- to less common ones such as the routes of migratory sea birds or seasonal winds. As a matter of fact, find an active outdoorsman over the age of fifty in your neck of the woods and start an informal apprenticeship under him. The same applies to the following short overview of unaided night vision. Do you happen to know a fellow shooter at the range who just happens to be an optometrist or ophthalmologist? Ask around. Then explore some of these questions with an expert. These kind of interdisciplinary investigations is what opens new answers to unresolved questions. Our first Village Praxis entry was July 2009. My, how time flies.  -BB While modern Western armed forces have sophisticated technologies and methodologies to increase visual acuity at night, one should practice what’s available when technology fails. Not everyone can afford to shell out three thousand dollars for their personal Third Generation night vision devices. Unaided night vision and “dark adaptation” is a compromise in the following components:
  • The inability to distinguish colors.
  • No detail can be seen (about the same as 20/200 vision in daylight).
  • That nothing can be seen directly in front of the eyes (no rods in the center of the retina), you must learn to look about 15-20° off center.
  • Only motion can be detected well, therefore you may have to learn to move your eyes to detect something that doesn't move.
  • Objects that aren't moving appear to move (autokinesis).  This has probably led to a number of plane crashes.
It takes the average person 30-45 minutes to acclimate to total night vision capability unaided. The ability to ruin carefully nurtured night vision for an event can quite literally be disposed of in a flash. Bottom line is that apart from studying the mechanics of your eyes, the primary two means are: Diamond viewing: “It is similar to the off-center vision technique taught in rifle marksmanship. Diamond viewing means that you move your eyes just slightly, a few degrees, in a diamond pattern around the object you wish to see. You do not have to move your head-use your peripheral vision.” Looking around objects. Your eyes are much more effective at the periphery of the cone than the center in low light conditions and movement can be detected with more alacrity. There are a number of resources for TTP on these variations of unaided night vision. FM 3-21.94 Appendix B, Limited Visibility Operations. An unaided night vision instructional program. This training presentation gives a great overview fro team training on unaided night vision. The bottom line is you have to reduce the recovery time back to night vision (dark adapted or scotopic).
Publisher’s Note: I have a tremendous debt of gratitude to the works of both John Hasnas and Lysander Spooner for inspiring the essay you’re about to read. I wanted to thank my friend, DH, for alerting me to Hasnas. For the longest time I have had a cognitive indifference, which turned to curiosity over time when I hear from so many quarters that we are under the rule of law and not men, and that makes everything better. Nothing could be further from the truth. Incredible, a mere few days after this published, Supreme(s) Leader Roberts issues this ruling on National Socialists Healthcare in King v. Burwell:
"In this instance, the context and structure of the act compel us to depart from what would otherwise be the most natural reading of the pertinent statutory phrase . . . Congress passed the Affordable Care Act to improve health insurance markets, not to destroy them. If at all possible, we must interpret the act in a way that is consistent with the former, and avoids the latter."
You simply can't make this up, even the Soviets would not use such tortured language and logic. Please take a listen to Tom Woods' interview with John Hasnas. Read “The Myth of the Rule of Law,” “The Depoliticization of Law,” and “The Obviousness of Anarchy” by Professor Hasnas. Edit: An attentive reader who happens to be an attorney pointed out the errors of my 1937-95 quote from Judge Napolitano; it should read under the Commerce Clause. My error and it has been corrected in the text. Napolitano: "Not one piece of legislation was seen as exceeding the scope of Congress's commerce power." –BB
“VICES are those acts by which a man harms himself or his property. Crimes are those acts by which one man harms the person or property of another. Vices are simply the errors which a man makes in his search after his own happiness. Unlike crimes, they imply no malice toward others, and no interference with their persons or property. In vices, the very essence of crime—that is, the design to injure the person or property of another—is wanting. It is a maxim of the law that there can be no crime without a criminal intent; that is, without the intent to invade the person or property of another. But no one ever practises a vice with any such criminal intent. He practises his vice for his own happiness solely, and not from any malice toward others.” - Lysander Spooner “If the natural tendencies of mankind are so bad that it is not safe to permit people to be free, how is it that the tendencies of these organizers are always good? Do not the legislators and their appointed agents also belong to the human race? Or do they believe that they themselves are made of a finer clay than the rest of mankind?” - Frédéric Bastiat, The Law
America is not a free country. Its government labors under the illusion that the more laws that exist, the more secure and hence the more free a people. At least that's the party line from the regime apparatchiks. What intellectual rubbish. This is nothing but a shabby justification for a state that grasps power at every turn and applies a tired Marxoid notion of Sovietizing every human transaction to make it transparent to the government (the reverse transparency is nowhere to be found) and use its ample resources of initiated violence to cajole, fine, kidnap, cage, maim or kill the alleged malefactors depending on their level of resistance to perceived state authority. As Lysander Spooner observes:
If two individuals enter into a contract to commit trespass, theft, robbery or murder upon a third, the contract is unlawful and void, simply because it is a contract to violate natural justice, or men's natural rights.” Unless you are the government.
Most of this rests on the iconic notion of the rule of law. Like the Constitution and limited government, the idea is assumed a priori to be correct for one reason or another. But like the two items I just mentioned, it does not stand any man’s scrutiny when examined. So what is the rule of law? John Hasnas:
[T]he law as a body of definite, politically neutral rules amenable to an impartial application which all citizens have a moral obligation to obey.”
Hasnas does a brilliant job of unpacking this nonsense and I urge my readers to read the full text of his 1995 examination of the rule of law in which he destroys the notion in detail. I wanted to add two observations to his magisterial essay. First, there is no such thing as objectivity despite the mewlings of both presstitutes and attorneys. Even those of us who consciously practice critical thinking, bias is absolutely unavoidable in the human condition. We are all discriminatory in the rhetorical sense. We all have limited time and resources that inform our worldviews and perspectives; we all have lower evidentiary bars for information favoring our belief systems. This is confirmation bias. One can see it in any controversy. Whether a religionist or an atheist, both sides will debate their respective views from the bias filters they consciously and unconsciously employ for apprehending the world. This applies to practically any great controversy that happens to entertain people at the moment. Per politics, the myth of the rule of law is ideal for creating, maintaining and expanding societal controls at the point of a gun. All politics is based on the use of violence. If we were honest, we’d call all politicians violence brokers. That is all they are, they dispense the rules for threatening and ultimately killing people by approved government agents. In America, the legislative branch of thuggery formulates the sparse guidelines for the latest variation in the application of the stick to a targeted victim group and then the executive agencies and the armies of bureaucrats crank out tens of thousands of pages of regulations that become the enforcement edict of the hundreds of thousands of badged and armed government bureaucrats who are the pointy end of all politics. Many in my readership have had the misfortune of going to college (including myself) and suffering through the usual suspects in the political science department listening to over-educated half-wits drone on about the advantages of their favored system of institutional violence. The political science professorate is the intellectual soothsayer caste of the coercionists. Thought experiment: with extraordinarily few exceptions, what would the professor say to a class if he could not discuss the initiation or use of violence to keep government afloat? The class would go home early.
“You cannot bring about prosperity by discouraging thrift. You cannot help small men by tearing down big men. You cannot strengthen the weak by weakening the strong. You cannot lift the wage-earner by pulling down the wage-payer. You cannot help the poor man by destroying the rich. You cannot keep out of trouble by spending more than your income. You cannot further the brotherhood of man by inciting class hatred. You cannot establish security on borrowed money. You cannot build character and courage by taking away men’s initiative and independence. You cannot help men permanently by doing for them what they could and should do for themselves.” - William Boetcker “Indeed, in a free government almost all other rights would become worthless if the government possessed power over the private fortune of every citizen.” - John Marshall
I issue a standard challenge to everyone within earshot:  show me one government or nation state which became smaller and smaller over time and increasingly less injurious to the freedom and liberty of individuals.  Again, I hear the bleating of the usual suspects on the alleged Right who claim that new-found respect for the Constitution will set everything right and we will all skip down the yellow brick road of the small government paradise known as America.  You are either a coercionist or a individualist, there is no middle ground.statist I will not belabor the details here for I have covered the Constitution abundantly in both essays and speaking engagements to show it for what it is:  a doomsday machine designed to bring maximum government to bear against a helpless citizenry reduced to bondage to the same document.  It is the great centralizer and grants unlimited power of taxation to the overlords in DC at Mordor on the Potomac. I have championed the Articles of Confederation in the past but even those documents were flawed but certainly gave smaller government a chance.  In the end, limited government and small government never exist for long before metastasizing into enormous machines built for one purpose:  to extract unlimited obedience on pain of caging, maiming and/or death of all persons living within the acknowledged confines of the taxing jurisdiction known as nation-states.  Nothing less, nothing more.  Politicians are neither statesman nor public persons of noble intent; they are simply a self-selected class of psycho-/socio-paths whose only agenda is the monopoly of the power to enforce what I just described.  Despite all the court historians, collectivist apologists and contemporary mouthpieces who sing paeans to government and the denizens who run it, the agenda remains the same: the destruction of individual direction and volition and the harnessing of the captured citizenry to the whims and will of the rulers.  You have been lied to and civics class in the government education system then and now has been a descriptive mechanism to rationalize yoking individuals into the collective hive of the state. Civics class is nothing more than obedience training make sure your leash remains fastened even when the government isn’t snooping. You cannot have a government without willing or unwilling submission of the subjects to the will of the rulers.  There is no historical antecedent or precedent for a government ever staying within the confines of its originating power.  None.  This speaks to my interpretation of the Western exodus in America in the 18th and 19th century.  The court historians talk about the wide-open spaces and the frontier mentality.  This was certainly a component but the main reason was a desire on the part of those sickened by the liberty-crushing Atlantic Constitutionalists to flee from that document and its strangulation of their freedom bit by bit. I can just imagine the two Celt brothers coming to a screaming halt at the beaches of California, looking over their shoulders and shouting: “Swim, Seamus! The Constitution is right behind us!”  Limited government is a legal fiction, a chimera and a cruel and tempting illusion.  It is the same as a belief in unicorns.  Unless I fasten a narwhal tusk to a most displeased horse’s forehead, they have never existed nor ever will (barring genetic engineering advances).  Judging from the behavior of the elected Grand Old Politburo in the recent “landslide” in 2014 in the unholy corridors of power of DC, they should ditch the Gadsden and hoist a unicorn bedecked flag. Political action will never reduce the size of government.  The incentives are so perverse to do otherwise that Buchanan’s Public Choice theories come to the fore with a vengeance.  Buppert's Corollary to Acton's Axiom is that power attracts the corruptible and absolute power attracts even worse.

“I believe that all government is evil, and that trying to improve it is largely a waste of time.” -H.L. Mencken Publisher's Note: I'm currently updating and revising my compilation of essays to which I will add an additional 300 pages (approximately) to the current book on Amazon and it will still be available at the very cool low price of $2.99. It is currently only available as an eBook. Amazon has revolutionized the world in more ways than one by circumventing the government supremacist gatekeepers in the big publishing houses. Once my esteemed editor is finished, I will plug it into Scrivener and compile it properly. I also maintain a Twitter presence at @Zero_Gov and you're welcome to follow. I have become an "occasional regular" (is there such a thing?) with my abolitionist friends at the Freedom Feens. Michael Dean is Feen6 and he runs a "teaching hospital" for high quality audio podcasting. I recommend listening. -BB Zero Gov has a forum.  The blog is a terrific vehicle for…a one way conversation.  Mind you, I love the replies and welcome them but the forum allows readers and editors to be much more expansive and interactive. Unlike the brevity haiku of Twitter or the seemingly one-way scribblings on a blog, it allows much more Socratic drilling and deep philosophical exchange. There are 31 sub-forums once you become a member not the two that appear for guests. I am hoping that most everyone will channel Socrates and discover that, at times, the questions are more...