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Category: Practical Freedom

A broad category of things we can do, or things others are doing, to increase personal freedom

Some doings at Claire’s Cabal

I don’t mention Claire’s Cabal much. But it seems time for a small update. First, we have a couple of public areas in the forum, to give a small taste. I’ve just posted a copy of this excellent article by Silver where anyone can see it. If you thought you knew every malign effect of the Federal Reserve, he describes one you probably hadn’t considered. Second, we’re in the process of starting up a “Members Helping Members” section where volunteers can offer assistance with anything from transportation and a place to stay to professional advice. Just announced it today and…

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Midweek links

  • Did anybody here think the MSM really meant all those editorials about how they were going to be more politically unbiased from now on? Here’s USA Today defining the entire alt-right movement as “espousing white nationalism.” And here’s Alan Dershowitz having to point out that Steve Bannon is no anti-Semite. I’m not fond of either the alt-right or Bannon. But get real, media. Get real. Your life depends on it.
  • And they ask — they seriously ask! — “Will America Now Have a Pravda?” No, you willfully blind jackasses: America has had a Pravda and an Izvestia for many years now.… 20 Comments
  • Although this applies only to the Pacific Northwest …

    … it’s a good wake-up call for anybody who might face a widespread natural disaster (which is, of course, everybody). Last summer, a vast exercise called Cascadia Rising was quietly carried out through the Northwest. For government types and emergency-service providers only, it made barely a bump in the consciousness of ordinary people — which may prove to be the ultimate flaw in its design, but that’s a question for another day. Cascadia Rising was designed to test emergency response in event of a “full rip” earthquake along the Cascadia subduction zone. Full-rip means a monster, a megaquake, 9.0 or…

    33 Comments

    Midweek links

  • Niall Ferguson on simplifiers vs complicators and how they can both be big problems in politics and government.
  • What the hell is a “security directive,” anyway? Sounds like something Ayn Rand would make up for her villains to impose. And why would any supposedly private company jump to comply with one? And furtherwhy, after the righteous drubbing the big ‘Net companies took for kissing the NSA’s butt (post Snowden) would Yahoo (and probably others) be so eager to continue osculating stinky feddie posterior?
  • Speaking of security, Bruce Schneier says, “Stop trying to fix the user” and fix the underlying systems. (I think he’s a lot right and a bit wrong, as spotted by his commentors.)… 7 Comments
  • Ten powerful ways to act locally

    We’re cruising down life’s highway and we find ourselves backed up in traffic by a colossal wreck. Glass and metal and blood and guts are strewn everywhere. Some survivors scream for help, while others lie bleeding out, pierced by steering wheels and shards of glass. But never fear! First responders are already on the scene. The experts will soon handle the ghastly situation. Except that the “experts” on this particular highway of life are standing there screeching at each other about their Twitter messages, tax returns, fat-shaming, mutual degrees of personal and financial corruption, and whether or not they enabled…

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    12 preparedness items you might not strictly need but would be glad to have

    This being the OFFICIAL National Preparedness Month, I’m sure you’ve diligently been working on your preps for the last three-plus weeks. Right? Wait. What’s that, you say? You’ve been working diligently on your preps for lo these many years and you hardly have to concern yourself with some belatedly declared month? Of course! You’re pretty well set by now, right? But everybody’s always lacking something. With that in mind, here are 12 preparedness items you probably don’t strictly need but would be great to have if you don’t already. And yes, these are Amazon Associates links. 1. Can organizers, trackers,…

    38 Comments

    Midweek links

  • Is there a “second Snowden” at the NSA? James Bamford, who knows as much as anybody else outside the fedgov’s blackbox of spies, believes there is.
  • In any case, we’re all in the NSA’s big, happy social network, whether we want to be or not. Not to mention the increasing number of people being forced onto Microsoft’s anti-social social network.
  • In Louisiana, nimble, willing private help for flood victims went far beyond the Cajun Navy. (Interesting use of technology, too. Could make me rethink the evils of F*c*b**k. And this is a case where phone-based geolocation may have saved lives.)… 8 Comments
  • Midweek links

  • Okay, in the great debate over victim disarmament, this is trivial. But still: “Get out of gun control, Apple.”
  • Uh oh. All those Loompanicsy books and articles about hiding stuff in your walls just got even more obsolete than they already were. Nifty app for home remodelers, though. (H/T MJR)
  • What a beautiful and unusual piece. Wendy McElroy talks about her experiences as a homeless teenager in “Try a Little Tenderness.” 13 Comments