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Living Freedom Posts

50 “wrong house raids”

Wow. 50 “wrong house raids” — on the same house! Really surprised the old couple who lives there hasn’t died of fright yet. Of course, the cops aren’t to blame. (Oh, never that!) It’s the computers, you know. —– CORRECTION: My original post said “150 raids.” Either I misread or the original article was later corrected. Mea culpa. Only 50 wrong raids. Well … that’s okay then …

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Thursday Miscellany

Okay, I’ve missed a few “Monday Miscellany” posts. So here’s some Thursday Miscellany to make up for that. We already know that even mild pressure from authority figures can make most people commit evil acts. And we know that placing ordinary people in authority over helpless others can be just as disastrous. (Although some skeptics question specifics of that experiment). Now, a French documentarian shows us that the power of TV can do the same. Humans are scary critters. On the other hand, it’s amazingly good news when the most mainstreamy of mainstream media suddenly gives respectful treatment to the…

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Panama

Panama. That’s where I was for most of the last month, as several people astutely guessed. I went because it’s freezing here and warm there. That was nice. I went to recharge my batteries, as Kevin Wilmeth put it. I went to play tourist. I went … just to go. And I went to answer the question, “Can I be more free outside the U.S.?” A lot of Americans have expatriated or retired to Panama, including a few I know. Some have urged me to head down that way and have a look, saying they found the place much freer,…

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Bigotry

Got a bitterly amusing voice mail last night. It was forwarded to me as an MP3 file by Rich Lucibella, publisher of S.W.A.T. magazine (for which, oddly enough, I write; Rich and editor Denny Hansen are terrific people). Anyhow, my latest S.W.A.T. article is called “Proudly Redneck.” It points out that in this veddy, veddy PC age, the one group it’s still socially acceptable to stereotype is “rednecks” — crackers, rubes, hayseeds. You know, us country folk. The article opens with eight bad old racial or ethnic slurs that no polite person uses these days and goes on to ask…

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Monday Miscellany (and a small quiz)

HOME! Waking up in the tropics, then struggling home through a blinding snowstorm 26 hours later is not fair! Not fair at all! But thank heaven for heroically dedicated friends; I didn’t have to drive myself that last crazy six hours. Why is every mainstream media article about the census a propaganda piece that could have been written by flacks at the Census Bureau? And why does every one of them repeat the lie about “just 10 questions”? Sure, there are merely 10 questions for people who live alone, but there are seven additional questions for each other resident —…

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“Help” the census!

An anonymous correspondent chides me: You’re WRONG, Claire! You shouldn’t be slyly urging readers to resist the census. Instead, we should be helping the census, just as all the ads and promos say. I live in a rural area in [state deleted] and I noticed that dedicated census workers had hung forms in big white baggies on the doorknobs of dozens of places I knew to be either abandoned or mere weekend or vacation cabins for people who live in cities. You don’t think all that effort should go to waste, do you? I sure don’t! So I helped the…

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More on free-market medicine

Travlin’ … Sorry for the “lite” posting the last few days. I will have more soon. But fact is that lazing, shopping, and basking in the sun don’t make exciting blog material, alas. Neither does routine traveling (even when you’re wedged into a strange little jumpseat next to a lavatory that has no water and whose door keeps flopping open every time the bus hits a bump). Ah well. In the meantime, I see that James Dunlap has an article on LewRockwell.com about free-market medicine outside the U.S. His piece is different from, but reflects the same values as, my…

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Hotel dogs

8:00 this morning. A polite “knock” on our hotel room door. Okay, more like a polite scratch, repeated when we failed to respond. When we opened the door, in strolled one of our new friends: We’ve met this girl previously in the hotel lobby, where she and her much older companion, a lab, reign in pampered splendor. Rotties seem to be the most popular local breed. We offered doggie delicacies. Like nearly all the pets in these parts, she was deeply suspicious of cheese. She finally took a slice, but spat it back out. (My dogs back home would be…

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Playing tourist (4WD style)

Today in our travels, we thought we’d just play tourist. So we signed on for an expedition into the cloud forests. Things got a tad adventurous when our wonderful guide (the young guy in the backwards hat in the photo) decided to take us off-roading. The vehicle — a 1979 Toyota Land Cruiser — was certainly equipped for it. (And oh boy, do I know a young man who’s going to be very envious of that Toyota.) This particular Land Cruiser has more than 2.5 million kilometers on its engine! To explain the picture above, I could make up a…

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More un-American acts

Lorri, my traveling companion, speaks scarcely a word of the local Furrin. But this morning she was able to walk into a pharmacy, raise her glasses, display an allergy-swollen eye, and walk out with a cream that would have required an $80 doctor visit in the U.S. Testing the system, I went into two pharmacies and showed a card on which I had written (courtesy of FreeTranslation.com) a request for a certain other pharmaceutical. I gave its generic name and all the brand names I could find online. In both cases, women behind the counter identified the drug by its…

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