Nuggets of Wisdom

Sunday, June 30, 2013

Daily Pony: PFUDOR

Pink fluffy unicorns dancing on rainbows! (REPEAT UNTIL INFINITY!)

The song will never get out of your head. It shall haunt you until your dying breath!

Friday, June 28, 2013

“My Immortal” Review Introduction

Calling “My Immortal” the worst fan fiction ever written is the understatement of understatements. Plus it sounds redundant. Fan fiction is rarely good to begin with. So calling fan fiction “bad” is like calling water “wet.” It’s merely stating the obvious.

Fan fiction, as the name implies, is “fiction” written by “fans”—nerds who are so obsessed with a film or show or book or game that they delude themselves into thinking they can write a story about it that is either on par with it or better, and since they lack the creative talent of the hired professional writers who wrote the original source material, what results is amateur hackery that borders between jack and squat.

That isn't to say that good fan fiction doesn’t exist. It does, but it’s rarer than a white buffalo grazing on a field of four-leaf clovers under a blue moon during a leap year, and finding it is like trying to find a diamond ring in a steaming mound of cow manure and broken glass—that’s swarming with flesh-eating horseflies—and infested with flesh-eating worms—and infected with HIV—and on fire! Sure, you may eventually find it, but trying to do so is such an excruciatingly task that it’s safer to avoid it altogether.

But even considering the genre, calling “My Immortal” the worst fan fiction ever written is still being far too kind, especially when compared to other bad fan fiction.

Take “Cupcakes” for example. Sure the story is beyond disturbing, especially for a fan fiction based on a little girl’s cartoon, but at least it’s well-written. Pinkie Pie may have been transformed into a sadistic serial killer, but at least she’s somewhat true to her character. That’s more than I can say for Harry Potter—or should I call him emo bisexual vampire goth?

Or consider “Agony in Pink,” the Power Rangers torture porn so sadistic that it and the newsgroup that hosted it were banned in Australia. And yet reading how Kimberly the Pink Ranger is tortured and mutilated is more bearable that reading how the entire Harry Potter canon is tortured and mutilated beyond recognition.

“My Immortal” is not merely the worst fan fiction ever written. It's the worst thing ever written by a human being, and considering other notorious examples of bad writing such as Twilight or 50 Shades of Gray, and considering the sheer volume of literature spanning millennia back to when mankind first invented written language, that’s quite the accusation.

Where do I even begin with this? Everything in the story is wrong. It’s Murphy’s Law applied to writing and taken to extreme, exaggerated levels: anything that can go wrong with writing not only goes wrong but horribly wrong. It’s like trying to make toast and not only burning it, but burning your entire house down and starting an inferno that wipes out half the tri-county area.

Trying to detail everything single thing wrong with this story would take a chapter-by-chapter dissertation, which I plan to do. But to refrain from repeating myself, allow me to explain the recurring problems in this fanfic:

Spelling and Grammar. Suppose you were given the responsibility of teaching English to a foreign exchange student who knew nothing about the language. You give him a one-hour lesson, and for his homework assignment, instruct him to write a 300-page novel due the following morning. What he would write would be Pulitzer Prize-winning material compared to “My Immortal.”

The most glaring problem with this story is the spelling and grammar, or rather, the lack thereof. The most recurring error is the overuse (or rather, abuse) of the ellipsis, which is used more times in this story than in the “Ultimate Warrior” comic series—and to quote the Nostalgia Critic in Spoony and Linkara’s review: “Stop using ellipsis!”

You have to wonder how the author managed to write this story without noticing the red marks made by her word processor’s spell and grammar check. The fanfic is so poorly written that it seems like it was typed out via text message, and considering the author’s age, that very well may be the case.

I kid you not when I say that reading this fanfiction caused me physical pain. As an English major, I tend to be a stickler for proper grammar—a grammar Nazi, if you will. So bad grammar is like my Kryptonite. Reading one grammatical error makes me cringe. Reading an entire page of them give me a migraine. Having read all 20,000 words in this fanfic, I was lucky enough to retain enough brain cells to remember my name, let alone control my own bowels. (I think I just soiled myself right now!)

What’s laughably worse is that the author co-wrote this with her friend, who proofread and edited it for her. The fact that not one, but two human beings, were able to read this story and not notice one single spelling and grammatical error speaks volumes about our public education system.

Canon. Most people assume that writing fan fiction is easy. After all, they’re just stories based on pre-existing stories and characters. But this simply isn’t the case. Good fan fiction (which again, is rare to come by) requires the author to be knowledgeable enough about the source material to write a realistic, consistent story about it. Too often, it’s easy to write characters that are “out-of-character” and stories that break from the original material’s canon. A good fanfic tries to be consistent with the main source material.

This isn't to say that liberties cannot be taken; in fact, in many cases, they have to be, especially when introducing new characters and settings. No matter how much a fanfic author may try to remain true to the original canon, they're inevitably going to deviate from it. This is especially true if they're writing something based on an ongoing series. All it takes is a new episode or new sequel to completely screw up their fanfic's canon. Again, this is to be expected. They are writing an unofficial story to an official franchise. Unless they are the original creator of said franchise, their work will inevitably deviate from it. What matters is that the author tries to remain consistent to the original canon.

This fanfic does not even try.

To steal a line from Encyclopedia Drammatica, if you gave this story to someone without informing them it was a Harry Potter fanfic, they probably wouldn't guess it was a Harry Potter fanfic. They'd assume it was the wet dream of a Hot Topic-obsessed emo-goth girl, and for all intended purposes, it is.

If you were reading this fanfic expecting to see Harry, Ron, Hermione, Draco, or any of the other characters from Hogwarts, then I'm sorry to inform you that your beloved characters are in another castle. None of the characters or settings from the Harry Potter series are present in this fanfic. Instead, you have a bunch of bisexual emo goth vampires who enjoy listening to My Chemical Romance and shagging each other's brains out.

Saying this fanfic breaks the Harry Potter canon assumes the author remotely cared about the canon, which she clearly doesn't. It would be bad enough if the author merely based the fanfic on the movies rather than the books, which she claims she does, but even then, she fails to do even that.

Even the Harry Potter spoof in Epic Movie more accurately reflected the original series. It had to. A spoof has to be somewhat related to the material it's trying to spoof. This fanfic isn't even a spoof, nor is it a rip-off. It's just bad writing. Period.

It would be one thing if the author wrote this as an original story about an emo goth vampire who attends a wizarding school with other emo goth vampires. It would still be crap, but at least it wouldn't be associated with the Harry Potter series.

Much Ado About Nothing. Most people consider Twilight to be the epitome of vapid self-insert Mary Sue fan fiction. That’s not true. Unlike “My Immortal,” Twilight actually has a plot. Granted, it’s a weak plot, but a plot nonetheless.

The same cannot be said of "My Immortal." The closest thing this fanfic has to anything remotely resembling a plot comes near the end. Before then, the entire story is nothing more than the author’s wish fulfillment fantasy of living in the Harry Potter universe and shagging her favorite characters. Other than that, this fanfic has nothing else to offer.

And when I say it has nothing to offer, I mean that quite literally. This fanfic is about nothing. According to Encyclopedia Drammatica (clearly a reliable source!), this fanfic is roughly 20,000 words long, and of those 20,000 words, the entire story can be broken down as such:
Descriptions of a character's hair and/or what they are wearing: 13.7%
Sentences with terrible adverbs or "Suddenly X came into the room!" 17.5%
Chapters involving a rock concert at Hogsmeade, and the necessary planning/clothes shopping: 27.2%
Comparing a character to a rock star: 3.4%
Sex/Voyeurism/Bondage/Attempted Rape (usual HP fare): 5.2%
Incredibly long ellipses......................................... 3.9%
Number of times a character gasps: 25
Number of times a character cuts their wrists: 15
Number of times a character is compared to Gerard Way: 13
From beginning to end, this fanfic is pure filler, with the exception of its weak plot and conflict near the end.

The sex scenes are by far the worst. They’re poorly written and randomly inserted with no other rhyme or reason other than to please its author's teenage libido.

Look, I’m not a prude. I have nothing against sex scenes, even those in fan fiction, as long as they’re written well. That’s simply not the case with the sex scenes here.

If a four-year-old was forced to watch two adults having sex and then told to write what he saw on colored paper with crayon, he would more accurately and coherently describe sexual intercourse than this author does.

What’s especially annoying is how this author tries to write the most explicitly X-rated material in the most PG-language in a failed attempt to sound cute: “Then he put his thingie into my you-know-what and we did it for the first time.” Writing such as this only reveals the author’s virginity.

Speaking of the author...

The Author. The only thing worse than a bad story is a bad author. The author in question is Tara Gilesbie, a.k.a. XXXbloodyrists666XXX, a.k.a. goffikgurl666, a.k.a. emo-goth-poser-wannabe! Not only is she infamous for writing the worst fanfic ever, but is equally infamous for being unable to accept criticism.

But perhaps this is to be expected. After all, teenagers are incapable of good writing or accepting criticism. Teenagers are naturally narcissistic. They assume everything they do is perfect and everyone who disagrees with them is a hater; and since the majority of fanfic writers tend to be teenagers who flunked English class, most tend to be whiny narcissists who cannot accept criticism. So perhaps Tara doesn't exactly stand out from the other talentless fanfic hacks, but even then, it certainly doesn't help her case.

In the Author's Notes that prefaced every new chapter, when she wasn't giving shout outs to her friends or rambling on about how My Chemical Romance rocks, Tara would label those who criticized her work as "haters" and "posers" and demanded that they stop "flaming" her. In many cases, she even threatened to not write a new chapter until she received a certain number of good reviews. The fact she continued writing new chapters either indicates that there were people stupid enough to like her work and give her good reviews, or that she was merely bluffing. (I wager that the latter is true.)

Given her over-the-top behavior and her blatantly bad writing, rumors spread that Tara was really a troll. Whether or not this is the case has yet to be determined. On the one hand, the fanfic seems like an intentional parody of bad Mary Sue fan fiction, but on the other hand, Tara seems to act like a legit bad fanfic writer.

You may wonder whether or not it's worth reviewing or critiquing a fanfic that was deliberately written to be bad. If something was intended to be bad, what else can we expect it to be other than bad? And you might have a point there. After all, it's hard to hold something to a higher standard if it was never meant to meet a high standard in the first place, so reviewing it or critiquing it does seem futile.

Even then, it really doesn't make a difference to me. Whether or not this fanfic was bad by design or accident, it still doesn't change the fact that it's bad. It's like if you were to run over your ex-wife with your SUV. You may have run over that bitch by accident, or you may have intended to run her over. Either way, she's dead, and you're looking to do some serious time in a place where it's not safe to drop the soap.

So yes, I still intend on critiquing this fanfic. Troll fic or not, this is still not only the worst fanfic ever written, but the worst thing ever written period. This summary is merely the tip of the yellow snowcapped iceberg. To truly understand how Celestia-awful this fanfic is, one had to dig right into the frozen piss, and I intend to do just that. I'm brave enough to venture into this, and if you are too, be sure to tune in next time when I begin my dissertation of "My Immortal"--the worst thing humanly written!

Thursday, June 27, 2013

Invisible Hand Of The Free Market, Eh?

Oh look, yet another crappy political cartoon warning of the "dangers" of the free market:

Funny how the most horrific horrors of the "free market" occur in heavily-centralized economies with massive government overregulation. I can't count the number of times someone tried to use COMMUNIST China as an example of free-market capitalism. Then again, these same statists assume Somalia is a free-market libertarian paradise. (What color is they sky in their universe?)

Anyway, the master of Bogosity-busting himself Shane Killian wrote an excellent rebuttal to this blatant bit of bogosity:

DOMA Struck Down

This past week has been a train wreck for SCOTUS. Not only did it cop out of ruling on racial discrimination in college admissions (otherwise known as affirmative action), but it also ruled that your silence can be used against you in court, ruling that you first have to invoke your right to remain silent before you remain silent. (How does that work?)

But recently, SCOTUS managed to do something right: it struck down the unconstitutional Defense of Marriage Act (DOMA), thus taking America one step closer to marriage equality.

Five years ago, I would not have been celebrating this decision. Back then, I considered myself a "Conservative Christian" whose only concern, like every other theocrat, was abortion and gay marriage. Yeah, screw the economy. Screw the wars. Screw immigration. Screw rising gas prices. The only issues that mattered to me were trivial social issues.

Embarrassingly enough, my ideal presidential nominee was evangelical pastor Mike Huckabee, though I inevitably went along with the other Republican drones by voting for John McCain. I don't know which was more embarrassing: that I voted for someone who supports targeting American citizens for drone strikes, or that I thought Sarah Palin was as intelligent as she was good looking. (Well, at least the latter part of that statement is true. Can't say the same for the former.)

But perhaps my most embarrassing moment during that election was voting for Amendment 2, which was Florida's equivalent of California's Proposition 8, which limited marriage between one man and one woman. I thought I was preserving "traditional marriage" and "family values", but all I was really doing was relegating homosexuals as second-class citizens.

Here I was, a so-called "conservative" who opposed "big goverment," though my vote revealed I had no problem with a government big enough to tell people who they could love and what they could do in the privacy of their own bedrooms.

Since then, I had been ashamed of my vote, and if I could go back in time, I would revoke it. But alas, I cannot. So I will do the only thing I can do: support the legalization of gay marriage.

This is not to say that I agree with gay marriage. I still personally believe marriage is between a man and a woman. However, that is my personal religious belief, and I have no more right to force it on others through law than Muslims have the right to force their belief that pork is unclean. I would not like it if Muslims prevented me from eating hot dogs and BBQ. Why should I, as a Christian, prevent homosexuals from marrying?

As a libertarian, you do not have to agree with gay marriage anymore than you have to agree with drugs or prostitution or gun ownership; but you cannot call yourself a libertarian and support the criminalization of such activities. Either we are free to pursue our own self interests, or we are not. It's that simple.

I'm looking at you, Rand Paul!

Tuesday, June 25, 2013

Daily Pony: Flank Reviews - Equestria Girls

Chester A. Bum--er, I mean, Hubert. J Flank--reviews Equestria Girls, and, omigosh, this is the greatest movie he has ever seen in his life!

And it goes without saying: My Little Pony, My Little--SPOILERS!

Monday, June 24, 2013

Daily Pony: Pinkazoid!

The Hub has My Little Pony: Friendship is Magic, Batman: The Animated Series, ALF, and Animaniacs. Now if it can get Freakazoid, then it would officially be the best channel on television!

Sunday, June 23, 2013

NSA Opens Bag Of Dicks

I haven't uploaded many blog posts lately. There are two reasons for this: first, I've been busy with work, and second, the majority of news stories these past few weeks have been about the NSA, and there's only so many times you can say "Big Brother is watching you!" and "Anyone defending this is a dick!" without sounding repetitive.

So this post is going to be an extensive list of all the "authoritarian psychopaths" who've either defended the NSA or have attacked whistleblower Edward Snowden.

First off is this list from The Economic Collapse Blog of the "22 Nauseating Quotes From Hypocritical Establishment Politicians About The NSA Spying Scandal":
#1 Barack Obama: "I think it’s important to understand that you can’t have 100 percent security and then have 100 percent privacy and zero inconvenience. We’re going to have to make some choices as a society."

#2 Barack Obama in 2007: "This Administration also puts forward a false choice between the liberties we cherish and the security we demand… That means no more illegal wire-tapping of American citizens. No more national security letters to spy on citizens who are not suspected of a crime. No more tracking citizens who do nothing more than protest a misguided war. No more ignoring the law when it is inconvenient. That is not who we are. And it is not what is necessary to defeat the terrorists… We will again set an example for the world that the law is not subject to the whims of stubborn rulers, and that justice is not arbitrary."

#3 Speaker Of The House John Boehner on what he thinks about NSA leaker Edward Snowden: "He’s a traitor."

#4 U.S. Senator Lindsey Graham: "I hope we follow Mr. Snowden to the ends of the Earth to bring him to justice."

#5 U.S. Senator Al Franken: "I can assure you, this is not about spying on the American people."

#6 Senate Majority Leader Harry Reid: "For senators to complain that they didn’t know this was happening, we had many, many meetings that have been both classified and unclassified that members have been invited to"

#7 U.S. Senator Mitch McConnell: "Given the scope of these programs, it’s understandable that many would be concerned about issues related to privacy. But what’s difficult to understand is the motivation of somebody who intentionally would seek to warn the nation’s enemies of lawful programs created to protect the American people. And I hope that he is prosecuted to the fullest extent of the law."

#8 U.S. Representative Peter King on why he believes that reporters should be prosecuted for revealing NSA secrets: "There is an obligation both moral, but also legal, I believe, against a reporter disclosing something which would so severely compromise national security."

#9 Director of National Intelligence James Clapper making a joke during an awards ceremony last Friday night: "Some of you expressed surprise that I showed up—so many emails to read!"

#10 Director Of National Intelligence James Clapper about why he lied about NSA spying in front of Congress: "I responded in what I thought was the most truthful, or least untruthful manner"

#11 National Security Council spokeswoman Caitlin Hayden: "The president has full faith in director Clapper and his leadership of the intelligence community"

#12 White House press secretary Jay Carney: "...Clapper has been straight and direct in the answers that he's given, and has actively engaged in an effort to provide more information about the programs that have been revealed through the leak of classified information"

#13 Dianne Feinstein, the chairwoman of the Senate intelligence committee: "There is no more direct or honest person than Jim Clapper."

#14 Gus Hunt, the chief technology officer at the CIA: "We fundamentally try to collect everything and hang onto it forever."

#15 Barack Obama: "Nobody is listening to your telephone calls."

#16 Keith Alexander, director of the National Security Agency: "We do not see a tradeoff between security and liberty."

#17 An exchange between NSA director Keith Alexander and U.S. Representative Hank Johnson in March 2012...

JOHNSON: Does the NSA routinely intercept American citizens’ emails?
JOHNSON: Does the NSA intercept Americans’ cell phone conversations?
JOHNSON: Google searches?
JOHNSON: Text messages?
JOHNSON: orders?
JOHNSON: Bank records?

#18 Deputy White House press secretary Dana Perino: "The intelligence activities undertaken by the United States government are lawful, necessary and required to protect Americans from terrorist attacks"

#19 U.S. Senator Saxby Chambliss: "This is nothing new.  It has proved meritorious because we have gathered significant information on bad guys and only on bad guys over the years."

#20 Former U.N. Ambassador John Bolton on NSA leaker Edward Snowden: "Let me ask, who died and made him king? Who gave him the authority to endanger 300 million Americans? That's not the way it works, and if he thinks he can get away with that, he's got another think coming."

#21 Senior spokesman for the NSA Don Weber: "Given the nature of the work we do, it would be irresponsible to comment on actual or alleged operational issues; therefore, we have no information to provide"

#22 The White House website: "My administration is committed to creating an unprecedented level of openness in government. We will work together to ensure the public trust and establish a system of transparency, public participation, and collaboration."
Granted, this list was written over a week ago, so it doesn't include Dick "War Criminal" Cheney ironically calling Snowden a "traitor" or FBI Director Robert Mueller arguing that obeying the constitution takes too long! And even then, this is but the tip of the yellow snowcapped iceberg.

Next up is a video by Morrakiu listing Snowden Haters (or as he puts it, "People Who Should Be Run Through With A Pike!"):

The worst offender on that list has to be the Tea Party calling for Snowden's death. You'd think a group of protesters who were quick to label anything Obama did as "tyrannical big government" (which, for the most part, has been accurate) would take this opportunity to decry Obama as Hitler; instead, they decide to turn on the whistleblower who exposed legitimate "tyrannical big government."

Sigh. What is with these people demanding an end to big government while simultaneously decrying whistleblowers who expose big government as traitors?

Finally, we have the worst offenders of them all. So what's worse than politicians and pundits defending Orwellian surveillance and attacking whistleblowers? How about the American public flip-flopping on the issue!

A recent Pew survey reveals that Democrats who once opposed warrantless wiretapping under Bush now support it under Obama, and Republicans who once supported it under Bush now oppose it under Obama:

Big surprise: partisan hacks only oppose something if the other team does it, but when their team does it, it suddenly becomes "okey-dokey-lokey"! Hypocrisy, thy name is politics!

But, of course, voting third party is "throwing away your vote"!

Friday, June 21, 2013

For Good People To Do Evil Things

For Good People To Do Evil Things by ~BlameThe1st on deviantART

"Government is an insult to human dignity. With or without it you would have good people doing good things and evil people doing evil things. But for good people to do evil things, that takes government."

- based on a quote by Steven Weinberg.

"The State! Always and ever the government and its rulers and operators have been considered above the general moral law...Service to the State is supposed to excuse all actions that would be considered immoral or criminal if committed by 'private' citizens...For centuries, the state (or more strictly, individuals acting in their roles as 'members of the government') has cloaked its criminal activity in high-sounding rhetoric. For centuries the State has committed mass murder and called it 'war'; then ennobled the mass slaughter that 'war' involves. For centuries the State has enslaved people into its armed battalions and called it 'conscription' in the 'national service.' For centuries the State has robbed people at bayonet point and called it 'taxation.' In fact, if you wish to know how libertarians regard the State and any of its acts, simply think of the State as a criminal band, and all of the libertarian attitudes will logically fall into place."

- Murray Rothbard, The State.

Skull based on clipart from iStock Photo.

Thursday, June 20, 2013

200 Watchers Special Announcement

Ever since I started my blog, I wanted to use it as a personal soapbox to talk about anything and everything. However, more often than not, I would talk about politics. And how could I not? American politics has become so bat guano insane that I have no choice but to talk about it.

Only recently did I decide to diversify my blog by talking about My Little Pony: Friendship is Magic. This was a way to counteract all the negativity on my blog with something uplifting, and what’s more uplifting that multi-colored cartoon ponies?

Even then, I’ve been dissatisfied with the direction of my blog and how it has devolved into yet another muckraking blog about current events. It’s really depressed me. I want to talk about more than simply politics and ponies.

For a long time, I’ve been a fan of internet reviewers like the Angry Video Game Nerd and Nostalgia Critic, and as such, I’ve been inspired to write my own reviews. But I never thought about what exactly I wanted to review, and I didn’t know where to start. If I were to get started reviewing, I wanted to start off with a bang by reviewing something truly horrendous.

And I finally found that one thing.

You see, at least once in our lives, we encounter something so bad that it totally challenges our perception of what we consider good and bad, whether that something is a show or movie or game or book or any other form of media; and we become so disturbed by it, so disgusted, so revolted, that we feel we have no other choice but to critique it. We cannot remain silent about it. We cannot let it slide. We cannot forget it. We cannot live in peace until we’ve let the world know how horrible it is.

Heck, one of the reasons the Nostalgia Critic returned to reviewing was because he had to speak his mind about The Odd Life of Timothy Green.

Every great reviewer has had one movie, one show, one game, that they despised to the point where they felt it was their solemn duty to eviscerate it through sound and thorough critique.

Red Letter Media has the Star Wars prequels.

Confused Matthew has Minority Report.

Nostalgia Critic had Scooby-Doo.

Spoony One had Ultima 9.

Linkara had One More Day.

And as we speak, the Angry Video Game Nerd is creating a full-length film about E.T. on the Atari 2600.

I wish to contribute my own Magnum Opus of a review. For once upon a time, I read something so bad, so terrible, so horrendous, that not only is its very existence a sin against good writing, but it would be a far greater sin to allow it to go un-critiqued.

You see, I firmly believe that people should be exposed not only to good writing, but also to bad writing. In literature classes, we focus on the classics, masterpieces in good writing, in order to show students what is good writing.

But I also believe they should be exposed to bad writing. For by studying good writing, we learn what to emulate in our writing; and by studying bad writing, we learn what to avoid.

This is why I love reviews of bad movies and bad games. Only by knowing what is bad can we better detect what is bad and learn to better appreciate what is good. Only by studying and critiquing what is bad can we better understand what it good.

This is why, if ever perchance I should be an English teacher, what I am about to critique would be required reading as a lesson on how not to write. For what I wish to review is the worst thing that has ever been written by a human being. This is the epitome of bad writing.

As an English major, I feel I cannot live soundly without knowing this abomination has been thoroughly dissected and critiqued, exposed for the monstrosity that it is, and its remains forever memorialized so that future generations can learn from it. I hope and pray that, by reviewing this, I can ensure that something just as bad as this, if not worse, is never written again.

And what is it that I wish to review?

I will let you all know next week, but as a clue, I leave you with this:

Thursday, June 13, 2013

Daily Pony: Equestria Girls Ending Scene

Don't worry, folks! There are no spoilers here. Just a hilarious comic strip.

Equestria Girls Ending Scene by *CrimsonBugEye on deviantART

Was I the only one to fall out of his chair laughing at this?

Wednesday, June 12, 2013

33 Reasons To Be A Libertarian

1) Because the taxes that supposedly go to building roads, bridges, and schools mostly go to funding the military-industrial complex.

2) Because the army is being forced to purchase tanks it neither wants nor needs. If the army were to withhold creating new tanks for three years, it would save taxpayers $3 billion dollars--the same amount the Pentagon spends in a single day!

3) Because over 189 thousand lives too many and over $2 trillion too much were lost in a war that was started by a lie, and yet not a single member of the administration responsible for it has been prosecuted.

4) Because terrorist attacks have quadrupled over the past decade since the War on Terror began.

5) Because four American citizens too many have been killed through drone strikes under the same president who won the Nobel Peace Prize.

6) Because no one should be forced to undergo a virtual strip search or sexual molestation before boarding a plane.

7) Because a 16-year-old boy should not be targeted as an alleged terrorist by the FBI under the PATRIOT ACT.

8) Because if the federal government can target American citizens for indefinite detention, lethal force, and assassination without due process, then American citizens should at least have the right to own assault weapons.

9) Because even though Switzerland has one of the highest gun ownership rates in the world, it also has the lowest gun-related crime rate of any civilized country in the world.

10) Because 20 elementary school students were killed at a gun-free zone, in a state with the strictest gun laws, and with legally-purchased and registered guns.

11) Because despite spending more on education per student than any other country, test scores remain stagnant and linger behind those of other developed countries.

12) Because public schools are graduating students who cannot read and who require remedial college classes.

13) Because all the wealth confiscated from the top one percent, who pay the most in taxes, would only be able to finance the country for one year.

14) Because despite America being the fourth most over-regulated country on earth, with regulation exponentially increasing over the past century, especially under the Bush administration, deregulation is blamed for our economic crisis.

15) Because Hong Kong has been the freest economy on earth for 19 consecutive years, and it is not a Somalian wasteland.

16) Because eight other countries have freer economies than our own, and none of them are Somalian wastelands.

17) Because the federal government is being controlled by the same corporations it is supposed to regulate.

18) Because electrical appliances are all properly regulated by a private organization rather than by a government agency.

19) Because the purchasing power of the dollar has rapidly declined since the Federal Reserve was instituted. One dollar 100 years ago has the same buying power as $23.49 today.

20) Because it is ridiculous to believe that the same institution responsible for the most pollution on the planet can fight pollution.

21) Because 200,000 Americans too many have died over the past 30 years because they were denied life-saving medicine whose marketing was delayed by the FDA.

22) Because despite spending more on entitlement programs than on the military, both Social Security and Medicare are on the verge of bankruptcy within the next decade.

23) Because Chile's private pension system provides seniors better benefits than America's Social Security.

24) Because both Switzerland and Singapore provide adequate universal healthcare without a nationalized, socialized healthcare system.

25) Because no one should have to die from being denied a medical transplant because they smoked a plant.

26) Because despite being less harmful than alcohol or tobacco, marijuana is illegal while the former two are not.

27) Because the government wants to fight obesity by taxing junk food and banning sugary drinks, all which were made from the same high fructose syrup it helped make affordable through decades of subsidizing corn.

28) Because "illegal immigration" is a symptom of a larger problem: a highly-bureaucratic immigration system that makes it harder to immigrate legally and more tempting to immigrate illegally.

29) Because the NYPD's stop-and-frisk program overwhelmingly targets minorities, even though whites are more likely to be found carrying weapons and drugs.

30) Because cops can beat, taser, and pepper spray a suspect after he was subdued and in handcuffs, and yet the man who videotapes the police brutality gets 6 years in jail.

31) Because a 12-year-old girl and 65-year-old grandmother should not be sued more than they are worth for downloading music.

32) Because while Barack Obama and Mitt Romney were debating funding to Sesame Street, third-party presidential candidates were debating issues that mattered most to Americans such as drone strikes, internet censorship, the drug war, and indefinite detention. (And voting third-party is throwing away your vote?)

33) Because it's none of the government's damn business what any one person does with their personal life provided they harm no one!

Has this list made you question whether or not you are a libertarian? Take this quiz to see where you stand politically.

To learn more about libertarianism, click here.

Please share this list with your non-libertarian friends.

Boehner's A Real Boner!

Last month, I officially switched my party affiliation from Republican to Libertarian, and I haven't looked back since. Ever since Ron Paul retired, there's nothing redeemable about the GOP.

Case in point: John Boehner had this to say about the NSA whistleblower Edward Snowden:

House Speaker John Boehner (R-Ohio) on Tuesday called NSA leaker Edward Snowden a “traitor” and said his actions are a “giant violation of the law.”

“He’s a traitor,” Boehner said on “Good Morning America.” “The president outlined last week that these are important national security programs to help keep Americans safe and give us tools to help fight the terrorist threat we face. The disclosure of this information puts Americans at risk.”
Well, I'll give John some credit here: as deplorable as he is, at least he's consistent. He had no problem with big government snooping on American citizens under Bush, and he has no problem with big government snooping on American citizens under Obama. At least he's not like those hypocritical Republicans who only now have a problem with government surveillance now that a Democrat is utilizing it.

Thing is, with Boehner having such a huge boner for big government, can he honestly claim to be for limited government? Can any Republican? Yet another reason why I switched to the Libertarian Party.

Guess Who's Joining Super Smash Bros?

The villager from Animal Crossing? Huh. Well, that's certainly unexpected.

Too bad they couldn't add someone cooler like Mega...

Ah yeah! Megaman's in the house! Sheet just got real!

Wonder who else is joining the battle?

Wii Fit Trainer? Well, I guess we've had weirder characters. If they can add Mr. Game and Watch and R.O.B., the Wii Fit Trainer seems just as logical.

So, what are your thoughts on these new characters? What other character would you like to see join the Super Smash Bros. roster? Leave your comment below.

How To Share Games on the PS4

What's this? You mean to tell me you don't have to pay a special fee in order to play a borrowed or used game? What a revolutionary concept! Why doesn't every other videogame console have this feature?

Oh, wait, they already do, and they always have. It's only the Xbox One that requires you to pay extra in order to play a game you borrowed from a friend.

Unless Microsoft redesigns the console before its release, the free market is going to demolish it.

Tuesday, June 11, 2013

Libertarians Don't Need To Lie

I would sooner advise you all to drink bleach than to visit the Daily Kos, as reading any of its diatribes is an excruciating experience that no human being with an IQ higher than spore mold should ever have to suffer through.

I would never consider writing for a site like that, and even if I did, I would probably be rejected for being too overqualified, seeing as I have more than one brain cell. Judging by its content, the writers are probably hired straight from crack rehabilitation centers.

Compared to other left-leaning blogsites, Daily Kos scrapes the bottom of the barrel. No, scratch that. This blogsite doesn't scrape the bottom of the barrel. This blogsite isn't the bottom of the barrel. This blogsite isn't below the bottom of the barrel. This blogsite doesn't deserve to be mentioned in the same sentence with barrels. (And yes, I am ripping off Robert Egbert. Consider it my tribute to him. God rest his soul!)

I feel that even mentioning this blogsite gives it far too much credence than it deserves. Trying to debunk any of its uneducated, uninformed, overtly-emotional tirades implies that this blogsite has the intellectual integrity deserving of proper peer review. It's like a Harvard professor trying to have an intellectual debate about quantum cosmology with a special-needs toddler. One offers well-reasoned arguments; the other incoherently babbles with drool running down their chin.

This blogsite does not deserve to be scrutinized. It should not even be recognized. It merely needs to be ignored. Like a screamer video, this is something you see once on the internet, and in sheer revulsion of it, you desperately try to repress any memory of it in the vain hope it would go away.

The only reason I am even mentioning the Daily Kos, whose journalistic integrity rivals that of TMZ--no, scratch that! TMZ has far more integrity than the Daily Kos!

Anyway, the only reason I am even mentioning this Celestia-forsaken blogsite is because someone at Bogosity Forum linked to a recent blog post. For the sake of confidentiality, I will not mention this person by name. (Curse you, surhotchaperchlorome! You are one sick puppy!)

The blog post is titled "Five Horrific Things Libertarian/Conservative Logic Calls 'Freedom'", and if reading that title made you facepalm, then reading the post itself will make you headdesk your keyboard into dust, and reading the comments will make you commit seppuku with your pencil. As such, I strongly advise you not to do so unless you dope yourself with extra-strength ibuprofen.

If you're expecting a thorough dissertation of this blog post, don't. I don't need to write one. Someone already did, and much better than I ever could. The article in question is "Libertarian Strawmen: Slavery, Serfdom, and Other Mistaken Criticisms of Free Markets", and if you want a thorough refuatiton of the silly Daily Kos post, this is it.

But even then, the screed isn't worth anyone's time. It's nothing but a string of strawman attacks against libertarianism. It's akin to a temper-tantrum throwing kindergartener writing a scathing critique of his teacher by claiming he eats his own poop and drinks his own piss. (What? You never did that with any of your teachers?) There is no sense offering a rational response to it because there is no rationale to respond to.

To illustrate what I mean, one of the first "freedoms" mentioned in this post is slavery. That's right! This blog post insinuates that libertarians support slavery. Now, the rational counter to that assertion would be to negate it with the concept of self-ownership, the belief that every individual owns himself, and thus cannot be owned by another individual.

But that would be assuming this blogger is rational enough to comprehend that, which he clearly isn't. The fact he tries to twist self-ownership in order to support slavery proves this. He argues that self-ownership supports slavery because, if every man is property unto himself, he can merely sell himself to another man.

Never mind, of course, that no libertarian has ever made that argument. And it doesn't matter that they never have. Because at the end of this poorly-written, poorly-thought-out screed, the author tries to cover his ass with this statement: "Libertarians and Conservatives will never admit this is what they favor, but their actions are clear: They oppose all measures that would prevent it.  Which in Sane People Land means this is what they support."

Yes, if libertarians "deny" supporting slavery, it proves they support slavery, because only someone who supports slavery would deny supporting it. In "Sane People Land," we call this mental gymnastics. At the Daily Kos, they call this "logic." And this is one of the most frequented blogsites on the net. I don't know whether to laugh or cry over this. Possibly both!

This is why I don't bother anymore trying to counter arguments against libertarianism. There are none. At least there are no "rational" arguments. This is because libertarianism is based on rationality. It's very crux is that individuals should be free to live their own lives provided they harm no one. That's not a radical concept. That's basic human f***ing decency, and anyone who denies it is a sociopath. Libertarianism is not so much an ideology as it is reality.

You see, it doesn't take much to be a libertarian other than a pair of eyes and common sense. Libertarians don't have to try hard to make arguments against the state. All they have to do is observe its actions, and when it f***s up, point and say: "Look at that! Isn't that stupid?!" That's about it. Libertarians don't have to make crap up. The state produces enough crap on its own.

For example, when libertarians claim America is becoming a police state, while that may sound like reactionary hyperbole, it's hard not to reach that conclusion unless you're living under a rock. One only needs to notice the ever-increasing militarization of local law enforcement and the abuses thereof to realize this is exactly the case. Just last week, I discussed how two cops nearly beat a man to death for asking them to read his traffic ticket before signing it, and how they were only being prosecuted for that savage act of brutality two years later. When cops have the power to demand strip searches for even the most minor offenses, yet videotaping them can land you 75 years in prison, there 's nothing else you can call this country other than a police state.

And when libertarians claim that terrorism is blowback of our foreign policy, that may sound like treason to a flag-waving jingoistic patriot, but any examination of our recent military history will prove it true. Following the September 11 attacks, Al-Qaeda claimed they were instigated by our support of Israel, our military presence in Saudi Arabia, and our sanctions against Iraq. Blaming the terrorist attacks on blowback isn't exactly a stretch when the terrorists themselves cite our interventionist foreign policy as the reason behind their attacks.

And when libertarians claim that our public schools are state indoctrination centers, that may sound "anti-education" and "anti-intellectual", but only if you're not paying attention. We spend more on education per student than any other country on earth, yet test scores remain stagnant. Our education system is clearly failing to educate. And it very well could be through design. In social studies classes across the country, students are reading textbooks "informing" them that "the threat of terrorism can be eliminated, the Patriot Act was not controversial and Iraq had weapons of mass destruction." This is not teaching children how to think, but what to think. What is that called again? Oh yes. Indoctrination!

And when libertarians claim that socialized medicine will lead to "death panels," that may sound like sensationalist rhetoric, but one need only look towards Europe to confirm its accuracy. Most European healthcare systems already have government bureaucrats determining who receives healthcare; and in most cases, the elderly are denied, dooming them to death. The British NHS alone kills 130,000 elderly patients annually through healthcare rations. And yes: Obamacare does not institute "death panels"; but considering how the bill is a baby step towards socialized medicine, it's not illogical to assume "death panels" are the inevitable outcome.

And when libertarians argue how Obama is acting like a tyrant, that may sound like bitter resentment, but it's hardly unfounded. Under his administration, the president has gained the power to target American citizens for indefinite detention, lethal force, and assassination without so much as "clear evidence" against them. Obama has launched more drone strikes than his predecessor. He has prosecuted more whistleblowers than any previous president. Just recently, his administration admitted to killing four American citizens through drone strikes. If that doesn't sound like a tyrant, that what the hell does?

Regardless of the issue, libertarians do not have to resort to making crap up. There is no need to. Reality is on their side. Their position is supported by logic, reason, and evidence. They do not have to lie. They only need to tell the truth.

Not so for their opponents. Those who oppose libertarianism have to resort to lying. Either they realize they cannot refute their arguments in good faith, or they lack the intelligence to do so. They have no choice but to make stuff up about libertarians and their ideology.

Those who oppose libertarianism claim libertarianism barrels down to "I've got mine. F*** you!" They claim libertarians are greedy and selfish. They argue libertarians are privileged white men who want to ensure freedom only for themselves. They claim libertarians want dirty air and water. They argue libertarianism will result in feudalism. They claim Somalia is a libertarian paradise. They decry libertarianism as a utopian pipe-dream. They decry libertarians as corporate fascists. And in the case with this recent example, they accuse libertarians of supporting slavery, dictatorship, serfdom, robbery, lynching, private imprisonment, and child prostitution.

In short, most arguments against libertarianism amount to strawmen. They cannot honestly refute libertarianism. They are unable to. They must resort to creating strawmen, knocking them down, and claiming victory. And when anyone, usually a knowledgeable libertarian, points out that their arguments are strawmen, they will only continue to insist that their arguments are legit. There is no sense arguing with them. They cannot be reasoned with because they could never reason to begin with. How can one possibly reason with someone who never subscribed to reason in the first? To plagiarize Dr. House, if anti-libertarians could be reasoned with, anti-libertarians would not exist.

Homeschooling On The Rise

More and more parents are beginning to see the public "education" system for the farce it really is, and more and more are acting accordingly by pulling their children out of it:
As the dissatisfaction with the U.S. education system among parents grows, so does the appeal of homeschooling. Since 1999, the number of children who are being homeschooled has increased by 75% in all states including Arizona, Texas, and California. Although currently only 4% of all school children nationwide are educated at home, the number of primary school kids whose parents choose to forgo traditional education is growing seven times faster than the number of kids enrolling in K-12 every year.

Any concerns expressed about the quality of education offered to the kids by their parents can surely be put to rest by the consistently high placement of homeschooled kids on standardized assessment exams. Data shows that those who are independently educated typically score between 65th and 89th percentile on such exams, while those attending traditional schools average on the 50th percentile. Furthermore, the achievement gaps, long plaguing school systems around the country, aren’t present in homeschooling environment. There’s no difference in achievement between sexes, income levels or race/ethnicity.
There's simply no defending our public "education" system. Despite spending more on education per student than any other country on earth, test scores remain stagnant and linger behind those of other developed nations. Our public schools are graduating more and more students who cannot read and who require remedial college classes.

Whether by accident or design, our public "education" system has failed to educate our children. More and more parents are realizing this. They are realizing that our politicians have no intention of reforming the system, since it's not in their best interests to do so. With this stark realization, parents are left with only one option: opt out of the system!

Question is: how long will they be allowed to do so?

Mark my words, as with its other services, the corporate state will do anything to maintain its monopoly. It will not permit competitors to usurp its privilege of educating children. It will ensure that the next generation is educated the way it sees fit, with the curriculum it deems appropriate, and with the education standards it wishes to impose.

Right now, the corporate state is trying to stem this ever-growing tide by using its media to smear homeschooling and dehumanize homeschooled children. But like Canute the Great trying to command the tides, the state will ultimately fail to dissuade the people from educating their own children. Once it realizes it cannot stop this trend through persuasion, as always, it will try to stop it by force.

Do I mean to imply that the state will outlaw homeschooling? It isn't unlikely. Many other countries have done the same. Take Brazil, for instance. The country has banned homeschooling, and its education system is heavily regulated by the federal government.  Incidentally, this country academically lags behind other South American counties, if not other countries worldwide. Coincidence?

Even in our own country, our politicians do not care for homeschooling. Just earlier this year, the Obama Administration deported a German immigrant family seeking asylum in order to homeschool their children. If our government does not wish to protect homeschoolers from other countries, it certainly will not protect homeschoolers in our own country.

By all means, let us continue to opt out of the system while we still can, but do not be surprised when the ultimately state prevents us from doing so. Where we go from there, sadly, I do not know.

Pity Poor Anita Sarkeesian!

I'm sure most of you already know about Anita Sarkeesian, a.k.a.: Feminist Frequency, a.k.a.: That-Whiney-Feminist-Who-Thinks-Vidya-Games-Are-Teh-Sexist!

Well, she recently tweeted this spark of genius concerning E3:
@femfreq: Thanks #XboxOne #E3 press conference for revealing to us exactly zero games featuring a female protagonist for the next generation.
Ah yes, those poor, poor wimmins is being oppressed because there are NO new video games with female protagonists.

Meanwhile, Sony's E3 press conference released trailers for Mirror Edge 2 and Lightning Returns: FFXIII. The irony here is painful!

As can be expected, Anita's tweet was meet with massive scorn and ridicule (and admittedly, some of it was genuinely misogynist); and predictably enough, she blogged about all the "hate" she received over it, and how it proves that women like her are still  being treated as second-class citizens.

Oh, woe is her! What kind of world do we live in where women are mocked for saying blatantly stupid things? Clearly this is teh patriarchy keeping dah wimmins down! How much longer must teh wimmins suffer under such oppresion?

Sunday, June 9, 2013

Murray Rothbard PWNS Daily Kos

A few weeks ago, the Daily Kos--which is clearly the pinnacle of intellectual discourse--published a blog post called Five Horrific Things Libertarian/Conservative Logic Calls "Freedom", and as you can guess from the title, the post is merely a string of libertarian strawmen. (But then again, what argument against libertarianism doesn't barrel down to a strawman?)

I have much to say about this blog post, which I will address in a future post, but for now, I want to address one particular argument. According to the mental midget who wrote this screed, one of the alleged "freedoms" that libertarians support is slavery.

I'll wait for you to stop laughing before I continue.

Anyway, according to his logic--or rather, lack thereof--the libertarian concept of self-ownership supports slavery because, if every individual is property unto himself, it follows that he is able to sell himself into slavery.

Now anyone with a basic understanding of libertarian philosophy can clearly see this is a bastardization of the self-ownership principle. Self-ownership claims that every individual human being is the sole proprietor of his own person, and because of this, he cannot be owned by another human being.

As for the individual allegedly being allowed to voluntarily "sell himself" into slavery, Rothbard, in his Ethics of Liberty, demolishes this argument thusly:
[While] a man can alienate his labor service, but he cannot sell the capitalized future value of that service. In short, he cannot, in nature, sell himself into slavery and have this sale enforced-for this would mean that his future will over his own person was being surrendered in advance. In short, a man can naturally expend his labor currently for someone else's benefit, but he cannot transfer himself, even if he wished, into another man's permanent capital good. For he cannot rid himself of his own will, which may change in future years and repudiate the current arrangement. The concept of "voluntary slavery" is indeed a contradictory one, for so long as a laborer remains totally subservient to his master's will voluntarily, he is not yet a slave since his submission is voluntary; whereas, if he later changed his mind and the master enforced his slavery by violence, the slavery would not then be voluntary.
Fancy that: a recent objection to libertarianism being demolished by an argument made by a libertarian thinker decades ago! It's as though any question or objection to libertarian thought can be easily addressed by reading libertarian literature.

Contrary to what anti-libertarians claim, libertarianism is not a radical concept: it is a universal one based upon over 300 years of enlightenment philosophy and thought. This ideology is not confined to Ayn Rand's novels, as many anti-libertarians argue; rather, being based upon classic liberalism, it extends from great thinkers from John Locke and Adam Smith, to Fredric Bastiat and Herbert Spencer, to Ludwig Von Mises and F.A. Hayek.

Of course, most anti-libertarians have never read any work written by these great minds. Most never even heard of them. When they think of libertarians, they think of Ayn Rand, who never even liked libertarians; and even then, these anti-libertarians probably never even read anything by her. If they did, they wouldn't equate her "makers vs. takers" dichotomy as being about "rich vs. poor"--which is a fallacious oversimplification.

Then again, I highly doubt that any of these anti-libertarians have read anything longer than a postage stamp. Unlike libertarians, they simply don't do much reading. After all, reading leads to thinking, and as experience has shown, anti-libertarians simply don't think.

Saturday, June 8, 2013

Daily Pony: Monthly T. Pony's Crying Ficus

A ponified version of a classic Monty Python skit.

Spam! Spam! Spam! Spam! Wonderful Spam!

Impeach Obama

When I first discovered the Amazing Atheist over five years ago, being a conservative Christian, I naturally despised him. I deplored his views on religion and politics, and wondered how anyone like him could garner such a huge audience.

However, as time went on, out of morbid curiosity, I watched more and more of his videos; and as I did so, I discovered that, even though I overwhelmingly disagreed with him, I had developed some respect for him and his views. I still disagreed with him, but respectfully so. To paraphrase Voltaire, I disagreed with what he had to say but supported his right to say. And as time continued forward, I surprisingly found myself agreeing with a lot that he had to say, to the point where I have since subscribed to his YouTube channel.

Don't get me wrong: the man is still a deplorable ass, and many of his past actions attest to that, and I still think he is wrong about God and religion. However, when it comes to his social and political views, I have come to agree with most of them, and even those I disagree with the rest, I respectfully disagree with them.

But now TJ has released a video that has earned him my full respect, to the point where I now endorse his channel and urge people to subscribe to him.

In his recent video, TJ lambasts Obama's blatant hypocrisy concerning warrantees wiretapping and surveillance, and in doing so, calls for Obama's impeachment.

I give this video my standing ovation and his channel my full endorsement. If you are not subscribed to him, by all means, do so!

Friday, June 7, 2013

I Am Bradley Manning

Recently a website in support of whistleblower Bradley Manning was released along with the following video:

What's ironic about all this is that I learned about it from Jim Hoft (a.k.a.: Gateway Pundit), who, in his blog post, referred to Manning as a "traitor," and did not have kind words to say on his behalf:
Never before has a superpower lost control of such vast amounts of sensitive information. The leaked documents reportedly came from the same source- Private First Class Bradley Manning – who was bitter after a breakup with his boyfriend. Manning, smuggled the information out of a secure facility on a CD-RW labeled “Lady Gaga.”
Of course, that hardly compares to this gem in the comment section:
Treason is a capital offense. How many of these f**king bradley mannings can we hang. I have a lot of rope handy and will gladly contribute. Of course we can expedite things and follow Chinas lead....shoot the bastards and send their families a bill for the bullets.

What's really ironic is that, if you visit his blog right now, Hoft is currently obsessing over the recent NSA revelation. He's indignant--and rightfully so--over the federal government collecting information from the personal electronic communications of American citizens; and yet, when a whistleblower leaks information from the federal government, he calls that person a "traitor"?

This is something I don't get about "conservatives" and their perception of Bradley Manning. They rant and rave against "tyrannical" government--a government that is no longer accountable or transparent; and yet, when someone like Manning tries to make said government more accountable and transparent by leaking information that the public has a right to know about--information that wouldn't have to be leaked if the government were more transparent, they denounce him as a traitor and demand that he be hung from the highest tree.

This is why I no longer consider myself a "conservative." They claim to be against "big government," but only when it suits their agenda. To them, the current military-industrial complex, with its overbloated budget and worldwide dominance, does not count as "big government," and anyone who tries to limit it, either by cutting military spending or by leaking military information, is considered a "traitor."

Apparently, a military superpower that polices the world is not "tyrannical," while a city government that offers free bicycles is. It's as though conservatives have lost the meaning of the word "tyrannical."

Shooting Escorts Legal In Texas

There's something about Texas that brings out the insanity in people. Maybe it's the heat. Maybe it's the collective stupidity. Whatever it is, only in a state as insane as Texas can a killer walk free because the escort he killed denied him sex:
A jury in Bexar County, Texas just acquitted Ezekiel Gilbert of charges that he murdered a 23-year-old Craigslist escort—agreeing that because he was attempting to retrieve the $150 he'd paid to Lenora Ivie Frago, who wouldn't have sex with him, his actions were justified.

Gilbert had admitted to shooting Frago in the neck on Christmas Eve 2009, when she accepted $150 from Gilbert and left his home without having sex with him. Frago, who was paralyzed by the shooting, died several months later.

Gilbert's defense argued that the shooting wasn't meant to kill, and that Gilbert's actions were justified, because he believed that sex was included as part of the fee. Texas law allows people "to use deadly force to recover property during a nighttime theft."

The 30-year-old hugged his defense attorneys after the "not guilty" verdict was read by the judge. If convicted, he could have faced life in prison. He thanked God, his lawyers, and the jury for being able to "see what wasn't the truth."
I'm sorry, but as a Christian, I do not feel that a man who shot and killed a woman because she refused to have sex with him has any right invoking God on his side. Then again, we live in a backwards country where the lowest lowlifes from Newt Gingrich to George Zimmerman can claim to be God-fearing Christians while taking huge steaming dumps on the very sacred tome they claim to believe in.

This ruling was sheer madness. When I think of "deadly force to recover property during a nighttime theft," I'm thinking of a lady defending herself in a dark alleyway from a knife-wielding punk trying to snatch her purse, not of a sleazy middle-aged man shooting an unarmed woman in the back of the head because she denied him poohtang. I'm all for self-defense and property rights, but this is stretching it.

The worst part about this story is that its sure to be used as an anecdote about the "dangers" of prostitution and a reason why it should be illegal--even though this incident only occurred BECAUSE prostitution is illegal. It's only because the world's oldest profession is illegal that it's pushed into the black market in the guise of "escort" services. Because of this, you end up with creeps procuring such services in the hopes of getting laid, and when they find out they're not--well, this story happens to be the more violent outcome. A less violent outcome would be the creep getting sex from the woman by force.

This is hardly an isolated incident. Every negative aspect that can be attributed to prostitution including rampant STDs, sex trafficking, child prostitution, and violence against sex workers can all be attributed to its criminality. It's only because prostitution is illegal that it's forced into the black market to operate without regulation. Only by legalizing it can it be granted the same oversight given to other professions, ensuring protection for both the prostitute and the public.

But as long as moral busybodies, from right-wing theocrats to left-wing feminists, continue to push their morality through law, more people will continue to be hurt through this profession. How many sex workers (or, in this case, alleged sex workers) have to die in the name of preserving puritanism?

Economics In One Lesson Animated

The smart (and sexy!) Amanda BillyRock will be launching her new website, and with it, a series of economics cartoons based on Henry Hazlitt's Economics In One Lesson.

Check out the preview:

EXCLUSIVE Eric Holder Interview!

Eric Holder accepts an interview at...West Michigan Junior High School?

Well, at least this interview was far more in-depth and grilling than any of the previous interviews he's had in the mainstream media.

Guess Who Once Opposed Warrantless Wiretaps?

At this point, the entire media and internet is ablaze over the recent revelation that the National Security Agency has been collecting phone records from millions of American citizens, as well as monitoring other forms of electronic communications from e-mails to text messages. If any of this is news to you, or even the least bit shocking, you're not paying attention!

Fortunately, there have been politicians who've been paying attention to these egregious violations of our right to privacy. In fact, one of these politicians was very vocal against such government oversight, especially during the Bush administration.

In 2007, this "Constitutional scholar" had this to say about warrantless wiretapping under the Patriot Act:
This administration also puts forward a false choice between the liberties we cherish and the security we provide. I will provide our intelligence and law enforcement agencies with the tools they need to track and take out the terrorists without undermining our Constitution and our freedom. That means no more illegal wiretapping of American citizens. No more national security letters to spy on citizens who are not suspected of a crime. No more tracking citizens who do nothing more than protest a misguided war. No more ignoring the law when it is inconvenient. That is not who we are, and it is not what is necessary to defeat the terrorists. The FISA Court works. The separations of powers works. Our Constitution works. We will again set an example for the world that the law is not subject to the whims of stubborn rulers, and that justice is not arbitrary. This administration acts like violating civil liberties is the way to enhance our security. It is not. There are no shortcuts to protecting America.
What verbosity. What courage. Clearly this politician cares about protecting our civil liberties, and we need him to fight for it. Whoever he is, he must consider running for office, perhaps even as President of the United States.

What's that? This man IS the President? And he's the one who authorized the NSA to spy on American citizens?

Well, this is ironic.

Oh well, at least we still have principled politicians like Rand Paul, who introduced a bill to curb this kind of surveillance. Clearly we can trust him, right? Perhaps trusting a politician who merely paid lip service to the Constitution was a poor choice the first time around, but certainly the second time is a charm, right? Right?!