Sons of Wichita: Q&A with Daniel Schulman About His Koch Brothers' Biography

President Barack Obama and Senate Majority Leader Harry Reid (D-Nev.) have called them out by name. On the broadly defined left, they are accused of controlling every aspect of the country's politics and business climate. They have been lampooned in bad movies and worse songs.

They are David and Charles Koch, the libertarian-leaning billionaires who are the subject of the new book Sons of Wichita: How the Koch Brothers Became America's Most Powerful and Private Dynasty, by Daniel Schulman.

"I think the one misconception that people have about [the Kochs] is that they are merely out there to line their pockets," says Schulman, a senior editor at Mother Jones.

In an account that is even-handed and well-researched (though far from uncritical), Schulman charts the brothers' central role in creating the modern libertarian movement and their principled opposition to subsidies and other forms of corporate welfare. He also details their criticism of conservative stances regarding many lifestyle issues and interventionist foreign policy. (Disclosure: David Koch is a trustee of the Reason Foundation, the nonprofit that publishes this website.)

Schulman sat down with Reason's Nick Gillespie to talk about Sons of Wichita, misconceptions about the Koch brothers, and whether American politics is gearing up for a showdown between the likes of Sen. Elizabeth Warren (D-Mass.) and Sen. Rand Paul (R-Ky.) in 2016.

Cameras by Todd Krainin and Joshua Swain. Edited by Swain.

About 15 minutes.

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Scroll down for HD, Flash, MP4, and MP3 versions.

For a fuller discussion of the Koch brothers' role in libertarianism and contemporary politics, read Gillespie's "Libertarianism 3.0: Koch and a Smile."

Editor's Note: We invite comments and request that they be civil and on-topic. We do not moderate or assume any responsibility for comments, which are owned by the readers who post them. Comments do not represent the views of Reason.com or Reason Foundation. We reserve the right to delete any comment for any reason at any time. Report abuses.

  • sticks||

    only

  • Mike M.||

    Wow, this thread sure sucked the first time around.

    Maybe responding to a week old comment for no real reason will get things going.

  • LemonMender||

    And apparently they didn't think it was good enough the second time around either, since now this appears at the top of the feed for a *third* time after another week.

  • LemonMender||

    Opps, misread the dates. Now I feel stupid.

  • Jesus H. Christ||

    I know nothing about the Koch's other than they seem to be the Slenderman of the Progressive movement.

  • GILMORE||

    Have you wiped your ass with Quilted Northern toilet paper?

    Then you are one of their slaves.

  • Canman||

    The mp3 link doesn't work. I hate that!

  • Bruce Majors Libertarian4Mayor||

    Few people knew that the Koch brothers are 1/8 black until their donation to the UNCF, but Henry Louis Gates is writing about it at The Root.

  • Hyperion||

    Kochtopus!!! Oh noes, the government is controlled by crazed libertarians who want businesses regulated to death and job killing climate hysteria to be enacted by executive action.

    /Derp

  • PapayaSF||

    As John here once said: You have to watch out for libertarians. They might take over and leave everybody alone.

  • Kevin47||

    No. Then we'll just be controlled by the corporate fascists. When government controls everything, they are accountable to the peoplez!

  • Hyperion||

    When government controls everything, they are accountable to the peoplez!

    Was that sarcasm or an attempt to reach peak derp?

  • Kevin47||

    That's the counterargument from progressives who want to pretend their embrace of fascism isn't exactly that.

  • VG Zaytsev||

    Everything under government
    Nothing against government
    Noting apart from government

  • cavalier973||

    Anything not forbidden is compulsory.

  • Nooge.||

    Libertarians are the perfect bogeymen.

    By the way, why are progressive billionaires like Buffett and Soros okay, but the Kochs are scary evil?

  • Hyperion||

    Because, Rethuglicans, duh!

  • GILMORE||

    TIMETRAVELING THREADBUMP

  • ||

    All we need is a Delorean and a flux capacitor and we're all set. Oh shit, Libyans!

  • Dumbass||

    totally useless without a powersource capable of delivering 1.21 gigawatts

  • ||

    That's what the Libyans were for!

  • Grand Moff Serious Man||

    Why I left right-libertarianism, or: Rothbard said you can let your children starve to death and that's not okay

    At least Rothbard recognizes that children are subject to the non-aggression principle, but outside of direct aggression (or maybe just aggression that results in death or mutilation) he reinforces that libertarian theory has nothing to say. A parent can starve their child to death. We might find this morally reprehensible, as Rothbard surely did, but it’s outside the purview of the political ethic.

    Walter Block, another prominent libertarian theorist, has attempted to narrow the case where abandonment is permissible (no one is willing to “homestead” the abandoned baby), but rejects that the non-aggression principle applies to children. Why? Because children aren’t full humans with all the same rights as adults. They exist in a superposition between animals and humans. Which means it’s permissible to aggress against children.

    Both Rothbard and Block accept that some degree of child abuse either violates the NAP (in Rothbard’s case) or delegitimizes parental ownership (in Block’s case), but what constitutes abuse represents a “continuum problem” for libertarians. Some attacks on children are okay but not too much. It’s a big gray area.

    It’s embarrassing that many libertarians have so little moral clarity on this issue.

  • PapayaSF||

    Hard cases make bad law, and all ideologies result in absurdities if applied at full strength to everything.

  • SForza||

    No, no, no! Children should be starved, and if they complain, they should be beaten.

    So it is, and so it ever shall be.

  • Cytotoxic||

    all ideologies result in absurdities if applied at full strength to everything.

    Except for Objectivism.

  • ||

    The non-aggression principle is a principle, not an entire philosophy. Attempting to apply a single principle as the guide in every conceivable situation is going to result in absurdities.

    I am not really a big fan of the non-aggression principle. It is a logical conclusion of self ownership, as are many other principles, yet it is often held out as some sort of foundational principle.

    In any case, it is not ok to starve your children.

  • Dances-with-Trolls||

    In any case, it is not ok to starve your children.

    I don't know any libertarian that would starve their children. In fact, I don't know any mentally healthy people of any political persuasion that would starve their children.

    I am, however, a libertarian that would gladly starve a lot of local proggie hipsters. By which I mean prevent them from buying lobster tails and energy drinks with their EBT cards.

  • ||

    I laughed.

    Yeah, in that case it is more than ok.

  • PapayaSF||

    I am, however, a libertarian that would gladly starve a lot of local proggie hipsters.

    Drive them out of Trader Joe's with sexist song lyrics!

  • Irish||

    At least Rothbard recognizes that children are subject to the non-aggression principle, but outside of direct aggression (or maybe just aggression that results in death or mutilation) he reinforces that libertarian theory has nothing to say. A parent can starve their child to death. We might find this morally reprehensible, as Rothbard surely did, but it’s outside the purview of the political ethic.

    This confuses me. Rothbard was, in many ways, an idiot. I think he was right about many things, but when I read him there are a lot of things he argues which seem to be either lacking in evidence or are total absurdities.

    Libertarians don't mindlessly follow Murray Rothbard. I'm not sure why what Rothbard had to say on a subject is really relevant.

  • Grand Moff Serious Man||

    In his view, Rothbard represents the logical conclusion of libertarian morality.

    I feel it is bait and switch since he pulls the stunt of rejecting minarchy on the fact that it still allows for NAP violation and then sort of half-heartedly endorses libertarian socialism at the end, thus ignoring the issue of minarchy all together.

  • Grand Moff Serious Man||

    In his view, Rothbard represents the logical conclusion of libertarian morality.

    I feel it is bait and switch since he pulls the stunt of rejecting minarchy on the fact that it still allows for NAP violation and then sort of half-heartedly endorses libertarian socialism at the end, thus ignoring the issue of minarchy all together.

  • Irish||

    One idiotic aspect of this is that a lot of libertarians don't really believe in the NAP at all. Others are willing to make exceptions in some cases, etc. You don't really see many libertarians who would argue we should apply the NAP to every single instance in our lives.

    There are libertarians who are libertarians for utilitarian reasons, libertarians who are libertarian for moral reasons, etc. and a as a result you can't really claim 'all libertarians believe X.' This is especially true given that rural libertarians tend to be more socially conservative than urban libertarians, so there's a fairly obvious split right there.

  • Grand Moff Serious Man||

    I suppose I am utilitarian since I reject going too far down the anarchy road in favor of simply minimizing the amount of coercion in society while enabling the greatest amount of freedom--all in the most practical manner available.

    The NAP is something that should be a core value of society and the individuals that comprise it. If we can get more people to think that way then the state will wither away. Unfortunately human nature makes that difficult.

  • ||

    Human nature makes that impossible. Assuming that other people are like yourself is a huge mistake. Many people are savages at heart, held at bay only by the threat of force. They don't act out of principle as they have none. There will always be large numbers of these types.

    The total state/anarchy condition exists in a homeostatic system. If it goes too far toward one end of the scale it is pushed back toward the other. It will never reach the absolute end of either.

  • Zeb||

    Yes, well stated. I consider myself a philosophical anarchist. Ultimately, there is nothing special about a government compared to some other group of people willing to use force to control people to some degree or other, it's just individuals acting as they see fit. But I fully accept that anarchy is not really a possible (or even necessarily desirable) state of affairs on any large scale. Governments just happen and that seems to be a part of human nature, in large groups, at least.

  • Francisco d'Anconia||

    thus ignoring the issue of minarchy...

  • Yenrab. Knarf Yenrab.||

    No, and this isn't a particularly difficult gedankenexperiment in libertarian theory, though it's a good opportunity for idiots to bash Rothbard or pretend that libertarians support starving children to death.

    Starving an infant to death, meaning that you lock him or her away in a room where no one else can care for or homestead them, is murder. Relinquishing your parental rights by abandoning the child by its nature permits others to assume parental responsibility for the child. If no one else accepts that--if it's known that there's a hungry infant who's been abandoned by his parents--and the infant starves to death, that isn't murder, anymore than it's murder to kick a squatter out of your house in the middle of a blizzard. Most of us, myself included, would socially isolate someone who would do something so immoral as to abandon a child, but the alternative is to create a statist child-welfare system like we have today, which does massively more harm than good.

    The alternative to abandonment/homesteading theory with children is to claim that others have a natural right to leech off of another's existence, which is tantamount to slavery and, not coincidentally, the favorite theory of smug authoritarians like Obama, who seem to believe that coercing parents is a legitimate role of the state.

    You can either support slavery and oppose libertarianism or you can support abandonment theory, but there's not any middle ground and certainly no utopia to be found in either.

  • LemonMender||

    … but the alternative is to create a statist child-welfare system like we have today, which does massively more harm than good.… You can either support slavery and oppose libertarianism or you can support abandonment theory, but there's not any middle ground and certainly no utopia to be found in either.

    A lot of question begging in this comment. One does not need to embrace either extreme to be philosophically consistent. One can oppose the welfare system and yet think that people do have some both moral and legal responsibility for their offspring. Even without a CPS or a legal mechanism to take children away, it is entirely possible to maintain that failing to provide for children for whom you are legally responsible should make one subject to relevant homicide/attempted homicide laws. And if children are abandoned, volunteer organizations could be involved in addressing their need without requiring a intrusive bureaucratic apparatus.

    You are making the mistake of assuming that the status quo is the only philosophic alternative to accepting Rothbard’s position and that Rothbard’s position is the only philosophic alternative to the status quo. It is this sort of absolutist and impractical thinking that plays right into the stereotypes of libertarians the the author of that piece was treating as the reality to frighten people away.

  • LemonMender||

    I see others below say the reading of Rothbard I am commenting against is a poor reading, but the comment I am responding to seems to assume that reading to be correct and semi-endorses it.

  • Yenrab. Knarf Yenrab.||

    If you're going to accuse someone of question begging, Tulpa, it's customary to point out where they've begged the question.

    Your concern for the "moral" and "legal" obligations--the former understandable and the latter an odd digression if you understand the origins of meaningful law, namely from the market rather than legislation by your political betters--demonstrates your failure to understand the central question of libertarianism, namely concerns of how people are to live together and to treat one another. The traditional word for this is ethics. Libertarianism is a political ethic, nothing more.

    You are making the mistake of assuming that the status quo is the only philosophic alternative to accepting Rothbard’s position and that Rothbard’s position is the only philosophic alternative to the status quo.

    I don't recall conflating the soft fascism that we have today with communism or monarchy, though I understand why you have to misrepresent others' arguments to win your internet debates.

  • LemonMender||

    I'm not now, and never have been, Tulpa. But since you seem to read this as part of Tulpa's argument rather than the argument I actually made, I'm at a loss as to how to respond to this, since you aren't responding to me.

    But the comment I responded to assumes the outcome, that there are only two alternatives, and then uses that assumption to arrive at the conclusion that if you don't agree with Rothbard you are in favor of a government welfare system. I'm just pointing out that you have set up a false dichotomy and then used it to prove your point, which is pretty basic question begging.

  • LemonMender||

    In other words, one can believe that failure of a parent to provide nourishment for his/her children (who are wholly reliant upon them for nourishment) falls under a legal definition of murder without also calling for the State to have a bureaucratic apparatus to take children and provide welfare for them.

    You are the one who *assertion* (without providing any evidence for said assertion) that A (belief that a legal definition of murder applies here) leads to B (a fascistic social welfare state).

    But because you are so keen to fight some other argument it is you who pulled in communism and monarchy, which are concepts I made absolutely no reference to and which never entered my mind when writing the comment. And then you complain about *me* misrepresenting *your* argument? I can only hope you were aware of the thick irony when you wrote that.

    The fact that I separated legal and moral obligations in my phrasing might have clued you in to the fact that I don't see them as the same thing, but that leads you to fight yet another shadow warrior that isn't me. But if we have a legal system (which we do), then talking about legal definitions and their relationship (or lack thereof) to moral and ethical relationships is hardly proof that I don't understand markets or think that my "betters" should legislate things.

    But then you aren't responding to my comment at all, but a figment of your imagination made in response to someone else.

  • LemonMender||

    …err, who *asserted*…

  • Ted S.||

  • OldMexican||

    A parent can starve their [sic] child to death. We might find this morally reprehensible, as Rothbard surely did, but it’s outside the purview of the political ethic.


    Leaving aside the obvious bullshit that Rothbard said that a parent can starve his children to death or the obvious grammatical error, there's the problem of simple logic to which the author seems oblivious, to wit: What about a parent, who is starving himself and unable to provide, keeping his kids with him (out of pride) to starve with him instead of giving them away to other people who could feed them? Is the parent acting according to the author's expectations of parental responsibility?

    Rothbard is simply answering a question on parental responsibility from the standpoint of the ethic of liberty, assuming that the children are free individuals just like their parents. Block disagrees in the sense that kids are simply too close to savages to become completely free individuals and thus still under the tutelage and responsibility of the parents until such a time the children are independent enough to emancipate.

  • OldMexican||

    The next question is if parents can abandon their children to which Rothbard says "abandoning your children does NOT violate the Non-Aggression principle" even if abandoning them leads to the children starving to death. Block disagrees with this, as taking the children to a place where their starvation is guaranteed is in itself an act of aggression and thus reprehensible. However, giving them away to a person or persons that can feed and look after them is not an act of aggression even if it is technically abandonment.

    Re: Irish,

    This confuses me. Rothbard was, in many ways, an idiot.


    Read what Rothbard actually said and not the editorialized version of a Salon dot com statist so you're not confused anymore.

  • OldMexican||

    The next question is if parents can abandon their children to which Rothbard says "abandoning your children does NOT violate the Non-Aggression principle" even if abandoning them leads to the children starving to death. Block disagrees with this, as taking the children to a place where their starvation is guaranteed is in itself an act of aggression and thus reprehensible. However, giving them away to a person or persons that can feed and look after them is not an act of aggression even if it is technically abandonment.

    Re: Irish,

    This confuses me. Rothbard was, in many ways, an idiot.


    Read what Rothbard actually said and not the editorialized version of a Salon dot com statist so you're not confused anymore.

  • Grand Moff Serious Man||

    Salon comment of the day:

    nywriter 19 minutes ago
    This is just one of many meta-analysis that I have posted here on Salon on innumerable occasions.



    Altogether, I have posted the results of numerous meta-analysis of studies of guns, some going back over several decades.



    These studies ALL conclude that guns cause death -- and weak gun laws cause death.
  • Grand Moff Serious Man||

    Continued:

    Here are the stats:

    Murders per 100K people



    USA -- 2.97

    Canada -- 0.5

    Australia -- 0.14 (used to be sky high until a 1996 law reduced murders by roughly 70 percent)

    France -- 0/07

    England -- 0.06

    Japan -- 0.01

    EVERY other OECD nation -- between a tiny fraction of the USA murder rate and a murder rate roughly equal to Canada's



    I have posted these stats on dozens of occasions.



    Anyone with a brain would look at the studies and stats and say "we need to do something about this. We CANNOT let thousands of people die every year because American conservatives are stupid and greedy sociopaths."

    Now to say that lax guns laws cause death is silly because we all know that violent crime and murders have gone done even as America as become more gun friendly.

    His response to be called out on this:

    I just posted the meta-analysis that says you are wrong.



    You need to be taken to task for being a POS liar.



    Anyone with a brain knows why the USA murder rate is dozens of times higher than the murder rate of other nations. Dozens of meta-analysis over DECADES have the same conclusion -- lax gun laws cause murders.

    It's like Tony and Palin's Buttplug produced an equally retarded and equally nasty child.

  • Irish||

    EVERY other OECD nation -- between a tiny fraction of the USA murder rate and a murder rate roughly equal to Canada's

    Uh...Mexico is an OECD nation and has a murder rate approximately 15 times what America's is.

    So this guy apparently doesn't even know what countries belong to the OECD.

    Also, Venezuela banned firearms about a decade ago and their murder rate has tripled and Mexico also bans firearms and has the second highest murder rate on Earth...after Venezuela.

    So the two countries with the highest murder rates on the planet have total firearm bans and both have seen their murder rates go up AFTER the ban was implemented.

    The only other Latin American country in the OECD is Chile, which has gun laws pretty similar to America's and happens to have the lowest murder rate in Latin America.

    See how much more complicated this issue becomes when you take other countries into consideration instead of just comparing America to Canada? Why does the U.S. only get compared to countries that are 95% white and western when people are talking about homicide rates? Is it because progressives are racists who like to pretend brown people don't exist?

  • Grand Moff Serious Man||

    That is excellent, and I did try to raise that point but he hasn't responded.

    If I may I think I'll copy what you said and paste it in a new comment front and center. People like that deserve to have their noses rubbed in their own feces.

  • Irish||

    Yes, please copy and paste and tell me his response.

  • Grand Moff Serious Man||

    Well the first post attempt was deleted or lost, so a second attempt has been made.

  • Grand Moff Serious Man||

    I think that thread is pretty much dead. I got one response complaining that it isn't fair since Mexico and Venezuela are poor, corrupt, and ravaged by drug and sectarian conflict.

    Because that explains their violence and not the violence in shitholes like Camden, Newark, and certain neighborhoods of Chicago.

  • Irish||

    Australia -- 0.14 (used to be sky high until a 1996 law reduced murders by roughly 70 percent)

    HAHAHAHAHAHAHAHAHA! This is a total fucking lie.

    Here's Australia's homicide rate since 1986.

    As you can see, the Australian homicide rate went from about .85 in 1996 to about .7 in 2004, a decrease of about 18%.

    Here's America.

    America's homicide rate between 1996, when Australia introduced their gun ban, and 2004 fell from 7.4 to 5.5, a decline of 26%. America's homicide rate fell more than Australia's did.

    Also, how can someone claim Australia had a 'sky high' homicide rate when the highest murder rate they've had since 1986 is 1.2? They've had one of the lowest murder rates on earth for at least 30 years, regardless of their gun laws.

  • Irish||

    Also, Australia's gun ban is bound to be more effective at actually getting guns off the streets since Australia is a fucking island.

    When people say we need a gun ban, I always wonder how they expect to enforce it. We have a gun riddled, high crime third world nation directly to our south and a border that progressives won't control because it's 'racist' to do so.

    Well, if we can't patrol the border of a third world country with a shit load of guns, how on Earth is any conceivable gun ban supposed to work? Are the Mexican cartels going to chose not to sell firearms in America out of the goodness of their hearts? If we can't stop the movement of cocaine and heroin, how do these people think gun prohibition is supposed to work?

  • ||

    England/Scotland/Wales is an island with a handgun ban so draconian that British Olympic pistol competitors have to practice in France or Ireland. Yet somehow gangs and criminals still get handguns, and quite easily. Imagine that.

  • Irish||

    Yeah, but that's just across the English Channel from mainland Britain.

    Australia is relatively close to Indonesia and Papua New Guinea, but they're farther from either than England is from France. Also, Papua New Guinea is so small and has a pretty small population, it's not as if you're going to see a well funded gun running operation from there.

    It's vastly different than shipping some guns across the English Channel and is obviously much different than having a 2000 mile border with a 3rd world nation with lots of guns.

  • ||

    No no no Irish, the Messicans get all of their guns from the US, so if we ban them here they won't have any to sell back to us. See?

  • Irish||

    I love arguments like that because they completely ignore the back yard gunsmiths of the Philippines:

    In the Philippines, they vote with their trigger fingers. Elections mean big business for illegal gunsmiths, who are looking forward to 2013 mid-term polls.

    With election-related violence commonplace, the Philippines imposes a ban on the carrying of guns for six months, from campaigning to the proclamation of winners.

    With legal access denied, Filipinos simply turn to the many illegal gunsmiths who ply their trade in back alleys and on the edge of rice fields despite government crackdowns.

    In Danao City, in the northeast of central Cebu island, they are already anticipating a windfall.

    "There's actually huge demand for guns, especially now and because of the elections next year," said a 33-year-old gunsmith, who asked to be named only as Remo, as he hammered away at bits of scrap metal in a makeshift factory in Danao.

    Clearly there's just not enough gun control.

  • Pathogen||

    Well, In Australia.. when guns are outlawed, only police outlaws will have guns...

  • ||

    "Anyone with a brain would look at the studies and stats and say " I forgot to take cultural differences and societal homogeneity into account" ".

    There, its fixed now.

    Did he include Mexico in his stats? Columbia? Other countries with strong gun control laws and astronomical murder rates? I am wondering who is really the POS liar.

    Actually, I'm not.

  • Hyperion||

    Canada -- 0.5

    Australia -- 0.14 (used to be sky high until a 1996 law reduced murders by roughly 70 percent)

    France -- 0/07

    England -- 0.06

    Japan -- 0.01

    Needz moar demograhics. I'm sorry, but why are we basing this on only countries that have an overwhelmingly caucasian population?

    Is Salon racist, as they have completely ignored every single country that is not almost entirely caucasion? Me thinks so.

  • PapayaSF||

    Anyone with a brain knows why the USA murder rate is dozens of times higher than the murder rate of other nations.

    Nope. The USA is more like #110, down in the middle of the pack.

  • Notorious G.K.C.||

    "I think the one misconception that people have about [the Kochs] is that they are merely out there to line their pockets"

    "people" = the people *I* know.

    "their criticism of conservative stances regarding many lifestyle issues"

    Lifestyle issues? Come one. You mean they disagree with conservatives about drinking expensive coffee, wearing white after Labor Day, or joining bowling leagues.

    Come on, this sounds like evasive vagueness.

  • Francisco d'Anconia||

    Just got back from the rodeo. Who names these guys? Did their mothers know they were going to be rodeo cowboys at birth?

    Chance
    Weston
    Cole
    Jordan
    Chase
    Beau
    Kory
    Dillon
    Guy
    Clay
    Garret...

  • Warrren||

    Ever seen a list of NASCAR drivers? Of course it's mostly the same demographics that they come from.

  • Agammamon||

    Its a cultural thing. I mean you hear the name Rufus or Shaniqua and what do you think of.

  • GILMORE||

    1970s funk bands?

  • Agammamon||

    Hmm, when I think of 1970's funk bands, names like Bootsy and George come to mind.

  • GILMORE||

    You need to get out more

  • Heroic Mulatto||

    Don't forget Maceo!

  • GILMORE||

    I plan to name my first son Zigaboo

  • Heroic Mulatto||

    @17:40....sooo godamm FONKY!

    Of course, we have Daptone still carrying the torch in 2014.

  • GILMORE||

    Gabe Roth (the bass player in every Daptone band, the main producer of all the recordings, and the co-founder of the label) was in the same class @ NYU with my best friend (a drummer), and we all ran in the same circles for about 5 years in the late 90s/early 2000s. I used to go to all the Sugarman 3/Mighty Imperials gigs, various other incarnations of their thing at the time (antibalas, budos band). That was also when i was DJing soul/funk nights in NY; we ran into one another a lot, and we also lived in the same neighborhood for years afterward. I think we'd both recognize each other by face now but havent seen them in years.

  • Heroic Mulatto||

    Awesome. I am jealous.

  • GILMORE||

    Funny daptone/Desco trivia

    This was i think their first 'successful' record, from 1998

    http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Daktaris

    and part of what made it popular was that it was released with the story that Desco had 'discovered' an unpublished 1970s afrobeat album and was 'reissuing' it. This was fairly common in the crate-digging scene (particularly in the 'deep funk' scene in England) and it actually got some international airplay/circulation and people bought the story, hook, line and sinker.

    naturally, it was just a bunch of 20something ex-NYU kids who recorded it in a basement in brooklyn with 2 mics and a reel-to-reel.

    as they note - one of the 'nigerian' song titles was, "Eltsuhg Ibal Lasiti"

    "Its all a big hustle", backwards.

  • PapayaSF||

    LOL

  • Francisco d'Anconia||

    I think of George Carlin and WYLD STALLYNS!

    *air guitar motion + dubbed "dedldeee" sound*

  • ||

    Actually they might. The rodeo crowd is fanatic and it does get passed down through generations.

  • Ted S.||

    Beau Bridges, Guy Lafleur, and Garret(t) Hobart? ;-)

  • Ted S.||

    Beau Bridges, Guy Lafleur, and Garret(t) Hobart? ;-)

  • Ted S.||

    I think I need a new mouse. I didn't realize I double-clicked the "Submit" button.

  • lap83||

    That's just what the squirrels want you to think.

  • GILMORE||

    NYT =

    Shit is all fucked-up in Iraq, which leads everyone to claim that they had the right ideas all along, just, uh, Republicans or something

    "Now that the spotlight has shifted to Iraq, the decision by the Obama administration not to arm moderate Syrian rebels at the outset is coming under scrutiny by critics who say the hands-off policy allowed the extremists to flourish.

    Former Secretary of State Hillary Rodham Clinton, who argued in favor of arming Syrian rebels, said last week at an event... “this is not just a Syrian problem anymore. I never thought it was just a Syrian problem. I thought it was a regional problem. I could not have predicted, however, the extent to which ISIS could be effective in seizing cities in Iraq and trying to erase boundaries to create an Islamic state.”

    Wait...what?

    You mean the *actual arming of Islamic militants in Syria which you were already doing*, ... you wish we'd have done *more of that*? You wish you had sent them more money and guns?

    DOUBLE DOWN BABY

    See, just because Hilary was Secretary of State when this was all going down? Don't try and like, pin this shit on her.

  • Pathogen||

    LEAVE. HILLARY. ALONE!!11!1!

  • VG Zaytsev||

    It's not like she bungled the gun running so bad that an ambassador got killed in the middle of it, or anything.

  • Cytotoxic||

    You know how we all want a libertarian island paradise? Apparently it already (sort of) exists and is called St. Kitts and Nevis. The catch is you have to pay to get in. And there's this guy that lets you pay in BTC.

    Plunk down $400,000 for real estate and you get a passport that allows visa-free travel to 120 countries. There are no taxes on personal income or capital gains and the islands’ restrictive disclosure laws offer shelter from outside scrutiny, according to the Tax Justice Network, a think tank that studies secrecy jurisdictions.

    Pretty sure drugs are still illegal, crime might be a problem, and I don't know what the gun laws are like but there's a guy living in St. Kitts and Nevin mentioned in the story who has a huge cache of them and posts pictures of them online.

  • Cytotoxic||

  • Heroic Mulatto||

    The catch is you have to pay to get in.

    You have to pay to get in; I already have a CARICOM passport.

    Seriously though, I like how the article paints anyone with two or more passports as inherently sketchy money launderers.

  • Ted S.||

    And of course "money laundering" is based on the fraudulent premise that it's moral for the state to have first claim on your money.

  • Agammamon||

    Of course you're inherently sketchy. By having two passports you've not fully committed to the social contract. If *you've* not fully committed, that might lead others to think *they* don't have to commit.

    Competition between governments! Then the government might have to give its citizens value for their money. How can Top Men govern if you can just *leave*?!

    Who will defend our nation if the young men can't be conscripted? Who will take on the overstuffed pension obligations?

  • PapayaSF||

    Homicide rate, USA: 4.8/100K. Rank: about #110.

    Homicide rate, St. Kitts and Nevis: 33.6/100K. Rank: #10.

  • Cytotoxic||

    Ah damn why so high? Not enough social contract?

  • Agammamon||

    INEQUALITY!

  • PapayaSF||

    Wikipedia:
    The population of Saint Kitts and Nevis is predominantly black (92.7%) or mixed (2.2%). 2.2% of the population is white and 1.9% East Indian.

  • Cytotoxic||

    Lets leave this kind of crap to American.

  • PapayaSF||

    You asked. Just sayin'.

  • ||

    It is only 65 mi sq. We won't all fit.

    Other than minor thievery the crime seems to be gang and drug related. Girls look nice.

    I could do that.

  • Cytotoxic||

    And once there's enough of us drugs get legalized problem solved. THIS should have been the Free State Project's 'free state'. They should have just raised money to buy people passports.

  • Notorious G.K.C.||

    "The Unelectable Whiteness of Scott Walker

    "A journey through the poisonous, racially divided world that produced a Republican star...

    "...Over the past few decades, Walker’s home turf of metropolitan Milwaukee has developed into the most bitterly divided political ground in the country......the area has given rise to some of the most worrisome trends in American political life in supercharged form: profound racial inequality, extreme political segregation, a parallel-universe news media....

    "...Between 1960 and 2010, the population of the three formerly rural counties around Milwaukee County (Waukesha, Ozaukee, and Washington, or the “WOW” counties, for short) nearly tripled, to 608,000....

    "...In the WOW counties, [Walker's] support was near-absolute; on talk radio, his views were echoed and amplified without question on a daily basis. A network of powerful conservative supporters, from the Koch brothers to Wisconsin’s own Bradley Foundation, had rallied to his side. Ensconced in this bubble of affirmation and adulation, Walker believed that he could crush collective bargaining without provoking a backlash."

    http://www.newrepublic.com/art.....l-politics

  • Yenrab. Knarf Yenrab.||

    The Unelectable Whiteness of Scott Walker

    If the New Republic's readership has any remaining decency, the author of that headline will be out of a job in the next few hours. I'd love to hear why a presumably literate human being would believe that smearing a man for his "whiteness" is acceptable on this or any other planet.

  • Ted S.||

    There's a whole lot of projection in those quotes.

  • Agammamon||

    Walker believed that he could crush collective bargaining without provoking a backlash.

    Turns out, he was right.

  • Cytotoxic||

    There was a backlash but it was wholly inadequate to stop it.

  • GILMORE||

    the very first paragraph of that piece describes a radio program where someone makes an unflattering comment about a fat black congressperson

    the story then transitions to where Scott Walker appears on the show... AND NOTHING RACIST IS SAID ABOUT HIM!?

    THEREFORE (in ProgLogic) = SCOTT WALKER IS RACIST FOR APPEARING ON THE SHOW!.

    Everything else in the piece flows from there = Scott Walker is racist, and all this talk of 'budgets'? and 'fical crisis'? is just so much Racism Code Language.

    Really, this is the playbook of the Contemporary Left. Its so ridiculous that it is sometimes hard to believe that people both write and read this sort of stuff *and don't think there's anything slightly weird or creepy* about the endless attribution of EVERYTHING to hidden-racist-evilness.

    I mean, nothing says "Race war!" like "state budget crisis!", right?

  • GILMORE||

    Apparently this is the quality of Scott Walker's political opposition

    Its supposed to be a poem.

    And apparently making light of this person is considered really 'uncool'. Because that's some serious personhood there.

  • Notorious G.K.C.||

    It's as if you and Derpetologist are holding a masochism contest.

  • Yenrab. Knarf Yenrab.||

    A good way to tell which political party is most full of shit at any given moment is to look at the number of poets and ministers featured at their rallies. The Jesus Camp whackadoos are positively mundane compared to some of these characters.

  • VG Zaytsev||

    We're less than a decade away from proggy's discourse being nothing more than the incoherent screams of a spoiled toddler.

  • Grand Moff Serious Man||

    Okay. Salon. Gun control. Take a look at the comments if you dare. I am a bit ashamed at how much effort I expended arguing with these idiots.

    http://www.salon.com/2014/06/1....._violence/

  • Pathogen||

    Cast not pearl...

  • Dances-with-Trolls||

    Take a look at the comments if you dare

    .....

    Well, I'm probably never going to get those brain cells back.

  • Cytotoxic||

    No, no, hell no.

  • ||

    I tried to read that, I really did. Reading it was like being bitchslapped by every sentence. It is all emotional appeal,cherry picking stats, disregarding contravening evidence, ignoring basic premises....a lengthy set up for the punch, which comes in the form of a marshmallow.

    And once again they propose things that would not have prevented any tragedies . Giving away that disarming us is their goal, not stopping crime or mass shootings.

    They think differently than we do. We will never be able to have any kind of a constructive dialogue with them. They are also mendacious as hell. Their goals are not what they say they are and their motives are not what they say they are.

    I am keeping my guns. Period.

  • Dances-with-Trolls||

    Progressives are willing for you to bear any burden, for you to pay any price, to achieve their dream society. Nerf the World!!

  • VG Zaytsev||

    Couldn't make it past the first one.

  • Notorious G.K.C.||

    "When I first heard about hitchBOT, I figured it was a joke, or perhaps a thought experiment by Frauke Zeller, a roboticist at Ryerson University in Canada.

    "I mean: how could a robot hitchhike across the country? Would its handlers be following behind it in a Dodge Caravan ensuring it made the trip safely? What would it even mean for this to happen?

    "But this is no joke. Zeller and a large team including co-creator David Harris Smith of McMaster University, are going to put their cute little bot on the side of the road in Halifax and hope that somehow the robot can talk its way to Victoria...

    ""We expect hitchBOT to be charming and trustworthy enough in its conversation to secure rides through Canada," they concluded."

    http://www.theatlantic.com/tec.....da/372677/

  • Notorious G.K.C.||

    (probably hiking up its robo-skirt)

  • Notorious G.K.C.||

    "THE PITFALLS OF PEACE

    "The Lack of Major Wars May Be Hurting Economic Growth...

    "...the very possibility of war focuses the attention of governments on getting some basic decisions right — whether investing in science or simply liberalizing the economy. Such focus ends up improving a nation’s longer-run prospects."

    http://www.nytimes.com/2014/06.....share&_r=0

  • Agammamon||

    No government has *ever* invested in basic science nor liberalized their economies in the face of war.

    They've certainly 'invested' in engineering advances (ala Manhattan Project) but not *basic science*.

    And I don't see how nationalizing the railroads (WWI), rationing, etc have ever *helped* an economy in the long run.

    These guys need to stop conflating the post-WW2 boom with WW2. WW2 didn't end the depression and usher in a new era of wealth and prosperity in the US.

    By definition - manufacturing tons of war material and then having it blown up or sunk is not wealth creation.

  • Pathogen||

    "..By definition - manufacturing tons of war material and then having it blown up or sunk is not wealth creation..."

    Those windows aren't gonna break themselves.. Commie!

  • Sevo||

    "Those windows aren't gonna break themselves.. Commie!"

    If the definition of adding wealth is moving a commodity from a lower value to a higher one, you can't do worse than taking a modern military aircraft and turning it into a smoking pile of scrap.

  • Irish||

    The only time there's ever been high economic growth following a war was WWII and it just so happens that that's the only war that was followed immediately with massive deregulation and reductions in spending.

    WWI was followed by gigantic inflation that basically wiped out savings and almost ruined the economy. For some reason, only WWII ever gets brought up by Keynesians.

  • Sevo||

    Irish|6.15.14 @ 10:34PM|#
    "The only time there's ever been high economic growth following a war was WWII and it just so happens that that's the only war that was followed immediately with massive deregulation and reductions in spending."

    In the US, it was also fueled by pent-up demand (there were no civilian goods available during the war), and a total lack of competition.
    We'd bombed other competitors into hand labor and BTW, there was no competition for US labor since the unions controlled access; blacks need not apply.

  • VG Zaytsev||

    And that was only in the US. Britain kept their war time controls into the 1950s with predictably bad results.

  • VG Zaytsev||

    These guys need to stop conflating the post-WW2 boom with WW2. WW2 didn't end the depression and usher in a new era of wealth and prosperity in the US.

    That is true, however, a lot of new deal idiocy was ended for the war effort in 1942.

  • Cdr Lytton||

    And I don't see how nationalizing the railroads (WWI), rationing, etc have ever *helped* an economy in the long run.

    The railroads were so worn out after WWI due to inept government management and short term goals that it was explicitly not repeated during WWII.

  • Irish||

    Tyler Cowen has built a career based on disappointing me. Every time I think he's one of the few public commentators with his head on straight, he has to go and say something really fucking stupid.

  • Yenrab. Knarf Yenrab.||

    The Lack of Major Wars May Be Hurting Economic Growth

    Or, How to Tell You're Debating a Lunatic (or a Keynesian)

  • Irish||

    Cowen isn't even a Keynesian. He's a 'libertarian' who I'm convinced periodically writes something idiotic so that left-wing economists will say he's one of the 'reasonable ones.'

  • Cytotoxic||

    a Lunatic (or a Keynesian)

    But you repeat yourself.

  • Ted S.||

    Let's bomb the NYT building to smithereens. Instant stimulus!

  • Notorious G.K.C.||

    Hillary, intimating that there aren't other viable women candidates for President: “Politics is so unpredictable, whoever runs has to recognize that the American political system is probably the most difficult, even brutal, in the world.”

    In the world!

    http://www.weeklystandard.com/.....95039.html

  • lap83||

    It's much easier in other countries where you can keep your skeletons out in the open instead of jamming them all into one little closet.

  • kibby||

    I'll bet women in all those countries where they have zero rights totally agree with her.

  • Irish||

    I'll bet all the politicians who get murdered every election cycle in the Philippines also agree with her.

    It's doubtlessly far easier to have your entire family shot by your political opponents than to have someone call you old.

  • Sevo||

    OK, about 100 pages into it. Schulman's treatment of the family in general can't be faulted; he is "fair" by about any measure.
    But it is also obvious that his understanding of libertarianism and a market economy is flawed; drawn from lefty stereotypes.
    Example: C. Kock states he is pleased when he reads of a failed entrepreneur, as that effort failed to please the customers. Schulman sees this as 'without pity' rather than as support for creative destruction.

  • Sevo||

    Hmmm.
    Looks like the mommies of reasonoids have decided 8:30 is bed time.
    Sleep tight!

  • cavalier973||

    Ha! I'm sitting under my blanket with a flashlight!

  • cavalier973||

  • Plàya Manhattan.||

    "The immediate cause of death was from sepsis caused by an ulcerated bedsore, the family member said."

    That's just wrong. Take me to Switzerland if I'm ever headed down that road.

  • C. Anacreon||

    Keep your feet on the ground and keep reaching for the stars.

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