For Gold, Peace, and Freedom


Investigative Documentary Exposes Reasons Behind Non-Prosecution of Goldman Sachs; Includes Full Transcript

March 23rd, 2016

Last Friday a remarkably well-produced investigative video was released on YouTube by John Titus under the username “BestEvidence”. John Titus is known for his role in the production of Bailout, a movie that explains the political corruption and financial crimes that occurred during the era of the 2008 financial crisis and subsequent bailouts of “too big to fail” global banks.

This latest video is titled “The Veneer of Justice in a Kingdom of Crime”, and it investigates the question of why Goldman Sachs and other “too big to fail” financial institutions have managed to avoid prosecution for fraud or other financial crimes in spite of the fact that many other reports, for example the Untouchables episode that aired on PBS Frontline back in 2013, seemed to expose and implicate them. The video does a very good job of connecting the metaphorical dots and showing the extent to which political corruption in the United States, along with the influence of global banks, has effectively subverted the rule of law and rendered a certain elite class of people immune from prosecution.

After watching this enlightening documentary I searched online for a transcript but could not find one at the time, so after several hours of rather tedious work, I managed to compose a text transcript of it myself. I have posted this text below the video.

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Election Day: A Brief History of When and Why

November 2nd, 2010

election-day-symbols.jpgEvery other November, Americans go to the polls to vote in federal elections. Intense passion and debates go into these decisions, as a wave of political participation sweeps across the country. Much less thought is given to the timing of Election Day. Why is Election Day when it is? After all, “the Tuesday following the first Monday in November” seems like an awfully quixotic, random choice. How was that decided? Was there any reason, or was it just pulled out of a hat? Why isn’t it on a weekend? Why in November at all?

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A Guide to Detecting Lies

September 14th, 2010

bill-clinton-lying.jpgMost people abhor being lied to. When someone lies to you, it can feel like an insult to your intelligence. It’s natural to feel hurt and angry on discovering that someone has purposely tried to deceive you. Can you tell if you are being lied to? Most people feel remorse when they lie, and this makes them speak and act in a certain way. Trained professionals can use these verbal and non-verbal clues to detect a lie. If you would like to learn more about these clues, read on.

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How to Run for Office as a Libertarian

November 11th, 2009

running-for-office-paperwork.jpgAlthough I have not posted anything in the Politics section for a while, earlier this week Wes Benedict sent out this nice little summary article that looks like it might be useful for some of you. Currently we are drawing close to the filing deadlines for candidates to run in the 2010 elections here in Texas, and the deadlines for other states will follow shortly thereafter. This means that if you have become fed up enough with the current situation that you want to run for office, you will need to think about getting your paperwork in order pretty soon so that your name will make it onto the ballot by next November.

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Politically Correct Cars

September 12th, 2009

political-correctness-cars.jpgI am not your politically correct type of person, so I don’t really appreciate politically correct cars. I get irritated when a vehicle is designed to dictate my behavior.

I’m all grown up and even well-read and educated, so I obviously know that smoking isn’t good for me. I don’t need Dodge to tell me that, or to try to keep me from smoking by making vehicles that have no ashtrays. Even if I didn’t smoke, I might like to use the ashtray to store change, candy, or maybe even some nice nicotine replacement gum. Yeah, right.

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The Importance of Values in Local Political Campaigns

August 29th, 2009

political-campaign-values.jpgA long history of questionable tactics in politics can leave a bad taste in the potential voter’s mouth. However, voters must evaluate candidates for public office each year at different levels of local government, including boards and commissions of townships, school districts, water management districts, cities, and counties. When political campaigns are conducted the local level, it is important that the voters get to know the issues.

A local candidate is someone who voters can get to know by attending a local speech. News media coverage does not serve as the only source of voter decision making. When you consider who to vote for, the values that candidates represent are important. How about judging a person’s suitability for office based on a record of clean campaigning without dirty politics? Here are four questions to help you decide which candidate to support with your vote in the next local election.

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How to Become a Libertarian Precinct Leader

July 14th, 2009

Libertarian Party logoFor the past few months, our national Libertarian Party has been sending out a weekly “Monday Message” to its email subscribers. Most of the time I don’t bother mentioning them here because they’re usually little more than familiar political rants and calls for donations that can be found at the main LP.org site or the sites of several state affiliates. However, the message that was released yesterday by Donny Ferguson, the current Communications Director, deserves a reprint because it contains some useful information about how to get involved in the political process and organize campaigns at the local precinct level. In fact, if I had written it myself I could probably use it as an addendum to my earlier essay on how to organize a political campaign.

Have you considered becoming a Libertarian precinct leader?

I’m asking because, as a political party, we have an obligation to win elections. Not only do our over 200 elected Libertarians need some friendly allies where they serve, there are many communities across America with no elected Libertarians.

We need to change that.

And successful organizations do it by organizing at the local level.

In politics, organization defeats ideology. I can’t tell you how many times I’ve opened the paper the morning after Election Day and heard my candidate’s opponent openly wondering, “How did that wacko, with his views, beat me?”

The answer is “We were better organized than you.”

So what can you do to become a precinct leader? Contact us, or your local LP, to let us know you want to volunteer. Then:

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10 Little Known Facts About Independence Day

July 4th, 2009

declaration-of-independence.jpgThis article by an author writing as “Melodyfair” lists ten relatively little known trivia facts about July 4th, the date known as Independence Day to Americans who celebrate this day as a national holiday. It carries much significance because it was on this date back in 1776 that a few colonial radicals with some decidedly libertarian political leanings finally got fed up with the British government of the time and drafted a document known as the Declaration of Independence, which effectively severed political ties to Great Britain and created the foundation for the modern United States.

Since this is supposed to be a libertarian site (and one that is using the Independence Day theme, no less!), I would feel remiss if I did not take this opportunity to remind readers that the most important part of the Declaration of Independence is the idea that we actually have the right to alter or abolish our government in order to preserve our liberty. In a rather provocative posting from last year, Michael Hampton from Homeland Stupidity made a refreshingly radical call to do just that:

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2008 Economic Stimulus Payment and Your IRS Taxes

February 14th, 2009

economic-stimulus-payment-tax.jpgLast year the IRS was besieged by telephone calls regarding treatment of the 2008 economic stimulus payments. Complicating matters even further was the fact that some people who did not get a stimulus payment may still be due one, as this article by Anthony Ventre explains. It remains to be seen whether the Obama administration’s attempt at a stimulus will cause similar confusion, but it’s interesting to see how messy and complicated income taxes have become.

There were so many questions stemming from the 2008 Bush administration economic stimulus package that the Internal Revenue Service had to detail extra people to answer the barrage of questions from people who received it and people who didn’t. According to the IRS, there were 119 million tax payers who received these payments. Owing in part to the tough economic times, the Internal Revenue Service has noted an increase in early filers and a concomitant increase in tax errors in the current 2008 filing year.

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Texas Libertarian Party Election Records and Recap for 2008

November 11th, 2008

libertarian-party-texas.jpgToday Wes Benedict has released a letter detailing election day results and other related issues to members of our Libertarian Party affiliate in Texas. Despite the disappointing totals for presidential candidate Bob Barr, the party set several new records in other races, including highest percentage and vote total for U.S. Senate, highest number of candidates on the ballot, and over one million votes for our Court of Criminal Appeals statewide candidate. Only one other LP candidate, John Monds in the race for Georgia’s Public Service Commission, surpassed the one million vote mark nationally.

Here is the text of Wes Benedict’s email, which includes a link to the vote totals and percentages for all Libertarian Party of Texas candidates. Meanwhile, if you’re looking for the election results for LP candidates nationally, you can find these at the LP.org site here.

Dear Texas Friend of Liberty:

Thanks to our donors for coming through recently and helping us to purchase more door hangers and yard signs. Our Assistant Director, Arthur DiBianca, and I worked feverishly for the past couple of months recruiting volunteers and shipping door hangers and signs to as many of you as we could find and recruit.

Texas Libertarian candidates did great on election day, breaking some new records. Thanks to all of our candidates and volunteers who worked hard for the past two years, and to our donors.

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Why “Progressive” Income Taxes Do Not Equal Progress

November 7th, 2008

progressive-income-tax-fail.jpgToday I ran across an interesting little article that has been showing up in forwarded emails and occasional blog posts recently. Labeled as “Bar Stool Economics”, it is a simplified version of why “progressive” income taxes (that is, taxes that are weighted heavily against people who are relatively wealthy) do not work very well even when we try to lower the overall tax burden. As I have mentioned in a few previous posts, as long as taxes cannot be practically avoided, I would much prefer a consumption-based tax to any type of income tax because people at all levels of income would have an element of choice in how much tax they pay based on their actual spending. Of course, there are also several other advantages, but I will leave those as material for another article.

Our Tax System Explained: Bar Stool Economics

Suppose that every day, ten men go out for beer and the bill for all ten comes to $100. If they paid their bill the way we pay our taxes, it would go something like this:

  1. The first four men (the poorest) would pay nothing.
  2. The fifth would pay $1.
  3. The sixth would pay $3.
  4. The seventh would pay $7.
  5. The eighth would pay $12.
  6. The ninth would pay $18.
  7. The tenth man (the richest) would pay $59.

So, that’s what they decided to do.

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