Alternative Medicine Is Libertarian Medicine
, by Butler Shaffer
, 2 Dec 2006
Discusses several aspects of healthcare, including self-ownership, being responsible for our own care, decentralized information, the collapse of external authorities and the dehumanizing decisions resulting from institutionalized healthcare
[O]ur social world is becoming increasingly decentralized and organized along horizontal lines ... The Internet is decentralizing the communication of information, with some twenty-two million blogsites in the world ... providing the opportunity for horizontal, two-way communication among people through some one billion personal computers. For the first time in human history, each one of us has the technological capacity to directly communicate—bilaterally—with every human being on the planet, provided (a) they all have computers, and (b) they choose to communicate with us.
Big Business and the Rise of American Statism
, by Roy Childs
, Feb 1971
Originally a speech given at the first convention of the Society for Individual Liberty, 15-16 Nov 1969
In the telephone industry, things were in a similar shape. From its foundation in 1877 until 1894, Bell Telephone (AT&T) had a virtual monopoly in the industry based on its control of almost all patents. In 1894 many of the patents expired. "Bell immediately adopted a policy of harassing the host of aspiring competitors by suing them (27 suits were instituted in 1894-95 alone) for allegedly infringing Bell patents." But such efforts to stifle competition failed; by 1902, there were 9,100 independent telephone systems; by 1907, there were 22,000. Most had rates lower than AT&T.
Cisco provides a lesson
, by Eric S. Raymond, 5 Jul 2012
Examines Cisco's agreement for upgrading their router firmware and its implications regarding internet freedom
The power relationship remains dangerously asymmetrical; the closed source remains their instrument of control over you. This is why you should demand open source in your router, open source in your operating system, and open source in any application software that is important to your life. Because if you don't own it, it will surely own you. This is also why people who make excuses for or actively advocate closed-source OSs and network software ... are enemies of liberty - enablers and accomplices before the fact in vendor schemes to spy on you, control you, and imprison you.
The Internet and the End of Monetary Sovereignty
, by Bill Frezza, The Future of Money in the Information Age
Considers how cyberspace promises of privacy and anonymity may lead to new monetary institutions and "a practical realization of laissez-faire capitalism" as advocated by Ayn Rand
What Rand could not foresee ... is that technology would create a new world in which the fundamental facts of life have indeed changed. That world is called cyberspace and its growing backbone is the Internet. The Internet will not merely make our existing forms of commerce more efficient, but will support the emergence of self-organizing, supranational communities whose economic intercourse can be based on exactly the principles Rand espoused. It will never be possible to transport wheat or steel across a wire ... But any product of the human mind can be communicated as a stream of digital bits.
The Many Monopolies
, by Charles W. Johnson, 24 Aug 2011
Describes four ways in which markets are distorted by government interventions, explains Benjamin Tucker's "Four Monopolies", examines five present-day monopolies and discusses Tucker's libertarian views
The Infrastructure Monopoly includes physical and communications infrastructure ... Incumbent telecommunications and media companies like AT&T, Comcast, and Verizon accumulate empires by cartelizing bandwidth; control of broadcast frequencies is concentrated through the FCC's political allocation; and ownership of telephone, cable, and fiber-optic bandwidth is concentrated through local monopoly concessions for each medium.
Related Topics: Banking
, Free Market
, Free trade
, Health Care
, Intellectual Property Laws
, Occupational Licensing
, Benjamin Tucker
The Second Superpower is the Real Fourth Estate
, by Kevin Carson
, 28 Jun 2013
Explains the term the "Fourth Estate", how the current fourth estate are simply stenographers and who are supplanting them as true journalists, as per James Moore's idea of a "Second Superpower"
Among other things, the collapsing entry barriers to recording events in real-time and distributing them on the Web enable the Second Superpower (i.e., you and me) ... This illustrates the fundamental game change that networked communications technology has introduced in the age-old struggle between the privileged and non-privileged. For centuries, the transaction costs and capital outlays for coordinating action have meant that we have been oppressed largely through hierarchical, institutional actors ... The new technologies ... mean ... we can take on powerful institutions — on a more than equal basis ...
Treating Surveillance as Damage and Routing Around It
, by Kevin Carson
, 11 Aug 2013
Discusses how, as in the wake of the Snowden disclosures, distributed networks respond to attempts at state control, citing PGP adoption and the Firefox TOR browser bundle malware
That's how networks always respond to censorship and surveillance. Each new attempt at a file-sharing service — Kazaa, ... The Pirate Bay — was less dependent on central servers and other vulnerable nodes than the one before it. Wikileaks responded the same way to U.S. government attempts to shut it down: Besides being hosted on backup servers around the world — some in countries less than friendly to the U.S. government — it responded to seizure of its domain name by publicizing its numeric IP address. Thousands of Wikileaks supporters around the world published its IP address or mirrored the site.
Who Owns the Internet?
, by Tim Swanson, Mises Daily
, 4 May 2006
Explains how and why "net neutrality" proposals came about, monopolistic tendencies, comparisons to natural resources and others held in common, and how variable pricing has been used elsewhere to solve similar problems
In theory, AT&T can lower the quality of the data transferred across the network ... One of the catalysts ... is that the large telecommunication firms are trying to finance infrastructure upgrades—such as fiber optic rollout—and are facing lower margins due in part to disruptive technologies (e.g., wireless, satellite) ... Because of this, executives at the established telecom firms have mentioned that in the future, they might charge third-party developers ... higher rates. And because they control large swaths of network pipeline, they have the leveraging ability to discriminate.
Why the FCC should die
, by Declan McCullagh, CNET
, 7 Jun 2004
Central planning didn't work for the Soviet Union, and it's not working for us. ... The FCC rejected long-distance telephone service competition in 1968, banned Americans from buying their own non-Bell telephones in 1956 ... and did not grant modern cellular telephone licenses until 1981--about four decades after Bell Labs invented the technology.