The ‘Simple’ Rules for Fighting Federal Asset Forfeiture

Get out your magnifying glass for this flowchart.

The Heritage Foundation, as part of a multipartisan effort to help educate Americans about our abuse-prone police civil asset forfeiture system, has produced a lovely pamphlet explaining how the whole racket works, complete with an illustrated story.

Read more by Scott Shackford at Reason.com

Why The Gun Is Civilization

Human beings only have two ways to deal with one another: reason and force. If you want me to do something for you, you have a choice of either convincing me via argument, or force me to do your bidding under threat of force. Every human interaction falls into one of those two categories, without exception. Reason or force, that’s it.

In a truly moral and civilized society, people exclusively interact through persuasion. Force has no place as a valid method of social interaction, and the only thing that removes force from the menu is the personal firearm, as paradoxical as it may sound to some.

When I carry a gun, you cannot deal with me by force. . . .

Read more by Marko Kloos at munchkinwrangler.wordpress.com

Should Governments Be Allowed to Steal Your Property?

I’ve already written about the despicable practice of “civil forfeiture,” which allows governments to confiscate the property of innocent people who have not been convicted of any crime.

And I’ve cited great columns on the issue from George Will and John Stossel., as well a sobering report on the topic from the Wall Street Journal.

Now the Institute for Justice has a video that should outrage any decent person.

It’s examples of government thuggery like this that make me a libertarian. You should be one as well.

Read more by Daniel J. Mitchell at Townhall.com

The Main Driver of GDP Growth: A Strong Rule of Law

GDP Growth More Strongly Correlated with Rule of Law than Anything Else …

Economist Woody Brock says that a nation’s GDP growth is based mainly on whether or not it follows the rule of law.

–SNIP– Economists have thoroughly documented that failure to enforce the rule of law leads to a loss of trust … which destroys economies.

This is true whether it is in the West, in Nigeria or any other country.

Read more at WashingtonsBlog

40 Reasons to Ban Guns

In my honest opinion, Christians are not forbidden by Christ to practice basic self-defense. There are times, of course, when suffering through persecution (even unto death) will happen, but if somebody breaks into your house I think you have the obligation to protect your family. And by protect your family, I mean own some firearms and know how to use them.

The following is a pretty funny rendition of the reasons given why we shouldn’t have guns. A friend of mine sent this to me and I just had to post it… You know which reason I really despise? I’ll tell you in a minute, you should read the reasons first. Also, pay attention because there is a quiz at the end.

40 Reasons to Ban Guns

1. Banning guns works, which is why New York, DC, Detroit & Chicago cops need guns.
2. Washington DC’s low murder rate of 69 per 100,000 is due to strict gun control, and Indianapolis’s high murder rate of 9 per 100,000 is due to the lack of gun control.
3. Statistics showing high murder rates justify gun control but statistics showing increasing murder rates after gun control are “just statistics.”
4. The Brady Bill and the Assault Weapons Ban, both of which went into effect in 1994 are responsible for the decrease in violent crime rates,which have been declining since 1991.
5. We must get rid of guns because a deranged lunatic may go on a shooting spree at any time and anyone who would own a gun out of fear of such a lunatic is paranoid.
6. The more helpless you are the safer you are from criminals.
7. An intruder will be incapacitated by tear gas or oven spray, but if shot with a .357 Magnum will get angry and kill you.
8. A woman raped and strangled is morally superior to a woman with a smoking gun and a dead rapist at her feet.

Read 32 more reasons at LibertarianChristians.com

Found this originally at TheStrangestBrew.com

What civil-asset forfeiture means

KERRI KALEY was a sales representative for a subsidiary of Johnson & Johnson. She and some of her colleagues sometimes received excess or outdated medical devices from their clients, which they then sold, splitting the proceeds among themselves. The government believed this amounted to theft, and in 2007 Ms Kaley, her husband and Jennifer Gruenstrass were indicted on charges of stealing medical equipment. They contended that their conduct was not criminal, because the material in question was unwanted. Still, they prepared for a long fight; to pay for their legal defence the Kaleys borrowed $500,000. That defence worked well for Ms Gruenstrass: a jury voted to acquit her on all charges in less than three hours after the prosecution could find not a single witness who claimed ownership of the material in question. Things went less smoothly for the Kaleys. After they were charged, prosecutors obtained an order freezing more than $2m of their assets, including the $500,000 they borrowed for their legal defence, claiming those assets constituted “proceeds” of the alleged crimes.

This is a procedure known as “civil-asset forfeiture”. Unlike criminal forfeiture, in which prosecutors seize the proceeds of criminal activity as punishment for a crime, civil-asset forfeiture does not require a conviction or even a criminal charge:

Read more by J. F. at Economist.com

Gov. Walker Signs Zero-Based Budgeting Into Law

Gov. Scott Walker has signed Senate Bill 407 into law, making it 2015 Wisconsin Act 201. Starting with next year’s budget, each agency will have to submit one budget request which assumes a 5 percent reduction in their budget, and one request which assumes the budget stays at its current level.

Rep. Rob Hutton (R-Brookfield) and Sen. Chris Kapenga (R-Delafield), co-authors of the bill, thanked the governor and reiterated their argument that the legislation will improve the process of budget-making by allowing agencies to address their own spending.

Read more at MacIver News Service

A Libertarian Defense of Lincoln

In libertarian circles, Abraham Lincoln isn’t a president that gets a whole lot of respect. There are a few reasons for this, including:

1. Lincoln illegally suspended habeas corpus, barricaded cities and stretched the limits of executive power well-beyond any measure, even with generous interpretation, that could be granted by the Constitution

2. The Union that emerged from the Civil War was one of much more centralized power and, in many respects, anathema to the vision of the Founders

3. . . .

Read more by Jonathan Blanks at blanksslate.blogspot.com