John Mackey offers solutions to minimize time in government hospitals

“We are actually an incredibly unhealthy nation,” said John Mackey, co-founder and CEO of Whole Foods Market. John spoke at an event in Austin, Texas hosted by Liberty International. John pointed to obesity, heart disease, cancer, diabetes, and auto-immune diseases as examples, “They’re not infectious diseases. Those are dietary lifestyle diseases that we basically, we bring it upon ourselves.” “We can also avoid those diseases,” added John. According to John Mackey, the best way to avoid medical care is to take care of yourself, which may be an ideal way to minimize time in the government healthcare system, which John considers, “broken.” John said that Americans are getting fatter, “Over 71 percent of all adults are overweight now, and 38 percent are obese.” What’s worse, according to John, is that America is exporting a dietary pattern of obesity, and this is making the world more unhealthy. John listed sugars, oils and starchy foods that Americans have been over-consuming, and this has lead to an obesity epidemic and cancer. “Cancer is far more preventable than most people realize,” said John. The two highest risk factors are diet and tobacco, said John. But John suggested a healthier diet based on whole foods, “The Whole Foods Diet is basically arguing to eat 100 percent real foods.” The diet plan eliminates all processed foods, and increases reliance on plant based foods, while not necessarily eliminating animal foods. John suggested avoiding refined grains, flour, sugars and oils. For further detail on the Whole Foods Diet, click below to watch the entire video:  

There is something very wrong with the Russian hacking story

In an interview in  2015, Colin Powell said about weapons of mass destruction in Iraq, “The intelligence community, all 16 agencies assured us that it was right, my speech at the UN was based on that information.” In hindsight, it seems obvious that the “evidence” for weapons of mass destruction in Iraq was always flimsy, but that ignores the incredibly emotionally charged political climate at the time. “Evidence” that should have been met with skepticism, or at a minimum, rational scrutiny from journalists, was instead parroted by every major publication in the country. Reporters simply repeated whatever the Bush administration had to say on the matter without bothering to validate any of these claims. Of course, Cheney and his gang of thugs never actually said that Saddam had anything to do with 9/11 or had ties to Al Qaeda, they were just sure to mention all 3 in every speech and, coincidentally, a majority of Americans believed that we were invading Iraq because of Saddam’s role in 9/11. In other words, “anonymous officials,” insinuations, circumstantial and highly ambiguous “evidence” were used to convince millions of people to go to war with a country that had absolutely nothing to do with the September 11th attacks. And now, just as then, the media is all too eager to report these insinuations and unverified reports of Russia “hacking the election.” 52% of Democratic voters believe that Russia “hacked” the voting machines despite the fact that zero evidence exists to support this belief, and neither President Obama nor the intelligence community ever stated this. Does any of this sound familiar? The “intelligence community” has, for unexplained reasons, become a sacrosanct institution in the media, above reproach or question. “Journalists” seem incredulous that Trump (or anyone for that matter) would even dare to express skepticism over the conclusions of …

Can economists predict the future?

I can make a prediction that will almost definitely come true: On July 28th, 2061, a bright comet will appear in the night sky. Of course, this is not my prediction, but Edmond Halley’s — which is where the name Halley’s comet comes from. Unfortunately, Halley died before he could view Halley’s comet for himself, but he is proven correct every 76 years. In a similar way, the economist Ludwig von Mises predicted the collapse of socialism. He also died before he could view the collapse of the socialist economies of his time, but he has been proven correct again and again. How did Mises and Halley know such bold things about the future? And how can we use their insight to make our own predictions about the future? The answer has less to do with mathematics, and more to do with simple logic. For Halley, he deduced that a comet going around the sun would be seen again in the future, and he was correct. But for Mises, the problem was a bit more complex, because there was no bright object in the sky for him to look at. Mises understood the many problems with socialism, and the inevitable collapse of such a system. He wrote about his findings in, “Economic Calculation in the Socialist Commonwealth“. In this landmark essay, Mises proved that socialism could not work because the price system was broken. In a purely socialist system, prices are made up by bureaucrats, and this causes all kinds of chaos. Without real prices, no one has any clue how much anything really costs. When this happens, the entire system collapses. Mises and Halley predicted the future, but in reality, they were explaining a phenomenon, like a law of nature. Just like Albert Einstein predicted the existence of black holes, …

How the government broke my digital camera

Once upon a time, the government decided break my digital camera. Like the mean kid who throws your favorite toy down the stairs, the government succeeded in making all DSLR cameras worse for no reason. The consequence is that today, my DSLR camera cannot record videos longer than 29 minutes. Sure, that may not seem like a big deal, but if you work with video, this gets annoying fast! Let’s say I want to record an hour long speech — I have to stop the recording half way through and re-start it, just so I can get the entire thing. When I watch my final video, I have a big black pause right in the middle of my video. Some may think the 29 minute limitation is because of a technical glitch, or to prevent from overheating, but the real reason involves international tax law. According to tax laws for some EU countries, any camera that records video for more than 29 minutes is classified as a “video camera” and subject to much higher taxes of 5 to 14 percent. So in order to get around it, DSLR cameras simply record less than 29 minutes at a time. But all is not lost. Sure, the government may have taken my camera and thrown it into traffic, but there’s a way to “fix” it! Hackers have come to the rescue across the internet by providing ways to correct the problem. Now you can record video for as long as you want — in exchange for voiding your warranty. Still, the fix may be worth it! Now I can set up a few tripods and record longer interviews, without worrying about whether or not the camera is still recording. But the strange camera quirk is just another example of how we live …

Liberals embrace gun ownership now that Trump is President

Liberals in the US are beginning to embrace gun ownership now that Trump is President. BBC News reported that liberal gun purchases may be rising, and liberal gun clubs are seeing a big boost in membership. Some liberals say they are buying guns to defend themselves against potential tyranny from the Trump administration. Gwendolyn Patton, a member of Pink Pistols, a club for gay, lesbian and transgender gun owners, told the BBC, “There are people who have professed to carrying a gun now because Trump made them feel unsafe . . . I think their fears are groundless but I can’t make them not be afraid, so whatever they need to do to feel safer, I don’t have a problem as long as they do it responsibly.” The change in attitude is a stark contrast to liberal views about gun ownership during the Obama years, when CNN host Piers Morgan scored high ratings calling for a ban on assault rifles. In 2013, Piers Morgan asked Ben Shapiro, “Why do they need those weapons?” Ben answered, “They need them for the prospective possibility of resistance to tyranny.” Piers asked, “Where do you expect the tyranny to come from?” Ben answered, “The tyranny would come from the government.” Piers asked, “Barack Obama’s government?” Yes, back then, it was almost impossible for liberals to imagine why anyone would be afraid of Barack Obama’s government. But now that Donald Trump will be president, many people see him and his administration as tyrannical. So will liberals become more pro 2nd amendment? For some people, the tyranny may not be so far fetched, as Trump said that he would deport 3 million undocumented immigrants after his inauguration. Some liberals may wish to defend against this — perhaps even with a gun, or an AR-15 rifle. For some people, …

Is liberty a “slippery slope?”

Imagine a slippery slope where big government is at the top, and way down at the bottom is anarchy. Libertarians often stand on the middle of that slope. People constantly tell libertarians, “You kids can play on the slope, but don’t go too far or you’ll fall down!” The top is assumed to be safe. That’s where the government protects everybody, right? Personally, when I heard that liberty was a slippery slope, I immediately leaped off, and chose to live at the bottom. Why not? I begin with the assumption that a world without government would probably be a reasonably safe place to live. If someone proves me otherwise, then I’ll climb up the slope again. Sure, there will be lots to debate about — what about courts, fire, police, defense, seat-belts and schools? Let’s read, debate and discuss all these topics. But I think it’s unhealthy to start with the assumption that total government control is safe. Total government control has been tried, and millions of people died because of it. I don’t understand why we are supposed to assume that it is the safest starting point. So for me, I turn the whole mountain upside down. Let’s start with the assumption that a voluntary world would be ok. If anybody wants to propose a law, just know that you’re on a slippery slope towards totalitarian government control.

Is climate change really that scary?

According to SkepticalScience, “rising sea levels are widely considered to be the greatest threat posed by climate change.”   For the purposes of this argument, we will ignore any kind of disagreement within the scientific community about other causes, or the extent to which humans have driven this warming, and treat the theory of anthropogenic climate change as scientific fact.  Due to the complex nature of the debate, we will also ignore any other adverse impacts of climate change, and focus specifically on what is “widely considered” to be the greatest threat posed by climate change — sea level rise. So, what does the science say about sea level rise?  According to the Intergovernmental Panel on Climate Change, which broadly represents the scientific consensus on climate change, sea levels will continue to rise for the next century no matter what, but the rate at which they do depends on several factors.  Under the best case scenario, where governments take active measures to aggressively combat CO2 emissions, we can expect .28-.61 meters of sea level rise.  Under the worst IPCC projection, they expect .52 to .98 meters of sea level rise.  In other words, 1-3 feet by 2100. Now there are, of course, other projections which show higher rates of sea level rise due to Antarctica and Greenland contributing more in the next century (up to 2 meters in the worst case scenario), but these projections can hardly be described as the “consensus” of the scientific community.  Anyone familiar with even the basic fundamentals of the scientific method knows that outliers always exist and do not form the consensus.  If we’re gonna base our understanding of the issue on outliers, we would have to include those who don’t think the Earth will warm that much, or those who say the climate is less sensitive …

Ken Schoolland – the Paradox of Politics

Ken Schoolland, President of Liberty International, talked about the Ethics of Liberty. He asked 3 questions generally speaking: Do you trust the campaign promises of politicians? Is an honest politician more likely to win an election than a dishonest politician? Are the moral standards of politicians higher than my own moral standards? Professor Schoolland said that most people answer the above questions, “No!” But most people answer the next question very differently: Generally speaking, do you trust that the government will do good and necessary things for the country? Professor Schoolland said that most people answer this question, “Yes!” Why is that? Why do people distrust individual politicians, but when politicians are grouped collectively, people tend to trust more? Ken Schoolland talks about this, and many other issues related to his talked titled, “The Ethics of Liberty”.

The Adventures of Jonathan Gullible: Episode 2 – The Tall Tax

Another episode of Jonathan Gullible has been produced. In this episode, Jonathan Gullible meets a man crawling on his knees to avoid the “tall tax”. Jonathan says, “That must hurt!” The man says, “Yeah, but it hurts more not to.” This is the second cartoon episode in a series being produced by Liberty International. Joe Kent helped to animate the characters, with voice-over help from Ken Schoolland, and students at Hawaii Pacific University. Ken Schoolland is also the author of Jonathan Gullible: a Free Market Odyssey, available here! Please feel free to re-post or share!

Kishore Jayabalan: The future of free trade in an uncertain world

Kishore Jayabalan, Director of Istituto Acton, said Pope Francis, “Is not a fan of global capitalism. He’s been criticizing it almost from the beginning.” Mr. Jayabalan gave his talk titled, “The Future of Free Trade Under Pope Francis and Donald Trump.” The talk was given at The Foolish Things Salon, a libertarian gathering organized by Ken and Li Schoolland on Oahu. Kishore said that a backlash against the idea of global free trade has been building for a long time. Kishore said that as jobs in America have been outsourced, it’s easy for many to blame free trade, “without seeming to blame the democratic party, or the trade unions.” Mr. Jayabalan, a native of Flint Michigan, quoted Donald Trump, saying, “It used to be we built cars in Flint, Michigan, and you couldn’t drink the water in Mexico. Now we build cars in Mexico, and you can’t drink the water in Flint.” For Kishore, this statement was a perfect snapshot about how working class Americans may feel as jobs have left the country. In comparing Donald Trump and Pope Francis, Kishore said, “They have more in common than meets the eye.” Kishore pointed out that they are both leaders running against the elites, and they both seem to be generally unfriendly to global free trade. However, Kishore pointed out that global free trade is pulling the world out of poverty, and there are so many examples of this. According to Kishore, libertarians are on the right side of the global free trade debate. Kishore suggested that since world leaders are less ideological and more open to common sense arguments, “Free traders would be better off if we had to argue much more from common sense.” To listen to the full speech, listen below: