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55 Posts By Shiloh

  • Congressman Ron Paul: Farewell to Congress

    On November 14, 2012, Congressman Ron Paul concluded his public service in Washington D.C. that spanned over 36 years (23 years of which were spent in public service) with his final speech given on the House floor. While speaking of government, Congressman Ron Paul’s message is not one of politics — but of “the plain truth of things”.

    This man’s consistent example, message, and address will go down in the annals of history as one of the most important testaments to the name of liberty that has ever been known. Read his final address below. 

  • What Good is a Petition?

    As of my writing this, there are approximately 675,000 Americans from every state in the Union who have digitally petitioned the White House to allow their state to secede from the United States of America. In other words, there are the beginnings of a movement that seekito break up the United States as we know it.

    On its face, I support secession as a principle of individual liberty and sound Constitutional government. If government goes beyond its authority, it is the right of the people to either remove themselves from the association of that government or to abolish it altogether.

    That said, the current movement to secede is an endeavor in fruitlessness.

  • The Twelfth Article of Faith and Obedience to the Law

    Originally posted on LDS Liberty here.

    [A podcast of our interview with the author on this topic can be found here.]

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    We believe in being subject to kings, presidents, rulers, and magistrates, in obeying honoring, and sustaining the law.

    The Twelfth Article of Faith is a standard of religious compliance and belief of the Church of Jesus Christ of Latter-day Saints specifically regarding every member’s obligation to be subject to the laws of their country and to their leaders. Many interpret this Article of Faith to mean absolute compliance to all laws enacted within a political mechanism, while others have used this article to justify a higher principle of natural rights, justice, and morality.

    Grammar of the Twelfth Article of Faith

    This particular Article of Faith is commonly misread to include a coordinating conjunction that is not actually found and which dramatically changes its meaning when added. Most quote theTwelfth Article of Faith to read, “We believe in being subject to kings, presidents rulers, and magistrates, [and] in obeying, honoring, and sustaining the law.” The coordinating conjunction “and,” however, does not exist in the actual text. This is important because, grammatically, the coordinating conjunction changes the meaning of this passage.

  • Flaxen Cord Dependency

    This article was published on libertasutah.org on October 25, 2012, and an audio recording is available here.

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    Recently, a very accommodating and encouraging Lieutenant from the Provo Police Department showed up at our neighborhood’s first Neighborhood Watch in years. We have recently experienced a small crime wave in our neighborhood, as mostly unlocked cars were robbed and a few neighbors experienced backyard trespassers. Present at the gathering were several of us who wanted to take personal responsibility to patrol our own neighborhood at night. I live in a very good close-knit neighborhood, and my neighbors and I are all both shocked at the recent criminal activity and concerned for our neighbors’ well-being.

    There are several concealed-weapon-permit holders in my neighborhood and others who sometimes open carry, all of whom carry on a permanent or semi-permanent basis. I say this to illustrate the fact that my neighborhood is very conscientious in taking personal responsibility for its own problems.

  • Realizing True Personal Responsibility and Individual Accountability

    This article was published on libertasutah.org, on August 2, 2012, and an audio recording is viable here.

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    Both sides of the political aisle claim a near monopoly on accountability and responsibility while demonizing the “other side” for its irresponsible behavior. These ideals, however, have changed meaning throughout the years. Whereas individual accountability and personal responsibility meant taking care of one’s own business, and accepting the consequences and effects of one’s own actions, these concepts now come in the form of more legislation, stricter regulations, and more government involvement in the lives of the individual. True responsibility and accountability enhance individual liberty, yet in our current society, social and political accountability and responsibility are unnecessarily (and improperly) enforced at the expense of individual liberty.

  • Why Utahns, and Everyone Else, Should Vote 3rd Party

     

    In a previous post, I argued for the need to “shift Overton’s Window” by voting 3rd party, as a significant and realistic way of pulling the window of social acceptance back to a discussion of liberty and freedom.

    Today, America is staring down the barrel of a loaded double-barrel shotgun and is asking herself which single barrel she should look down to injure her less when it inevitably goes off. It is time to stop looking down the barrel of this shotgun and actually vote – for those who so choose—to change America. It is time to vote 3rd Party.

    Voting 3rd Party in Utah

    There is a realistic strategy to voting 3rd Party in Utah. Utah, like most states, doesn’t count write-in votes. This is to say that Utah only counts names on the ballot in its tally of the 100% voting. If those who wish to show a statistical significance in their 3rd Party vote, they must needs cast a vote for someone on the ballot. A vote for Ron Paul, for instance, will not be counted – period. However, a vote for Gary Johnson or Virgil Goode, because they are actually on the ballot as candidates from their respective parties, will be counted.

  • The Importance of Philosophy to Individual Liberty

    This article was published on libertasutah.org, on July 3, 2012, and an audio recording is viable here.

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    I graduated from Brigham Young University with a degree in philosophy. I consider myself a philosopher. As a student I learned that philosophy is of two types: (1) good philosophy, and (2) bad philosophy. Bad philosophy is, sadly, far more prevalent than good philosophy, and when most people think of philosophy in general (synonymous to “ever learning and never coming to a knowledge of the truth”) they think of bad philosophy.

    Good philosophy’s purpose is to present a consistent worldview, as we find the proper relationships and balances of man’s place in this world. Whereas bad philosophy results in cognitive dissonance, good philosophy leads to consistency in thought. Whether we admit it or not, we all have a philosophy (i.e. a view of the world, a justification for how we know that world, and what ethical relationships we accept from that discovery). The endeavor of knowledge is to have a good philosophy that leads to a discovery of truth.

  • Why You Vote For Someone Matters

    This article is also posted on LDS Liberty.

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    This article is not about getting you to vote against President Obama. This article is not about getting you to vote against Mitt Romney. This article is not about getting you to vote against Ron Paul, Gary Johnson, or any other of the unknown candidates running for president, or any other office in 2012 (or any other election). This article is not about convincing you to vote, if your abstention is a protest against the government and all that it entails.

    This article is about getting you to vote for President Obama. This article is about getting you to vote for Mitt Romney. This article is about getting you to vote for Ron Paul, Gary Johnson, or any other of the unknown candidates running for president, or any other office in 2012 (or any other election). If you choose not to vote, this article is about getting you to abstain for a reason.

    But what difference does it make?

  • Misplaced Power and the POTUS

    I am often told that our nation is hanging in the balance, and that if Obama wins the election then all will be lost. In such discussions, however, I am left wondering – what happened to the checks-and-balances within the Constitution? How can one man yield so much power as to single-handedly destroy this country?

    Speaking to the frailties of the US Constitution, James Madison – the “father” of the US Constitution – observed in the Federalist No 48 that while not every branch of government “should be wholly

  • Libertarian Realism: Shifting Overton’s Window

    Mitt Romney has a problem – a libertarian problem.

    It’s not because the libertarian Republicans were poorly treated by the GOP establishment over the last 4 years. It’s not that Ron Paul supporters were called “Paulbots”, “Paultards”, “Psychos”, “Crazies”, and basic “domestic terrorists” by fellow Republicans and conservative pundits. It’s not because the RNC and the Romney campaign did everything possible to keep Ron Paul delegates out of the National Convention (1). It’s not because the RNC broke its own rules. It’s not because the RNC performed blatant scripted rule changes that constituted a massive and unprecedented power-grab (1).

    These issues are annoying for libertarian Republicans to deal with among fellow Republicans, but the reasons why we will not vote for Romney are