Tag: authoritarian

Freedom of Speech Upheld in Face of ‘Nazi Salute’ Backlash

Nickolas Roberson | United States

School officials at Baraboo High School of Baraboo, Wisconsin, have decided that the students who were involved in a now-viral immage of them performing a Nazi, “sieg heil,” salute will not be punished. The picture was taken prior to Baraboo High School’s 2018 spring prom, and posted to the High School’s twitter account.

The school has faced significant backlash, with many claiming that the students are white supremacists and Nazis. In the face of the backlash, Lori Mueller, the superintendent of the school district stated in a letter sent to parents of the school district, “…we cannot know the intentions in the hearts of those who were involved. Moreover, because of the students’ First Amendment rights, the district is not in a position to punish the students for their actions.”

This is a tremendous improvement in the recognition of our natural and Constitutional rights in our modern-day school systems, as many high schools and universities crack down on almost any student or faculty member who dares speak out against the leftist collective opinions that run rampant in educational institutions. A prime example of this violation of our First Amendment right can be found at Shawnee State University, where a philosophy professor was forced to use a transgender student’s preferred gender pronoun rather than their name. The teacher, Nicholas Meriwether, referred to one of his students by their preferred name, as their proposed gender identity went against their biological gender of being a male, thus going against Meriwether’s evangelical Christian beliefs. Rather than respecting the professor’s freedom of speech and preference of using the student’s name, the university, donning their totalitarian jackboots, clamped down on his right to free speech, and forced the teacher to utilize the student’s gender pronouns of “she” and “Miss”.

It is a dreadful shame that public schools and universities, the proposed and advertised catalysts of innovation, expansion in logic and reason, and scientific progress and expansion, are strangling themselves of the freedoms of thought, expression, and speech. Nowadays, they choose to adopt the tantalizing, yet dreadful, ideologies of thought control and suppression, attempting to please the wicked idealogues of cultural Marxism.

Hopefully, with the recognition and respect of the First Amendment right of the students at Baraboo High School who participated in the Nazi salute photograph and Twitter posting, other public schools and institutions will follow this same path of respecting our natural and constitutional freedoms and liberties. Now, this absolutely does not mean we should accept the terrible, malevolent, and oppressive ideas of Nazism; on the contrary, one should always speak out against any and all totalitarian idea groups and theories. However, even though these students are most likely not Nazis and the photograph was a joke, we must respect the opinions of our fellow countrymen. To quote the author Evelyn Beatrice Hall, “I do not agree with what you have to say, but I’ll defend to the death your right to say it.”

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A New Look on Authoritarianism: Roman Dmowski

By Daniel Szewc | Republic of Poland

Beyond what most politically oriented people think, authoritarian capitalism hasn’t only existed as the offspring of third-positionism meeting reality, in the form of military dictatorships- (ie late stage Francoism, Pinochet’s Chicago boys or Xiaoping Deng’s opening on the world. In fact, the biggest ideological precursor of free market consequentialism in the interwar period was an authoritarian capitalist. Namely, Roman Dmowski, a world-renowned Polish diplomat, head started the biggest nationalist/right-wing movement that supported free market values in Europe.

Aside for his ideological work, he was a signatory of the Versailles treaty. During his first talk with the big 3 (Soviet Union leader Joseph Stalin; U.S.President Franklin D. Roosevelt; and British Prime Minister Winston Churchill), Dmowski gave a five-hour entry speech concerning Poland’s bid for independence. In it, he explained how an independent Poland would positively influence the balance of power in Europe. Interestingly, after a few sentences in Polish, his dissatisfaction with the translator’s ability to express his points in English and French, he decided to make his points in said languages himself.
After achieving his goal of creating an independent Poland, he proceeded to pursue a short-lived political career as minister of foreign affairs. Moving out of partisan politics completely, he constructed a political ideology named “National Democracy”, based on a principle of nationally aware masses that knew and understood the interest of their nation. He also coined the term “national egoism”, the idea that a nation-state should only pursue its own interest, not foreign ones. As to not make the state Machiavellian in nature, and ready to undermine all other nations, he was a strong supporter of morals and civic responsibility. What’s more, in an era of blatant global antisemitism, and the support for expulsion/extermination of Jews, he proposed a healthy rivalry- for example, instead of burning down Jewish shops, he promoted natives building their own. As to show how far he was from fascism rhetorically, he said that he doubted that fascism would outlive Mussolini himself (prior to the thought of a world war coming up being blatant).
Economically, he despised the “third way”- he was a supporter of the Krakow school of economics, a precursor to the Austrian school of economics. Its first member, (Prof. Dunajewski) was the teacher of Carl Menger, the founder of the Austrian school. Later on, Heydel and Rybarski, two Polish economists who proposed extreme deregulation of the economy during the time when most of the world was shifting towards Keynesian economic interventionism, lead the economic thought in his nationalist movement.

Dmowski’s line of reasoning was based upon the logical conclusion of taking the following ideas as principles- that his nation had potential, and that regulations slowed down the economy. The conclusion to this is that the members of the said nation should be allowed to freely compete in a free market, and through it, gain the best results. His hard work results in the fact that the biggest nationalist/libertarian party in Poland, Liberty (Wolność), is a market-oriented, pro-free trade movement.

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The Supreme Court: Enemy of Liberty, Friend of Authoritarianism

By Tj Roberts | United States

Brett Kavanaugh is a loss to liberty, but he is just a symptom to a much worse disease. That disease is the Supreme Court of the United States. Since Marbury vs. Madison, the Supreme Court has been used as a weapon for expanding government power, irreparably damaging individual liberty, and destroying local sovereignty. If the Supreme Court actually acted within its constitutional role, the nomination of Kavanaugh would not be a problem.

To start, the power of judicial review was not given to the Supreme Court by the Constitution. Rather, it was given to the Supreme Court by the Supreme Court itself. In the 1803 Marbury vs. Madison decision, Justice John Marshall gave the Supreme Court the power of Judicial Review, completely subverting the Constitution. By gaining the power of judicial review, the Supreme Court, a small collection of robed politicians, gained the ability to decide whether or not any and all federal/state/local laws are in accordance with the Constitution.

The Supreme Court Justices 2017
The Supreme Court Justices, 2017

Needless to say, this power is immense. With there being eight (and likely soon to be nine) Supreme Court Justices, fewer than ten people have full control over whether or not your rights are protected. But the trend of the Supreme Court has been the disintegration of economic liberty and disregard for personal liberties.

While the fact that the Supreme Court can declare a law unconstitutional has done enough damage, the fact that the Supreme Court will write the law through judicial review adds insult to injury. Roe vs. Wade, for example, passed a federal law stating that state and local governments cannot make laws that restrict abortion. If Hillary Clinton was the president, imagine the damage to economic liberty, gun rights, and private property her nominees would do! While it is worth celebrating every win for liberty, we must remember that the Court should not be able to write the law. If you would not wish your worst enemy to have this power, you must not allow even your closest ally to have this power.

In other words, the Supreme Court is diametrically opposed to liberty. Eight people have more influence over your life than any other individual. The path of the US that the SCOTUS has sent it down is one of centralization and totalitarianism. Even the DC vs. Heller decision opened the door for “reasonable” gun laws. When the court has enough power to claim that a class of human beings are not people (see Dred Scott) or may be locked in concentration camps (see Korematsu), the court has too much power.

How to Stop Government Growth without the Supreme Court

“But what will we do to stop unconstitutional law?” some may ask. This answer has two parts. For one, the Supreme Court has only aided the effort to grow the federal government. Were it not for the jurisprudence of the Court, economic activity would still be considered a fundamental liberty (see footnote 4 in the United States vs. Carolene Products). If we abolished the Supreme Court today, the federal government’s greatest cheerleader would seek to exist.

Second, Thomas Jefferson and James Madison gave us the exact answer to this question. In the 1798 Kentucky and Virginia Resolutions, Jefferson and Madison made it clear that the federal government is inclined to grow and that it is the duty of the states to nullify tyrannical federal legislation. The Tenth Amendment grants a great degree of power to state and local government so that the people will have more power through localization. The Kentucky and Virginia Resolutions take that power to its logical conclusion: local and state governments have not just the right, but the duty to resist federal tyranny.

Whereas the Court is part of the federal government, it has no incentive to hold back federal growth. The people and local governments, however, have every incentive to do so. The Supreme Court is the enemy of local and individual sovereignty. It is far too powerful. Not only can it cancel a law (at any level, mind you), it can write the law. Liberty cannot be achieved when society is effectively owned by a handful of seemingly omnipotent politicians.

Originally published on freedomandeconomics.org.

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Molon Labe: A Call Against Authoritarians

By Andrew Lepore | United States

Most of us know of the famous phrase “Molon Labe” meaning “Come and take it” in Ancient Greek. But many do not know the captivating history behind it, what it truly means, and how the phrase was originated.

The story behind this phrase represents defiance of authority and a refusal to surrender the natural right to self-preservation. In a time of extreme scrutiny towards the right to bear arms and an ever increasing authoritarian state, this story is an example of ultimate courage in the face of totalitarianism which is important to remember.

The phrase Molon Labe dates back to 480 BC during the second Persian invasion of Greece. The Persians Achaemenid Empire, led by King Xerxes I, had by far the largest military force in the world at the time. Xerxes wished to conquer all of Greece, wishing to complete the mission of his father who attempted to do the same but died in the first Persian invasion. Xerxes was determined, yet the Greeks would rather have died than become slaves to him.

At the time, Greece was a loose collection of city-states. They had formed an alliance to defend their homeland in the first Persian invasion and remained a loose confederation. Upon learning of the relatively unexpected Persian invasion, a state of panic ensued. They formed a plan to send 10,000 hoplites (the full size of the Spartan professional fighting force) to make a massive stand and hold their position near Mt. Olympus, in the valley of Tempe. But the plans were withdrawn when the true size of the Persian fighting force (which was estimated at the time to be over a million but now expected to be much lower).

Instead they mustered up a force of approximately 7,000 men ( 300 Spartans and their helots with 2,120 Arcadians, 1,000 Lokrians, 1,000 Phokians, 700 Thespians, 400 Corinthians, 400 Thebans, 200 men from Phleious, and 80 Mycenaeans) led by Spartan King Leonidas, to march north and block the Persian at the narrow coastal pass of Thermopylae, nicknamed “The Hot Gates”.

With the relatively small size of the Greek force, the terrain at Thermopylae was their best option for an advantage.The terrain consisted of a narrow, 15-meter wide mountain pass, with a sheer, jagged cliff one side, and the ocean to the other. The pass created a bottle like effect in which only a small portion of the attacking Persians could confront the Greek force at once. Unable to flank, the Persians would be forced to hurl wave after wave head-on into the Spartan Phalanx. This was the plan.

Upon Persian arrival, King Xerxes sent men to negotiate with Leonidas. He wished to avoid the headache of a battle, which he was sure would end with a quick Persian Victory, and move on to larger fish to fry deeper inland. They were offered their freedom, and the title “friends of the Persian Empire” if they bent the knee.

The Greeks refused.

Upon learning of the refusal, Xerxes sent back the messenger with a handwritten note ordering the greeks to “hand over your arms”. Despite being Outnumbered almost 100-1, Leonidas’ responded simply yet triumphantly with, “Molon Labe.” Come and take it.

Frustrated, the Persian messenger threatened “Our arrows will block out the Sun!” in which Leonidas calmly replied, “Then we shall have our battle in the shade!”

With the Greeks’ refusal came seething anger from the Persian King. To Xerxes it became personal, for nobody disrespected the “God King,” nobody denied his ultimate authority. To him, this was like a small child spitting in his face. Soon after, Xerxes and his Generals began making battle preparations.

On the first day of the battle, Xerxes ordered a mass of 5,000 archers to unleash a barrage of arrows at the awaiting defensive line. Despite firing tens of thousands of arrows from 100 meters away, they proved to be completely ineffective as they deflected off the greeks bronze armor and helmets.

Perplexed, Xerxes proceeded to launch a massive frontal assault, hurling waves of 10,000 Medes and Cissian’s. The terrain and fighting style enabled the Greeks to utilize the least amount of men as effectively possible. They stood shoulder to shoulder, forming a wall of overlapping shields and long spears protruding out from the sides.

This was the standard greek phalanx and it proved to be immensely effective against the massive hordes poorly equipped for this type of warfare. According to Ctesias, an ancient Greek historian, the first waves to engage the Greek Phalanx were “cut to ribbons.”

Getting increasingly frustrated, yet still believing the Greeks could not hold out much longer, Xerxes then threw 10,000 his most elite forces, the immortals, the most highly trained and well equipped fighting force the Persians had to offer, into the second assault. But the immortals fared no better than those who attacked before them.

The Greeks had heard stories of the immortals, they had heard the immortals were one of the most elite fighting forces in the world. Defeating them so decisively had been given the Greeks a source of hope, and became a source of even more courage than they had before.

On the second day, Xerxes launched yet another massive frontal assault, supposing that “the enemies, being so few, were now disabled by wounds and could no longer resist.” Yet after hours of relentless fighting, and wave after wave of Persian assault, they fared no better on the second day than on the first. After thousands of casualties, Xerxes (Totally Perplexed) halted the assault and regrouped with his generals back at their camp.

Xerxes reputation of being a “God-King” was at risk of being discredited, and he was desperate for a plan. Later that day, Xerxes received a massive break. A local named Ephialtes, incentivized by his desire for reward from one of the wealthiest king in the world, informed Xerxes of a path starting from the East of the Persian camp, which encircled the Greek force.

On the night before the third day, the Persians led by the Persian General Hydarnes, took position on the ridge above the Spartan position, effectively encircling them. Leonidas received word from a Phocian runner that the Phocian force had retreated, and that the Persians completely surrounded the them.

Upon learning this, Leonidas rallied his troops together. He proclaimed that as free men, those who wish to leave may leave, and those who wish to stay, to obey Spartan code of Honor and hold off the Persian advance, were welcome to stay with him and fight to the death. Of the original 7,000 men, about 2,000 of the remaining stayed, including all of the remaining Spartans.

These men knew the chances of them surviving were slim to none, yet they were determined to hold off the Persian army until their men could retreat, and carry word of the likely Persian advancement.

On the third and final day of the battle, Xerxes rounded up 10,000 of his most elite infantry and cavalry forces and marched towards the Greek front line. This time, as the Persian front neared 50 meters, the Greeks made a final charge forward from their original position to met the Persian infantry in a wider part of the pass, attempting to slaughter as many of the invading force as possible.

The Spartans put up a heroic last stand. In the clash, two of Xerxes’s brothers, Abrochromes and Hyperanthes, were slain by Greek hoplites. The Spartan King Leonidas was also slain in the assault, picked off by Persian archers. After some time, most of the Greek force had been annihilated, some men retreated to a small hill behind the pass where they made there final stand.

Accepting their fate, the remaining men fought to the death on that hill, while Persian arrows rained down on them. Herodotus wrote: “Here they defended themselves to the last, those who still had swords using them, and the others resisting with their hands and teeth.”

The final death toll at Thermopylae cost the Persians an estimated 20,000+ fatalities. The Greek fatalities, those annihilated in the rearguard and those who died in the first two days of battle, was estimated at about 2,500+ men. When Xerxes men recovered the body of Leonidas and presented it to him, he ordered the corpse to be beheaded, and the body to be crucified.

Some years later, after the Persian Invaders had been defeated, Leonidas’s bones were returned to Sparta, and a Stone lion placed at the battle sight to commemorate his courage and patriotism in the face of tyranny.

The Battle Of Thermopylae has gained a reputation for one of the most famous battles in human history. The last stand of the Greeks is an example of what courageous and determined men can do whilst protecting the liberty of their homeland. It has served as a symbol for patriots standing up to tyranny, and it has become a cultural icon for western civilization.

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Authoritarianism in the UK: Britain First Leaders Jailed For Hate Crimes

Free speech just took a blow in the UK – sacrificed at the alter of political correctness.

This week, two leaders of the right-wing nationalist group, Britain First, were jailed at Folkstone Magistrates’ Court over alleged anti-Muslim hate crimes in connection to a gang-rape trial.

Paul Golding, 36, and Jayda Fransen, 31, we’re sentenced to 18 weeks and 36 weeks, respectively, for racially aggravated harassment. Golding received only one conviction, whereas Fransen was convicted on three counts.

The pair denied the seven counts total and three charges were dismissed by the magistrate, Judge Justin Barron.

The charges stem from the controversial duos distribution of anti-muslim leaflets and videos depicting the alleged harassment of people they, albeit incorrectly, believed were connected to a gang-rape trial.

The trial involved men of migrant backgrounds. Three Muslim men and a teenager were convicted.

No – this is not Sweden. This is the UK.

The incidents occurred in May of 2017 and the trial began in January.

In one of the incidents, Fransen, with Golding acting as her cameraman, banged on the windows of a shop and screamed “paedophile” and “foreigner” at the occupants of said building.

After this and the other cited instances the two Britain First leaders were involved in, the footage was then shared on the organizations social media sites, including their Facebook page.

Justice Barron told the court that the pair, as evidenced by their actions, were engaged in “… a campaign to draw attention to the race, religion and immigrant background of the defendants.”

He also claimed that the two were using the case to garner controversy and to push their own political agenda by manipulating the facts of the trial to suit their ends.

Fransen told the court during sentencing that “This is a very sad day for British justice. Everything I did was for the children of this country and they are worth it.”

It is certainly not the first time a gang-rape has occurred in Britain or in Europe as a whole at the hands of a Muslim migrant, especially since the start of the refugee crisis resulting from the turmoil of the Syrian Civil War.

Understandably, many people in Britain and Europe are lashing out against what they view as a cultural invasion of their homelands, and therefore it makes perfect sense that “far-right” parties and organizations that emphasize nationalism and anti-immigration policies are on the rise. Whether you agree with the Britain First’s political agenda or the morality of Fransen and Golding’s tactics or not, a mature mind can easily discern that such behavior, hateful or not, does not come out of a vacuum.

There had to be a catalyst.

Take Hungary, for instance. Their Prime Minister has a proven track record of not backing down to the EU in regards to refugees.

Poland refuses to march in goose-step with EU directives coming out of Brussels.

Most recently, the Northern League – another anti-immigrant party – seized the reins of power in Italy.

There is a wave of populist anger and resentment – directed at perceived globalist, establishment types – sweeping across Europe.

It is not relegated to Britain.

And this populist revolt is manifesting itself at the voting booths across a troubled, beleaguered continent.

Wherever one stands on the issue of immigration and nationalist movements developing in Europe, as lovers of liberty and defenders of free speech, it is clearly evident that 36 and 18 week convictions are excessive.

If anything, these and similar convictions for hate crime violations will engage and embolden the disenfranchised people of Europe.

If anything, these convictions will make martyrs of Golding and Fransen and cement an image of Europe in the minds of voters as an Orwellian dystopia where thought-crimes are direct threats to the states agenda.

As the Britain First supporters leaving the courtroom after the sentencing of Golding and Fransen cried:

“No surrender. “