1. Skip to navigation
  2. Skip to content
  3. Skip to sidebar

The Ludwig von Mises Institute

Tu Ne Cede Malis

Advancing the scholarship of liberty in the tradition of the Austrian School for 30 years

Search Mises.org

The Libertarian Forum, Vol. 17, No. 7-8, July-August, 1983

Part of the complete Libertarian Forum archives. This issue is also available as a PDF format facsimile.

— Double Issue —


Libertarian Forum

Murray N. Rothbard, Editor

A MONTHLY NEWSLETTER    Vol. XVII, No. 7-8 July-August, 1983

Box 341, Madison Square Station, New York, New York 10010 US-ISSN0047-4517

Ronald Reagan, Warmonger

The world is in very dangerous waters. The "true" or rhetorical Ronald Reagan, the second Reagan of the conservative "Let Reagan be Reagan" slogan, has functioned only in the world of rhetoric since the beginning of his misbegotten Administration, or arguably since he embraced the Rockefeller Republicans at the convention of 1980. The rhetorical Reagan, he of the "Get Big Government off our Backs," free market, war-with-Russia stance, has been particulary eclipsed since the end of the first year of his Administration. In economics, quasi-libertarians, monetarists, and supply-siders have been elbowed aside since 1982, and replaced by the same kind of quasi-conservative Keynesians who brought us the Nixon and Ford Adminstrations. In foreign policy, however, while the war fanatics like Richard Allen and Richard Pipes were booted out after a year, there has recently been a recrudescence of war-hawk domination by a troika of old Reagan buddy Judge William P. Clark, national security adviser whose admitted total ignorance of foreign affairs seems especially to qualify him for a top foreign policy post; Cap Weinberger of Bechtel Corporation and the Defense Department; and neo-conservative hatchet-lady and political scientist Jeane Kirkpatrick, whose contribution to political theory was to distinguish between "good" authoritarian and "bad" totalitarian torture.

The war-hawk troika signalled its accession to power by booting out Thomas Enders (one of the people most responsible for the Vietnam War) and Deane Hinton from their key State Department posts in Central American policy, for the sin of being too dovish and soft-nosed. This was a shock to those knowledgeable in foreign affairs, since it was roughly equivalent to Hitler's firing Goebbels for being soft on the Jewish Question. Clearly, we were in for a lot of trouble. Since the rise of the troika, and the relative eclipse of the "dovish" George Shultz in foreign policy, the following events have occurred as the Reagan Administration heats up the Cold War and marches, step by step, toward World War III.

I    Reagan Breaks the Law

If there is one thing that conservatives are firm about, it is that one must never, ever break the law. No matter how unjust the law, they prate, one must never disobey it; one must only try one's best to get the law changed. But as long as a law is on the books, it must be enforced. And yet Ronnie Reagan has broken at least two laws openly, flagrantly, and defiantly. Even so, no one, least of all conservatives, has called for his Impeachment.

What are these laws? One is the Boland Amendment, in which Congress made illegal any U.S. government attempt to give covert aid to Nicaraguan rebels in order to overthrow, or, as they say these days, "destabilize", the Nicaraguan government. Yet the CIA has been giving massive aid to the Nicaraguan contras, and has even established bases for the contras in neighboring Honduras, setting up the conditions for an escalating war between the two nations. This has been perhaps the most open "covert" operation in history. For many months, the U.S. government has been using the patently lame excuse that the "covert" aid was certainly not designed to overthrow the Nicaraguan government. No, it is only to put some pressure on Nicaragua to stop sending aid to the leftist guerrillas in El Salvador. While this aid might well be there, it has been so elusive that the best efforts of the U.S. and its satraps to prove Nicaraguan aid have so far been abject failures. Most guerrilla weapons, in the time-honored tradition, have come from the United States, either via capture of government arms or sale by corrupt government officials.

Recently, however, the Reagan Administration has felt so emboldened on the march toward war that it has allowed ultra-hawk Under Secretary of Defense Fred ("the Ick") Ikle to proclaim frankly and boldly that yes indeed the "covert" aid is designed to overthrow the Nicaraguan regime. So why isn't Reagan impeached and Ikle booted out?

The second flagrant defiance of the law was Reagan's refusal to obey the War Powers Act, by which Congress ordered the President to subject the maintenance of U.S. troops abroad to its wishes as soon as these troops become subject to actual hostilities. U.S. Marines have been killed in Beirut, and yet the President stubbornly refused to obey the War Powers Act, and only grudgingly agreed to a compromise when Congress knuckled under and ratified the Marines staying in Lebanon for at least another 18 months. Yet, amidst Congressional appeals and whines for Reagan to please, sir, obey the law, no one, of either party mentioned Impeachement. Since the brief and glorious flurry in 1974, has impeachment once again become Unthinkable?

II    Deeper Into Lebanon

U.S. policy in Lebanon is a classic case of sinking deeper and deeper into a quagmire, almost deliberately escalating step-by-step into another Vietnam. We begin, seemingly innocent enough, contributing 1,300 Marines to an international "peacekeeping" force. Amidst all the the right-

wing jibes at the United Nations, we forget that the major problem with the UN is not its "anti-Americanism" but its being designed as an instrument for "collective security against aggression," i.e. bringing us a state of potentially permanent war in seeking the chimera of permanent peace. The trouble with the UN is that it gets us into situations like a seemingly harmless "peacekeeping" operation.

But how, after all, do soldiers "keep the peace" except through fighting and killing? And so here we are in the midst of a civil war that has raged among literally dozens of groups in Lebanon for decades. What in hell does the United States know or care about the ancient Druse people, for example, and how dare it set itself up as an arbiter of their fortunes? Originally, in Step 1 of the operation, U.S. Marines were only supposed to fire if fired upon. But then a U.S. naval force with 2,000 more men came, and began shelling Druse positions in the Shouf mountains above and south of Beirut. The excuse was that these positions were shelling Marine positions. But soon hostilities escalated further, and it turns out that the U.S. Navy began to shell the Druse not for endangering our Marines but for battling against the Christian Lebanese Army, to which the U.S. is increasingly committed to winning the civil war. I suppose that, in that logic, the Lebanese Christians become surrogate U.S. Marines, worthy of the same protection. And so it goes.

But not only is the United States presuming to intervene ever further in the Lebanese civil war, it is also coming down unerringly on the (long-run) losing side. For a steady fact amidst the confusion of forces is that "Lebanon" is not a true country but an abortion. It was carved out of Syria by French imperialism after World War I, to serve as a French client state. Furthermore, the religious proportional representation imposed since the 1930's used as a basis the census of 1932. In that year pro-French Maronite Christians along with their Christian allies, had a majority of the Lebanese population. But if current demographics, a half-century later, were ever used as a basis for quotas of power in the government, the Muslims would be dominant, since they now form about two-thirds of the population. The essence of the Lebanese struggle is an attempt by a minority of "pro-Western" Maronite Christians to dominate and bully a Muslim majority. In the long run, this system cannot work and will be overthrown, and it is in this cauldron that the United States has decided to make itself the major enemy of Islam in Lebanon. The Lebanese army, much vaunted in the U.S. media, is a Maronite Christian army, and the President of Lebanon, Amin Gemayel, is the leader of the very same Phalangist forces that massacred helpless Palestinian women and children at the refugee camps of Sabra and Shatila.

American officials are engaging in a great deal of hand-wringing about their terrible dilemma in Lebanon. If we stay, we might get embroiled deeper and deeper in another Vietnam; but if we leave, the Gemayel government will fall. Tough. It is not a proper function of the United States to prop up dictators all over the world. And to those who think we have "national security" interests in Lebanon (assuming that word can be defined intelligently) it would be nice to hear exactly what they may be.

As for the cease-fire, it is nice to have it, but there have been many cease-fires in Lebanon, and how long does anyone think this one will-last? Any more permanent solution is being held up by the insistence of Gemayel, a man whose power depends almost totally on U.S. military might, on conducting negotiations in his own presidential palace.

Americans must ask themselves and their government: Why die for Gemayel? Why die to impose Maronite Christian rule over Muslims? What kind of foreign policy is that? Is such a policy really necessary to protect Maine or Seattle from foreign aggression? If we don't fight the Druse in their ancestral home in the Shouf mountains, will we really have to fight them in the streets of Boston?

III    Deeper into Central America

The Central American morass is not as boldly in the headlines right now as Lebanon, but is fully as dangerous for escalating military conflict. The United States is backing an unpopular and despotic regime in El Salvador, and is building bases in Honduras in order to aid and abet the "contra" invasion of Nicaragua. All of these are inexorably losing propositions, and therefore to keep its wildly interventionist commitments, the U.S. must continue to escalate its forces and its war in Central America.

In El Salvador, the much touted "free elections" are now forgotten, as the guerrillas slowly but surely increase their power in one province after another. In this country ridden by dictatorship and by right-wing paramilitary squads murdering dissenters, government army officers refuse to go out on patrol in guerrilla country (in the words of the old joke, "you can get killed out there!") and stay confined to their base, punctuated occasionally by grand but pointless sweeps throughout the countryside. Weekends they take off to cavort amidst the fleshpots of the capital city. In Nicaragua, in contrast, the army is doing very well and the well-supplied contras are getting nowhere. For one reason, in contrast to the Salvadoran army, the Nicaraguan forces go out habitually in small patrols to encounter the enemy.

And the egregious Fred Ikle proudly proclaims that in Central America "we seek victory for the forces of democracy." These are the same "forces" that expelled the bureau chief of the Associated Press from El Salvador for telling the truth, and that are daily torturing and murdering dissenters from the right-wing dictatorial governement.

IV    007 Hysteria

Fueling all of these war escapades, softening any resistance to them in Congress and the country, adding to pressure for any and all military expenditures, is the hysteria whipped up by Reagan, the right-wing, and the Establishment media over the tragic shooting down of Korean Airliner 007 over Sakhalin Island. After milking the maximum amount of propaganda from the failure of the Russians to admit shooting down the plane, or to explain the incident, for eight days, it turned out that the U.S. authorities were also engaged in telling untruths on a massive scale. For one thing, the U.S. finally and grudgingly admitted that the Soviet jet interceptors had indeed fired several warning shots at 007 before shooting it down. This after many days of hopped-up denunciations that the Soviets had neglected to fire any warning shots. Also, it took several days for the U.S. to admit that a U.S. RC-135 spy plane flew near the 007 route and that for some time the paths of the

Page 2

The Libertarian Forum July-August, 1983

two actually coincided.

There are many unanswered questions and fuzzy areas about 007—enough, surely, to defuse the hysteria and try to get back—or forward—to a sane approach toward the airliner and toward the Soviets generally.

1. What in hell was KAL 007 doing flying 300 miles off-course for several hours over Soviet airspace? KAL 747's are equipped with three separate, cross-checking, internal navigation systems. The pilot and crew of 007 should have known instantly that they were off course. And why were there no radio communications from 007 until fifteen minutes before it was shot down? The idea of radio failure makes no sense. Not only because they did make contact at long last, but also because 747's are equipped with five separate radios, two of which can reach anywhere in the world. Futhermore, the route flown by 007 is well-travelled; there are planes up there all the time, including another 747 twenty minutes behind that was carrying Senator Jesse Helms. Why didn't 007 contact any of these other planes and check where they were?

Moreover, all Pacific pilots are well aware, and it is marked clearly on their navigational maps, that one does not fly over Soviet airspace without advance clearance, because the planes are likely to be shot down. Why then the insouciance of the 007 pilot? Especially since a civilian KAL airliner was shot down over the Soviet Arctic in 1978? There is one crucial difference, however, between the 1978 incident and that of 1983: the 1978 airlner was a 707, with little of the sophisticated navigational systems of the 747. Its pilot could well have gotten lost; the 007 pilot could not.

Another point: 007 was supposed to report every hour to air controllers on the ground. Why didn't any of the U.S. or Japanese air controllers, also well aware of the dangers of flying over Soviet territory—especially the sensitive military installations in the Kamchatka-Sakhalin area—why didn't they ever notify 007 that it was way off course and to get back pronto?

Specifically, we know that the RC-135, our spy plane, was flying on the course that day to monitor Soviet tests. But our most capable monitor for the Soviet tests is the U.S. Cobra Dane radar at Shemya, at the tip of the Aleutians and only 450 miles from Kamchatka. The Shemya radar would have seen quickly that 007 was off course, and would have tracked it from then on. Why, then, didn't an American official at Shemya immediately pick up a phone, call 007, or call the Japanese controllers at Narita? It is no wonder that the London Sunday Times concluded from its investigation of the 007 incident that "there is now a growing conviction in military, political and aviation circles that Captain Byung In was not in Soviet airspace by accident."

2. Was the 007 incursion planned, and, if so, why? If KAL pilot Chung Byung In was "witting", and the U.S. and Japanese air controllers were perhaps aiding and abetting, what was the point? The suggestion in the media that Chung Byung might have taken this dangerous route deliberately to save money on fuel seems idiotic; surely a hell of a risk to take for saving some gasoline. It is more plausible to look at Korean Air Lines, nearly all of whose pilots are former officers in the South Korean Air Force, and who retain high security clearance. Chung Byung himself was considered one of KAL's best pilots, as witness the fact that he was chosen to be the pilot for several 747 flights of the South Korean president to the U.S. and to various countries in Southeast Asia during 1981 and 1982. The present form of Korean Air Lines originated in 1969; before then, the Korean government was running the company. In that year, the government decided to put KAL into the hands of a private transportation company, the Hanjin Group, headed by two brothers, Cho Chong ("Harry") Hoon and Cho Chong ("Charlie Cho") Kun. Most KAL business is manufacturing aircraft for the Korean Air Force, which of course cements the closeness of its ties with the Korean military.

Furthermore, Fred Kaplan reports in the Boston Globe that the two brothers have close ties with the Korean CIA. A former director of Korean affairs at the U.S. State Department told Kaplan that throughout the 1970's Charlie Cho ran money back and forth between the KCIA and Japanese bigwigs. Kaplan was also told that KAL used to run money and spies in and out of Korea and assisted the KCIA in its lucrative drug smuggling.

And where the KCIA is, can the US CIA be far behind?

The Soviet Army newspaper Krasnaya Zvezda claimed, on Sept. 16, that Chung Byung had boasted to intimates that he was carrying out special tasks for U.S. intelligence, that he had placed equipment on 747's to spy on Soviet installations, and that he intended to leave KAL soon because of the high risks entailed in flying for the CIA. This could well be hokum, but it is surely suggestive in light of the evidence.

If the 007 incursion was planned by the KCIA, with or without US connivance, why did they do it? There would appear to be three possible reasons, or some combination of the three: First, the 747 could have been functioning as a spy plane. A former U.S. Air Force intelligence officer remembers being told in 1967, according to Fred Kaplan, that KAL habitually attached side-view cameras to commercial airliners capable of long-distance photography. Newt Royce of the Hearst press reported on September 4 that U.S. intelligence officials admit that civilian airliners are routinely used for spying: Aeroflot for the Russians, and Finnair and others for the U.S. The common counter-argument that the U.S. needs no such photos because of its satellites, runs against the fact that satellites fly at regular times and so can be evaded if necessary, and that photos taken at 30,000 feet can often tell more than, or at least confirm, photos from satellites.

A second, more plausible, reason was to test the quality and speed of Soviet air defenses. What they found should have gladdened their hearts, since they discovered that the Russian military are a bunch of stumblebums. There is a peculiar tendency of right-wingers, from conservatives to conservative libertarians, to look upon the Soviet Union as a mighty, super-efficent, Satanic monolith, omniscient if not omnipotent, and always ready to strike. Yet what is the Soviet Union but a giant, rigidified bureaucracy, and what is bureaucracy but a bunch of confused, ineffective stumblebums? Free market advocates should after all, be particularly alive to this fact.

And so what we saw in the 007 incident was a Soviet air defense that didn't seem to know what was going on or what to do, that allowed a large, slow, passenger airliner to fly for two-and-a-half hours over sensitive Soviet airspace without

Page 3

The Libertarian Forum July-August, 1983

interception, that took all of thirty minutes to get the interceptor jets off the ground. Not only that: three days after 007, several test-fired Russian ICBMs blew up over the same area! With this record, it is very possible that it took Marshal Ogarkov all of eight days to find out what in hell happened over Pacific Siberia that night.

So crummy have Soviet air defenses shown themselves to be that various press reports have U.S. intelligence authorities believing that up till the very end the Soviets were convinced that they were tracking and shooting down not a civilian 747 but an RC-135 spy plane. For one thing, Soviet interceptors may have misidentified the plane because they were always at least 2,000 feet below 007 and therefore could not make out its distinctive silhouette. Furthermore, the Soviets could have been misled by their obsolete radar equipment, and by the fact that Soviet commanders don't trust their pilots with access to radio frequencies with which they could have contacted the Korean airliner. In fact, U.S. Air Force Chief of Staff Charles A. Gabriel happily concluded from the 007 incident that the Soviet air defense performance "gives us a little more confidence" in the ability of the U.S. Air Force to penetrate Soviet air space "if necessary." (New York Times, Sept. 18.) Could finding this out have been the point of the whole exercise?

One thing that the U.S. authorities acknowledge they discovered is the tense, nervous state of the Soviet air defenders. The Americans confirmed the Soviet account of nine U.S. military spy plane incursions into Soviet airspace over the Kurile Islands this year. Take frayed nerves, the deep fear that the next U.S. military air incursion might be a nuclear attack, and the Soviet penchant to punish severely any commanders who allow intruding aircraft to escape, and the stage was set for the tragedy of 007.

A third possible reason for the incursion, less plausible than the others but which should not be dismissed out of hand, is that 007 was a right-wing US/South Korean intrigue designed to provoke the Soviets into doing precisely what they did—thus heating up the Cold War and ending any possibility of detente for a long time to come.

There are various other conspiracy theories about 007 that can be dismissed tout court. One is the Bircher theory that the Soviets shot down 007 because they knew that Rep. Larry McDonald (D., Ga.), head of the John Birch Society, was on the plane. It seems to me that in the improbable event that McDonald was No. 1 on a Soviet hit list, they could have assassinated him far more easily in Washington without causing an international airplane incident in which they lose an enormous number of propaganda points. (If I were in the Kremlin and had an Americanski hit list, McDonald would scarcely be high up on it.) Even less plausible is the kooky antipodal conspiracy theory, voiced by Larry Flynt of Hustler fame, that McDonald himself was in on the disaster, along with the CIA, in order to make himself an anti-Communist martyr and heat up the Cold War. Another kooky sub-variant is that 007 was a coordinated plot by the Reagan Adminstration and the Russians to get rid of McDonald, since the Adminstration is run by Trilateralists. A hilarious "sub-sub-variant," as noted by the Menckenesque Marxist journalist Alexander Cockburn, "is that the Russians' true target was Scoop Jackson, knowing full well that news of the incident would give him a fatal heart attack." (Village Voice, September 20).

3.    What are the Lessons of 007?

The alleged lesson pushed by the war hawks, the right-wing, and the Reagan Administration (at least in rhetoric), and following them the bulk of the media, is that the shooting down of 007 was mass murder or even a "massacre," that this "proves" that the Soviet system is evil, and that the Soviets are barbarians and mass murderers who should be treated as such. What being treated as such really means is never fully spelled out. Oddly enough, the policy conclusions never match up to the bitter and sweeping analyses. Thus, a group of orthodox, unreconstructed Randians, centered around Peter Schwartz and his magazine The Intellectual Activist, took the trouble and the enormous expense to take out a full page ad in the New York Sunday Times (Sept. 11). The thrust of the ad was that the Soviet Union should be treated as a "well-armed" neighborhood police force would deal with murderers in their midst. The Randians proceed to spell out what they claim to be the implications of their analogy: specifically the breaking of all diplomatic relations, since one does not engage in "detente" with local murderers. Other right-wingers, pursuing the same logic, have added a call for prohibition of all East-West trade. But these logicians are acting haltingly and bizarrely on the basis of their own logic. For of course this sort of thing—ostracism, refusal to trade or negotiate—is not what neighborhood police do to a murderer. What they do is to apprehend and execute him. Following Randian and other right-wing logic, then, what the United States is supposed to do, right now, is nuke the Soviet Union.

The interesting point is: Why don't the Randians and other right-wingers see that this is their real thrust? Is their grasp on the logic of their own position that weak? In short, are they that dumb? Failing that conclusion, the Randians/conservatives can have only two things in mind: either (a) they favor the immediate nuking of the Soviet Union and haven't got the guts to say so, i.e. this is precisely the hidden agenda behind their beating of the war drums; (b) something is holding them back from going all the way in whooping it up for a nuclear holocaust. If so, it would behoove them to examine what that something is, and, if they focussed fully on that for a while, they might begin to reconsider their entire war-hawk perspective. Perhaps then the Intellectual Activist, which proudly proclaims its subtitle, "In Defense of Individual Rights," might begin to see that a nuclear holocaust would, to put it mildly, be a massive assault on the individual rights to life of countless millions of innocent Russians and Americans. Perhaps then they will also see that their own irresponsible rhetoric is tantamount to threatening and bringing closer a nuclear confrontation that would slaughter far more innocents than even Communist regimes have managed in ruling their own subjects. In the good old Randian phrase: Randians, "Check your premises!"

The real lessons of 007 are very different, and have gotten very little attention in the media. They can be summed up as follows:

a. Americans are Very Selective in their Moral Indignation.

In February 1973, the State of Israel shot down a Libyan commercial airliner over the Sinai Desert, killing 109

Page 4

The Libertarian Forum July-August, 1983

persons. Yet no President of the United States got on the air to denounce the "massacre," no media people claimed that this incident demonstrated the "evil nature" of the "barbaric" Israeli system, no one demanded that all trade and diplomatic relations with Israel be cut off, and no Randians took out full-page ads declaiming that Israel should be treated as local police treat mass murderers. Why not?

b. No Superpower is to be Trusted with High-Tech Weapons of Mass Destruction.

The major lesson of this incident is that both superpowers are paranoid and trigger-happy, and each has its finger close to the nuclear button expecting momentary assault from the other side. Both sides can unleash enormous destruction within moments. Instead of trying to keep the 007 tragedy from ballooning into a full-blown war crisis, the Reagan administration seized the opportunity to heat up the Cold War, kill all attempts at detente, and intensify arguments for any and all accumulations of nuclear weaponry. For a while, the atmosphere looked very close to the blundering into World War that marked the Guns of August, 1914. The major lesson of the 007 crisis is the desperate need for joint nuclear disarmament of the superpowers, for the permanent elimination of the nuclear button by which the super-states hold the entire human race at risk.

We might as well consider here the agitation for unilateral U.S. nuclear disarmament that has been pushed for the last couple of years by people within the left-wing of the Libertarian Party. (The argument over unilateral disarmament transcends Crane Machine-anti Crane Machine boundaries. It is, as it were, trans-Machine. Thus the main advocates have been Sheldon Richman and Leslie Graves Key of the left-wing of the Machine, and Jeffrey Rogers Hummel, in the anti-Machine camp. Hummel, in particular, has been an eloquent and knowledgeable spokesman for unilateral disarmament.) My own position is that while I would prefer unilateral disarmament to the monstrous status quo, these are not our only choices. For I vastly prefer mutual nuclear disarmament to unilateral; clearly the people of the world, their rights and liberties, would be far more secure under the former. The unilateralists like to think of their position as more radical than that of us mutualists; but isn't it more radical to have every superstate disarm their weapons of mass destruction, than only one? In fact, the shoe should be on the other foot: why wouldn't any libertarian strongly prefer mutual to unilateral disarmament? Why are our unilateralists hanging back rather than going all the way?

I remember back in the 1950's and 1960's, when the anti-nuclear movement was gaining strength in the United States. The all-out pacifists took the peculiar position that they would rather see the U.S. government disarm unilaterally than negotiate an agreement with Russia for joint disarmament. The reason for this odd position was not, of course, that these pacifists were secret Commies, trying to open us up for a Soviet takeover. The reason was that their idea of politics was making a moral statement rather than accomplishing results. A government that disarms unilaterally can be said to be making a purer, more heroic, moral statement than one that persuades other governments to disarm together. By extension, the pacifists themselves were making a purer, more heroic moral statement than those in the anti-nuke movement who advocated joint nuclear disarmament. I am afraid that something like this is driving our unilateralists, who, in their desire to make purer and more heroic moral statements than anyone else, are losing sight of the fact that mutual disarmament would be a far more libertarian event, a far greater cause for rejoicing by us and by the entire human race, than unilateral disarmament. So why not go for it?

V    Conclusion: Reagan: Rhetoric and Reality

Ronald Reagan was swept into office by the conservative movement, whose leader and spokesman he had become. He made a raft of campaign promises to that movement, each and every one of which he has broken egregiously. He raised income taxes rather than lowered them, he brought us $200 billion deficits rather than balancing the budget, he entrenched fiat money rather than bringing back the gold standard, his budget is the highest absolutely and as percentage of GNP in American history, he has deregulated nothing, he has not abolished the Departments of Education and Energy, etc. The conservative movement has long been animated by three broad concerns: (a) Freeing the economy and Getting Big Government Off Our Back; (b) using government to enforce Judaeo-Christian morality (so-called "social" issues), and (c) engaging in nuclear war with the Soviet Union. Simply listing these concerns reveals that (b) and (c) the theocratic and the war-mongering, contradict the libertarian (a), to put it very mildly. The conservative movement is so constituted that in a tussle between these three, (b) and (c) always win out in their hearts and minds over the free market.

The quintessence of Ronald Reagan is that he is a master in supplying the conservative movement with the rhetoric they want to hear. In all politicians there is a gulf between rhetoric and reality, but in Ronald Reagan that gulf has become a veritable and mighty ocean. There seems to be no contact whatever between Ronnie the rhetorician and Ronnie the maker of policy. In that situation it is hard to know which one is "the real" Reagan. The conservatives, feeling betrayed but lacking any guts for a break with the Administration, persist in asserting (publicly, at any rate) that the rhetorical Reagan is the real one, and that if only his evil pragmatist advisers would "let him," this real Reagan would finally emerge. Hence, the famous right-wing slogan, "Let Reagan Be Reagan." But the problem with that slogan is the "let." What do you mean, "let"? Who picked these evil advisers, and who persists in maintaining them in power? None other than Reagan himself. So in what sense is this visible person not the "real" Reagan?

There are only two solutions to his dilemma, neither one a happy situation for conservatives. Either Reagan is a total cretin, a puppet who gets wheeled out for ceremonial speeches, and who really believes that he is putting conservative policies into effect. Or Reagan is a cynical master politician, keeping the conservatives happy by dishing out their rhetoric and his phony 3x5 card anecdotes, while keeping corporate centrists happy by pursuing the New Deal-Fair Deal-Great Society-Nixon-Ford policies that we have all come to know so well. Either way: Reagan the imbecile or Reagan the cynical manipulator, the

Page 5

The Libertarian Forum July-August, 1983

situation is hopeless for conservatives, who yet persist in wilfully not perceiving this stark reality.

Of the three conservative concerns mentioned above, Reagan has clearly and flatly sold out the free market, and also pretty much for the theocratic social issues. Unfortunately, the anti-Soviet part of the rhetoric is something that Reagan seems to believe in more firmly than the rest of the stuff, so that he has more difficulty abandoning his conservative mass base on this issue than on the others. "Unfortunately," because the more Reagan betrays conservatism on the war front (and on theocracy), the better. The drift toward war, and the ascendancy of the war-hawk troika, are ominous signposts for the future. The only silver lining in the cloud is that, despite the whipped-up hysteria, the Reagan Administration hasn't really done anything to crack down directly on the Russians. (He couldn't retaliate by banning Aeroflot in U.S., since Carter had already locked that into place when the Russians marched into Afghanistan.) His not doing anything concrete has, of course, sent conservatives up the wall, for this is by far their most emotional and most deeply felt of the three broad issues. It is a helluva note when we have to rely, for saving us from nuclear annihilation, on the likes of the Rockefellers, the Trilateralists, the Shultzes, the Kissingers, and all the rest. But that is unfortunately the way things are.

Hopefully, as rhetoric and reality clash and as we weave back and forth in the direction of the Final World War, Ronnie will be booted out in 1984, and we will all be able to leave the question of who or what is the "real" Reagan to shrinks and historians. Ronald Reagan will, then at long last, become supremely irrelevant for our time.

Letters on Gandhi

Dear Editor:

I should say I am aghast at Murray Rothbard's "The New Menace of Gandhism" (March) but I am not surprised. Aghast at the blatant intolerance, un-surprised by the Randian-Objectivist attitude toward anything spiritual.

The rising tide of Gandhism is, at any rate, not the worship of the man or even of his particular methods or beliefs, but of his attitudes. Gandhites (speaking for myself) will certainly modify the methods to benefit the times. Nonviolent resistance, in this country, would certainly be a far cry from the massacres and slaughter of Gandhi's time. Also, libertarians are indeed not especially pacifist by being non-violent in intent. Certainly I do not turn the other cheek, rarely. And before Gandhi came into my reading, I was cheering Thoreau who advocated the same civil disobedience. Where do Randians get off setting the standards for a philosophy and movement, ages old, long before Ms. Rand came upon the scene?

Defending this libertarian's defection against Mr. Rothbard's observations, I would have to say that, firstly, I have always been a supporter of the American Revolution, violence and all. I do not, however, believe it is necessary now, but if so I have no doubts libertarians will fight one.

This "craze" does not serve a function for "burnt out" activists as speaking for myself I am working just as hard and harder than ever. My activity remains the same. I have simply decided I cannot support a libertarian political party or government by voting. I still participate in political activities but no "candidate-type" support and action. A "drop out" of anything I am not, Mr. Rothbard. Only that which has clay feet or I have outgrown. Politics is a child's-play-ego-trip. A mania for fame and power. what good have the ego trips of those who are in office, and have been for a while, done for libertarian freedom? Not one iota. Not one. They have compromised themselves right back to warmed-over republicansville from whence they came. I have yet to see a leopard successfully change his spots.

I do not think any of us are going to throw ourselves into the machinery of the state. We are not martyrs, but we are activists. I cannot speak for the others, but I do not "sit around" talking, since my non-political decision. I am still writing, and to editors, and legislators and in other areas. I am publishing. I am involved in Toastmasters, speaking libertarianese wherever I am. I have offered "education" with other writers' works and my own reasoning, to my share of potential believers. I do not consider myself burnt out or inactive. Crazy maybe. But not lazy.

I do not think reviling of Gandhi's motives or beliefs serves any purpose since they are not the core of the non-violent, non-acquiescing philosophy. Certainly I have not heard anyone of us call him a libertarian or a saint. Certainly he had his personal motives just as you, I, and others have theirs. Gandhi's fanaticism is acknowledged. It served its purpose, for its time and place. It is not necessarily ours. His sexual attitudes are also his personal business. I fail to see the pertinence except to sneer and revile. A man's belief is his fortress. Although perhaps not agreed with, the man is no less guilty of anything than those who mindlessly obeyed. A man sets himself up as a certain something, rounds up a following and pursues his dream. Everyone has that privilege and prerogative Mr. Rothbard, and may the most effective and "followed" movement win. What "type" of libertarians eventually start, or win, or lose, the "revolution" will determine the future direction of this nation.

I have chosen the way I feel is the most decent, ethical and honest. Shame on you Murray Rothbard, for showing your "fear" through such an intolerant article.

Yes, the best activists are deserting your L.P. and that is the fear. That there are no longer any libertarians in the political party. And there are not.

As for Mr. Gandhi "selling out," he had the prerogative of living and learning and changing his mind as do all the rest of us. Except we start where he left off.

Perhaps, Mr. Rothbard, you may consider that the

Page 6

The Libertarian Forum July-August, 1983

libertarian movement is not as steeped in the heritage (?) of Rand and Mises as you think, but instead, steeped in far deeper philosophies besides the objectivists and the economists. Any movement sans spiritually will die and the L.P. is already very ill. I would be afraid, too, Mr. Rothbard, for truth will out and will then set us all free. Whose? Only time will tell.

Lorraina M. Valencia.

Dear Editor:

I am writing in response to your article about Gandhi and Non-violent action in your recent issue of LF. I admit I didn't get a chance to read the article thoroughly and do not have it before me so my comments are really very general.

First I intuit that you are attacking non-violent action because it might drive people away from the party. In truth, the thing that drives most people away from the party/including myself, before I realized its general strategic impotence—was the infighting and the backbiting—of which your article might easily be conidered an example.

Second, you may oppose non-violent action because of your fervent ideological and perhaps psychological attachment to the idea of our "right" to use violence to enforce our view of libertarian "justice"—both as a means of abolishing the state and as a way of maintaining order afterwards. Your ego bridles at the very suspicion that someone might disagree with your sacred "right" to use violence.

Mostly, I think you are afraid of what you may perceive as real competition to your brand of libertarianism. You are afraid that libertarians might accept Gandhi's essential message—that there are no absolute standards of truth and justice and therefore we should settle all our disputes, including those over property—non-violently. You quote Koestler to attack Gandhi. I don't have the quotes or even the original title of the work you quoted from, but I can quote you some certainly later Koestler which indirectly supports Gandhi's basic assumption—that absolute truth is probably unattainable. "In fact our physicists have been engaged, over the last fifty years, in ruthlessly discarding previously sacrosanct 'Laws of Nature' and replacing them with obscure mental constructs which cannot be represented in three-dimensional space, and whose quasi-mystical implications are hidden in technical jargon and mathematical formalism . . . (Physics and parapsychology) have in common an attitude defying commonsense and defying 'Laws of Nature' previously considered inviolable."

This from one of his last and most "synthetic works," Janus, (1978.) Also from Janus an understanding of the concept of our essential interconnectedness as human beings in this description of "Mach's Principle" which "states that the inertial properties of terrestrial matter are determined by the total mass of the universe around us." The metaphysical implications are fundamental—for it follows from it not only that the universe as a whole influences local, terrestrial events, but also that local events have an influence, however small, on the universe as a whole . . . which reminds one of the ancient Chinese proverb: "If you cut a blade of grass, you shake the Universe." Such thinking is a basis for the opinion of all violence is wrong because it hurts us all . . . something Gandhi would certainly agree with.

As you know Tim Leary, Robert Anton Wilson and Karl Hess all have rejected absolutist truth though they may not have come out for total non-violence. LeFevre, rather than being an "aberration," in fact expresses the purest form of libertarianism: toleration and non-violence.

As you can see from the enclosed I myself am into relativism and non-violence and am working hard on several articles and booklets to bring this message to the libertarian movement—but even more so to the rest of the world. The very big "New Age" movement which study the New Physics and the Non-violent action movement in the antinuclear and disarmament movements are ready for this new synthesis. Austrian economics will of course be incorporated into what I write because it it based on the realization that all values are relative. However, natural law and natural rights are out the window. There is no excuse for violence! And to avoid the violence of the bully—whose numbers would be negligible in a non-violence society—stay out of dark alleys and put good fences around your neighborhoods!

I realize you have invested your life and reputation into promoting natural rights and aren't liable to be swayed by a rambling letter from me. But if you really are into the search for "truth"—or at least greater probability, I'd advise you to read the books on list at end of enclosed article.

I believe the "revolution" will come from those of us who believe in the metaphysics of relativistic creative consciousness, the ethics of freewill and non-violence and the rituals—of sex and drugs and rock and roll???!!! Why wait till your next life to get hip? Get hip now!

(Try reading Tim Leary's autobiography which is quite amusing . . . though I don't agree with all his views on physiology.)

Carol Moore
c/o Libertarian Office
1550 Westwod Blvd.
Los Angeles, CA 90024.

The Editor Replies:

I know I promised my readers (May-June) to have done with the Gandhi Question, but these letters are too fascinating not to print. Both letters are interesting chiefly in revealing the inchoate and mystical mind-set of the modal Voluntaryist. The only other comment worth making on Ms. Valencia's letter is that it has been twenty-five years since I have been called a "Randian." While the charge is as absurd as the rest of her lettter, it does have a kind of nostalgic charm.

Ms. Moore adds a special blather about the "new physics," which, since the popular misinterpretation of Heisenberg's Uncertainty Principle decades ago, is supposed to show us that there is no truth. We then find that since "there are no absolute standards of truth and justice," that absolute non-violence follows from this . . . this what?

Page 7

The Libertarian Forum July-August, 1983

Absolute truth?! Ms. Moore's assertion that there are no absolute truths is either itself an absolute truth, and therefore self-refuting, or else it is only her own admittedly "relative" truth, in which case we can and should toss it in into a relative ashcan.

Ms. Moore's blithe contention that since there "are no" absolute standards of truth and justice that non-violence therefore follows, is old-hat but absurd nonetheless. If there are no objective standards of justice to resolve disputes then the tendency will be—as throughout history—to settle disputes by sheer force, by the will to loot and power. And if Ms. Moore is serious about refusing to cut a blade of grass, then she is in for big trouble, since she will not be able to eat anything vegetable, let alone animal. With such advice, the human race would die out very quickly.

As for Arthur Koestler, who ever said that he was omniscient?

We might note also the unfortunate penchant of both letter-writers to engage in psycho-smears of their opposition. Not only is this invalid, but one is almost tempted to remind them of the admonition about people in glass houses.

Ms. Moore writes later to announce to us that she is at work on a tract on the New Physics and non-violence, to be entitled Anarchy is Peace. In the immortal words of Sheridan Whiteside in The Man Who Came To Dinner: "Are we to be spared nothing?"

Meanwhile, back at Voluntaryist GHQ in Los Angeles, George Smith seems to have flipped out entirely. Mirabile dictu, The Craniac Update must have laid a restraining hand on the young ranter in his reply to our "New Menace of Gandhism." For the true Smith now emerges, unedited and unbuttoned, frothing at the mouth, in his own Voluntaryist: the entire issue being Part I of a full-scale hymn of hate launched in our direction, a hymn which I suppose will continue on and on into the twenty-first century—for who knows how many parts this "article" is going to contain? At any rate, as we promised our readers, he will have to continue flailing away in the snake pit all by his lonesome, since indeed we have had our final say on the Gandhi Question.

High Tech 'Crime': A Call for Papers

The other day an old friend of mine, a libertarian and a veteran New Yorker who like myself is determinedly low-tech, was lamenting the crime problem. "Somehow," he grinned, "the one thing I can't work up any worry about is 'computer crime.'" We laughed heartily. But later I began to ruminate on the new areas of alleged crime opened by our new "high tech" technologies. The press is full of mounting hysteria about the alleged need for new laws to cope with new high-tech crimes. Young lads in Milwaukee, inspired by the marvelous and exciting film War Games, use their home computers and modems to enter secret computer information networks. The New York Times headline (Sept. 18) proclaims: "Prosecutors Find Laws Inadequate to Fight New Computer Crimes". Meanwhile, senders of cable-TV programs fight to prosecute enterprising folk who build antennae on their roofs to catch signals without paying, or others who purchase satellite dishes to trap every possible TV frequency. And the Supreme Court is gravely hearing a case that might allow producers of video films to prohibit (or at best tax) people from using their own VCRs to tape TV programs or movie cassettes which they rent from entrepreneurs.

But wait a minute! Before we rush to pass new laws making criminals out of large groups of people, surely we should pause and think—and surely, too, our a priori presumption must be that whatever anyone is doing is legitimate, unless someone can prove otherwise. The burden of proof is on those who would make criminals out of previously peaceful and productive citizens. At first blush, it seems that, yes, we must pass new laws adapting the concept of crime to new technological realms. But then we must stop and consider: Why can't the common law, which has always applied principles to new technological situations, be applied without creating new statute law—always a dubious instrument at best?

Take, for example, alleged "computer crimes." We learn that, for what all of us would recognize as theft, such as the computer bank theft committed years ago in a lovely British film by Peter Ustinov, there is really no need for new laws. Thus, the New York Times (Sept. 18): "Prosecutors distinguish between two types of computer criminals. On the one hand, they said, are those who use computers as a tool to defraud banks or other businesses, often using modern technology to cover their tracks. Prosecutors and private computer security consultants said such cases were still the most common and the laws dealing with them were adequate." (Italics mine.) In short, the regular laws against fraud and theft are sufficient; for such deeds which everyone would recognize as criminal there is no need for new laws.

What worries prosecutors, then, where their hands are now tied, are situations where young computer mavens or "hackers", using their own computer, their own modem hooking them up legitimately to a telephone line, can extract information from other computers also hooked up to the same line. When, typically, a password is needed to hook into the other computer, the hacker can often discover the passwork by guesswork or by randomizing sequences of numbers.

Well, before we rush to laws, let us ponder the problem. Why should it be illegal for a young hacker, using his own computer and modem, to hook into a modem of another

Page 8

The Libertarian Forum July-August, 1983

computer? It seems to me that libertarianism decrees that every person should have the right to do whatever he wants with his own property. Only the hacker's own property, and phone lines for which he has bought access, is involved in this "computer crime." So how can it be a crime at all?

But how then can copyright be justified at all? If I buy a book from a bookstore, by what right does the word "copyright" stamped on the book prohibit me from reprinting and reselling it? The answer there—and the reason why copyright is a common-law action—is that I contracted with the bookstore (who in turn contracted with the publisher and author), when I bought the book not to reprint and resell it. In short, my contract decreed that I do not own the book outright; I own every aspect of the book except the right to print and sell it, which the publisher or author reserves to himself. Therefore, violation of copyright should indeed be illegal.

But the problem has been raised: What of third parties? Can they be said to violate copyright? Someone else, Zeke, sees the book in my house, or I lend it to him. He then copies it and reprints and sells the book. Since he didn't sign any such contract, how can Zeke be violating copyright or doing anything illegal? My reply here is that whether Zeke signed any contract is immaterial. The important point is that my own title to the book was obtained with the right to copy reserved to the author/publisher; and that Zeke's title cannot be any wider than my own. The point here is akin to a tort problem. Suppose that I had stolen rather than purchased the book. And suppose, too, that Zeke had bought the book from me in good faith, thinking that I had purchased it legitimately. Doesn't he then really own the book, and can't we then say that when Zeke is apprehended with the stolen book, that the injured bookseller can't deprive him of it? Surely not, for a contract cannot convey a greater title than the one originally held. I stole the book, and therefore the book is stolen property, and Zeke must disgorge it if apprehended. He can then try to take damages out of my hide, for defrauding him. But the book properly belongs to the bookstore alone. Similarly, my title to any copyrighted book is not mine fully; I don't have the right to copy, and therefore Zeke can't have the right to copy either.

So while I defend the common law of copyright, I contend that there is nothing analogous to a copyright contract in the case of "theft of information" from a computer and its modem. The young hacker has not contracted anything with the other computer-owner; his only contractual status is with the phone company, whom he pays for access to its lines. And I can't see that the hacker has committed any tort either. His "entry" into the other computer is only metaphoric. In actual fact, he was only able to get information through a phone line to which both owners have voluntarily hooked their computers.

I conclude, then, that there is here no computer crime at all. And that if the computer owner wants to safeguard his information from free-loaders, it is up to him to install security safeguards so as to make entry into his system impossible for those not paying a fee. The burden is on him to keep his own phone line free of unwanted persons. I conclude further that no new computer crime laws should be passed and that libertarians should oppose them as interfering with the property rights of hackers.

Why, in fact, do the owners keep their modems hooked into general telephone lines, despite the unchecked "theft of information"? Because of the great convenience in having a large number of computers hooked into each other to constitute a vast, nationwide data network. All right then; if the owners calculate their benefits and costs, and figure that the benefits to them of plugging into the information network outweigh the costs of hackers being able to use it for free, then so be it. If not, let the owners get out of the networks, or else tighten their security systems. Let them take their cue from the Defense Department, which has now decided to "build a fence" around their networks, especially their military computer networks, with "virtually uncrackable" coded messages and special passwords required for entry. (New York Times, Oct. 5).

Let us now turn from computer "crimes" to TV frequencies. The situation, I submit, is analogous. If a TV station, whether regular or cable, emits frequencies on a certain channel at a certain place, then it should have the

Watch For The Next Blockbuster

LP Convention Issue!!

Renew Now!

Subscribe Now!

Page 9

The Libertarian Forum July-August, 1983

private "ownership" of the right to transmit signals on such frequencies. Anyone else trying to broadcast on the same channel at the same place should be dubbed an aggressor against the property right of the pre-existing TV station. Indeed, that is precisely how the federal courts were beginning to apply the common law to the new technology of radio transmission (Tribune Co. v. Oak Leaves Broadcasting Station, Circuit Court, Cook County, Illinois, 1926), when the federal government, in panic that each radio station might obtain private property rights, rushed through laws to prevent it and to nationalize the airwaves (The Radio Act of 1927).

But even though every station should have the unimpeded right to transmit signals on any given channel or frequency, it should not be able to interfere with anyone's right to receive signals. The station does not and cannot own the signal itself, only the right to transmit the signals. Why should Tex, a man with his own satellite dish or antennae on his own property, not have the right to receive any signals he darn pleases with his own equipment? Cable-TV stations, of course, can and do scramble their signals so that TV set owners who don't pay cannot receive a clear signal. And that's fine. Let Home Box Office scramble its signals, then, and good luck to it. But I find it monstrous that Home Box Office can and does send out the gendarmes to harass people ingenious enough to build antennae on their roofs in Brooklyn and Queens and point them toward the World Trade Center, thus picking up HBO signals without payment. If HBO doesn't like it, let it set up a better scrambling system. If it can't do so or it finds that alternative too costly, then it should jolly well have to put up with ingenious freebies, with satellite dishes or pointed antennae.

Finally, there is the almost incredible harassment of VCR owners. If I buy a VCR and a blank tape, I should be able to tape a movie or other program off my own TV set. If the TV or movie people don't like it, they should jolly well have to lump it. It is grotesque that movie producers might get the Supreme Court to agree to outlaw use of the VCR. Worse yet is that the movie producers are harassing poor SONY, who only manufactures and doesn't use VCRs. Obviously, SONY has the deep pockets to enjoin and sue, which most home owners do not. Obviously, too, the government would have a great deal of difficulty mobilizing an enormous Gestapo, armed to the teeth, to break in on and confiscate or destroy the VCRs in many million American homes. Defend your VCRs to the death, fellow Americans! In practice, then, the movie people are not going to outlaw VCRs. They will just force SONY and the other manufacturers to pay a tax to the movie people, a tax which will be passed on to every VCR buyer. But the unfortunate principle—and the higher cost—might well be enshrined in the books.

The problem in all these cases is not whether "property rights" should or should not be upheld. The problem in each of these cases is: Who should have the property right? The computer hacker to do what he wants with his own computer and his access to the telephone lines, or the other computer owner? The signal sender or the signal receiver in the latter's own equipment? The VCR owner or movie producers? In all of these cases I believe that the concept of copyright has been illegitimately extended to become invasive, and that the fact that the common law cannot combat these "crimes" is already an indication that they are not crimes at all.

But I am in an odd position here. Of all the people in the libertarian movement, I probably know the least about computer technology. There are few movement people lower tech than myself. And yet among all the computer mavens in the movement, I have seen no discussion of these thorny issues. But it is important to apply libertarian property rights theory, i.e. judgments in various areas on who is a criminal and who is a victim, to advancing technology. So on these matters I still have a relatively open mind. Before the Iron Door closes, I cheerfully invite libertarian theorists and high-tech mavens to submit papers, on any or all sides of this problem, for possible publication in the Libertarian Forum. Is there computer crime? Are VCR and satellite dish owners criminals? Please send in your discussions, and help advance libertarian theory.

Arts and Movies

by Mr. First Nighter

Zelig, dir. by and with Woody Allen.

In recent years, Woody has been a highly erratic filmmaker. After reaching a glorious peak with the hilarious and perceptive Annie Hall and especially Manhattan, Woody trended downward. Sunrise Memories I like more than most critics, but it was still far below Annie Hall and Manhattan. The last Allen opus, A Midsummer Night's Sex Comedy, an hommage to Ingmar Bergman's only worthwhile movie, the charming and early Smiles of a Summer Night, was simply atrocious. Not only was it not funny, it had no redeeming features, and was a torture to sit through. Its brief span seemed like many hours, if not weeks.

Zelig has been hailed by almost all critics as his masterpiece, and they have waxed rhapsodic over its technical brilliance in integrating Allen into a host of old documentary film clips of the 1920s. Well, the hell with technical. From the point of view of the movie consumer, Zelig is a nothing, a zero, a brief piece of fluff with virtually no content. It is better than Midsummer Night because it is not a trial to sit through; it is simply blah, not funny at all, except for one or two quiet chuckles, and with nothing profound to say. And mine was not the only such reation. I saw Zelig in the heart of Woody Allen Country, in what New Yorkers sardonically refer to as the Golden West Side.

Page 10

There was not a laugh for the whole length (again, brief) of the picture.

In no sense is Zelig a masterpiece or breakthrough. It is simply Allen treading water until the next one.

Never Say Never Again, dir. by Irvin Kershner. With Sean Connery.

Yes, Sean Connery, as they say, is James Bond. And is it grand to have him back. Even though the last Bond film, Octopussy, with Roger Moore, the second best Bond, was one of the better Bond movies, Moore's perpetual elegant smirk can never substitute for Connery's rugged persona. It is a pleasure to see Connery again surrounded by gorgeous babes and high-tech gadgets supplied by British Intelligence. It is also a pleasure to see Old Culture seduction on the screen again, shorn of all angst, kvetching, and endless bleatings about sensitivity, commitment, "relationships," and "parenting." As Jan Hoffman writes in the Village Voice (November 1): "unlike the conscience-stricken New Men of the screen, he never even dangles the possibility of a 'relationship.' He continues to seduce and is seduced by his women with an oddly innocent shamelessness, as if feminism and post-1968 sexual dialogue had never happened." And even though obviously getting on in years, he still bless him eats red meat and drinks martinis.

But there is, however, a problem. This is a new set of Bond producers and directors, with the results that the usually witty dialogue is now virtually non-existent, the marvelous metallic musical theme is replaced by blah rock, and much of the acting is inferior to the old team. Alec McCowen hams it up too much as the gadget-man "Q"; Edward Fox is poor and hammy as "M" (how we miss the late Bernard Lee!); and the Ernest Blofeld, head of SMERSH, is far inferior to the original. When ordinarily fine actors like McCowen and Fox do badly, we can blame it on the director, and Kershner is obviously more at home in action shooting than he is at handling actors.

But of course Connery is back and we've got him, and that's worth a great deal. And there is one great piece of dialogue, worthy of the classic Bonds (the best being Dr. No and From Russia with Love.) The main villain, SMERSH's Number One, Largo, played very well by Klaus Maria Brandauer, after losing a sinister war game to Bond and seeing Bond grandly abandon the prize, says: "Do you lose as gracefully as you win?" To which, Bond replies, in his best style: "I don't know. I've never lost."

A word of warning: the title song, a piece of unmelodic trash, is not the great Harry Woods tune of 1936 with virtually the same title.

Cassandra Moore For Palo Alto City Council!

In this political off-year, Libertarians throughout the country have the chance to support an outstanding candidate for City Council of Palo Alto, California, and one with a good chance to win! Cassandra Moore is a 48-year-old businesswoman, head of her own real estate firm, and a Director-Elect of the Palo Alto Board of Realtors. She has a Ph.D. from the University of Michigan. Her husband, Thomas Moore, is an outstanding transportation economist at the Hoover Institution, who took the couragous step of endorsing Clark for President and not Reagan for President in 1980.

The City Council race is non-partisan, but Cassandra and her literature identify herself as a Libertarian, and she is one of nine candidates running for four at-large seats, and has an excellent chance to win. She has aggressively attacked the Palo Alto tyranny imposing no-growth on housing, preventing cable TV in the area, and the use of zoning laws to put neighborhood shops and restaurants out of business.

Cassandra Moore is a member of the People Against the Draft, the Nature Conservancy, Amnesty International, and the National Taxpayers Union, as well as the Libertarian Party. Send your dollars in support of this remarkable candidate! Contributions can be sent to Moore for City Council, 3766 La Donna Ave., Palo, Alto, CA 94306.

Page 11

The Libertarian Forum July-August, 1983


Journal of


Murray N. Rothbard, Editor

The Journal of Libertarian Studies publishes intellectually stimulating papers relating to all aspects of human liberty. Its purpose is to seek a deeper understanding of human action, and the institutions and ethical foundations of a free society. Work published thus includes economics, political and ethical philosophy, sociology, psychology and the history of ideas.

Of special note in Volume Five . . .

  • "An Economic Critique of Socialism." A full issue devoted to developing and updating the insights of Ludwig von Mises and Friedrich A. Hayek on the impossibility of rational economic calculation under socialism. Collected and edited by Don Lavoie, George Mason University.

  • "Gustave de Molinari and the Anti-statist Liberal Tradition" (Parts I and II), by David M. Hart, Macquarie University. The first study in English on the radical free-market, 19th-century French economist Molinari.

  • "Herbert Spencer as an Anthropologist," by distinguished Spencerian scholar Robert L. Carneiro. A major study on Spencer as an unacknowledged father of modern anthropology as a social science.

    "Herbert Spencer's Theory of Causation," by philosopher George H. Smith. On Spencer's view of causality as the essence of any science, with special emphasis on its role in his "scientific system of ethics."

    (Both papers originally presented at the CLS/Liberty Fund sponsored conference on "Herbert Spencer: His Ideas and Influence," August 1980.)

JLS is published quarterly and subscriptions are accepted on a per-volume basis only. Annual subscription rates are $10 for students, $22 for institutions, $14 for all other individuals. Please add $4 for foreign delivery or $10 for airmail.

Address inquiries to: Center for Libertarian Studies
200 Park Avenue South, New York, N.Y. 10003

Page 12

HTML formatting and proofreading by Joel Schlosberg.