L. Neil Smith's

Number 25, April 1, 1997

Letters To The Editors

From: mvillacres@esri.com
Subject: Re: Plain sense

Mr. Smith,

A friend passed me a copy of your essay, which I found most interesting. I just wanted to comment on the following paragraph:

> If John Lennon had been carrying an Ithaca Auto and
>Burglar under his coat, the Fab Four would be selling live
>albums of their fifth reunion concert by now.

This would be like saying elephant poachers would be discouraged if elephants carried guns themselves. John Lennon was a firm believer of peace, not to say that he was against guns, but his firm beliefs would have never allowed him to carry a gun. IMHO this speculation does not belong in your fine piece of writing.


From: aaron_p_brezenski@ccm.ch.intel.com
Subject: Re: Libertarian Talk Radio

I just read "They Can't All Be Walter Williams, Part Two", and I have to let you know about a talk radio show host I'm pretty sure is still around.

WXYT in Detroit, Michigan used to broadcast Mark Scott, an objectivist talk radio guy, as late as 1992. I haven't been in Detroit on a weekday since then, so I'm not sure if he's still around. Some of what he had to say was kind of loopy ("I don't think we came from monkeys", in response to a comment about evolution-- which brings to mind the question of where he thinks the human race *did* come from), but he was a pretty good listen and a welcome rest from Rush Limbaugh and other statist apologists.

At one point, Mark was kicked off WXYT for "making comments incisive to riot" or some such "crime". He worked in New York for a while and then returned.

Just thought you'd be interested. Hope to see you at AZLP convention this year.

Rgds, AB

P.S. Pallas is a truly *rocking* read. My best to you and your family.

From: davidmbr@sprynet.com

To the Editor:

I must take exception to the views stated by the publisher of The Libertarian Enterprise, L. Neil Smith, on the issue of breakfast.

In particular, I take the strongest exception possible to the knee-jerk opposition to bacon as a breakfast dish, the sort of knee-jerk opposition which is so inveterately characteristic of the knee-jerkingly oppositional anarcho-consumption fringe of the libertarian movement.

Smith suggests that bacon may well be a viable meal entry when it comes to BLT sandwiches--note, a lunch item--but that no sane person could possibly appreciate bacon first thing in the morning as part of a breakfast meal. He issues his spattering anathema on bacon as a pronunciamento only, however, with no argument to back it up. As it happens, I never eat breakfast any more myself, except in the form of granola bars, but when I have had breakfast, and when I have had bacon and eggs for breakfast (scrambled eggs only), I certainly have had nothing to say against the bacon (as long as well done, crispy) and eggs (scrambled) as something for me to eat for breakfast.

And how could I--or anyone? What possible argument could there be against it? I hope that Smith is not going to fall back on the old bad-for-one's- health-based-on-pumped-up-cholesterol argument, which he has, rightfully, disdained in other places.

It is clear that in his adamant distaste for bacon Smith commences with an unreasoning prejudice against all breakfast as such. I don't want to psychoanalyze him or anything but it seems to me the source of the animus may be an unconscious recognition that breakfast is the symbol of the requirement of getting out of bed in the morning, when perhaps Mr. Smith would like to sleep for another hour or two. Then willy-nilly he takes this prejudice based on his reluctance to get out of bed and applies it uniformly and a priori to all possible constituents whatever of any breakfast dish. And thus roundly claims--with no evidence of course at his behest--that no possible alternative constituent could be edible by anyone at that time in the morning (the time when he would rather have not had to get out of bed). Is this fair or just, either to any particular breakfast item or to the meal of breakfast overall?

It's far too much effort for Smith, apparently, to prepare a breakfast when he would much rather continue slumbering. As if it were the most arduous task in the world to toss a couple strips of bacon on the pan and scramble a couple eggs. Well, if that's the case, why not just prepare the breakfast the night before and stick it in the microwave the following morning? Would that not be more seemly than endeavoring to transmute a venial laziness into Philistine virtue via the fool's gold of shoddy and incontinent polemic?

I pass over in silence Mr. Smith's ludicrous assault on boxed cereal--which, of course, requires very little effort and ingenuity to pour into a bowl even for one of the vast intellectual resources of L. Neil Smith. Before any one of your subscribers rushes in to bolster His Smithiness in his sweeping anti-cerealism here, pray let me just point out a few empirical facts of existence: such as Lucky Charms, such as Peanut Butter Captain Crunch, such as Rice Chex, such as Special K--all and each of them tasty and convenient cereals, especially when plentifully heaped with sugar. Nonetheless anathema to Mr. Smith, though, right? I'm not persuaded. Or are we to believe that Smith pours salt onto his cereal?

Then again, maybe he does.


David M. Brown

Libertarian Enterprise publisher replies, "Shut up and eat your granola bar, Dave."

From: Chris Goodwin
Subject: Libertarian Enterprise Feb 1 -- 60k

To the Editor:

I myself may get crucified for this, but I thought I'd take issue with some of John Taylor's statements in the 2/2/97 issue of The Libertarian Enterprise. Mr. Taylor's gist seemed to be that, the Second Amendment being important to individual liberty, the rights of private property owners (specifically, business owners) should be ignored for its sake (specifically, their right to not allow firearms onto their property).

Mr. Taylor states that "If we truly believe that an individual business owner may impose any requirement he desires on those who work at or patronize his business, based on the doctrine of sovereignty of private property, then what do we do when he refuses to hire or serve someone on the basis of skin color?" It may seem a bit ironic, but I know of several libertarian types (myself included) who would defend a business owner's right to hire (or not) whom he pleases in his business, or to deal with those whom he chooses -- regardless of race, religion, choice of friends, etc.

Mr. Taylor, our rights stem from our *property* rights, including first and foremost the right to own ourselves. Among these is our right to decide who should and shouldn't be allowed on our property, whether this be a private home or a business.

I consider myself a Second Amendment absolutist, for the record. I believe that all people -- men, women, and responsible children of any age -- should be allowed to carry whatever weapons they feel necessary in order to defend their lives, their rights, and their property (to quote someone whom I respect, "No order to it...just three ways of sayin' the same thing."). I'm also a private property absolutist, and a free expression absolutist.

I simply choose not to deal with those whose business policies I disagree with, whether this be choice of personnel or allowing (or not allowing) weapons on the premises. I don't need the government to make either of those choices for me, thank you very much.

From: Jim Ray
Subject: What to call the Slick one

In your fine article on the Lippo Administration jerk, you make the following points.

> Through it all, no measure of culpability seems
>to have touched him. They used to call Ronnie Raygun
>the "Teflon President". So what do you call this guy?
>Well, a homely old highschool expression about "slicker
>than snot on a doorknob" comes to mind. Remember that,
>next time you hear the phrase, "Slick Willie".

I have long said that the best characterization for the asshole is "Buckminsterfullerine Bill." ("Buckyball Bill" for short.) A Buckyball is the world's slickest substance, supposedly. :-)

> The undeniable fact is, if the Mena Marxist were
>invalided off the job, we'd all be immeasurably better
>off. Which led me to (what I'll pretend was) an even
.more startling thought: I challenge the sane portion
>of my readership (the office-holders and socialists who
>call themselves "liberals" that we're spamming don't
>count) to name any politician whom we wouldn't
>be better off without.

Well, I agree with the challenge, but think about it ... President Gore??? He is a threat dead or alive (nobody can be sure which he is, anyway). The "reasonable" alternative to Gephardt(!) will mean the death of this nation if he inherits the office by election or heart-attack. I envy Dave Barry and other comics for the material they will be fed soon.

Regards, Jim Ray

From: Douglas Heard
Subject: Complaint

I have a complaint.

I find that ya'll (that's southern for everyone in the general area of there) are no better at things than I am. I want to know how I can make idols of you if you can do things only as well as I do.


Starting about the 13th or the 28th I start looking for the new issue of Libertarian Enterprise. Ya'll seem to refuse to go along with the standard publishing idea of releasing the June issue in March. In fact often you are a few days late.

This morning (3/18/97 6:00am EDT) I checked again. There you were. But by 6:40 I had read the whole issue and now I am waiting for a new issue.

Sure would like the issues to be longer and have more articles.

Keep it up.

S. Douglas Heard

[EDITOR'S NOTE: Sorry Doug, I'm late again...]

[WEBMASTER'S NOTE: I do try hard to get it webified and installed on the server the same day I get it. I'm just glad it's not a daily :-) ]

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