Big Head Press

L. Neil Smith's
Number 510, March 15, 2009

"The Missouri government wants you dead."

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Announcifications From Your Publicatorialist:
Wikipedia, Missouri, and Ceres
by L. Neil Smith
Publisher and Senior Columnist
The Libertarian Enterprise

First, the bad news.

It seems that, that splendid source for all kinds of information, is no longer dedicated to the truth, assuming it ever was.

Individuals who have tried to edit the pages about Barack Obama—to reflect the incontrovertible fact that he is not God, Abraham Lincoln, Franklin Roosevelt, or Ronald Reagan—report that their contributions have vanished within minutes of posting them, and that they, themselves, have been suspended for three days following each "infraction".

When some sort of official at Wikipedia was contacted about this, she stonewalled, claiming that this censorship was the work of "volunteers", implying they were somehow beyond control of Wikipedia itself.

Like the Red Guard and the Khmer Rouge were "volunteers".

I intend to look into this further, contact the official myself, and see Wikipedia put an end to these pernicious practices. I have liked Wikipedia very much and used it a dozen times a day since I became aware of it. (In all honesty, there are many others I know who have never liked or trusted it.) With tremendous regret I will stop, until it returns to the openness and verity I valued it for in the beginning.

I seem to be fated, in this way, to end up in conflict with many of the things I love best. To some individuals in the media, for example, although one of the great joys in my life is the magnificent N-frame revolver in all its forms, I am known as "the man who killed Smith & Wesson", even though I was hardly the first or only writer to call for the boycott which resulted in the company being sold three times.

Nevertheless, it's enough that they know—to quote Lucky Ned Pepper (Robert Duvall in True Grit)—that I'll do what I have to do.

Watch this space.

To tide us over during our "suspension" of Wikipedia, here are a few alternatives it may be fun and useful to explore. I look forward to it.

Our Mighty Editor Ken Holder adds:

The famous 1911 edition of the Encyclopaedia Britannica is online at

And the 1917 edition of the Catholic Encyclopedia is at

There is also


The two older ones are out-of-date in some areas, but represent outstanding scholarship in other areas.


More bad news.

The police state of Missouri has officially decided that, if you supported the candidacies of Ron Paul (or Bob Barr, yech tooey!), stand by the authority of the U.S. Constitution, or wish to see the Federal Reserve abolished—or if you display bumper stickers about any of those or many other, similar efforts—you just might be a terrorist.

I am not kidding.

That's what they're telling their jackbooted thugs, statewide, in an internal manual that has been leaked to the general freedom movement by some anonymous cop who remembers of what his real duties consist.

This means that, if you're stopped for speeding, or for a broken taillight, and the officer sees a Ron Paul sticker on your rear bumper, he'll be coming at you with his safety strap unsnapped, and you're in danger of becoming a statistic—because some bureaucratic moron is offended that you want to be free of his wholly benevolant influence.

With the help of others in the movement, we're going to go to work on this fundamental violation of everything it means to be American, and you can help. It is not the first time something like this has happened, but we must do everything we can to make damn sure it is the last.

This week, we'll prepare a document to be sent to Chambers of Commerce and tourist bureaus throughout the "Show Me" state, firmly encouraging them to get their government back into breeches of an appropriate size, or face the loss of as much business as we can manage.

Five actions are imperative.

The state of Missouri must recall the offending manual, gather up every possible copy, and turn them over to responsible individuals—the Ron Paul Campaign, for example, I don't trust the ACLU—for pulping.

Second, the state must send out a bulletin to those who received the offending manual, retracting what was said in it and energetically reminding police officers everywhere of their solemn duty under oath to defend the Constitution—especially the Bill of Rights—from "all enemies foreign and domestic". The problem these days is mostly domestic.

Third, the state must issue a deep, sincere, and extremely public apology to Ron Paul and everyone else mentioned by the manual. I'm highly offended that I wasn't mentioned, but I won't insist on an apology.

Fourth, the state must abolish—root and branch—the corrupt state agency that issued the offending manual, and permanently sever all relations, official and otherwise, with its opposite number at the federal level, the evil and unconstitutional Department of Homeland Security.

Fifth, the state must fire those who wrote and distributed the offending document and deny them any pension or benefits they may have accrued.


Finally, some good news.

My novel Ceres, which our sterling Editor rather baldly stated last week I've been unable to sell, will begin serialization, starting tomorrow, Monday, March 16th, at the Big Head Press website at

It isn't so much that I've been unable to sell the novel—which is absolutely the best I've ever written—as that I've been unable to sell myself to northeastern publishing's gatekeepers who now stand locked, shoulder-to-shoulder, against anything even the least bit politically incorrect. In trying to sell Ceres, I contacted, individually, over four hundred agents, not one of whom was willing even to look at the book, let alone represent me. I have no direct knowledge, but I suspect my advocacy of armed self-defense for children is the issue, although nobody seems to have the guts to tell me.

Ceres, you may know, is a freestanding sequel to Pallas. It is the story of a teenage brother and sister, born and raised on the terraformed asteroid Pallas, great-grandchildren of pioneer Emerson Ngu.

Wilson Ngu, 17, wants to be an asteroid hunter. He also has an Internet girlfriend at the other end of the Solar System whom he's deeply longing to meet in the flesh. At his age, in the pioneer culture of the asteroids—he's considered to be an adult, and he holds an adult job, helping to survey Ceres, largest of the asteroids, for terraforming, under the supervision of his engineer father, Adam Ngu.

Llyra Ngu, 13 when we first see her, is the only figure skater on Pallas (hockey being extremely popular in the asteroids) but she wants desperately to skate—and compete at it—on Earth. The trouble is, that's twenty times the gravity she grew up in, and she could easily be seriously injured or killed in the attempt to fulfill her fondest dream.

Together with her 19-year-old coach and companion, lovely Jasmeen Khalidov, the daughter of Martian colonists, Llyra hops from world to world—and from gravity well to gravity well—training for months or years at a time until the day her body can withstand skating on Earth.

Those are only two of the many stories, and three among dozens of characters you'll find and love—or hate—in Ceres. It's my very best and my favorite. Read it, tell me and others what you think on my blog at . Maybe together we can get it between covers (or into marvelous Tom Swiftian reading devices) where it belongs.

It will be followed by Ares and Beautiful Dreamer.

Four-time Prometheus Award-winner L. Neil Smith has been called one of the world's foremost authorities on the ethics of self-defense. He is the author of 25 books, including The American Zone, Forge of the Elders, Pallas, The Probability Broach, Hope (with Aaron Zelman), and his collected articles and speeches, Lever Action, all of which may be purchased through his website "The Webley Page" at

Ceres, an exciting sequel to Neil's 1993 Ngu family novel Pallas was recently completed and is presently looking for a literary home.

Neil is presently working on Ares, the middle volume of the epic Ngu Family Cycle, and on Roswell, Texas, with Rex F. "Baloo" May.

The stunning 185-page full-color graphic-novelized version of The Probability Broach, which features the art of Scott Bieser and was published by BigHead Press has recently won a Special Prometheus Award. It may be had through the publisher, or at


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