Big Head Press

L. Neil Smith's
Number 570, May 16, 2010

"Prepare for the future by getting to it"

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Letter from Jim Keech

Letter from Scott Bieser

Letter from A.X. Perez

Another Letter from A.X. Perez

Over the years, I have come to despair that there will ever be a consensus to remove government from our lives. I have come (sadly) to that conclusion because not only does the vast majority of the population still cling to the concept, but even those in the liberty movement all seem to have some issue where they are more than willing to support government control to enforce their own beliefs.

I refer, of course, to Mr. Longcore's article "Arizona, Immigration and Racial Profiling: Liberal Panties are in a Wad." Apparently, his hostility to the free movement of individuals is so great that he is willing to sacrifice everyone's right to move about unmolested by the minions of his preferred overlords. What he apparently does not recognize is that he is falling for the classic scam of all governments everywhere—manipulate the population, through fear, into voluntarily surrendering their own rights. The scam always involves some "other" that "we" need to be protected from. Of course, once the machinery is in place and people have become used to the concept, it is used to control everyone. Perhaps Mr. Longcore believes that living in a state where armed men demanding documentary proof from whomever they feel like that they are "legally" present (and yes, that's what it amounts to) is perfectly acceptable. But it is also apparent that Mr. Longcore believes that the state will only use these powers for good—against, you know, those people. That belief is naive, mistaken and incredibly dangerous.

While Mr. Longcore's opposition to the federal regime is commendable, it appears to do nothing more than substitute the comparable deity of state authority for the rejected federal authority. What I cannot determine (after many years of study and thought) is just how state governments are any more legitimate than the federal government. Or why we should be any more eager to surrender our liberties to a local set of bureaucrats than we are to their federal cousins.

Jim Keech

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Folks here may be interested to know that Escape From Terra, the libertarian sci-fi adventure web-comic co-written by Sandy Sandfort and myself, and illustrated by Lee Oaks, has been collected into its first printed volume—entitled, strangely enough, Escape From Terra Volume 1. The book retails for $12.95 and will be available July 7. You can pre-order it at comics specialty shops and at

Scott Bieser

Director, Big Head Press

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Frank Frazetta passed away Monday 10 May 2010. He is probably best known for the ERB and Conan cover art he did for Ace and Lancer paperbacks in the sixties, but his work was quite a bit more extensive. If you are a fantasy/science fiction art fan you will realize his importance as an artist, second only to the late Kelly Freas (interestingly, both men did work for Mad Magazine.)

His work, as mentioned elsewhere, informed my concept of feminine pulchritude, and anyone looking at the two men's work can see his influence on Boris Vallejo.

The world is a sadder place for his loss.

A.X. Perez

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[Some of Mr. Frazetta's books listed at

Rough Work

Legacy: Paintings and Drawings

Testament: The Life and Art of Frank Frazetta

Frank Frazetta Book Three

Frank Frazetta Book Two


Arguably the readers of TLE believe that the highest value for a state to pursue is to guarantee the liberty of its people. From time to time we must actually think out what ideas we are espousing to achieve this end.

The first is to shoot down the idea that political rights and economic rights are separable. This idea is held by statists and needs to be shot down regularly and enthusiastically. It costs money to exercise free speech and run for office, buy guns and otherwise exercise your freedom; contrariwise you need free speech, the right to vote, procedural rights in court and guns to hang on to your property. Property and political rights are a package deal, not an either or affair.

The second is that there is anything particularly sacred about a particular size of government. The Arizona law regarding immigration that has everyone's panties in a bunch is a state law. The vast majority of restrictive gun laws are state laws (and yes there are plenty of restrictive federal laws also). Contrariwise, Vermont carry, homestead protection laws (referring to debt), and common law marriage laws are state laws. Sooner or later international law binding on the US will protect some rights and threaten others. Undoubtedly we will eventually have interplanetary and even interstellar states, all protecting certain rights and endangering others.

Unless and until we can get rid of government we have to struggle to defend and regain rights at all levels and use one level to keep the other(s) honest. Hit 'em high, hit 'em low, and hit 'em over and over.

For something to be a right it must be enforceable. Unarmed people have only the "rights" armed people are willing to extend them. Contrariwise, armed people must remember that if they abuse their power they will face resistance. Gun control laws deny us the right to have rights, ultimately they allow a class armed by right (government misleaders) to enforce their will by force against an unarmed servile class.

There are more points to contemplate. Three are a good start.

A. X. Perez

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