Big Head Press

L. Neil Smith's
Number 694, October 28, 2012

"Libertarianism must, for the foreseeable
future, be a strategy for conservatives"

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TLE Articles Re-posted In Freedom's Phoenix

Dear Ken,

I'm extremely happy to observe that a record three articles from last week's L. Neil Smith's THE LIBERTARIAN ENTERPRISE were, in effect, re-run in the Monday, October 22 edition of Ernie Hancock's mighty _Freedom's Phoenix_. The publication's actual practice is to link through to the article's original publication site, but with two intervening screens, often with fanciful decorations.

If you don't receive Freedom's Phoenix in your e-mail, the front page URL is By the time you read this, of course, there will be a new front page, and I don't know if they keep archives.

The three articles they chose to show to a wider audience are "Ian B. Titter's "We'll Have to See What Happens Next", "It's Time to Wake the Fuck Up and Tell Big Brother to Go to HELL!" by the irrepressible Neale Osborn, and my own "The Doldrums". And of course, we do archive our back issues. Scroll down the right-hand column to find the link.

I've always regarded my appearances in Freedom's Phoenix as a great honor, in which you, our esteemed editor, must claim a proper share.

So congratulations to us!

L. Neil Smith

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Re: "Another Letter from A.X. Perez"

Editor commented:

[ And don't forget to pack a lunch, a canteen, and a collection of snacks—Editor ]

Carry three snack packs of :

1. A couple of Tanka Bars or two ounces of jerky or bilitong.

2. One hard tack biscuit or about four saltine crackers (or other bread product equivalent).

3. An ounce or so of dried fruit.

4. A couple of squares of Abuelita or Ibarra chocolate (meant to make hot chocolate but can be eaten as candy. Abuelita chocolate has cinnamon in line with Mexican tastes (Abuelita is Spanish for Grandma)). Reasonable substitute for D Ration.

5. Vitamin pills to make up for what above lacks.

6. Tea/coffee bag.

Note that above constitutes a reasonable "iron ration" if you are in in an E &E, lost and waiting search and rescue, hunkered down after a catastrophe. Also note that if you are willing to take time you can assemble a fair number of these without getting Homeland Security and other busies on your case.

A. X. Perez

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Light a smoke go to jail?

Re: "It's Time to Wake the Fuck Up and Tell Big Brother to Go to HELL!" by Neale Osborn

Here! Here! to Neale Osborn for the article on City of San Rafael banning smoking in private residence.

I understand the San Rafael City Councils concern about people smoking. I too have seen the comercials warning of the dangers of smoking in your own home. My favorite is the one where a woman is smoking in her apartment. The smoke from her cigarette floats outside, pauses (sinister music in the background) it detects a baby sleeping two stories up and infiltrates the neighbor's apartment The smoke then rushes in a huge undispersed cloud up the babys nostrils. Big tabacco probably engineered this new cigarette, the Heat Seeking Baby Finder smokes (now in menthol) to attract younger customers.

Now, for the record, I too, don't smoke, and am somewhat of a health nut of late. I am also familiar with odd no smoking laws. Working as a gardener in a park system that banned smoking, I am approched by concerned citizens wanting me to confront the local hooligans to "please extinguish your smokes, joints, cigars, crack pipes etc".

So what happens to you if you are caught smoking in your overpriced townhouse in San Rafael? According to Wikapedia if you are caught smoking in your home, the first fine is $100 dollars and 5 days community service (probably picking up cigarete butts in city parks). The second time they catch you in your home smoking its a $300 dollar fine and ten days of community service. (Maybe this time they have you patrolling apartments with a palm fron seeking out Baby hunting smoke clouds and dispersing them). The third time and by now you should be checking your home for wires, bugs. cameras etc, its $700 fine and 15 days community service. Now by this time you are so jaded with community service, you just sit on main street with the city issued broom and chain smoke, daring to get jail time. It's good to note in Marin County you can smoke on city sidewalks.... as long as you keep moving. it's true

So what's my beef with this law? Enforcement. How will they move forward with enforcing these tough new smoking laws? How will they detect you lighting up in your own bathroom? Apartment complex snitches? Babies with detection devices staking out nearby windows? or just 5am raids by S.W.A.T? "Look sir we found Butts in the ashtray by the bed...and there is a baby three doors down". How about the men in suits just question your kids at school about what Mommy and Daddy have been doing? Whats next Big Brother?... personal smoke detectors around everyones neck? Ever see the Movie Brazil? V for Vengence?... are the smokers of San Rafael going to be hiding in their attic like Ann Frank? ... but I digress.

Smoking..yeah it's unhealthy, (yet, oddly refreshing)... yes, people should mind where they light up and not do what my Father did and blow smoke in your childs face at the dinner table (I must admit the smell of Pall Mall Golds makes me meloncoly), but a couple of months back an oil refinary in Richmond California exploded and darkened the sky's over the Bay area with toxic pollutants all the way to San Francisco and yes,.. San Rafael.

Perspective People.

Again three cheers for Neale Osborn.

Robert Sheets

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T. J. Lindsay bites the dust!
Or, at least, he is retiring.

"The Lindsay" of Lindsay's Books has announced his retirement "in 2013 or earlier" and the closing of his book store.

For many decades Mr. Lindsay has been the premier supplier of technical books to the do-it-yourself crowd, machine shop mavens, foundry sand-crabs, eccentrics, nut cases (like me) and geniuses at large (like "Uncle Dave" Gingery).

It ain't all Uncle Dave.

He (Lindsay, not Dave) has titles from all over and back to the mid nineteenth century. He used to have "De Re Metallica" by Agricola in the Hoover English translation, but I don't know if it is still cataloged. There are tech-school text books, how-to volumes from some of the best industrial arts guys around and collections of articles from technical manuals and magazines back to the early twentieth century. Get a 1940's version of "How to Run a Lathe" by the South Bend Machine Tool Company.

His titles cover a plethora (really!) of stuff, such as:

  • Machine shop practices, building the major tools from scratch — from scrap (the Gingery series), building EDM machines and other shop tools and techniques.
  • Foundry tools and methods. Make your own molding shop and blast furnaces for the back yard. Fuel them with charcoal, propane or natural gas. Pour castings in aluminum, zinc and pot metal, copper alloys, iron alloys. Design and build centrifugal fans to power your crucible and cupola furnaces. Make your own crucibles. Dig ore for your cupola furnace, with a sharp stick, while wearing a leather breech-clout, a tie and a top hat! (OK, that last one was a joke. Lame.)
  • Sheet metal shop tools and methods. Make your own brake and slip-roll. Books of projects. Start a local sheet metal fabricating business.
  • Make electric generators, modify alternators, re-build or modify motors, make electro- and permanent magnets. Make radios from scratch. Emulate Nicola Tesla. Short circuit yourself and go up in a puff of smoke!
  • Learn about old-time chemistry. Set up a chem-lab. Screw up and dissolve, stain, burn, poison, blow-up and generally kill yourself in the most ingenious ways! Go up in another puff of (green) smoke!
  • Make wooden toys for kids. Make ship models for yourself.
  • Make steam, sterling, turbines and other kinds of engines. Build boilers from scratch and blow yourself (and the garage) up again! Build locomotives from scratch. Well, "maybe" on that last one.
  • Make wind and water turbines to power your generators or shop. Recycle waste oils.
  • Other stuff that I forgot to mention.

Basically, if you drop a bunch of money (including postage) on Lindsay, he will show you how to make a very complete industrial revolution. You may even have some fun. While killing yourself in the most ingenious ways. Count your fingers at the end of the day.

From Lindsay's "Meet Dave Gingery" page:

"One day about twenty years ago Dave asked me if I was interested in offering his series of books on building machine tools from scrap for practically nothing. They're written for the guy who'd love to buy a lathe but is broke—in other words, most of us. He told me he had been building lathes for more than 20 years!

I said I was interested, but as usual, a little skeptical. When I saw his books, I was amazed. And I'm still amazed.

Dave has proven that you can start with simple handtools and can build precision machine tools. First, you set up a simple foundry and pour castings to build a lathe. You then use the lathe to build the shaper which will cut the dovetails, T-slots, and gears for the milling machine. Next, you build the drill press. Finally, you can go back and build the accessories you need for your lathe and other tools: dividing head, screw-cutting gears, chucks, and lots more. A handy sheet metal brake is thrown in for good measure.

Dave is magician! Give this guy a file, your aluminum storm door, and some charcoal, and he will turn it into precision machine tools! And he has shown thousands of others how to do it too!"

Get a catalog for $2 from Lindsay at Order some books. Do it NOW while you still can. The complete machine shop from scratch series is available in a package deal at a discount. There are some other package discounts. Check out the trauma center and links to other book dealers. Some are available on, but not many.

You can also buy Uncle Dave's books (and his son Vince's, too) direct, at the Gingery book store.

Note: I just received a note from Lindsay Books. Here is the pertinent part:

"In the future, you may want to visit our new associate e-store:
Your Old Time Bookstore
YOTB's site offers all books printed by Lindsay and provides decline/error notification before processing...

Lindsay Publications, Inc.

PO Box 538
Bradley, IL 60915
Fax: 815-935-5477"

See you in the shop.
Michael Bradshaw

[ I have Mr. Lindsay's series on building a machine shop from a collection of scrap metal. It's like reading poetry. I'd start to work on it tomorrow if I didn't feel like crap all the time.—Editor ]

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