Links for June 28, 2010: Some Thoughts on Slavery and Reparations

June 28, 2010
  1. Walter Block | On Reparations to Blacks for Slavery

    The issue of reparations for slavery came up in conversation with a friend of mine last week. I’m not particularly well read on the issue, but here is something from Walter Block’s libertarian perspective. See also: Block’s Reparations, Once Again.

  2. A page from the 1850 Congressional Globe.

    The Library of Congress | A Century of Lawmaking for a New Nation: U.S. Congressional Documents and Debates, 1774 – 1875: Consideration of the Seventh Census

    Mr. BUTLER. The census heretofore taken has only required the number of slaves, and I see no useful information the obtaining of the names of the slaves can afford. On a plantation where there are one, two, three hundred slaves, there are perhaps several of the same name, and who are known by some familiar designation on the plantation. It can afford no useful information, and will make a great deal of labor. I made the same objection in the committee, and I move to amend in accordance with that objection now.
    Mr. DAVIS. If we are only to get the aggregate number of slaves, how are we to ascertain the owners?
    Mr. BUTLER. By providing that the number of slaves owned by him shall be put opposite to the name of each owner.
    Mr. DAVIS. Then we shall lose the benefit of the classification of ages.
    Mr. BUTLER. Not at all. The age and sex will remain—everything but the name. Read the rest of this entry »

A Big Music Survey

June 26, 2010

This one comes to me from my cousin, Angie:

Name your top 10 most played bands on iTunes (Or Last.FM):

1 Play
2 Play
3 Play
4 Play
5 Play
6 Play
7 Play
8 Play
9 Play
10 Play

A still image from "The Geometry of Circles".

What was the first song you ever heard by 6 (Philip Glass)?
I think Philip Glass music is, like, hard-wired into the human brain at the time of conception.  Everybody knows that sound.  I didn’t know it at the time, but Philip Glass actually did the music for a series of Sesame Street sketches called The Geometry of Circles.  It must have been the first.  Read the rest of this entry »

The Outer Continental Shelf Deepwater Royalty Relief Act — or — Why Big Oil Drills in Deep Water

June 25, 2010

Originally posted in the Spout-Off Forum of the Cape May County Herald, this post is intended to supplement Matthew J. Novak’s article and blog at, Bashing BP (For Doing Exactly What Government Led Them to Do), with links to further information about the Outer Continental Shelf Deepwater Royalty Relief Act (DWRRA), and its origin and purpose.  Congress passed DWRRA in 1995 to give Big Oil an economic incentive to drill in deep water.

John Johnston (D-Louisiana) sponsored S.158: Outer Continental Shelf Deep Water Royalty Relief Act in 1995. That bill was not voted on, but its text was incorporated into S. 395: Alaska Power Administration Asset Sale and Termination Act as Title III of that act. It was signed into law by President William Jefferson Clinton (D-Arkansas) on November 28, 1995 and became P.L. 104-58. Seventy-five percent of the Senate voted Yea. Eighty-four percent of the House of Representatives voted Yea on a resolution in support of the legislation. Looking at the vote counts, notwithstanding the stated glitch, I’d say that Democratic incohesion on the bills was slightly less soul-crushing than the Republicans’ near unanimity in favor of the bills.  Read the rest of this entry »