The Bible Assumes Private Property and Business Ownership

(Originally posted February 2011)

Here is a great quote from Dr. Grudem:

A. PRIVATE PROPERTY

According to the teachings of the Bible, government should both document and protect the ownership of private property in a nation.

The Bible regularly assumes and reinforces a system in which property belongs to individuals, not to the government or to society as a whole.

We see this implied in the Ten Commandments, for example, because the eighth commandment, “You shall not steal” (Exod. 20:15), assumes that human beings will own property that belongs to them individually and not to other people. I should not steal my neighbor’s ox or donkey because it belongs to my neighbor, not to me and not to anyone else.

The tenth commandment makes this more explicit when it prohibits not just stealing but also desiring to steal what belongs to my neighbor:

“You shall not covet your neighbor’s house; you shall not covet your neighbor’s wife, or his male servant, or his female servant, or his ox, or his donkey, or anything that is your neighbor’s” (Exod. 20:17).

The reason I should not “covet” my neighbor’s house or anything else is that these things belong to my neighbor, not to me and not to the community or the nation.

This assumption of private ownership of property, found in this fundamental moral code of the Bible, puts the Bible in direct opposition to the communist system advocated by Karl Marx. Marx said:

The theory of the Communists may be summed up in the single sentence: abolition of private property.

One reason why communism is so incredibly dehumanizing is that when private property is abolished, government controls all economic activity. And when government controls all economic activity, it controls what you can buy, where you will live, and what job you will have (and therefore what job you are allowed to train for, and where you go to school), and how much you will earn. It essentially controls all of life, and human liberty is destroyed. Communism enslaves people and destroys human freedom of choice. The entire nation becomes one huge prison. For this reason, it seems to me that communism is the most dehumanizing economic system ever invented by man.

Other passages of Scripture also support the idea that property should belong to individuals, not to “society” or to the government (except for certain property required for proper government purposes, such as government offices, military bases, and streets and highways). The Bible contains many laws concerning punishments for stealing and appropriate restitution for damage of another person’s farm animals or agricultural fields (for example, see Exod. 21:28-36; 22:1-15; Deut. 22:1-4; 23:24-25). Another commandment guaranteed that property boundaries would be protected: “You shall not move your neighbor’s landmark, which the men of old have set, in the inheritance that you will hold in the land that the LORD your God is giving you to possess” (Deut. 19:14). To move the landmark was to move the boundaries of the land and thus to steal land that belonged to one’s neighbor (compare Prov. 22:28; 23:10).

Another guarantee of the ownership of private property was the fact that, even if property was sold to someone else, in the Year of Jubilee it had to return to the family that originally owned it:

It shall be a Jubilee for you, when each of you shall return to his property and each of you shall return to his clan (Lev. 25:10).

This is why the land could not be sold forever: “The land shall not be sold in perpetuity, for the land is mine. For you are strangers and sojourners with me” (Lev. 25:23).

This last verse emphasizes the fact that private property is never viewed in the Bible as an absolute right, because all that people have is ultimately given to them by God, and people are viewed as God’s “stewards” to manage what he has entrusted to their care.

The earth is the LORD’S and the fullness thereof, the world and those who dwell therein (Ps. 24:1; compare Ps. 50:10-12; Hag. 2:8).

Yet the fact remains that, under the overall sovereign lordship of God himself, property is regularly said to belong to individuals, not to the government and not to “society” or the nation as a whole.

When Samuel warned the people about the evils that would be imposed upon them by a king, he emphasized the fact that the monarch, with so much government power, would “take” and “take” and “take” from the people and confiscate things for his own use:

So Samuel told all the words of the LORD to the people who were asking for a king from him. He said, “These will be the ways of the king who will reign over you: he will take your sons and appoint them to his chariots and to be his horsemen and to run before his chariots. And he will appoint for himself commanders of thousands and commanders of fifties, and some to plow his ground and to reap his harvest, and to make his implements of war and the equipment of his chariots. He will take your daughters to be perfumers and cooks and bakers. He will take the best of your fields and vineyards and olive orchards and give them to his servants. He will take the tenth of your grain and of your vineyards and give it to his officers and to his servants. He will take your male servants and female servants and the best of your young men and your donkeys, and put them to his work. He will take the tenth of your flocks, and you shall be his slaves. And in that day you will cry out because of your king, whom you have chosen for yourselves, but the LORD will not answer you in that day” (1 Sam. 8:10-18).

This prediction was tragically fulfilled in the story of the theft of the vineyard of Naboth the Jezreelite by Ahab the wicked king and Jezebel, his even more wicked queen (see 1 Kings 21:1-29). The regular tendency of human governments is to seek to take control of more and more of the property of a nation that God intends to be owned and controlled by private individuals.

SOCIALISM likewise is the taking over of private property, industry, and the capital of a man’s labor. Here is a good working definition of socialism followed by Professor Richards describing it as well:

In order to have a “favorable” view of socialism one must have either forgotten what the entire world learned about socialism from the late nineteenth century on, or have never learned anything about it in the first place. The latter is obviously true of much of the younger generation.

Socialism started out being defined as “government ownership of the means of production,” which is why the government of the Soviet Union confiscated all businesses, factories, and farms, murdering millions of dissenters and resisters in the process. It is also why socialist political parties in Europe, once in power, nationalized as many of the major industries (steel, automobiles, coal mines, electricity, telephone ser­vices) as they could. The Labour Party in post-World War II Great Britain would be an example of this. All of this was done, ostensibly, in the name of pursuing material “equality.”

In the foreword to the 1976 edition of his famous book, The Road to Serfdom, Nobel laureate economist Friedrich Hayek wrote that the definition of “socialism” evolved in the twentieth century to mean income redis­tribution in pursuit of “equality,” not through govern­ment ownership of the means of production but through the institutions of the welfare state and the “progres­sive” income tax. The means may have changed, but the ostensible end—equality—remained the same.

Hayek’s mentor, fellow Austrian economist Ludwig von Mises, explained in his classic treatise Socialism: An Economic and Sociological Analysis, that the wel­fare state, the “progressive” income tax, and especially pervasive government regulation of business were all tools of “destructionism” in the eyes of the socialists of his day. That is, he observed that the proponents of socialism always employed a two-pronged approach: (1) the government takeover of as many industries and as much land as possible, and (2) attempts to destroy existing capitalist societies with onerous taxes, regula­tions, the welfare state, inflation, or whatever they thought could get the job done.

Thomas J. DiLorenzo, The Problem with Socialism (New Jersey, NJ: Regnery, 2016), 4-5.

Democrats Favor Socialism Over Capitalism… Sorta

Here Dennis Prager discusses a recent poll showing that Democrat are in LOVE with socialism. USA TODAY notes the following about the poll:

According to a Gallup poll published Monday, a majority of Democrats no longer hold a positive view of capitalism, while nearly 60 percent of them feel good about socialism. More than 70 percent of Republicans, on the other hand, see capitalism positively, while only 16 percent of them have a positive view of socialism.

The positive view of socialism among Democrats, and those who lean Democrat, actually dropped a point from 58 percent in 2016. But in those same two years, positive feelings about capitalism plummetted from 56 to 47 percent

At one point Prager notes that socialism hasn’t made one dime in money… which made me think of this quote from an excellent book:

  • A 2009 study by the Swedish Economic Association discovered that the Swedish economy had failed to create any new jobs on net from 1950 to 2005. Thanks to conservative reforms, however, progress was finally being made, and Sweden’s national debt went from 80 percent of GDP in 1992 to 40 percent by 2008.

Thomas J. DiLorenzo, The Problem with Socialism (New Jersey, NJ: Regnery, 2016), 79.

The Free Market vs. Nationalization In Protecting the Environment

(See PRAGER U’s PLAYLIST) Here is an excerpt that the above video compliments.

It is a hallmark of socialist governments everywhere to nationalize heavy industries like petroleum, and, in the process, turn them into government-supervised environmental criminals unaccountable to property owners and consumers. For example, when privately owned British Petroleum (BP) caused an accidental oil spill in the Gulf of Mexico, it immediately established a $20 billion fund to pay future claims of damages and did everything it could to clean up the mess. It had legal obligations and its corporate reputation at stake. When the Mexican government’s oil company, Pemex, causes an oil spill in the Gulf of Mexico—and there have been many—it claims “sovereign immunity” from any legal damages. In the first five months of 2015, Pemex was responsible for three catastrophic oil rig explosions in the Gulf of Mexico that caused several deaths, numerous injuries to oil platform workers, and generated air and water pollution. Pemex claimed that the explosions caused no oil spill, but satellite images taken by Greenpeace Mexico showed a two-and-a-half-mile long oil slick reaching from the exploded oil platform. “Pemex has proven time and time again that you cannot trust their statements,” said Gustavo Ampugnani of Greenpeace Mexico.

The United States is not immune from socialist-d riven environmental problems. Many utility compa­nies, for example, are government-owned with less than stellar results. In 2015, to take just one recent example, the people of Flint, Michigan, were alerted to a fright-cuing environmental debacle. The city government, supposedly in an effort to save money, switched its city’s water supply from Lake Huron to the Flint River, despite the fact that the Flint River had long been known to be extraordinarily polluted. The Flint city government (and the state’s Department of Environ­mental Quality, according to a class action lawsuit) failed to properly treat water from the Flint River. The result was that city residents drank and bathed in water full of lead and other dangerous chemicals.

For many intellectuals, the attraction of socialism is that it is “rational”; it is a “planned” economy, planned by people like them. In reality, the environ­mental and economic results of socialism are a litany of disaster.

Thomas J. DiLorenzo, The Problem with Socialism (New Jersey, NJ: Regnery, 2016), 120-121.

Yaron Brook Responds To Socialist Arguments One-By-One

I will first post this popular question during the Q&A of the below linked lecture. (Just a note, while I am not on board for a fully idealized “Ayn Rand Objectivism,” but many aspects are just true.) Very important:

(FULL VERSION of Dr. Yaron Brook, president of the Ayn Rand Institute arguing that “Equal is Unfair – The Inequality Advantage” at The University of Exeter.) The following is more of Dr. Brook’s responses during Q&A:

Rush Limbaugh Explains Net Neutrality

Rush does a good job in explaining the countering info to all the scare tactics of the Left about “net neutrality.”

Net Neutrality – Ma Bell

Here is a comment via my LIVELEAK (rough language warning):

Pai is right. The neutrality storm is being shilled up by the content providers that are scared they will have to actually start paying market rates for their access. The loudest is Netflix, and anybody with at least two brain cells (and a functioning ability to give a shit) know that’s the bunch that melted down a lot of peering among the major networks while screaming for those same networks to increase Netflix’s transit capacity for free. They stir the ignorant masses up with bullshit about ‘equal access’ while their data accounts for up to 70% of the total internet bandwidth demand and 90/10 asymmetrical peering transits. They talked the weak Obama administration into legislation to favor their business, calling it “Net Neutrality” and are now pissed they are about to lose that favoritism. 

The stupid sheep are screaming that ISPs will fuck them over with fees and blocked content while the fat cat content providers sit back and grin at how easy it is to manipulate their minions. The internet was created and ran just fine for twenty years before the unnecessary Obama “Net Neutrality” doctrine. The doomsday claims of the NN bunch are belied by the facts. 

Wanted to get this portion of an important article here — via THE MISES INSTITUTE:

The Natural-Monopoly Myth: Telephone Services

The biggest myth of all in this regard is the notion that telephone service is a natural monopoly. Economists have taught generations of students that telephone service is a “classic” example of market failure and that government regulation in the “public interest” was necessary. But as Adam D. Thierer recently proved, there is nothing at all “natural” about the telephone monopoly enjoyed by AT&T for so many decades; it was purely a creation of government intervention.”54

Once AT&T’s initial patents expired in 1893, dozens of competitors sprung up. “By the end of 1894 over 80 new independent competitors had already grabbed 5 percent of total market share … after the turn of the century, over 3,000 competitors existed.55 In some states there were over 200 telephone companies operating simultaneously. By 1907, AT&T’s competitors had captured 51 percent of the telephone market and prices were being driven sharply down by the competition. Moreover, there was no evidence of economies of scale, and entry barriers were obviously almost nonexistent, contrary to the standard account of the theory of natural monopoly as applied to the telephone industry.56

The eventual creation of the telephone monopoly was the result of a conspiracy between AT&T and politicians who wanted to offer “universal telephone service” as a pork-barrel entitlement to their constituents. Politicians began denouncing competition as “duplicative,” “destructive,” and “wasteful,” and various economists were paid to attend congressional hearings in which they somberly declared telephony a natural monopoly. “There is nothing to be gained by competition in the local telephone business,” one congressional hearing concluded.57

The crusade to create a monopolistic telephone industry by government fiat finally succeeded when the federal government used World War I as an excuse to nationalize the industry in 1918. AT&T still operated its phone system, but it was controlled by a government commission headed by the postmaster general. Like so many other instances of government regulation, AT&T quickly “captured” the regulators and used the regulatory apparatus to eliminate its competitors. “By 1925 not only had virtually every state established strict rate regulation guidelines, but local telephone competition was either discouraged or explicitly prohibited within many of those jurisdictions.”58

Conclusions

The theory of natural monopoly is an economic fiction. No such thing as a “natural” monopoly has ever existed. The history of the so-called public utility concept is that the late 19th and early 20th century “utilities” competed vigorously and, like all other industries, they did not like competition. They first secured government-sanctioned monopolies, and then, with the help of a few influential economists, constructed an expost rationalization for their monopoly power.

This has to be one of the greatest corporate public relations coups of all time. “By a soothing process of rationalization,” wrote Horace M. Gray more than 50 years ago, “men are able to oppose monopolies in general but to approve certain types of monopolies. … Since these monopolies were ‘natural’ and since nature is beneficent, it followed that they were ‘good’ monopolies. … Government was therefore justified in establishing ‘good’ monopolies.”59

In industry after industry, the natural monopoly concept is finally eroding. Electric power, cable TV, telephone services, and the mail, are all on the verge of being deregulated, either legislatively or de facto, due to technological change. Introduced in the United States at about the same time communism was introduced to the former Soviet Union, franchise monopolies are about to become just as defunct. Like all monopolists, they will use every last resource to lobby to maintain their monopolistic privileges, but the potential gains to consumers of free markets are too great to justify them. The theory of natural monopoly is a 19th century economic fiction that defends 19th century (or 18th century, in the case of the US Postal Service) monopolistic privileges, and has no useful place in the 21st century American economy.

Let me caveat this next excerpt by saying I am NOT a fan of the New American Magazine. They are a John Birch publication, and my understanding of this organization is intimate, and so are my ultimate rejection of many of it’s positions. THAT BEING SAID, I thoroughly enjoyed this article (minus the NWO crap!) — THE BREAKUP OF MA BELL:

….Alexander Graham Bell patented the telephone on March 7, 1876, but initially it was considered no more than a passing novelty. In fact, Western Union passed up the opportunity to purchase the Bell patents for $100,000. But when those patents held by American Telephone and Telegraph Company expired in 1894, competition entered the market and the availability of telephone service and the number of telephones exploded. The telephone moved from novelty to necessity. According to Adam Thierer of the Cato Institute, there were, at the time, more than 3,000 telephone companies vying for customers. Author G. W. Brock, in his book The Telecommunications Industry, pointed out the difference competition made:

After seventeen years of monopoly [thanks to the patents held by AT&T from 1877 – 1894], the United States had a limited telephone system of 270,000 phones [mostly concentrated] in the centers of the cities, with service generally unavailable in the outlying areas. After thirteen years of competition [1907], the United States had an extensive system of six million telephones, almost evenly divided between Bell and [its competitors], with service available practically anywhere in the country. [Emphasis added.]

Writing in The New Telecommunications Industry, authors Leonard Hyman, Richard Toole, and Rosemary Avellis concluded that “competition helped to expand the market, bring down costs, and lower prices to consumers.” Because of the negative impact upon AT&T by its competitors, the president of AT&T, Theodore Newton Vail, changed the focus of the company from competition to consolidation. As noted by Thierer, “Vail’s most important goals upon taking over AT&T were the elimination of competitors, the befriending of policymakers and regulators, and the expansion of telephone service to the general public.” Vail’s belief in the superiority of a single monopolistic system was reflected in the company’s new corporate slogan, “One Policy, One System, Universal Service.” In the company’s 1910 annual report, Vail wrote:

  • It is believed that the telephone system should be universal, interdependent and intercommunicating, affording opportunity for any subscriber of any exchange to communicate with any other subscriber of any other exchange…. It is believed that some sort of a connection with the telephone system should be within reach of all…. 
  • It is not believed that this can be accomplished by separately controlled or distinct systems nor that there can be competition in the accepted sense of competition…. [Emphasis added.] 
  • It is believed that all this can be accomplished to the reasonable satisfaction of the public with its acquiescence, under such control and regulation as will afford the public much better service at less cost than any competition or government-owned monopoly could permanently afford…. [Emphasis added.] 
  • Effective, aggressive competition and regulation and control are inconsistent with each other, and cannot be had at the same time.

Author R.H.K. Vietor, writing in Contrived Competition, said, “Vail chose at this time to put AT&T squarely behind government regulation, as the quid pro quo for avoiding competition. This was the only politically acceptable way for AT&T to monopolize telephony.” In fact, without government regulations eliminating the competition, the reinstitution of the AT&T monopoly would have been impossible. The Kingsbury Commitment (named for one of Vail’s employees) was an agreement with the Attorney General and the Interstate Commerce Commission in 1913 that essentially codified the playing field which allowed AT&T to regain monopoly control of the industry.

In 1934, the power to regulate the telephone industry under the ICC was transferred to the new Federal Communications Commission. Enacted by the Roosevelt Revolution during the Great Depression, the Communications Act of 1934 created the FCC “for the purpose of regulating interstate and foreign commerce in communication by wire and radio so as to make available, so far as possible, to all the people of the United States a rapid, efficient, nation-wide, and world-wide wire and radio communication service with adequate facilities at reasonable charges.” In other words, according to Thierer, “every American was henceforth found to be entitled to the right to telephone service, specifically cheap telephone service.” The FCC’s powers included the power to regulate rates and restrict entry by competitors, all in the name of preventing “wasteful duplication” and “unneeded competition.”…..

For months, it seemed nearly every media figure was in hysterics over the impending repeal of net neutrality. Then, net neutrality was repealed… and nothing much changed. So what exactly is net neutrality, and why do so many people have such strong opinions about something they don’t understand? Jon Gabriel, editor-in-chief of Ricochet.com cuts through the hysteria to bring you the facts.

MORE

Why YOU Love Capitalism

Do you use an iPhone? Watch Netflix? Listen to Spotify? Then you love capitalism and can’t stand big government. How do we know? Jared Meyer of the Foundation for Government Accountability explains.

The New Trail of Tears

American Indians are the poorest of all of America’s ethnic groups. Why? After all, the government has granted them massive reservations and created entire agencies to look after them. Well, maybe that’s why. Naomi Schaefer Riley, author of “THE NEW TRAIL OF TEARS,” explains.

John Stossel interviews some American and Canadian Indians regarding how the Federal Government hampers the entrepreneurial spirit in the Native populations and how capitalism [free-markets] — and NOT social programs and handouts — make Indians rich and self-sufficient.


Federal Hand-Outs

vs.

Entrepreneurship


(Above video description) Imagine if the government were responsible for looking after your best interests. All of your assets must be managed by bureaucrats on your behalf. A special bureau is even set up to oversee your affairs. Every important decision you make requires approval, and every approval comes with a mountain of regulations.

How well would this work? Just ask Native Americans.

The federal government is responsible for managing Indian affairs for the benefit of all Indians. But by all accounts the government has failed to live up to this responsibility. As a result, Native American reservations are among the poorest communities in the United States. Here’s how the government keeps Native Americans in poverty.

Indian lands are owned and managed by the federal government.

Chief Justice John Marshall set Native Americans on the path to poverty in 1831 when he characterized the relationship between Indians and the government as “resembling that of a ward to his guardian.” With these words, Marshall established the federal trust doctrine, which assigns the government as the trustee of Indian affairs. That trusteeship continues today, but it has not served Indians well.

Underlying this doctrine is the notion that tribes are not capable of owning or managing their lands. The government is the legal owner of all land and assets in Indian Country and is required to manage them for the benefit of Indians.

But because Indians do not generally own their land or homes on reservations, they cannot mortgage their assets for loans like other Americans. This makes it incredibly difficult to start a business in Indian Country. Even tribes with valuable natural resources remain locked in poverty. Their resources amount to “dead capital”—unable to generate growth for tribal communities.

Bake My Satan Cake – Dammit!

The below is a clip from Tucker Carlson discussing with a Satanist their organization wanting a “Satanic cake” (upside down Cross and all) baked by a Christian baker. I include a short clip as well of a Christian trying to get an anti-gay cake baked, as well as Steven Crowder in Muslim owned bakeries trying to get a same-sex wedding cake baked. In each case I support the business owner.

Here is another example of how the “Cake-Fascists,” as GAY PATRIOT calls them, cannot legislate conscience — via THE DAILY SIGNAL:

The Christian baker in Colorado who was sued for declining to make a cake for a same-sex couple’s wedding reception received a strange request last month: Design and bake a cake celebrating Satan’s birthday.

“I would like to get a quote on a birthday cake, for a special event,” the email request to baker Jack Phillips, sent Sept. 30 and exclusively obtained by The Daily Signal, reads. It continues:

It is a cake that is religious in theme, and since religion is a protected class, I am hoping that you will gladly bake this cake. As you see, the birthday cake in question is to celebrate the birthday of Lucifer, or as they [sic] are also known Satan who was born as Satan when he was cast from heaven by God.

The request for Phillips to quote a price for the cake also asks for an “upside down cross, under the head of Lucifer.”

The incident exemplifies the complexity of government laws mandating that those in creative occupations violate their religious beliefs in serving clients or customers.

This is a danger that lawyers for Phillips, owner of Masterpiece Cakeshop in Lakewood, Colorado, say they’re raising before the U.S. Supreme Court, which in June agreed to take the baker’s case.

Phillips gained nationwide attention after declining to make the wedding cake for the gay couple, and eventually being found guilty of discrimination by a Colorado state agency and the courts.

Phillips has told The Daily Signal and others that his Christian faith not only doesn’t allow him to design and make cakes celebrating same-sex unions, it prevents him from designing cakes that involve such elements as witchcraft or explicit sexuality……

Here is an example of how this has even infected the last Libertarian presidential nomination process (from my post entitled: “Christians Discriminated Against By Gay Coffee Shop Owner“):

The point is that when the government gets into the weeds on HOW a person SHOULD think on matters regarding their own business… you will have chaos. This mom just ended up making it herself. Which, sorry, you may have ta do in a free country from time-to-time.

Now, WWRPTD? (What Would RPT Do). If I owned a bakery, I would bake cakes for everyone. Why? Because it would be a way to get people into a Christian environment to witness to. For instance, if a Satanist came into my hypothetical store and wanted me to bake a cake… I would. If he or she asked why a bakery such as mine with Christian symbols would do so, I would open up my visible bible to 1 Corinthians 8:4-8

Now concerning eating food offered to idols: We know that no idol is real in this world and that there is only one God. For even if there are “gods” in heaven and on earth (as indeed there are many so-called “gods” and “lords”), yet for us

there is only one God, the Father,
    from whom everything came into being
        and for whom we live.
And there is only one Lord, Jesus the Messiah,
    through whom everything came into being
        and through whom we live.

But not everyone has this knowledge. Some people are so accustomed to idolatry that when they eat food that has been offered to an idol, their conscience becomes contaminated because it is weak. However, food will not bring us closer to God. We are no worse off if we do not eat food that has been offered to an idol, and no better off if we do.

(ISV)

I had the pleasure (God’s Sovereignty) of being in the right-spot-at-the-right-time to lead a Satanist in the sinners prayer. I brought him to HEBREWS 10:4-10, and discussed why Satanism is so concerned about blood in sacrifices when it was done once-for-all-time. I would love to build relationships in order to do this. BUT, that is me! A business owner can do his business how he or she pleases.

Are Medical Insurance/Big-Pharma Company Profits… Evil?

R & D Costs for “Big Pharma”

This comes via ChEMBL-og:

Came across a link on Google+ to a post to a Forbes article (via Greg Landrum) and thought I would post a link here. It’s a simple economic analysis of the costs of Large Pharma drug discovery. Very simple, money in vs. drugs out. There is however a lot of complexity behind the numbers, for example – quite a few of the drugs will have been licensed in, the transaction costs for these in-licensing events have probably been factored in, but what about all the other burnt capital in the biotech companies that supplied the in-licensed compounds – this will inflate the numbers further. Of course the majority of these costs are incurred on the failed projects, the wrong targets, the wrong compounds, or the wrong trials.

To put the AstraZeneca number of $11.8 billion per drug in some national context (equivalent to £7.5 billion) – this is almost 17 years of the entire BBRSC budget (£445 million in 2011), or only two drugs from the entire investment portfolio of the mighty assets of the Wellcome Trust (~£14 billion in 2011) – that’s right, not two drugs from their annual research budget, but two drugs by shutting down the investment fund and putting it all into drug discovery and development (at Astra Zeneca ROI levels).

Scary numbers, eh? Are public funding agencies up to the task? Do we really know what to do differently? There’s also a POST on the same Forbes article on the In THE PIPELINE BLOG.

(An updated Forbes article is HERE)

Getch-yur POPCORN/PEANUTES Here!! (Antifa Edition)

(Language Warning)

THE DAILY CALLER caught up with Gesualdi, who says his experiences reveal how humorless the Antifa protesters are and how dangerous they can be — especially when there are no alt-right protesters for them to fight against.”

Here is Gesualdi’s “Hitler Rap” put to a beat:

More from the DC:

….“As a comedian I am obviously a big free speech advocate, which is why this recent wave of protests bother me,” he says. “Though most of the protesters have good intentions and show up simply looking to exercise their free speech rights, many come for the sole purpose of starting fights and causing destruction. That’s not how we solve problems in America.”

“What I do is bring a bit of absurdism to the venue, to hopefully keep things lighthearted while also showing how ridiculous it is to characterize these protests as if they are the battlegrounds of a civil war,” says the comedian. “These kids may think they are badass street soldiers fighting against the forces of evil, but it’s hard to maintain that narrative when you’re being heckled by a peanut vendor.”

Gesualdi says that unlike the last time, the protest site was “almost devoid” of right-wing voices, many of whom were chased off by the large Antifa turnout, or because they were warned not to go by the organizer.

“I saw one group of people being chased into the police station by a group of leftists,” he says. “There’s actually a great video of this on LiveLeak, which pans over to me hawking my wares.”

The comedian says that the normal Berkeley protest crowd was peaceful, with “lots of people laughing, asking for pictures, etc.” A trio of Juggalos — fans of Insane Clown Posse — even treated Gesualdi to a bottle of Faygo and he got to sing along to “I’m Gonna Let It Shine” with older hippies.

“It was only when I got too close to the Antifa camp that things started to go south,” he says, describing how he was attacked by two separate black-clad groups.

“One group of Antifa-types took issue with the tiny American flags attached my vendor’s tray of snacks,” he described footage that was captured on his video. “Declaring them symbols of colonialism and white supremacy, they ripped them off and burned them in front of me. I was surprised they were so brazen about it, and parts of the crowd even cheered as the flags burned.”

Gesualdi was confronted by another set of Antifa later on in the day, when one of them declared him a “troll” and encouraged the group to accost him. “Knowing this could end badly I attempted to walk away from the situation, but they followed behind, ringing a cowbell for some reason. Very intimidating.”

He speculates that the reason he was targeted was because few right-wing voices had come out for them to attack, so they were happy to go after him. “They lobbed some rotten tomatoes at me, but thankfully, none of them could throw worth a damn. They blared rape whistles in my ear and got some tomato juice on my shirt, but stormed off in anger when I just ignored their nonsense and kept trying to sell them bags of popcorn.”

Gesualdi says that what really surprised him about the protest was how many people there were going on about the “evils of capitalism.”

“They seemed too much like a stereotype of the classic clueless communist who knows capitalism is evil but isn’t really sure why,” he says. “One young man tried seriously explaining to me that people didn’t want to pay because they were socialist, though I actually had commenters from socialist countries tell me that of course they pay for their food and that kid was a clueless idiot.”

“Others told me to cease my selling and ‘seize the means of production.’ I will have to look into seeing if the state is willing to acquire me a free peanut factory.”

Gesualdi says he won’t let the bad experience deter him from going to future rallies if it allows him to keep exposing their absurdity, but he worries that Antifa will paint a target on his back if he becomes a regular face.

“The Berkeley police were nowhere to be seen on both occasions I’ve gone and I honestly believe it’s only a matter of time before someone gets killed at one of these things,” he says.