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PreTeena: November 12 – November 18, 2018

Sunday Comics!

You won’t want to miss these hilarious cartoons depicting the ups and downs of adolescence. Now each week’s strips will debut on Sundays as the lead strip of Liberty Island’s Sunday Comics feature. If you draw a comic and would like to have your work featured on Sundays, please contact us: [email protected] Check out Allison Barrows’ new PreTeena blog here.

10 Sunset Photos I Shot This Month

*Submit your photographs of nature and the outdoor life to [email protected] to participate in this weekly feature exploring the natural world.*

34 Ethical Questions Raised by Elevating Artificial Intelligence to Human Legal Status

There are a number of ethical questions raised by raising artificial intelligences to the same legal status as a human:

If an AI is legally “alive,” is turning it off considered sedation or murder? Are there limits on turning one off?

Does an artificial intelligence have a right to access information? Is internet access for it a right akin to the freedom to walk down the street for a human?

The Greatest Conservative Films: Dirty Harry (1971)

Editor’s Note: In April of 2017 writer Eric M. Blake began a series at Western Free Press naming the “Greatest Conservative Films.” The introduction explaining the rules and indexing all films included in the series can be found here. Liberty Island will feature cross-posts of select essays from the series with the aim of encouraging discussion at this cross-roads of cinematic art with political ideology. (Click here to see the original essay. Check out the previously cross-posted entries on Jackie Brown, Captain America: The First AvengerCaptain America: The Winter Soldier, Captain America: Civil WarUnforgivenHail, Caesar!, Apocalypse Now, Fight Club, Man of Steel, Batman v. Superman: Dawn Of Justice ULTIMATE EDITION, Wonder Woman, Kill BillGran Torino The Dark KnightThe Dark Knight RisesBlazing Saddles, The Magnificent Sevenand Shaft.) If you would like join this dialogue please contact us at submissions [@] libertyislandmag.com.

Check Out the Start of Book 2 in the Steve Dane Action Series

Brian Drake’s Another Way to Kill is packed with thrills

THE LIGHT over the fuselage doorway turned from red to green, and for the first time in many years, Steve Dane jumped out of a perfectly good airplane.

His insulated jumpsuit blocked the harsh cold of the night, but he felt the icy blast on his neck and most of his face. Goggles with built-in night-vision capability covered his eyes. The goggles gave the ground below a greenish hue. As he fell through space, he scanned for a dot somewhere in the forest below. Dane pulled the rip cord; the parachute billowed out of his pack and jolted him violently as it blossomed. His descent slowed. He grabbed the risers over his shoulders, and continued looking for the dot.

His lady and partner-in-crime, Nina Talikova, was supposed to be down there with the landing beacon. They faced a tense situation in Bogota. If something had happened to her—

He found it.

[Click here to purchase Skills to Kill, the first novel in this series, on Amazon. And click here for book 2, Another Way to Kill.]

New Fiction: The Last Pistoleer

Rancho de San Miguelito, Chihuahua, Mexico – May 14, 1916 – High Noon:  “HALT!” yelled the young cavalry lieutenant, as the threehorsemen riding out of the gated archway veered away from the men he had posted on the southeast side of the hacienda and headed at full-gallop towards him. They had apparently been alerted to make their escape by the man skinning a dead cow in the yard that had run into the ranch house as the soldiers approached, and then came back out again, nonchalantly resuming his work.

“Damnit!” The lieutenant dropped the Springfield rifle he held in his left hand – useless with three riders less than twenty yards away and closing fast – and drew the Colt “Peacemaker” he’d picked up on order in El Paso just before deploying south of the border.

1918, American Remembrance

World War I, The Great War, 1914-1918, really is one of the most poignant chapters in America’s extraordinary history.

1) Imagine – America gathers up a million troops and throws them at another continent where wages an atrocious, industrial war that Americans have no fight in.

Check Out Daniel J. Flynn on ‘Custer’s Next-to-Last Stand’ at City Journal

Many thanks to Daniel J. Flynn for his kind mention of Liberty Island in his review of the new historical novel Armstrong, by H.W. Crocker, III.

The Garrison Mentality: More Than Meets The Eye

Deconstructing Canadian Culture, Part 6: Animation

The consequence free hipster odyssey of Scott Pilgrim and the gritty, blood-soaked path trod by Wolverine do not contradict one another – they are one and the same. This contradiction plays itself out in a concept called “the garrison mentality“- broadly, the idea that Canadians invent or seek out their own personal wars despite living in relative peace. But rather than explicate this confusing concept through politics or history, I will do it using two children’s cartoons with Canadian roots.

One, “Transformers: Beast Wars,” is likely well known to you. Everybody knows the robots in disguise thanks to Michael Bay’s explosion-soaked series of films. (Hilariously, and proving my point in a way, “Beast Wars” was deemed to be too violent a title for Canadians, so the show was known in Canada as ‘Beasties.'”) The other, “ReBoot,” is acclaimed in animation circles but enjoys much less popular fandom. Both were created by Vancouver-based Mainframe Entertainment.

Visually, these two series have not aged well. Being early-to-mid 1990s CGI, the uncanny valley runs deep through them. But the writing, voice acting and character development remain top-notch and surprisingly deep. And, for the purposes of our discussion, the ancient animation actually helps convey the sense of unease and low-level threat central to the garrison mentality.

At the 11th hour of the 11th day of the 11th month, 1918, the guns fell silent…

A Veteran’s Day Reflection

We now call it Veteran’s Day, because to continue to refer to it as “Armistice Day” would seem like a cruel joke, given subsequent events. It was billed as “the war to end wars” and “the war to make the world safe for democracy.” Naive idealism ran so high that even 10 years after the war the Kellogg-Briand Pact was signed, purporting to end war as a dispute resolution among nations (and although historians tend to smirk at its mention, it was the beginning of our undue reliance upon weak international forums rather than time-tested deterrence).

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