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|Industry||Publishing, Catalog book sales|
|Defunct||May 8, 2006|
|Headquarters||Port Townsend, Washington|
|Michael Hoy, President, Book Editor|
Lou Rollins, Proof Reader
Loompanics Unlimited was an American book seller and publisher specializing in nonfiction on generally unconventional or controversial topics. The topics in their title list included drugs, weapons, anarchism, sex, conspiracy theories, and so on. Many of their titles describe some kind of illicit or extralegal actions, such as Counterfeit I.D. Made Easy, while others are purely informative, like Opium for the Masses. Loompanics was in business for nearly 30 years. The publisher and editor was Michael Hoy.
Mike Hoy started Loompanics Unlimited in East Lansing, Michigan, in 1975. In 1982 he moved the business to Port Townsend, Washington, where his friend and fellow publisher R. W. Bradford had earlier relocated.
In January 2006, Loompanics announced that it was going out of business, and that it was selling off its inventory. In the spring of 2006, Paladin Press announced that it acquired the rights to 40 titles previously published or sold by Loompanics, including the works of Claire Wolfe, Eddie the Wire, and other popular Loompanics authors.
In addition to Loompanics' large annual catalog of all its stock, Loompanics regularly mailed its customers a thinner quarterly supplement featuring a selection of books interspersed with articles about government propaganda and conspiracies, and/or underground resistance. The addressing side of the cover included a World War II American graphic of an eagle carrying a stack of volumes and the slogan, "Our men want books!"
Loompanics did not fall into the categories of mainstream liberal, conservative, or libertarian politics. While Hoy expresses a preference for free markets, he also criticizes libertarians for championing multinational corporations, which he describes in a 2005 article as being entirely different entities from individuals. Hoy characterizes them as governmental entities, since their limited liability is the result of government fiat, rather than contractual dealings among individuals. Thus, in some ways, Hoy argues, corporations have more rights than individuals. He also criticized libertarians for brainwashing themselves, stating:
""Libertarian" followers have been taught numerous thought-stopping techniques by "Libertarian" leaders, so that anyone who attempts to discuss the non-market reality of corporations is slapped with a negative label ("anti-corporate," "anti-trade," etc. — there are lots), and then any questions raised by that person are literally unthinkable to "Libertarians.""
Hoy's articles, which systemically lambasted the policies of all major political groups, earned him the wrath of organizations across the political spectrum.
Loompanics' FAQ stated that the company's name is a play on words inspired by Hoy's fondness for National Lampoon.
According to Gia Cosindas, Amazon.com, eBay, and Google refused to allow Loompanics to advertise on their sites, since some of the books' content violates their editorial guidelines. Specifically, Google wrote, "At this time, Google policy does not permit the advertisement of websites that contain 'the promotion of violence [and] drugs or drug paraphernalia.'"
Legacy and aftermath
On May 8, 2006, Loompanics stopped accepting retail orders. Their website encouraged potential customers to contact other publishers, who have had several Loompanics titles transferred to them, or became the new publishers of established Loompanics authors.
- Luger, Jack (1990). Counterfeit I.D. Made Easy. Loompanics Unlimited. p. 137. ISBN 0915179903.
- First Time
- Simson Garfinkel (August 1997). "5.08: Street Cred – Covert Catalog". Wired. Retrieved 2016-03-17.
- Kasia Pierzga, "Alternative publisher calls it quits", ptleader.com, 25 January 2006. Retrieved 3 October 2018.
- Paladin Press FAQ
- "Why Corporations Are Not People, And The Unsavory Consequences of Pretending That They Are, A Challenge to 'Libertarians'" by Mike Hoy, 2005 Spring Supplement Archived 2007-06-26 at the Wayback Machine
- "Covert Censorship on the Web" by Gia Cosindas, 2005 Spring Supplement Archived 2007-04-23 at the Wayback Machine
- Loompanics Unlimited is closed, loompanics.com (archived version at archive.org. Retrieved 11 February 2018.
- AuthorViews video interview with founder Michael Hoy
- Loompanics 2003 Catalog
- Sonni Efron, "Manuals Fit for Mayhem--by Mail", Los Angeles Times, 5 January 1992.
- Robin Clarke, "Anarchy Reigns at Loompanics", Chicago Times, 27 August 1993.
- "FBI releases files on controversial booksellers Paladin and Loompanics" Boing Boing, 20 July 2011