David Friedman once said that “government can’t even give anything away.” Given how much of electoral competition consists of promises to give people things, that is a striking indictment of government.
Unfortunately, it is all-too-commonly true. Government dollars (ultimately from citizens’ pockets) frequently benefit people other than those they target. Further, they also provide different goods and services than intended.
For example, government wants to help col... (more)
That's Bill de Blasio, the current mayor of New York City, who was elected in 2013 after running unabashedly as the progressive, socially democratic candidate. I find it interesting that people are surprised by the mayor's illiberal stands on many (... (more)
“Every day in communities across the United States, children and adolescents spend the majority of their waking hours in schools that have increasingly come to resemble places of detention more than places of learning. From metal detectors to drug tests, from increased policing to all-seeing electronic surveillance, the public schools of the twenty-first century reflect a society that has become fixated on crime, security and violence.”—Investigative journalist Annette Fuentes
Is capitalism moral or greedy? If it's based on greed and selfishness, what's the best alternative economic system? Perhaps socialism? And if capitalism is moral, what makes it so? Walter Williams, a renowned economist at George Mason University, answers these questions and more.
For the next year, we are all going to have to endure the presidential campaign and its accompanying blowhard speeches, insipid commentaries, and vapid debates.
At the same time, many people will be terribly excited over the opportunity they get every four years to elect the person who will wield omnipotent power over their lives. It’s really not surprising that people get so excited about the presidential race because it’s the only time when the person who will rule over them wil... (more)
Consider the impact on the civil liberties of the American people of four of the non-stop wars that the U.S. government has been waging for a very long time: the war on drugs, the war on terrorism, the war on immigrants, and the war on wealth. These four wars have converted what was once a free country into a police state, making the United States the most over-incarcerated nation in the world.
The war on drugs has subjected people to an untold number of searches of persons, homes... (more)
"Since mankind's dawn, a handful of oppressors have accepted the responsibility over our lives that we should have accepted for ourselves. By doing so, they took our power. By doing nothing, we gave it away. We've seen where their way leads, through camps and wars, towards the slaughterhouse." - Alan Moore, V for Vendetta
What began with the passage of the USA Patriot Act in October 2001 has snowballed into the eradication of every vital safeguard against government overreach... (more)
"So, I figured I'd ask you," said my contractor. "You're a lot smarter than me and--"
That's when I stopped him.
Tom knows I am a college professor, and he wanted to ask my advice on his daughter's education. He's an ex-Marine who never went to college. It makes sense to ask an educator for advice about education, but why does that make me smarter?
I thought about all the times I've asked Tom's advice about the house we are renovating, and about all t... (more)
Last week Europe saw one of its worst crises in decades. Tens of thousands of migrants entered the European Union via Hungary, demanding passage to their hoped-for final destination, Germany.
While the media focuses on the human tragedy of so many people uprooted and traveling in dangerous circumstances, there is very little attention given to the events that led them to leave their countries. Certainly we all feel for the displaced people, especially the children, but let’s not f... (more)
Kim Davis, the 49 year old clerk of Rowan County, Kentucky, has been the subject of much discussion as of late. Kim made headlines when she defied the Supreme Court’s Obergefell v. Hodges ruling from April, by refusing to issue marriage licenses to same sex couples. Davis cites her r... (more)
On a daily basis, we hear about how if the #BlackLivesMatter movement really cared about black lives then they would say something about the black on black crime in poverty-stricken neighborhoods across the United States. This assertion comes from opponents of the #BlackLivesMatter movement and is usually made by police apologists who ignore the fact that police kill black men at a much higher rate than whites.
African-Americans make up only 13 percent of the population, yet they ... (more)
Glenn Beck, acting in his self-appointed role as a punitive populist prophet, has urged his audience to join “hand-in-hand, arm-in-arm,” and “ring” their local police departments in prayer. The local police are “under siege,” Beck tremulously insists, and divine intervention on their behalf is necessary.
Beck hasn't yet urged Americans to act as human shields on behalf of the heavily armed, body armor-clad functionaries who are supposedly paid to protect them. Some police union o... (more)
In view of the thousands of laws in the USA for whose violation people are punished even though no identifiable person has been harmed by their actions, is it not wholly appropriate to say that those who are punished are in fact being punished for political crimes?
For example, persons entering or leaving the USA must file a declaration of the exact amount of cash and negotiable monetary instrume... (more)
In the USA, thousands of distinct actions that violate no one’s natural rights have been declared illegal. Often the law provides for draconian punishment of those who violate such unjust laws. Sometimes, especially in cases involving alleged violation of tax laws or drug laws, the government may seize an alleged violator’s assets, making it impossible for him to mount an effective defense, conduct a business, or even live a normal life. In this perverse legal environment, ordinary people know, ... (more)
It’s been noticed more than a few times that there aren’t many substantive differences between the Republicans and Democrats. While this is true in many ways for the parties themselves, the Left and Right certainly differ on a range of issues from welfare to abortion to gay rights.
What they have in common — at least the mainstream varieties — is a desire to use the state to shape society in whatever way they see fit. As Andrew Napolitano put it, “We have migrated from a two-p... (more)