The holidays celebrate material plenty. But that can be a tough sell these days.
We mostly take our plenty for granted. We don't even know its absence. This is especially true regarding food. Global hunger has fallen to historic lows — down 27% just since 2000. Fully 17 countries have improved by 50%. Famine has been effectively ended in normal times, and the few cases that remain are due not to a lack of production but to war.
The situation in the developed world is incredible: poverty and hunger at historic lows, mostly nonexistent in most people's life ... (more)
In the wake of last month’s shooting at Umpqua University in Oregon, national debate has once again been sparked over the role of firearm controls. Gun-control laws must be passed, we are told, that target these events and reduce or eliminate their frequency. However, much like most debates in the political realm, convenience and sound bites take the center stage over understanding root causes of violence it... (more)
President Obama announced, "We do not succumb to fear."
What did he mean with his use of the pronoun "we"?
He's got to be talking about the military and the CIA -- i.e., the national-security establishment -- which undoubtedly will not be afraid to drop more bombs in the Middle East and kill more people in that part of the world.
He certainly can't be talking about the American people. They are among the most frightened people in the world! They succu... (more)
“Hold on, my friends, to the Constitution and to the Republic for which it stands. Miracles do not cluster, and what has happened once in 6000 years, may not happen again. Hold on to the Constitution, for if the American Constitution should fail, there will be anarchy throughout the world.”—Daniel Webster
Thanksgiving is not what it once was.
Then again, America is not what she once was.
Americans have become so enthralled by the “bread and circuses”... (more)
Donald Trump's presidential campaign makes perfect sense once it is understood to be the political equivalent of what is called a "heel turn" in professional wrestling.
In 2007, before becoming a "reality TV" star in his own right, Trump was cast by World Wrestling Entertainment for a major role in an extended storyline that culminated in Wrestlemania 23. The climax of that pay-per-view event was a proxy battle between wrestl... (more)
Now that the final movie in the series is out, we know. "Hunger Games" is not just a popular movie series for young adults, a fantasy tale about about a young girl's heroism. It is far more sophisticated than that. It is a political allegory, the best known of our time, about power and the complications of its displacement.
In this way, it covers the same intellectual terrain as Aristotle's Politics, Machiavelli's The Prince, and de Jouvenel's On Power, but in a way that is more ... (more)
The problem with America's "anti-ISIS coalition" is not a matter of poor planning or a lack of resources. It is not a matter of lacking leadership or military might. The problem with America's "anti-ISIS coalition" is that it never existed in the first place. There is no US-led war on ISIS, and what's worse, it appears that the US, through all of its allies, from across the Persian Gulf to Eastern Europe and even within Washington itself, are involved in feeding ISIS, not fighting it.
Over the past few days, we've been highlighting the fever pitch with which the surveillance state apologists and their friends have been trampling over themselves to blame Ed Snowden, blame encryption and demand (and probably get) new legislation to try to mandate backdoors to encryption.
These were the words written on a sign, held up by a citizen in a mass rally in Paris, the day following the ghastly slaughter of innocents. The rally itself took place in defiance of the nighttime curfew that had been instituted by the French government (the first since 1944). This curfew came with other methods of control such as a border closure (again, first time since WWII), tanks on the streets, and a de facto end to free movement and assembly. <... (more)
Do men need to check their privilege? Gender activists tell us that men carry around with them an invisible knapsack of advantage. Well, is this true and is it the whole story? AEI Scholar Christina Hoff Sommers checks the facts.
In the wake of the unfortunate and diabolical terrorist attacks perpetrated in Paris, the international surveillance and intelligence communities have responded with a predictable refrain: give us more power and give us more money.
Terrorism is great for business if you’re in the business of growing the government leviathan. The bodies in Paris are not yet buried, while the vultures with dollar signs (and pounds and Euros, etc) in their eyes have already swooped down for a feast.
Terrorism, what is it good for?
1) The military-industrial-Congressional complex: Thanks to Glenn Greenwald for bringing to light the enormous profits that are already rolling in for the merchants... (more)
The terrorist attacks carried out in the heart of the French capital, either coincidentally or intentionally, have served as the perfect point of leverage for the West on the very eve of the so-called "Vienna talks" regarding Syria.
With its serendipitously strengthened hand and with France taking a more prominent role, the West is attempting to reassert not only its narrative, but its agenda regarding the ongoing conflict in Syria, an agenda that has – as of late – been derailed ... (more)
“ISIS is certainly not a state” said Obama in a recent statement. This is the official line Western governments use to describe ISIS. The label terrorist is often used to describe dangerous and aggressive organizations. However, these characteristics are not used to describe organizations that don’t threaten the strategic interests of states that dominate the international community.
When French President Francois Hollande declared this week that France is "at war," this could only possibly have been news to people who weren't paying attention. Of course, France is at war. France has been bombing foreign targets for years, and making war in numerous locales across the globe.
One of the purposes of last week's terrorist attacks was to inflict casualties on the Fren... (more)
"They that can give up essential liberty to obtain a little temporary safety deserve neither liberty nor safety." - Benjamin Franklin
"Voice or no voice, the people can always be brought to the bidding of the leaders. All you have to do is tell them they are being attacked and denounce the pacifists for lack of patriotism and exposing the country to danger. It works the same in any country." - Hermann Goering, German military commander and Hitler's designated successor
Cultural Marxism enjoyed a victory last week when University of Missouri President Tim Wolfe resigned after members of the Missouri Tigers football team joined a student movement calling for his resignation. While I fully support the rights of these players to leverage their athletic ability to advocate a cause — as I would support their university if it decided to pull their scholarship — what is concerning is the actual list of demands shared by the cause they joined.
"Conservatism is the antidote to tyranny. It's the only one. It's based on thousands of years of human experience. There is nothing narrow about the conservative philosophy. It's a liberating philosophy. It is a magnificent philosophy. It is a philosophy for the ages, for all times." ~ Mark Levin
"I realized that conservatism was the philosophy that best suited me, with its emphasis on individual liberty, personal responsibility, and merit." ~ Mark Levin
The horrific attacks in Paris on Friday have, predictably, led to much over-reaction and demands that we do more of the exact things that radicalize people and make them want to attack us. The French military wasted no time bombing Syria in retaliation for the attacks, though it is not known where exactly the attackers were from. Thousands of ISIS fighters in Syria are not Syrian, but came to Syria to overthrow the Assad government from a number of foreign countries — including from France and t... (more)
I had a dream the other night, that I was president of Loyola University, and faced with the challenges that confronted Tim Wolfe, the now ex-president of the University of Missouri. But don’t get worried: I have no intention of taking up any such office; it would interfere with my research, writing and publication. In any case, I am not sure Loyola is quite ready for a Jewish atheist as its leader.
In any case, what would I do if I were in Mr. Wolfe’s shoes? Here are the demands... (more)
This talk was delivered at the Mises Circle in Phoenix, AZ, on November 7, 2015.
Whether we’re talking about illegal immigration from Mexico and Central America, or birthright citizenship, or the migrants coming from the Middle East and Africa, the subject of immigration has been in the news and widely discussed for months now. It is an issue fraught with potentially perilous consequences, so it is espe... (more)
Westminster Abbey, nearly a thousand years old, is my favorite stop in London, which I've visited so many times now that I've lost count. Each time I walk through the main entrance, my eyes are drawn immediately to the left because of the imposing statue of a man I deeply admire: William Ewart Gladstone, a devoted friend of both British and American liberty and the greatest of all British prime ministers.
Today, the name Gladstone adorns towns, parks, schools, and many buildings a... (more)
Bodies are still being counted after terrorist attacks rang out in Paris tonight, some stories have the death toll exceeding 120. I'll let the news outlets sort out the details on what actually happened, but from the limited information available I can say this. Anybody who is acting surprised must have had their head in the sand for the last few months. ... (more)
French people are being methodically executed in droves, helpless to defend themselves due to civilian disarmament and forced to wait for militarized SWAT teams to protect them, but the nation "knows how to defend itself," says president François Hollande.
There is little question that individual liberty and economic stability have taken a beating during the past fifteen years. Most state institutions, from the Supreme Court to local governments, have been active in diminishing our traditional freedoms. CSIS and other alphabet soup spy agencies now intrude into our personal lives in order to categorize our threat levels. We are given no choice but to fund the murder of foreign citizens through endless, unjust wars. We can only watch while the ... (more)
The highly effective Russian operation in Syria has clearly exposed the real position of the West, along with the ties it has with international terrorist groups.
As is already known, the so-called Western coalition, created by Washington more than a year ago has been "effectively fighting" terrorism in Syria and Iraq. What are the results? Desert areas with no terrorists to be found anywhere have been heavily bombed, at the same time, terrorists are regularly acquiring weapon due... (more)
The United States and the Republic of Korea have drastically altered their military plans towards North Korea by shifting their central focus from preparation of a large-scale direct confrontation to swift localised subversive actions, reported the Japanese newspaper Asahi Shimbun on October 5, 2015. According to the newspaper, while previously the United States and the Republic of Korea (RK) were considering a full-scale ground war, the "sudden provocations from the North, which have been takin... (more)
In an epic display of the totalitarian nature of political correctness, "protests" at the University of Missouri have culminated with an email being sent out by campus police urging students to call the cops if they experience "Hateful and/or Hurtful Speech."
The protests were spurned after the African-American student government president claimed that in September, people in a passing pick-up truck shouted racial slurs at him which prompted other black students to come forward an... (more)
America's next president will inherit more than a bitterly divided nation teetering on the brink of financial catastrophe when he or she assumes office. He will also inherit a shadow government, one tha... (more)
The song "America the Beautiful" should be changed to "America the Invader."
According to Christopher Kelly and Stuart Laycock, the United States "has invaded or fought in eighty-four out of 194 countries" and "has had some form of military involvement with a spectacular 191 out of 194." Their findings are published in the appropriately titled America Invades: How We've Invaded or Been Militarily Involved with Almost Every Country on Earth.
It's a well-known fact that the supreme commander is the highest official of the armed forces in any country. Simultaneously, as a rule, this very individual occupies the position of a head of the state, whether it's a president or monarch. The fundamental law of any state -- the national constitution specifies the rights and duties of the Supreme Commander, that doesn't simply define the military policy of a country, but also bears responsibility for the fighting capacity of the national army, ... (more)
When Arkansas Senator Tom Cotton was an undergraduate at Harvard he took time out to become a "Publius Fellow" at the "Straussian" neocon Pentagon propaganda mill known as the Claremont Institute in Claremont, California. After graduating he returned to Claremont Graduate School to pursue graduate studies in "government" under the tutelage of the "Straussians" there, but dropped out to pursue a law degree instead. He then joined the U.S. Army, eventually going to Iraq to kill Muslims. All of... (more)
Like millions of Americans, this past week I was sitting on my couch, drinking a cold beer, watching Game 1 of the World Series -- professional baseball's hallowed championship. Suddenly the satellite feed went out, the screen went dark. Naturally, as FOX Sports scrambled to get their live feed fixed, many of my fellow Americans took to twitter to speculate as to what had caused the outage. I was, sadly, unsurprised to see that the most common joke people were making was that China must have hac... (more)
A huge sign outside a local tire store really irritated me a couple of weeks ago. Its large letters blared: "WE SUPPORT THE TROOPS." I was tempted to get out of the car and demand that the owner tell me what he was actually doing besides displaying the sign, which probably didn't cost much in money or effort. I suspected that posting the sign was the extent of his "support," but I restrained myself and kept going.
I wonder if anyone ever asks the owner that question. Probably not.... (more)
We now have less than one year until the 2016 presidential election, and you can expect to be treated to an earful of carefully crafted, expensive sound bites and political spin about climate change, education, imm... (more)
At some point, you may have heard someone call the government a "gang of thieves writ large," which is a generalization of a quote attributed to libertarian thinker Murray Rothbard. However, if you're not familiar with the philosophy behind that quote, you might mistakenly believe that it is nothing more than a clever observation on the wasteful and corrupt nature of government. That's because you may not be aware of the meaning of "writ large." It's synonymous with "clearly" or "obviously." In ... (more)
The yard sign said, "Elect a Problem Solver President." As I drove by, I wondered why I saw no candidate's name.
It turns out the sign was not for any particular candidate but for a "No Labels, Problem Solver" convention held in October in Manchester, New Hampshire. Eight presidential candidates from both parties attended; after all, what political candidate doesn't want t... (more)
Our booming green-industrial complex built up by administrations of both parties in the US is effectively using the United Nations, its thirty two “sister” institutions — such as the World Bank, UNESCO, and numerous “tribunals” — and hundreds of training and research centers. This huge international bureaucratic buildup is already employing over a million “international civil servants” to administer what our socialist visionaries hope will become the world government of the future.
Washington, D.C. is home to a host of memorials. Walk in any direction for long and you're bound to run into at least one of them. By far, the memorial that generates the strongest reaction from me is the Vietnam memorial. The name of all the U.S. casualties are chiseled on the wall, from the start of the war to end. Someone is always there crying or making a rubbing of their loved-one's name. What resonates with me about the memorial is that it's strikingly cold, but hauntingly personal. It's a... (more)
Thanks to the fundraising and polling success of Senator Bernie Sanders, socialism has become increasingly fashionable in the United States, particularly among young people. Because people are treating Sanders' old ideas as if they're just the kind of bold and fresh thinking America needs, I've released a free eBook refuting them called Bernie Sanders Is Wrong. Whether it's trade, "inequality," alternative energy, the $15 minimum wage, greater fringe benefits for workers, or why the Scandinavian... (more)
Once upon a time, a dental or medical exam was an opportunity to read a book. No more. The TV blares. It was talking heads discussing whether a football player had been sufficiently punished. The offense was unclear. The question was whether the lashes were sufficient.
It brought to mind that punishment has become a primary feature of American, indeed Western, society. A baker in Colorado was punished because he would not bake a wedding cake for a homosexual marriage. A county or ... (more)