Civil Liberties & Privacy

Individual Rights or Civil Rights?

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Civil rights and affirmative action are getting their closest reexamination in years. Unfortunately, the reexamination is not close enough. With scant exception, no one is willing to go to the core of the issue and condemn the entire rotten regime for what it is — massive violation of individual rights. The way civil rights are defined today confronts us ... [click for more]

The Magic Bullet That Stops Tyranny in Its Tracks

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Governments at all levels are raging out of control, trampling the rights of the people, escalating the attack on the Bill of Rights seemingly without any recourse available to the people. Until recently, it has not been widely appreciated that for the last hundred years, we have been ... [click for more]

An Essay on the Trial by Jury

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For more than six hundred years — that is, since Magna Carta, in 1215, — there has been no clearer principle of English or American constitutional law, than that, in criminal cases, it is not only the right and duty of juries to judge what are the facts, what is the law, and what was the moral intent of ... [click for more]

Vigilant Distrust, Part 1

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Part 1 | Part 2 Free enterprise. Familiar words for this class. Enterprise is an undertaking marked by its difficulty, requiring action that is bold, energetic, and venturesome in order to accomplish it. I need not remind you that "free" as in free enterprise does not mean something without cost. Instead "free" means that the person undertaking the task ... [click for more]

Loving Your Country and Hating Your Government

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Several months ago, President Clinton condemned Americans who exposed and criticized wrongdoing by the U.S. government. The president said: "There's nothing patriotic about hating your government or pretending you can hate your government but love your country." Let us examine the implications of the president's claim. In the 1930s and throughout World War II, ... [click for more]

Takings: The Evils of Eminent Domain

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The "takings clause" of the U.S. Constitution is the portion of the Fifth Amendment that says "nor shall private property be taken for public use without just compensation." It is one of the few parts of the Bill of Rights that authorizes the government to violate individual liberty, since under ... [click for more]

Have We Abandoned Our Principles?

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America was founded upon commonly held principles of right and wrong. Our Declaration of Independence and our Constitution recognize these principles and enumerate several of them. Among these principles is the acknowledgment that we, as individuals, have certain unalienable rights — namely the rights to life, liberty, and the ... [click for more]

Demystifying the State

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Mystification is the process by which the commonplace is elevated to the level of the divine by those who have a vested interest in its unassailability. Government is a perfect example of mystification at work. Government is a group of individuals organized for the purpose of extracting wealth and exerting ... [click for more]

Freedom through Encryption

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When the history of the modern struggle for liberty is written, Philip Zimmermann will be celebrated as a true hero. To understand why, we must explore the issue of privacy in the information age. It is a story that should the thrill the heart of every lover of liberty. The government has always been able to read our mail. After ... [click for more]

The Greatest Enemy

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They're out to get me — the most relentless, implacable foe a human being ever had. They've been after me all my life. On the day I was born, they demanded to know who I was and where I was so that they could put me on their list. Their spies ... [click for more]

Individualism and the Free Society, Part 2

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Part 1 | Part 2 It was the United States of America, with its system of limited, constitutional government, that implemented the principle of capitalism-a free trade on a free market-to the greatest extent. In America, during the nineteenth century people's productive activities were for the most part left free of governmental regulations, controls, and restrictions; most thinkers ... [click for more]
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