Free Society

The Fight over Right-to-Work

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The “right-to-work” issue is back. When a state passes a right-to-work law, as Michigan did this month, employers in that state can no longer agree to require workers to pay union fees as a condition of employment. Supporters of right-to-work see it as a way to protect workers from being forced to support unions against their will. Many opponents of ... [click for more]

The Calling: Risk, Tradeoffs, and Freedom

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In the wake of the Newtown massacre, people from all over the political spectrum are chiming in with their own recommendations of what should be done to prevent this kind of horrific tragedy. For my purposes here, I want to put aside two rather obvious points in order to explore some more subtle ones. First, for American politicians, especially President ... [click for more]

The Political Use and Abuse of Children

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On December 7, President Obama signed the Child Protection Act of 2012. The act continues a political trend that harms children psychologically and endangers them physically — namely, the trend of fearmongering about child abuse. Certainly, child abuse exists, but more than enough laws already exist to address the issue in all its manifestations. More than enough cameras and ... [click for more]

The Goal Is Freedom: Individualist Collectivism

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Is the free market an individualist or collectivist social arrangement? Don’t answer too quickly. It’s a trick question. Most people — free-market friend and free-market foe alike — will answer “individualist.” And that makes perfect sense. The free market describes a political/legal environment in which individuals are at liberty to engage in any peaceful activity, with only force and fraud ... [click for more]

Why Are Brothels Illegal?

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In contrast to the boring and predictable presidential candidates, there are some unusually colorful candidates who somehow manage to get into office each time there is an election. Actor Arnold Schwarzenegger was twice elected to the California governorship. Professional wrestler Jesse Ventura was elected governor of Minnesota. Singer Sony Bono was a member of the U.S. House of Representatives until his life was tragically cut ... [click for more]

The Lingering Curse of “Bush Freedom”

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It has been almost four years since George W. Bush’s presidency ended. Unfortunately, it increasingly appears that Bush did permanent damage to this nation’s political vocabulary and understanding. Rather than repeal his worst precedents, Barack Obama used them as launch pads for his own abuses. And the scant discussion of Obama’s power grabs in this fall’s presidential campaigns illustrate ... [click for more]

Limits on the Right to Exit: The New Slavery

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The federal fascists respond with threats and vilification when a few knowledgeable citizens renounce their American citizenship and move — with capital and assets that they have accumulated by honest endeavor — to a more hospitable state, one that does not mulct them as rigorously by the theft benignly called taxation. The government bullies, who threaten to follow the ... [click for more]

Don’t Trust the Feds’ Happiness Index

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The Obama administration is financing research to devise a new gauge for Americans’ happiness. A National Academy of Sciences panel is currently analyzing proposals for surveying Americans’ “subjective well-being.” But there are grave perils in any “national happiness index” Uncle Sam might concoct. Critics increasingly complain that the Gross Domestic Product does not accurately measure citizens’ quality of life. The ... [click for more]

Organ Donor Revolution — or Revolt?

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On June 25, the Institute for Justice (IJ) announced a life-saving development. It is now legal to compensate people for supplying bone marrow to those with cancer or blood diseases. The impressive victory took close to three years of legal maneuvering, and yet some commentators expressed the immediate hope that organ donations might open up in a ... [click for more]

Who Should Feed the Children?

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Eating is one of the most basic of human instincts. It is a daily necessity. It is essential to life. It doesn’t need to be learned. It is the first thing a newborn baby wants to do. It is a common occurrence. It is also a pleasant experience that often serves as the basis for entertainment, fellowship, dating, and ... [click for more]

The Two Little Cities Who Can’t

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The Department of Justice (DOJ) is stomping its jackboot down on two little towns that straddle the Arizona-Utah border. The Civil Rights Division has brought an unprecedented and vague federal religious discrimination lawsuit against the cities and their utility companies (PDF). In its June 21 announcement, the DOJ stated, “This is the first lawsuit by the ... [click for more]

An Unfamiliar Definition of “Voluntary”

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It is called a “voluntary safety plan.” Using the plan, Child Protective Services (CPS) can bypass the constitutional rights of parents and take children away from non-abusive homes. (Note: agencies function under different names from state to state, but they are often referred to merely as CPS.) The definition and implementation Texas guidelines offer a typical CPS definition of a safety ... [click for more]
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