Freedom Daily Archive

The Middle East Harvests Bitter Imperialist Fruit

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The wall-to-wall coverage of the disintegration of Iraq ought to carry this credit: “This bloodshed was made possible by the generosity of British and French imperialists.” The stomach-wrenching violence in Iraq — not to mention the horrendous civil war in Syria, the chronic unrest in Palestine/Israel, and problems elsewhere in the Middle East — are direct consequences of the imperialist ... [click for more]

Freedom Lost in Obama’s Secrecy-Censorship Crossfire

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On June 2 the Supreme Court provided invaluable aid to the Obama administration’s campaign to protect Americans from evidence of federal abuses. The Court acceded to the administration’s appeal and refused to hear a free-speech case involving New York Times reporter James Risen. Risen, a courageous Pulitzer Prize winner, has been in the federal crosshairs since his 2006 book, ... [click for more]

Command Posts: Roads, Railroads, and State

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As any viewer of the British Channel 4 Time Team series will have noticed, almost everywhere below Hadrian’s Wall that the archaeological team digs, they have a fair chance of finding an Imperial Roman road, or a local road leading to it. The Romans were great engineers and road builders (and not just in Britain). Roman roads were all ... [click for more]

Government-Rigged Markets

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Crony Capitalism in America 2008 – 2012 by Hunter Lewis (AC2 Books 2013), 399 pages. Ayn Rand called it “the aristocracy of pull.” That was her term for the political-economic system in which people can get ahead (and even become exceptionally wealthy) by virtue of their connections with those in power, rather than by their work, innovations, and ... [click for more]

The Worst Government Crimes

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Bloodlands: Europe between Hitler and Stalin by Timothy Snyder (Basic Books 2010), 560 pages. We can locate the deadliest place and time in world history, certainly for the modern West, in the stretch of land between Berlin and Moscow in the 1930s and 1940s. That setting hosted an unimaginable bloodbath thanks to the worst killers ever to plague Europe — ... [click for more]

The Presidential Authority to Torture and Assassinate, Part 1

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Part 1 | Part 2 If our American ancestors in 1787 had been told that the Constitution was going to bring into existence a national government that would have the powers to torture and assassinate people, including American citizens, there is no reasonable possibility that Americans would have approved the document. They would undoubtedly have instead chosen ... [click for more]

On Work

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I hear therefore with joy whatever is beginning to be said of the dignity and necessity of labor to every citizen. There is virtue yet in the hoe and the spade, for learned as well as for unlearned hands. And labor is everywhere welcome; always we are invited to work. — Ralph Waldo Emerson, “The American Scholar,” 1837 Work! (Exclaimed in ... [click for more]

America’s Cluster- Bomb Congress

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Tens of thousands of Americans have been bushwhacked by a single arcane sentence in a 673-page law Congress enacted six years ago. The IRS is seizing both federal and state tax refunds for individuals whom the Social Security Administration accuses of having received excessive benefits years ago. But the government often has zero evidence of the overpayments, and the ... [click for more]

Due Process versus Secret Courts

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Due process is a set of legal requirements that protect the individual against abuse by the state. Examples are a person’s right to be notified of court proceedings in which he is involved and the right against self-incrimination. Due process is woven into the fabric of American society through both the Constitution and legal precedent. Few practices are as damaging ... [click for more]

The Poverty of Top- Down Anti-Poverty Efforts

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The Idealist: Jeffrey Sachs and the Quest to End Poverty by Nina Munk (Doubleday 2012), 272 pages. In the idealist, the system-building visionary, there is a certain natural attractiveness, a gravitational pull centered on the strength of his convictions. We desire to be a part of his crusade, or at least to root it on, because we admire the ... [click for more]

A Conservative Dissents from the Corporate Status Quo

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The Great Deformation: The Corruption of Capitalism in America by David A. Stockman, (Public Affairs 2013), 768 pages. Most leftist critiques of libertarianism focus on an alleged blind defense of corporate power. Indeed, left-libertarian Kevin Carson has helpfully criticized the very real problem of “vulgar libertarianism,” the working assumption that current economic realities are a product of free-market dynamics ... [click for more]
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