Freedom Daily Archive

Egypt’s Lessons for Americans, Part 2

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Part 1 | Part 2 The ambivalent reaction of the U.S. government to the Egyptian coup should not have surprised anyone. While U.S. law requires a termination of U.S. foreign aid to Egypt in the event of a coup, the Obama administration ignored the law by simply refusing to declare that the coup was actually a coup. Keep ... [click for more]

The Phony Trade-Off between Privacy and Security

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Most people take it for granted — because they have heard it so many times from politicians and pundits — that they must trade some privacy for security in this dangerous world. The challenge, we’re told, is to find the right “balance.” Let’s examine this. On its face the idea seems reasonable. I can imagine hiring a firm to look ... [click for more]

AmeriCorps: Idealistic Triumph or Usual Buffoonery?

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National service is the latest fashionable panacea for all that ails America. Time magazine ran a July cover story, “How Service Can Save Us,” on the potential benefits of pressing all young people into service. The article approvingly quoted a retired Air Force veteran: “There isn’t an 18-year-old boy who doesn’t need to get his butt kicked by someone ... [click for more]

The Fault in Fairness

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The coffee aisle at the supermarket has become the latest front in the crusade for “social justice.” Coffee roasters proudly tout their allegiance to the ideals of the fair-trade movement, which ostensibly aims to elevate the economic and social welfare of disadvantaged Third-World farmers. Despite its meteoric rise in popularity, does fair trade translate its stated intentions into tangible results? ... [click for more]

Freedom of Speech: Abridge to Nowhere

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Americans, known for their outspokenness on matters of politics, sports, American Idol contestants, and practically every other topic, would appear to treasure few things more highly than their freedom of speech. Why, it’s even right there in the Constitution: “Congress shall make no law  ... abridging the freedom of speech.” In America, everyone is allowed to speak his mind ... [click for more]

Whither Power?

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The End of Power: From Boardrooms to Battlefields and Churches to States, Why Being in Charge Isn’t What It Used to Be by Moisés Naím (Basic Books 2013), 320 pages. The topic of Moisés Naím’s book is the decay of power — the shift of power “from brawn to brains, from north to south and west to east, ... [click for more]

The Business Cycle Explained

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It Didn’t Have to Be This Way: Why Boom and Bust Is Unnecessary — and How the Austrian School of Economics Breaks the Cycle by Harry C. Veryser (Intercollegiate Studies Institute 2012), 318 pages. This is one instance where a book’s subtitle tells the reader much more about its content than the title does. You know at once that ... [click for more]

Egypt’s Lessons for Americans, Part 1

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Part 1 | Part 2 The military coup in Egypt last summer holds some valuable lessons for Americans, especially with respect to such things as freedom, democracy, and the U.S. national-security state, which has been an important part of American life since the end of World War II. The coup provides an especially important lesson with respect ... [click for more]

Is Edward Snowden a Lawbreaker?

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Most people believe that Edward Snowden, who has confirmed that the U.S. government spies on us, broke the law. Even many of his defenders concede this. While in one sense the statement “Snowden broke the law” may be trivially true, in another, deeper sense it is untrue. He may have violated the terms of legislation passed by Congress and signed ... [click for more]

Voting Rights as Bogus Panaceas

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The Supreme Court struck down a key provision of the Voting Rights Act last June. “Liberals” were horrified and reacted as if the Civil War had been fought in vain. Supreme Court Justice Ruth Ginsburg denounced the decision for its “hubris,” Rep. John Lewis (D-GA) condemned it as a “dagger” stab at civil rights, and Attorney General Eric Holder ... [click for more]

Gabriel Kolko Revisited, Part 2: Kolko Abroad

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Part 1 | Part 2 Gabriel Kolko’s historical writing hinges on the interrelations of economic, political, and ideological power in American history. His later work increasingly focused on those phenomena in relation to war, peace, and empire. As his project went forward, Kolko increasingly departed from that Marxist framework in which state power becomes so utterly subordinate ... [click for more]

Digging Out

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Pundits are full of advice about how and how not to pull the country out of its financial morass. Rebuild infrastructure or cut spending, increase deficit spending or reduce the debt, raise or lower taxes, regulate or deregulate, implement a new industrial policy or get government out of the economy, open the monetary floodgates or end the Fed’s easy-money ... [click for more]
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