Freedom Daily Archive

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]

Revisiting Vietnam

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Kill Anything That Moves: The Real American War in Vietnam by Nick Turse (Metropolitan Books, 2013), 386 pages. The Vietnam War polarized Americans in the 20th century like no other event, dividing the people as no war had since the so-called Civil War a century earlier. Even though Vietnam was thousands of miles away, had not attacked the United ... [click for more]

The Welfare State Exposed

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After the Welfare State, edited by Tom G. Palmer (Jameson Books, 2012), 180 pages Most Americans (indeed, most people in every advanced nation) walk around in a fog of myths and misconceptions concerning the subject of this book — the welfare state. They believe that in the absence of governmental welfare programs, there would be little or no support ... [click for more]

It’s Not Edward Snowden Who Betrayed Us

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When you cut through the fog, the NSA controversy is about whether we should trust people with institutional power. Edward Snowden’s courageous exposure of massive secret surveillance separates those who say yes from those who say, “Hell no!” The trusting attitude can be found among progressives and conservatives alike (with notable exceptions), and even some who have identified themselves as ... [click for more]

The Sordid History of IRS Political Abuse

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The power to tax has long conferred the power to destroy one’s political opponents. When the latest IRS politicization scandal erupted in May, many commentators talked as if the abuses were a novelty in American history. But, as David Burnham noted in his masterful 1990 book, A Law Unto Itself: The IRS and the Abuse of Power, “In almost ... [click for more]
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