by Richard M. Ebeling
America! For more than 250 years the word has represented hope, opportunity, a second chance, and freedom. In America the accident of a man’s birth did not have to serve as an inescapable weight that dictated a person’s fate or that of his family.
Once a newcomer – the immigrant – stepped on American soil he left the political tyrannies ... [click for more]
by James Bovard
Federal spending on food aid has skyrocketed in recent decades, and the feds are now feeding more than 100 million Americans. Yet, according to the Agriculture Department (USDA), far more Americans are “food insecure” now than before the mushrooming of subsidized feeding programs. But rather than seeing this as evidence of a government failure, a chorus of activists and ... [click for more]
by John Ahrens
Against Autonomy: Justifying Coercive Paternalism by Sarah Conly (Cambridge University Press, 2013), 256 pages (ebook edition reviewed).
Bowdoin philosophy professor Sarah Conly has given us a remarkably timely book. Against Autonomy makes an important contribution to the trending discussion of what some call the “nanny state” and others might call simply “petty fascism” (or maybe just “fascism”). It is ... [click for more]
by Wendy McElroy
In the book Nudge: Improving Decisions about Health, Wealth, and Happiness, the “choice architect” Cass R. Sunstein describes his idea of “libertarian paternalism.” The paternalism aspect refers to “nudging” people in a desired direction, for example by putting photos of rotted lungs on cigarette packages. The libertarian aspect refers to not actually stripping people of the freedom to choose. ... [click for more]
by Sheldon Richman
The debate incited by Mayor Bloomberg’s plan to outlaw supersized sodas in New York misses an important point. In the mayor’s words, “We’re not taking away anybody’s right to do things. We’re simply forcing you to understand that you have to make the conscious decision to go from one cup to another cup” (emphasis added).
There it is. He wants ... [click for more]
by Laurence M. Vance
While eating in a restaurant in the Atlanta airport recently, I noticed that the restaurant’s bar was closed and — to make it perfectly clear — all the chairs had been turned over and placed on the bar.
Now, although I don’t frequent bars in airports or anywhere else, I was nevertheless intrigued. “The bar doesn’t open ... [click for more]