The Somber Trio

Among the most serious harms are those to liberty and physical well-being. One can compensate adequately for many injuries, but damages at law are slight compensation for lost liberties and physical injuries. We’ve a new national environment, in which actions once impermissible are now encouraged, and redress once required is now no longer recognized. If […]

The Erosion of Political Norms (Concluding Part 4 in a Series)

More than one small town has struggled for years under the debilitating influence of political & economic conflicts of interest, misguided priorities, and dodgy or grandiose claims. These conditions where those that  That Which Paved the Way for Trumpism. Those locally who carried on this way made Trumpism more likely, the way a moderate illness might weaken […]


Norman Rockwell wasn’t the finest painter of the twentieth century (to express the matter gently), but at least when he created a painting capturing the spirit of free speech as one of Roosevelt’s Four Freedoms, he understood speech as a right, not a privilege, lucky break, or favor from government. So it is with government, […]

The Existential (Imagined and Real)

It was Michael Anton (writing as Publius Decius Mus) who exactly one year ago famously declared that 2016 was “The Flight 93 Election,” an existential fight for survival for state-loving conservatives: 2016 is the Flight 93 election: charge the cockpit or you die. You may die anyway. You—or the leader of your party—may make it […]

Don’t Be a Sucker

In 1943, in the middle of the Second World War, the United States Government, fighting on both sides of the world, commissioned a short film about fascism entitled Don’t Be a Sucker. The film describes the fight in which America was embroiled in the style and vernacular of that time; it’s even more compelling to me […]

‘Pick a torch, America’

Author Manu Saadia‘s August 12th tweet about Charlottesville describes the choice before this country: Pick a torch, America — manu saadia (@trekonomics) August 12, 2017

Tracking Putin’s Propaganda on Twitter

Over at the Alliance for Securing Democracy, they’ve a Dashboard for Tracking Russian Propaganda on Twitter. It’s called Hamilton 68, after No. 68 of the Federalist Papers, in which Hamilton (writing pseudonymously as Publius) considers the danger of foreign interference in American elections (“These most deadly adversaries of republican government, might naturally have been expected to […]

On Transgender Americans

One could write about the recent Twitter statement from Trump that “[a]fter consultation with my generals and military experts, please be advised that the United States government will not accept or allow transgender individuals to serve in any capacity in the U.S. military,” but there’s a broader question than military service. To be sure, I believe […]

‘What Putin’s team is probably telling him about Trump’

Michael Morell, former deputy director of the CIA from 2010 to 2013 and twice acting director, and Samantha Vinograd of the National Security Council staff from 2009 to 2013, speculate from experience on What Putin’s team is probably telling him about Trump: This is a speculative account of a memo that Russian President Vladi­mir Putin’s national […]

Under the Gazette‘s Reasoning, Rosa Parks Should Have Stayed at the Back of the Bus

Over at the Gazette, there’s an editorial about whether a local school superintendent should have sent a message about immigration to residents without consulting his school board. See, Our Views: Superintendent sends the wrong message. I’ll set aside the issue of immigration, and address the deeper issue of the Gazette‘s reasoning on obedience to the […]

So Much for the ‘Master Race’

I’m white. (I’ll joke and say that, in fact, I’ve been white for as long as I can remember). It’s simply a natural characteristic for me. (It’s easier, unquestionably, to describe matters this way – as though without a social context – if one has not experienced discrimination). One can’t say the same about Richard Spencer, white […]

Sunshine Week in Wisconsin

The USA Today Network of Gannett papers in Wisconsin (including the Milwaukee Journal Sentinel) asks How open is your government? Tell us: They’re entrusted with important responsibilities to keep people safe, educate kids, maintain roads and enforce rules fairly. Taxpayers fund their salaries. But just how public are public officials? That’s what we want to know. As […]

Cato’s Policy Handbook, Chapter 13: Immigration

Cato’s Policy Handbook for Policymakers, 8th Edition, is now available. Chapter 13 offers excellent immigration suggestions to move toward a freer labor market. It’s a reasoned approach in the place of dodgy data and nativist biases. What private individuals believe about these matters is their own concern; policymakers and officials should meet a higher standard, […]