The Swiss Minaret Ban: Some Things Never Change

In the Letter Concerning Toleration, John Locke wrote, Nobody… neither single persons, nor Churches, nay, nor even commonwealths, have any just title to invade the civil rights and worldly goods of each other, upon pretence of religion. Those that are of another opinion would do well to consider with themselves how pernicious a seed of […]

Is Cato ‘Liberal’ on Criminal Law Issues?

Kent Scheidegger, who blogs over at Crime and Consequences, takes issue with the recent New York Times article that said liberal and conservative groups are finding common ground on criminal justice issues.  He makes some fair observations but then he had this to say about Cato: The picture is somewhat complicated by the existence of […]

Lula’s Diplomatic Embarrassment in Honduras

One of the big losers from yesterday’s successful election in Honduras has been Brazil’s president Luiz Inácio Lula da Silva, who demonstrated that under his presidency, Brazil is not ready to play a positive leadership role in the hemisphere. Not only did Lula seem to be complicit in smuggling deposed Honduran president Manuel Zelaya into […]

A Few Foreign Policy Items

1) Commandant of the Marine Corps announces part of justification for sending more troops to Afghanistan: “where we have gone, goodness follows.”  Pat Lang is displeased. 2) Glenn Greenwald observes that in Foreign Policy magazine’s survey of leading public intellectuals who write about foreign policy, the United States is tied with Somalia and Iran for […]

Remembering the Reporter Who Sued the Fed

With the Washington Post and other mainstream media outlets publishing endless defenses of “Federal Reserve independence” and proclaiming the Fed as savior of our financial system, it is all to easy to dismiss much of the media as simply defenders of the status quo.  There were many, however, willing to challenge this orthodoxy.  Standing out […]

Monday Links

Nancy Pelosi: “The power of Congress to regulate health care is essentially unlimited.” Since August 2008 the monetary base (bills in circulation plus bank credits at Federal Reserve banks) has increased by 137%. If not defused, this bomb will eventually explode into inflation. Federal spending  just pushed the government’s debt over $12 trillion. Spending has […]

They Never Learn

The town of Truckee, CA is an upscale community nestled in the Sierra Nevadas near Donner Summit off I-80. Housing is expensive.  Truckee’s origins were as a railroad town, so there is older housing.  In Truckee, however, downscale is funky and comes with upscale prices.  The Truckee Town Council has decided to provide “downpayment assistance” with loans at […]

Government Health Care Awash in Waste

Official estimates put the amount of improper payments in federal subsidy programs at about $100 billion a year, with Medicare and Medicaid accounting for more than half. The actual loss to taxpayers is probably much higher. The Government Accountability Office has issued a new report illustrating why improper payments are so high. It focuses on […]

“Climategate” and Government

It was “Open Mic” this past weekend at Politico Arena: My post: Brad Smith is to be commended for encouraging Politico Arena contributors to comment on the emerging “Climategate” scandal.  And it is noteworthy that both he and Walter Russell Mead, the first to respond to Brad’s invitation, have taken a “let’s-see-the-evidence” posture toward the matter, discounting neither […]

Slavery and the Tariff: Exceptions to the American Spirit

We have much to be thankful for as Americans. We live in a country founded on the principles of liberty and limited government, and the freedom and prosperity we still enjoy today flow from those foundational principles. I was reminded of our great heritage recently as I was re-reading Frederic Bastiat’s classic pamphlet, “The Law.” […]