Wednesday, September 30, 2009
Tuesday, September 29, 2009
Isn't this the sort of thing that caused so much trouble just a short while ago? This sounds like another government attempt to keep the market from pricing houses accurately, i.e., to reinflate the housing bubble.
Saturday, September 26, 2009
Last week I mentioned that I traveled to Warsaw, Poland, to participate in the Liberty Weekend Devoted to the Life and Legacy of Frédéric Bastiat. I can report now that the conference, sponsored by PAFERE, was a smashing success.The rest of TGIF is here.
Wednesday, September 23, 2009
Click on the cover at the right for the table of contents.
Sunday, September 20, 2009
Tomorrow [i.e., yesterday] I’ll lecture at the Liberty Weekend Dedicated to Frédéric Bastiat, sponsored by the Polish-American Foundation for Economic Research and Education (PAFERE) in Warsaw. Preparing for my visit, I reread Bastiat’s great book The Law. Oh we do we need Bastiat today!The rest of TGIF is here.
Wednesday, September 16, 2009
Friday, September 11, 2009
One-party autocracy certainly has its drawbacks. But when it is led by a reasonably enlightened group of people, as China is today, it can also have great advantages. That one party can just impose the politically difficult but critically important policies needed to move a society forward in the 21st century.Who wrote that? Thomas Friedman of the New York Times. Is any comment necessary? Possible?
Let’s begin by noting that the so-called health-insurance companies deserve little sympathy. As they exist today, they are very much creatures of the State. In fact, there’s a sense in which it can be said that if we didn’t have health-insurance companies, we wouldn’t need them.
Read the rest here.
2. Despite all its guarantees -- contrary to its ideological justification for existing -- the state can't protect us -- even from a ragtag group of hijackers. Trillions of dollars spent over many years built a "national security apparatus" that could not stop attacks on the two most prominent buildings in the most prominent city in the country -- or its own headquarters. That says a lot. No. That says it all. The state is a fraud. We have been duped.
3. The shameless state will stop at nothing to keep people's support by scaring the hell out of them. (Robert Higgs writes about this.) That people take its claims about "why they hate us" seriously after 9/11 shows what the public schools and the mass media are capable of doing to people. But the people are not absolved of responsibility: they could think their way out of this if they cared to make the effort.
4. Blowback is real. Foreign-policy makers never think how their decisions will harm Americans, much less others. They never wonder how their actions will look to their targets. That's because they are state employees.
5. As Randolph Bourne said, getting into a war is like riding a wild elephant. You may think you are in control -- you may believe your objectives and only your objectives are what count. If so, you are deluded. Consider the tens of thousands of dead and maimed Iraqi and Afghanis. What did they have to do with 9/11?
6. No one likes an occupying power.
7. Victims of foreign intervention don't forget, even if the perpetrators and their subjects do.
8. Terrorism is not an enemy. It's a tactic, one used by many different kinds of people in causes of varying moral hues, often against far stronger imperial powers. Declaring all those people one's enemy is criminally reckless. But it's a damn good way for a government to achieve potentially total power over its subjects.
9. They say the enemy of my enemy is my friend. Maybe, maybe not. But it seems abundantly clear that the enemy of my friend is also likely to be my enemy. See the U.S.-Israel relationship for details.
10. Assume "your" government is lying.
(Adapted and re-posted from 2006.)
Thursday, September 10, 2009
Wednesday, September 09, 2009
It was nothing but theater. The objective was to get good reviews from the pundits. He was no less ambivalent about the "public option" than he has been, so the "Progressives" shouldn't be terribly happy.
But I am curious why all these employers are buying health plans for their employees that drop them when they get sick? What's up with that?
From Barack Obama's speech to schoolchildren, which even many conservatives praised:
And even when you're struggling, even when you're discouraged, and you feel like other people have given up on you -- don't ever give up on yourself. Because when you give up on yourself, you give up on your country.
Friday, September 04, 2009
Advocates of what is called health-care “reform” must lack confidence in their case. Were they sure that more government control of medicine and medical insurance was a good thing, they would answer the opposing arguments rather than marginalize their adversaries as corrupt or crazy.The rest of this week's op-ed is at FFF website.
I’m inclined to think of George Orwell and F. A. Hayek at the same time. Both showed great courage in writing the truth, undaunted by the consequences awaiting them. Both valued freedom, though they understood it differently.The rest of TGIF is here.