Tag: History

The U.S. Empire’s Shameful Multiplier Effect »

Let X = number of persons who died in the USA as a result of the 9/11 attacks. X ≈ 3,000. Let Y = number of persons who have died in Afghanistan, Iraq, and Pakistan as a result of direct war violence associated with the U.S. attacks and occupations since 9/11. Y ≈ between...
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How John Locke Should Have Saved The Lone Ranger »

I had a glimmer of hope for the 2013 film The Lone Ranger when I read that young U.S. attorney John Reid, aka The Lone Ranger, arrives in untamed west Texas with a copy of John Locke’s Two Treatises of Government. After watching the otherwise entertaining summer action film, I left the theater wondering...
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Jim Crow and the Progressives »

Historians often speak glowingly about the Progressive movement of the late 19th and early 20th centuries. Typically they write off the racist statements made by many of its leaders—Herbert Croly, John Dewey, Teddy Roosevelt, Woodrow Wilson, and others—as minor “blind spots” unrelated to Progressivism. But perhaps the apologist historians also have trouble seeing clearly....
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Why Fight for King and Country? »

There is something monstrously out of whack about going to war for a large nation state. I can understand why a man might take up arms in defense of himself, his family, his friends, perhaps even his neighborhood or his town. But once we get past the lived-in milieu, a man’s risking his life,...
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Robert William Fogel (July 1, 1926 – June 11, 2013) »

Robert Fogel died a few days ago. He was a prominent figure in the academic economic history profession for five decades, virtually from the time he burst onto the scene with the publication of a polished-up version of his Johns Hopkins Ph.D. dissertation, Railroads and American Economic Growth, in 1964. This book was the...
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Happy May Day »

It’s May Day—International Workers’ Day—a time for us to celebrate the workers of the world, who, as Marx told us, had nothing to lose but their chains and therefore would inevitably mount a worldwide revolution to throw off the hated capitalist system that had forged their chains. But something happened on the way to...
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Guardian Against Tyranny: The Writ of Habeas Corpus »

To live under tyranny is to live in fear—especially the fear of being arrested and jailed at the whims of the rulers. This is why America’s Founders regarded the right not to be detained arbitrarily as a cornerstone of liberty, and why they cherished the legal device they believed had secured that right: the...
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Nationalism—the Bane of the Modern Age »

Everyone, it seems, has a hollow space in his makeup. Perhaps he has no faith, no hope, no charity; no sense that he is basically a lord or a priest or a peasant; no comfort in knowing his personal latitude and longitude in the great scheme of things; no ethical compass to give him...
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“There Were Giants in the Earth in Those Days.”—Genesis 6:4 »

There are now many more libertarians in the world than there were fifty years ago. Libertarian writing has increased greatly, and the readership of libertarian literature has increased substantially, especially since the development and widespread adoption of the Internet and the World Wide Web. Yet, it seems to me, we no longer have libertarians...
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The State—Crown Jewel of Human Social Organization »

Since the earliest stage of human history (say, the time of Cain and Abel), human beings have been homicidal maniacs. Yet, for untold ages, something was missing, something with the capacity to raise their murderous mania to truly magnificent heights. Only very late in human history—perhaps 10,000 years ago or thereabouts—did the long-awaited breakthrough...
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