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Atomic Bombs: What My Momma (Never) Told Me »

Some 72 years ago this month, the United States dropped atomic bombs on Hiroshima and Nagasaki, Japan. An estimated 60,000 to 80,000 people were killed instantly in Hiroshima and another 40,000 were immediately killed when Nagasaki was bombed. In the coming days, weeks, months, and years, thousands more would die as a result of...
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Review: Silence Explores Religious Liberty in Feudal Japan »

Silence, the powerful new film by iconic film director Martin Scorcese, is a complex story of faith and spiritual inspiration set during feudal Japan’s 17th century purge of Christians and their priests. It’s also a moving and thoughtful meditation on religious freedom, on personal versus state-sponsored faith, and on how character is defined by...
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What Makes a Miserable Country? »

Venezuela is the world’s most miserable country, according to a team of researchers at Johns Hopkins University who have calculated a World Misery Index. “Misery” is measured as the sum of a country’s inflation rate, unemployment rate, and interest rate, minus the annual percentage change in real GDP per capita. The higher the total...
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Death Valley? Peter Thiel and Steve Jobs on What Could Kill Silicon Valley »

On January 27, legendary entrepreneur Peter Thiel told a packed house at an Independent Institute luncheon, at the Olympic Club in San Francisco, that to blaze new trails ask: “What important truth do very few people agree with me on?” One of mine is that California will not be the epicenter of the tech...
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I Can’t Believe There’s No Butter! Bad Trade Policy Burns Christmas Bakers »

I love to cook. From my great grandmother’s recipe for fried chicken (fried in lard, of course) to my mom’s recipe for Kentucky burgoo (think stew), there are a few kitchen staples this cook can’t do without. The star of many southern recipes is butter. Perhaps famous southern cook Paula Deen put it best:...
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The Wolverine and the Implicit Libertarianism of the Wayward Samurai »

I’m not sure what I expected from the 2013 film The Wolverine, the most recent addition to the summer box office from the Marvel comics archives, but a libertarian theme seemed too much to hope for. And I was right—to an extent. In fact, after watching movie, I think the plot has an unusually...
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A December 1941 Speech that FDR Never Delivered »

On or about December 5, 1941, President Franklin D. Roosevelt (probably with the aid of one or more speech writers) prepared a speech on U.S. relations with the Far East, in general, and with Japan, in particular. The speech was to be delivered to the Congress in order, as its opening sentence indicates, “to...
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Yankee, Go Home! »

After the Japanese government surrendered to the Americans and their allies in 1945, the U.S. military occupied the Japanese home islands and ruled the nation for several years. In due course, however, Japan’s situation was normalized, and, moreover, in 1946 the Japanese adopted a new constitution that renounced war as an instrument of national policy: CHAPTER...
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Democracy is Over-Rated »

Ever since Woodrow Wilson, who embroiled American troops in the mud of Flanders and contributed to the deaths of millions of soldiers in a global “war to end all wars”, U.S. presidents have, to greater or lesser extents, pursued the goal of making the world safe for democracy. That objective is a fool’s errand....
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Nuclear Power and the State »

The devastating earthquake in Japan has damaged multiple nuclear reactors, and at least one of these facilities is said to pose the potential of Chernobyl-levels of contamination. Germany is responding to this tragedy by temporarily closing down seven nuclear reactors, while France, the second-largest user of nuclear energy in the world, is reportedly planning...
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