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Independence Day

NOT the Impossible Dream

The American Dream is dead. Has been for at least a year . . . or so we’re told: “American Dream Dead,” said the Huffington Post “The American Dream is out of reach,” CNN Money “The American Dream is Dead, and Good Riddance,” according to a column by Keli Goff

Lunchroom Black Market

The Pushers

When I was a teenager, my mom attended nursing school and became very interested in nutrition. This had consequences. She stopped buying sugary cereals, for instance. Well! We could not supinely accept this. My younger brother hid Cap’n Crunch and other stuff like that under his bed; and when we

Out of control cops

Marauding Cops

Policemen who perpetrate acts like those I am about to describe should be imprisoned. That’s not an anti-police statement, it’s a pro-law-and-order one. Anybody who vandalizes the property of innocent people and pointlessly terrorizes them, whether flashing a badge as prelude or not, should be arrested, prosecuted, convicted and punished.

Global Blame

Gases and Masses

For once, The Washington Post headline actually reflected the commentary: “America is the worst polluter in the history of the world. We should let climate change refugees resettle here.” Michael B. Gerrard, associate faculty chair at Columbia University’s Earth Institute and director of the Sabin Center for Climate Change Law

NSA Hydra

Safety, Savings and Symbolism

How can the U. S. save $2.5 billion a year, reduce the federal workforce by 4,000 hires, and engage in a symbolic act of undoubted patriotism, all at the same time? Get rid of the Department of Homeland Security. Matt A. Mayer, a former DHS employee who claims to have

Reason and Freedom

Reason Requires Freedom

For two weeks, Reason magazine was stopped by court order from talking about two government actions. It started with online comments. Everyone who samples the Internet knows that although some un-moderated remarks are judicious and thoughtful, others are intemperate and un-thoughtful. Freedom of speech subsumes the latter just as much

Magna Carta Nation

Under the Law, Not Beneath It

Celebrating the 800th anniversary of the Magna Carta Libertatum this week, I noted how a document intended to serve the very upper classes, by limiting each others’ powers, led to liberty for all. The Nation, on the other hand, used it to excoriate the Citizens United ruling. “Magna Carta reminds

Magna Carta

An 800th “Birthday”

Something happened 800 years ago yesterday, something of note. The much-loathed and legendary — but real-life — King John signed a document with his barons that limited his power. It was later called the “Magna Carta,” the great charter. Strange history. It was signed, made a big deal of, and

Free State

A Spring in Their Step?

The “Free State” — Maryland — just got a little freer. Deborah Ramelmeier, Social Services Administration head honcho, has laid forth from her mighty public perch in Maryland’s Department of Human Resources an official directive to the state’s Child Protective Services (CPS). She finally addressed the issues in the Meitiv

Kim Kataguiri

Free Brazil

Kim Kataguiri — a founder and the most prominent public face of the Free Brazil Movement, which recently led millions in protest against high inflation, high taxes, and economy-crippling cronyism — is an unusual man. First, there’s his age: 19. Second, there’s his background — atypical but hardly unique, given

Duopoly

The Duopoly Rules

As Americans brace themselves for another presidential campaign, USA Today’s editors hazard that the “configuration” of the Commission on Presidential Debates (CPD) “certainly creates an appearance of a political duopoly designed to limit independent voices.” In 1987, after the League of Women Voters displeased the two major parties, the duopoly’s

TSA

Political Theatrics

Our suspicions have been proved: the Transportation Security Administration (TSA) doesn’t secure much of anything; it is mere “security theater.” After revelations that TSA screeners failed to find weapons and other deadly contraband in 96 percent of tests, David A. Graham, writing for The Atlantic, asked “what kind of theater

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