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Overburdened Pack Mule

Taxation Rules

It turns out the United States is a tax haven. Haven? Heavens! I live here. I don’t feel that low-tax feeling when April 15 rolls around. But the Cato Institute’s Dan Mitchell, an expert on all things tax-policy — a dirty job, but somebody’s gotta do it — says “The






Too Respectful of Congress?

In disagreements between individuals and the IRS, I tend to side with individuals against the IRS. So Wednesday’s Supreme Court ruling against the Defense of Marriage Act seems about right, on the face of it. Yes, the judicial review and nixing of DOMA regarded a tax case. The state of






The First Isn’t Enough

The First Amendment isn’t enough. Because its provisions have stronger teeth than most other amendments in the Bill of Rights, it gets put into service quite a lot, to bolster other freedoms. It’s a pity there’s no general “right to freedom” — or even “freedom of contract” — amendment. A






Two Words to Know and Share

Two old words, newly relevant: Federalism and nullification. Last Sunday, on Townhall.com, I noted ten state ballot measures to watch. Third on my list was Colorado’s Amendment 63: If swing-state voters in Colorado join Missouri voters, who in August enacted a state measure protecting citizens from being forced to purchase






Farm at Your Own Risk

Some of the most vicious threats to individual rights and liberty occur not on the federal but on the local level. Clint Bolick, an attorney who has combated many local governmental assaults on citizens around the country, once wrote a book to make the point entitled Leviathan: The Growth of






Rights Retained by All But Kagan

When grilled by the Senate Judiciary Committee, Supreme Court nominee Elena Kagan didn’t have to go out on a limb to dismiss the rights affirmed in the Declaration of Independence. Most liberals and conservatives share the view that a judge’s job is to interpret the law, not defend “natural rights.”






Sotto Voce Sotomayor

Last week, former Congressman and presidential candidate Bob Barr sent out a simple admonishment to his Twitter list: “Let’s have a real debate on Judge Sotomayor, not hysterics. . . .” Unlikely. Appellate Judge Sonia Sotomayor is precisely the kind of jurist to divide us. She’s said things that seem






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