Think Freely Media presents Common Sense with Paul Jacob


Of Wolves and Politicians

Should Michigan’s Department of Natural Resources (DNR) create a wolf-hunting season? That question will be on the statewide ballot this November. Twice. Twice? Yes, voters will decide two separate referendums: Proposal 1 and Proposal 2. And yet, voters may not actually determine with either vote whether there will be a

Grand Rapids’ Grand Alliance

Two incredible activists in Grand Rapids, Michigan, have achieved the impossible. Through their hard work in gathering over 10,000 voter signatures on a petition, Rina Baker and Bonnie Burke have united big business and big labor in perfect harmony. Union bosses and the bigs of biz are now funding a

Politicians Need Petition Experience

On Tuesday, U.S. Rep. John Conyers (D-Mich.), the 49-year, 25-term congressman representing bankrupt Detroit, made big news. According to the Wayne County clerk, Conyers failed to gather enough voter signatures to earn a spot on the Democratic Party Primary ballot this Fifth of August. Still, I stand by my Townhall

Spring’s Decisions

Spring is in the air, and old men’s hearts turn to thoughts of . . . law. Yes, Supreme Court Decision Season has begun. Yesterday, two decisions were handed down. In Schuette v. BAMN, Justice Kennedy “announced” the decision to reverse a previous court’s determination overruling a citizen-initiated constitutional amendment

A Conspicuous $2.4 Million

Flint, Michigan, has seemed like a hopeless case for a long time. Even before Michael Moore’s Roger & Me, Flint was undergoing deindustrialization. Politicians resisted, promising to reverse the trend. Failure after failure, they still desperately prove themselves interested in trying something, anything, to make the town “seem” vibrant and

The Right Not to Be Ripped Off

Michigan’s state House and Senate passed Right-to-Work bills last week, because, as Governor Rick Snyder said, workers “should be able to decide whether to join a union or not.” Which exact bill will wind up on the governor’s desk is anybody’s guess, but one could be signed into law by

Better Than a Thousand Boneheads

H.L. Mencken and George Jean Nathan, when they took over the early 20th century journal Smart Set, served it up with a great motto: “One Civilized Reader Is Worth a Thousand Boneheads.” That’s how I feel about my readers. I almost always enjoy the comments section of, and sometimes

Equally Unequal

Two court cases come to our attention, courtesy of Cato’s Ilya Shapiro. Both involve the favoring of members of one group over another. The Sixth Circuit ruled that a voter-approved amendment to the Michigan state constitution outlawing racial preferences in college admissions would violate the U.S. Constitution’s equal protection clause.

Sore Insiders

Party politics is often underhanded. Many of our country’s founders knew this all too well, and tried to avoid the factionalism of party politics. But still, two political factions emerged, and our politics has been dominated by two parties ever since. And believe me, the two insider parties work mightily

Not-So-Total Recall

Michigan has a recall law. Citizens can toss out an unrepresentative representative before you can say Ypsilanti — even if that politician hasn’t committed a crime or tweeted lewd photos of himself. Well, maybe not Ypsilanti-simple: one must gather enough signatures to reach 25 percent of the contested office’s vote

How Not To Be in Pictures

Everybody wants to be in pictures, it’s said. Michiganders, who’ve been funding moviemaking with their taxes for years, should try digital cameras and YouTube. The state’s governor, Rick Snyder, has proposed a new budget slicing and dicing the state’s generous (read: foolhardy) film subsidy and tax credit system. This is


Government is almost defined by one kind of business it runs: The last-use-of-force business, such as police and courts and military. Since we don’t pay for these services in fees, contracts, and sales — we’re taxed, instead — we don’t usually call them “businesses.” But governments have gotten involved in

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