Politics

The Election Has Been Hacked

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The FBI is worried: foreign hackers have broken into two state election databases. The Department of Homeland Security is worried: the nation’s voting system needs greater protection against cyberattacks. I, on the other hand, am not overly worried: after all, the voting booths have already been hacked by a political elite comprised of Republicans and Democrats who ... [click for more]

A Few Thoughts on Machiavelli

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The Italian Renaissance politician and writer Nicolò Machiavelli (1469–1527) remains controversial. His defenders see him as a tough-minded “realist” and the founder of proper political science. Some writers find two Machiavellis: an advisor to aspiring despots, or (alternatively) a sincere republican theorist bent on freeing Italy from foreign rule. Either way, Machiavelli’s analysis of such categories as fortune, necessity, ... [click for more]

Political Fiction in an Age of Televised Lies

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“We’ve got to face it. Politics have entered a new stage, the television stage. Instead of long-winded public debates, the people want capsule slogans—‘Time for a change’—‘The mess in Washington’—‘More bang for a buck’—punch lines and glamour.”— A Face in the Crowd (1957) Politics is entertainment. It is a heavily scripted, tightly choreographed, star-studded, ratings-driven, mass-marketed, costly exercise in ... [click for more]

Six Steps in Analyzing Political Issues

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Every political issue can be analyzed or argued on at least six levels. The levels are usually conflated, but they should be addressed separately even when there is overlap. Otherwise, confusion rather than clarity results. Indeed, sometimes the only way to make sense of a disagreement is to peel away the layers and inspect them one by ... [click for more]

Trump and Libertarians in the Political Arena

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For perhaps most self-described libertarians, supporting any politician is an uneasy exercise in bullet-biting pragmatism, premised on the idea that we ought to support the most libertarian individual in the race—even if that person is really not very libertarian. The author has, as it happens, spent years arguing against this view, suggesting that abstaining from the voting booth is ... [click for more]

Donald Trump the Corrupt Creation of America’s Bankrupt Politics

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Commentators from the political “left” as well as the “right” have attempted to analyze and dissect the rise and appeal of Donald Trump. The reality is, I would suggest, is that he represents the essence of the modern interventionist state, with its regulated economy and redistributive politics. Those on the “left” see Trump as the epitome of an undercurrent of ... [click for more]

Government Interventionism Created Hillary Clinton and Donald Trump

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America and Europe, and, indeed, other parts of the world are going through major political, economic and cultural crises. In the U.S., some social critics consider the likely Democratic and Republican candidates for president to be among the most corrupt, power lusting and personally offensive that have ever run for that high office. In Europe, the Social Democratic and moderately ... [click for more]

What Sports Can Teach Us about Politics

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What can sports teach us about civil society and federal agencies like the Department of Health and Human Services? In his most famous speech, Senator Robert A. Taft (1889–1953) answered that question. Taft was a passionate defender of private enterprise in domestic policy as well as non-intervention in foreign affairs. This made him oppose the New Deal policies adopted under ... [click for more]

This Year’s Presidential Politics Equals Continuing Big Government

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The daily and unending bombardment of political campaign reporting and news, with its “drama” about who will be the Republican and Democratic Party candidates for the U.S. presidency, hides from view the continuing and real choice facing the American public: freedom or statism, individual liberty or government control. This real underlying question is hidden from view because the media coverage ... [click for more]

The Futility of Representative Government in an Age of Robber Barons

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“That's the way the ruling class operates in any society. They keep the lower and the middle classes fighting with each other… Anything different—that's what they're gonna talk about—race, religion, ethnic and national background, jobs, income, education, social status, sexuality, anything they can do to keep us fighting with each other, so that they can keep going to the ... [click for more]
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