On August 11, 2014, officers from the Caldwell, Idaho Police Department asked for Shaniz West’s permission to enter and search her home. They were looking for her ex-boyfriend. West authorized the search and handed over her keys. Instead of entering and searching the home, though, the police brought in a SWAT team, surrounding the building. “[P]olice repeatedly exceeded the authority Ms. West had given them,” a lawsuit she filed complains, “breaking windows, crashing through ceilings, and riddling the home with holes from shooting canisters of tear gas, destroying most of Ms. West and her children’s personal belongings.”
Almost everyone loves the idea of “speaking truth to power.” Standing tall, talking boldly, consequences be damned – how heroic! Yet on reflection, this Speech of Heroes takes two radically different forms.
I was on a recent episode of the Anarchy Bang podcast with the topic being Anarchist Colonization of Mars. Here are the pieces that I wrote for the intro and the editorial for this episode.
Bruce Sacerdote‘s NBER Working Paper, “Fifty Years of Growth in American Consumption, Income, and Wages” provides a nice update on the measurement of CPI Bias. The punchline should be obvious, but it’s great to hear such an eminent economist say it: “Meaningful growth in consumption for below median income families has occurred even in a prolonged period of increasing income inequality, increasing consumption inequality and a decreasing share of national income accruing to labor.”
My daughter brought home a busted up Motorola Razor flip phone yesterday. She got it trading stuff with neighbors. It’s still a beautiful piece of hardware. She couldn’t understand how it was so cool when it came out despite doing nothing but calls and texts. I couldn’t explain.
What are the purposes of the BDS movement? To pressure the government of Israel to meet “its obligation to recognize the Palestinian people’s inalienable right to self-determination and fully compl[y] with the precepts of international law by: 1. Ending its occupation and colonization of all Arab lands and dismantling the Wall; 2. Recognizing the fundamental rights of the Arab-Palestinian citizens of Israel to full equality; and 3. Respecting, protecting and promoting the rights of Palestinian refugees to return to their homes and properties as stipulated in UN resolution 194.”
At the heart of debates around education freedom and school choice is the subtle but sinister sentiment that parents can’t be trusted. They are too busy, too poor, or too ignorant to make the right decisions for their kids, and others know better how to raise and educate children. Never mind that parents have successfully cared for and educated their children for millennia, ensuring the ongoing survival and continued success of our species.
What’s the best case against war crimes trials? Simple: War crimes trials might delay peace – or reignite a war – and war is hell. Indeed, war is often hellish enough to overcome the intuitive moral presumption in favor of making violent criminals suffer for their misdeeds. When countries adopt amnesties to prevent future bloodshed, I keep my mind open.
This episode features an interview of academic and juris doctorate Brink Lindsey from 2014 by Trevor Burrus and Aaron Powell, hosts of the Free Thoughts podcast. We know income inequality exists, that some people are very rich and others very poor. And this bothers quite a lot of us. Aren’t we right to be concerned about this? Isn’t there something wrong when some people have access to far more resources than others?
Bernie Sanders is fortifying efforts to preserve the educational status quo and stifle change. Earlier this week, the 2020 Democratic presidential candidate announced his 10-point plan for education reform, including banning for-profit charter schools, placing “a moratorium on public funds for charter school expansion” and ensuring that charter schools look and act the same as conventional public schools.