July/Aug 2013 cover with white logo 600

July/August 2013

Volume 63, 2013

The pursuit of power consumes the political classes, of course, but as the State grows, its power only becomes more desirable. Accordingly, our lives are increasingly defined by the exercise of government power. In this issue we examine some of the many abuses of power that have become almost routine: Bruce Yandle discusses the predictable use of the IRS to target political opponents, Michael Nolan takes a look at building stadiums with tax dollars, Lenore Ealy says the Common Core is just more centralization in education, and editor Max Borders walks us through an ideology that says the State owns your children. In our reviews, Allen Mendenhall discusses a new book that casts an unflattering light on habeas corpus. We also consider some alternatives to power: Tom Bell discusses a new kind of limited democracy and we have a conversation with Oliver Porter, whose public-private partnerships are shrinking city governments around the world.


Common Core: A Tocquevillean Education or Cartel Federalism?

MAY 14, 2013 by

Even if the Common Core could deliver on its promises, its spread across the country poses a serious threat to the principles of federalism and the habits of self-governance that once produced a flourishing, voluntary society.

Collectivized Children

All Your Kids Are Belong to Us
JUNE 05, 2013 by

A controversial ad claiming that children belong to the community underscores how fully the State education apparatus disrupts the children's education within real families and real communities.

IRS Targeting: As Predictable as Politics

JUNE 06, 2013 by

The IRS's targeting of Tea Party groups was only par for the course. All government actions are best viewed as political actions.

Grave Robbers: Anti-Competitive Regulations for the Dead

MAY 07, 2013 by

A host of anti-competitive regulations serve funeral directors at the expense of the grieving.


Coca-Cola Confronts the Politics of Obesity
JUNE 03, 2013 by

Coca-Cola just became the latest company to knuckle under to public health bullying.

Did Capitalism Give Us the Laugh Track?

MAY 30, 2013 by

Television shows full of bad jokes written for laugh tracks instead of people seem like proof that the market caters to the lowest common denominator. A closer look at the history of the laugh track tells a different story.

Oil! Price Discovery and Regulation

MAY 20, 2013 by

Thanks to regulations at the pump, the price of gasoline has less than ever to do with supply and demand in the oil market, disrupting the market's price-discovery mechanism.


The Great Power Auction

JULY 03, 2013 by

It's time for State power to be broken up and decentralized. It's going to take a lot of innovation to do it.

The Man Who Outsourced the Government

An Interview with Oliver Porter
MAY 28, 2013 by

Oliver Porter created and implemented the public-private partnership model for Sandy Springs, Ga.--a city of 100,000 people near Atlanta--and has agreed to sit down with The Freeman.

Can We Correct Democracy?

JUNE 04, 2013 by

A democracy focused on the rejection of unpopular laws would allow for a broader electorate and a more immediate expression of voters' wills. It would also limit the worst excesses of the State.

The Market: This Time It’s Personal

The Other Side of the Impersonal Market
JULY 12, 2011 by

Freedom of movement, in physical and social space, is the essence of the free society.

Advice for Young, Unemployed Workers

MAY 16, 2013 by

Times are tough for young workers--especially since they've mostly been lied to throughout their lives. Coming to terms with some hard truths now, though, will give them the chance to thrive.


Guitars, Eccentric Billionaires, and Space Travel

MAY 22, 2013 by

Space travel, once the domain of Russian dogs and astronaut golfers, is being taken over by private enterprise and entertainment moguls. And it's fabulous news.

The “Great” Writ

The Power of Habeas Corpus in America
JUNE 07, 2013 by ,

Anthony Gregory's examination of habeas corpus traces its spotty record, explains how it can manage to produce power rather than restrict it, and puts Foucault to a novel use.

Hollow Men

MAY 10, 2013 by

The Great Gatsby is full of hollow people living hollow lives without any meaningful connection to each other. And that's exactly the point.

Take Me Out to the Cleaners

Crony Capitalism and Stadium Funding
JUNE 12, 2013 by

Stadium funding deals amount to making some people's leisure-time preferences a matter of law, then forcing everyone to transfer money to the already wealthy.

Outside the Complex

For those in Guantanamo
JUNE 10, 2013 by

Close enough to see only their shadows flickering in distant metal cages


JUNE 20, 2013 by

What kind of disciple is the girl who learned how to splint her own spine?

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