Sheldon Richman

You need not suspect the motives of those responsible for NSA surveillance to detest what they are doing. In fact, we may have more to fear from spies acting out of patriotic zeal than those acting out of power lust or economic interest: Zealots are more likely to eschew restraints that might compromise their righteous cause.

The government’s response to Edward Snowden’s leaks about the National Security Agency’s secret monitoring of the Internet and collection of our telephone logs is a mass of contradictions.

Thursday, 30 May 2013 06:45

Bangladeshi Workers Need Freed Markets

A passionate debate now rages over whether international safety standards should be enforced against manufacturers in the developing world and their Western retailers. Unfortunately, the debate is unnecessarily narrow. What needs discussing — and radical changing — is the Bangladesh's political-economic system, which benefits elites while keeping the mass of people down.

Nothing will have been learned from this scandal if all that happens is the firing of some IRS administrators and the issuance of new guidelines on 501(c)(4) applications. That is not nearly enough.

Wednesday, 17 April 2013 17:00

Gun-Control Demagogy

Demagogues offend us because they try to bypass our rational faculty with appeals to gut emotion. That pretty well sums up what gun controllers have done since the Newtown tragedy.

Those who favor “universal” background checks on gun buyers make some ridiculous arguments.

Tuesday, 02 April 2013 10:00

Progressives Believe in Money Magic

It’s hard to believe that in the 21st century, educated people believe the government can produce real wealth by creating money. It’s especially ironic that the main preachers of this superstition fancy themselves progressives and are the first to accuse their opponents of being against science.

Tuesday, 26 March 2013 00:00

How the News Media Betrayed Us on Iraq

The tenth anniversary of the start of America’s illegal and aggressive war against Iraq should not pass without recalling that the mainstream news media eagerly participated in the Bush administration’s dishonest campaign for public support.

The enormity of the crime committed by the Bush administration, with the complicity of cheerleading politicians (Republican and Democrat), journalists, and foreign-policy “experts” cannot be adequately calculated — and the consequences are not all in.

Tuesday, 19 March 2013 22:00

The Dow Jones Is Lying

The Dow Jones Industrial Average (DJIA) is at a record high, and the unemployment rate has ticked down to 7.7 percent, but this is no time to celebrate. The economy is still in the doldrums.

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