Available Now! (click cover)

America's Counter-Revolution
The Constitution Revisited

From the back cover:

This book challenges the assumption that the Constitution was a landmark in the struggle for liberty. Instead, Sheldon Richman argues, it was the product of a counter-revolution, a setback for the radicalism represented by America’s break with the British empire. Drawing on careful, credible historical scholarship and contemporary political analysis, Richman suggests that this counter-revolution was the work of conservatives who sought a nation of “power, consequence, and grandeur.” America’s Counter-Revolution makes a persuasive case that the Constitution was a victory not for liberty but for the agendas and interests of a militaristic, aristocratic, privilege-seeking ruling class.

Wednesday, April 26, 2006

Jane Jacobs (1916-2006)

Jane Jacobs, champion of the spontaneous life of cities and radical critic of government urban planning, died yesterday at age 89. Through her many books and the conduct of her life, no one did more to describe the nature of the city as a free unplanned order in the Hayekian sense or to expose the pretensions of social engineers. Among her books are The Death and Life of Great American Cities, The Economy of Cities, Cities and the Wealth of Nations, Systems of Survival, and The Nature of Economies. The New York Times and Washington Post obits are here and here.

From the Times obit:
Ms. Jacobs did not limit her impact to words. In 1961, she and other screaming protesters were removed by the police from a City Planning Commission hearing after they had leapt from their seats and rushed the podium. In 1968, she was arrested on charges of second-degree riot and criminal mischief in disrupting a public meeting on the construction of an expressway, which would have sliced across Lower Manhattan and displaced hundreds of families and businesses. The police said she had tried to tear up the stenographer's transcript tape....

Ms. Jacobs moved to Toronto in 1968 out of opposition to the Vietnam War and to shield her two draft-age sons from military duty. But she quickly enlisted in Toronto's urban battles. No sooner had she arrived than she led a battle to stop a freeway there.

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