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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.

Friday, March 30, 2018

TGIF: Cambridge Analytica -- Bogey of the Week

The panic over Cambridge Analytica looks like an acknowledgment that Russiagate is a losing horse. 
CA is the latest excuse for Hillary Clinton's ignominious loss to Donald Trump, following "the Russians" and former FBI Director James Comey. Since those others haven't exactly carried the day -- still no evidence given against Russia and plenty of unflattering stuff came out about Trump when Comey was grandstanding -- it must have been time for a new tack. CA's psychographic microtargeting appeared to fill the bill.

TGIF (The Goal Is Freedom) appears on Fridays. Sheldon Richman, author of America's Counter-Revolution: The Constitution Revisited, keeps the blog Free Association and is executive editor of The Libertarian Institute. He is also a senior fellow and chair of the trustees of the Center for a Stateless Society and a contributing editor at Antiwar.com.

Become a Free Association patron today!

Friday, March 23, 2018

TGIF: The Iraq Invasion after 15 Years

On the 10th anniversary of the U.S. government's criminal, catastrophic, and still-to-this-day consequential war against Iraq in March 2003, I wrote:
It is no exaggeration to say that most news operations were little more than extensions of the White House Office of Communications. Abandoning even the pretense of an adversarial relationship with the government, the media became shameful conduits for unsubstantiated and outright false information about Saddam Hussein’s alleged threat to the American people. Included among the falsehoods were reports that Saddam had a hand in the 9/11 attacks, had trained al-Qaeda fighters, and had attempted to obtain uranium ore and aluminum tubes for nuclear bombs. 
Put bluntly, the disastrous invasion of Iraq, which was sold on the basis of lies told by President George W. Bush, Vice-President Dick Cheney, [CIA Director George Tenet,] Secretary of State Colin Powell, Defense Secretary Donald Rumsfeld, national-security adviser Condoleezza Rice, and others might not have happened without the enthusiastic help of the New York TimesWashington PostWall Street Journal, ABC, NBC, MSNBC, CBS, CNN, Fox News, and others. The blood of more than a hundred thousand — perhaps more than a million — Iraqis and 4,500 [now nearer to 5,000] Americans is on their hands too.


TGIF (The Goal Is Freedom) appears on Fridays. Sheldon Richman, author of America's Counter-Revolution: The Constitution Revisited, keeps the blog Free Association and is executive editor of The Libertarian Institute. He is also a senior fellow and chair of the trustees of the Center for a Stateless Society and a contributing editor at Antiwar.com.

Become a Free Association patron today!

Saturday, March 17, 2018

The Presumption of Innocence: Not Just for the Courtroom

Journalist Peter Hitchens wrote the following in the connection with the events in Salisbury, England, involving a former Russian double agent and his daughter, but it is worth keeping in mind always:

The presumption of innocence is not just a great liberty and defence against state power. It can also help investigators avoid the obvious conclusion, and carry on pursuing other lines of inquiry which might otherwise escape attention.

After all, isn’t the point of almost every detective story we read and see on the TV that the police tend to arrest the obvious suspect, and it is hardly ever the right one? As Sherlock Holmes used to say, as he began work with his magnifying glass, and his clients pressed him for an instant verdict ‘It is a capital error to theorise without data’. Also, it is amazing how wrong the obvious solution can be. I take the opportunity, yet again, to urge everyone to read Josephine Tey’s severely brilliant novel ‘the Franchise Affair’, in which dogged, sceptical inquiry reveals that something apparently impossible is true, and that the obvious, unpopular suspects in a crime are (in that particular case) wholly innocent of it. Once you have read it you will never view a criminal case or trial in the same way.

Friday, March 16, 2018

TGIF: Economic Nationalism: Elitism in Populist Clothing

My old friend and former American Conservative editor Dan McCarthy gets it all wrong about Donald Trump's "national security" tariffs on aluminum and steel.

TGIF (The Goal Is Freedom) appears on Fridays. Sheldon Richman, author of America's Counter-Revolution: The Constitution Revisited, keeps the blog Free Association and is executive editor of The Libertarian Institute. He is also a senior fellow and chair of the trustees of the Center for a Stateless Society and a contributing editor at Antiwar.com.

Become a Free Association patron today!

Friday, March 09, 2018

TGIF: Trading Places

"What protection teaches us, is to do to ourselves in time of peace what enemies seek to do to us in time of war." --Henry George
When Donald Trump can propose tariffs on imported steel, aluminum, washing machines, and solar-panels without being roundly booed off the stage, one has to wonder if reason has any power to win the day. Is this truly a democracy of dunces?
Read TGIF at The Libertarian Institute.

TGIF (The Goal Is Freedom) appears on Fridays. Sheldon Richman, author of America's Counter-Revolution: The Constitution Revisited, keeps the blog Free Association and is executive editor of The Libertarian Institute. He is also a senior fellow and chair of the trustees of the Center for a Stateless Society and a contributing editor at Antiwar.com.

Become a Free Association patron today!

Friday, March 02, 2018

TGIF: The Grammar of Russiagate

Closely observing the grammar of the Official Russiagate Narrative is revealing and instructive. It provides clues to the (language-)game being played.
Read TGIF at The Libertarian Institute.

TGIF (The Goal Is Freedom) appears on Fridays. Sheldon Richman, author of America's Counter-Revolution: The Constitution Revisited, keeps the blog Free Association and is executive editor of The Libertarian Institute. He is also a senior fellow and chair of the trustees of the Center for a Stateless Society and a contributing editor at Antiwar.com.

Become a Free Association patron today!

Thursday, March 01, 2018