Posts

The Key to Economic Stimulus Success

Originally published February 3, 2009 in The Washington Times

As the United States struggles through a recession, political leaders are hoping a “stimulus package” will save us.

There is nothing wrong with the government trying to stabilize or even energize the economy. It is the reason we craft fiscal and monetary polices.

The problem with most stimulus packages is that they usually don’t work.

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The Coming Crisis in Citizenship

Originally published online in July 2007 at the Washington Policy Center.

Thomas Jefferson was blunt when he talked about the role of education in a free society. He said,

“If a nation expects to be ignorant and free in a state of civilization, it expects what never was and never will be.”

Because Americans, in general, accept Jefferson’s admonition, we invest considerable time, effort, and money in our system of public education.

In return, we hope that our schools will teach children the basic facts about our history, government and economic system, preparing the next generation to be good citizens.

Liberty: A Capital Idea

During a recent visit to Seattle, I encountered a young woman standing on a street corner demanding that President Bush take action to stop the genocide in Sudan.

When I asked her if she thought Bush should send troops to the region as he did in Iraq, she responded with a blank stare. It was then that I realized she had not thought that far down the road. Although she wanted to use American power to stop genocide, she did not want to get her hands dirty accomplishing the task.

Dilemmas like hers are why I often remind my students and colleagues that only the impotent and the naïve have the luxury of self-righteousness. After our five-year experience in Iraq, Americans are also learning this lesson. Read More…