Reason

A leading social and political commentary magazine offering a refreshing alternative to Washington-based opinion. Focus is on free markets while covering politics, culture, and ideas through a mix of news, analysis, commentary and reviews..

Articles from Vol. 43, No. 4, August-September

Applebee's Welfare: California Cities Going Broke
HOW SICK are California's county and city governments? Sacramento's $25 billion state budget deficit has become infamous nationwide, although on a per capita basis the Golden State is far from America's most troubled state. But local governments around...
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Bollywood vs. Jihad: Which Is the Bigger Threat to Fundamentalist Islam: The Pentagon or Mumbai?
INDIA IS A COUNTRY riven with religious, linguistic, socioeconomic, and regional clashes. But the battle that split the country in two last year concerned a far more basic, existential question: Munni or Sheila? These are the screen names of the...
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Boxing Professor Keynes
[ILLUSTRATION OMITTED] Russ Roberts, a professor of economics at George Mason University, is the co-creator of two online rap videos pitting the ideas of economists John Maynard Keynes against those of Friedrich Hayek. The second of these, in which...
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Cut the Debt by Cutting Government: The First Reason-Rupe Poll Shows a Country More Radical Than Its Politicians
AS CONGRESS GRAPPLED over the federal government's $14.3 trillion debt ceiling this spring, the first-ever quarterly Reason-Rupe Poll found that 69 percent of Americans consider it "very important" to reduce the national debt. Another 17 percent deemed...
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Fair Tax or Foul? the Promise and Peril of Changing the Way We Pay for Government
[ILLUSTRATION OMITTED] DURING THE FIRST Republican presidential debate in May, erstwhile Godfather's Pizza CEO Herman Cain was asked about expert projections that his proposal for a national sales tax would hurt poorer Americans and involve taxation...
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Fear of a Muslim America: In the Fight against Radical Islam, Conservatives Are Trying to Limit the Property and Speech Rights of Peaceful American Muslims
IN MARCH, almost 10 years after the attacks of September II, 2001, America's uneasy, contradictory relationship with Islam was on full display at two congressional hearings. The first, a House Committee on Homeland Security meeting chaired by Rep....
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Home Insecurity: Two Privacy Cases Hit Us Where We Live
A YEW YEARS AGO, two police officers were chasing a suspected crack dealer at an apartment complex in Lexington, Kentucky, when they lost sight of him as he ducked into one of two units at the end of a breezeway. Detecting "a very strong odor of burnt...
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Natural Gas Flip-Flop: Big Environmental Groups Were for Fracking before They Were against It
THE WORLD's projected natural gas supplies jumped 40 percent last year. Until a decade ago, experts believed it would be technically infeasible to exploit the natural gas locked in 48 shale basins in 32 countries around the world. Then horizontal drilling,...
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Peace Nixed: Antiwar Movement Retreats
IN OCTOBER 2002, Barack Obama, then a state senator in Illinois, addressed a Chicago rally against the proposed invasion of Iraq. The young politician denounced the "dumb" and "rash" war as a "cynical attempt by ... armchair, weekend warriors in this...
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Poker Bust: Online Gambling Indictment
PREET BHARARA seems to be haunted by the fear that someone, somewhere, may be playing poker. Last year Bharara, the U.S. attorney in Manhattan, threatened an Australian payment processor with up to 75 years in prison for helping online poker companies...
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Revolution Redux
My February 2008 story on Ron Paul ("Scenes From the Ron Paul Revolution") didn't just survey a presidential campaign that failed to win. It surveyed a revolution still in motion. "Even if Ron Paul doesn't get that many votes," I concluded, "his voters...
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Spray Paint the Walls: Graffiti, Art, and Advertising
IN LOS ANGELES, the Museum of Contemporary Art (MOCA) is hosting the "first major U.S. museum survey of graffiti and street art" Sponsored in part by Nike and Levi's, "Art in the Streets" celebrates a form of cultural expression that America has collectively...
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The Cybersecurity-Industrial Complex: The Feds Erect a Bureaucracy to Combat a Questionable Threat
[ILLUSTRATION OMITTED] IN THE LAST TWO YEARS, approximately 50 cybersecurity-related bills have been introduced in Congress. In May the White House released its own cybersecurity legislative proposal. The Federal Communications Commission and the...
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The Day Everything Continued to Change: An Overlooked Lesson of 9/11: America's Strength Is Based on Dynamism
ON SEPTEMBER 6, 2001, the Justice Department's antitrust division dropped its three-year court battle against Microsoft. At the time, Microsoft's domestic share of the Web browser market, the proximate cause for the litigation, was around 90 percent....
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The Declaration of Independents: Meet the Future of American Politics
[ILLUSTRATION OMITTED] WHEN WAS THE last time you read the Declaration of Independence? Go ahead and call it up; give it a quick scan. Don't focus on the detailed bill of particulars against King George ("He has called together legislative bodies...
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The Eternal Fallout Shelter: We're Still Living in the Wake Left by Cold War Civil Defense Hysteria
IN THE SUMMER of 1961, 100 pessimistic members of an Arizona-based religious sect called the Full Gospel Assembly Church spent about $250,000 (in current dollars) on food, locked up their homes, and descended into a half dozen nearby bomb shelters...
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The Red/blue Paradox: Why Do Liberal States Give While Conservative States Take?
WE HEAR IT all the time: Red states are for limited government; blue states are for heavy spending. While this may be true when it comes to broad political preferences, it's false as measured by patterns of federal spending. When you compare the 50...
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Why Art Failed Us after 9/11: Trying to Make Sense of Senselessness
[ILLUSTRATION OMITTED] A DECADE AFTER the 9/11 attacks, the dust from that horrible day has mostly settled, literally if not quite figuratively. Builders are rushing madly to complete construction of the 1,776-foot-tall One World Trade Center, a...
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