Freeman

A monthly journal of liberal and progressive politics. Articles include historical analysis, original research, and critical essays.

Articles from Vol. 62, No. 6, July/August

Adapt: Why Success Always Starts with Failure
Adapt: Why Success Always Starts with Failure by Tim Harford Farrar, Straus and Giroux/Picador * 2011/2012 * 320 pages * $27.00 hardcover; $17.00 paperback; $9.99 e-bookReviewed by Richard W. FulmerTim Harford's thought-provoking book argues that complex...
Can Mutually Beneficial Exchanges Be Exploitative?
When two people not under duress enter into an exchange for goods or labor services, both must be expecting to benefit or the exchange would not occur. In any such exchange there necessarily exists a double inequality of value. Each trader gives up something...
Casino Banking
JPMorgan Chase & Co., one of the nation's leading banks, revealed in May that a London trader racked up losses reportedly amounting to $2.3 billion over a 15-day period. The losses averaged over $150 million per day, sometimes hitting $200 million...
Cleveland Passed the Test of Character and Statesmanship
As usual, this year's presidential campaign will test the popularity of two men. It will also tell us a lot about each man's character, even if we think we already know all there is to know about them both. At this writing, some pundits are predicting...
Deep Freeze: Iceland's Economic Collapse
Deep Freeze: Iceland's Economic Collapse by Philipp Bagus and David Howden Ludwig von Mises Institute * 2011 * 125 pages * $12.00Reviewed by George LeefIn this short but highly illuminating book, economics professors Philipp Bagus and David Howden (both...
Elia Kazan Reconsidered
The short list of best American film directors will forever include Elia Kazan, whose cinematic efforts include many good films, several great ones, and a couple of immense quality that have fallen through the cracks due to poor timing, comparison to...
Just Wait until It's Free
The quip "If you think it's expensive now, just wait until it is free" is funny because of the unfortunate truth it contains. The truth is unfortunate less because it's impossible to provide benefits without costs than because politicians constantly...
Liberty of Contract: Rediscovering a Lost Constitutional Right
Liberty of Contract: Rediscovering a Lost Constitutional Right by David N. Mayer Cato Institute * 2011 * 189 pages * $21.95 hardcover; $9.95 paperback; $7.99 e-bookReviewed by Jacob H. HuebertThe U.S. Supreme Court has no coherent ideas about - or real...
Not Enough Inflation? It Just Ain't So!
Two wrongs may not make a right, but a second dose of poison might just cure the first dose. That's at least what Paul Krugman, America's most prominent left-wing economic pundit, is saying about an untapped remedy for our economic woes. In his April...
Politicians' Dreams
Several aspects of human behavior, besides a misunderstanding of reality, are critical to the survival of political scoundrels. Let's look at a few.Tariffs and import quotas raise sugar prices. Michael Wohlgenant andVincent H. Smith, in their article...
Reading Each Other
National Endowment for the Humanities Chair Jim Leach spent most of 2010 on a Civility Tour of America, hosting events and discussions about the importance of the humanities for reintroducing civil discourse to American culture. Leach sees civility as...
Rwanda's Economic Success: How Free Markets Are Good for Poor Africans
Societies have turned around and succeeded after passing through a period of vicious conflict and ruthless violence. Rwanda is an example.Since the brutal genocide of 1994, when about 20 percent of the population was killed, the political and social...
Should We Follow George Washington or Woodrow Wilson?
George Washington believed that public morality and private morality were inseparable. If you were unethical in private situations, with family and friends, you would also be unethical in political life. Because the arena of political life was larger...
Silent Spring after 50 Years
This year marks the 50th anniversary of a foundational document in modern environmentalism: Rachel Carson's Silent Spring. Today, when Carson's book is often mentioned but rarely read, it is easy to forget how important it was in shaping American attitudes...
Socialism's Prescient Critics
There is a good case to be made that the birth and spread of totalitarian socialism defines the twentieth century more than anything else. That is not what most schoolchildren are taught or what most people in the West believe, but it is a justifiable...
The Clash of Economic Ideas
At England's stately University of Cambridge in fall 1905, a clever postgraduate mathematics student named John Maynard Keynes began his first and only course in economics. He would spend eight weeks studying under the renowned Professor Alfred Marshall....
The Economy Needs No Conductor
We spend too much time waiting for orders - and money - from Washington. The collapse of the housing bubble gave politicians a license to do what they wanted to do all along: spend. The usual checks on extravagance, weak as they are, were washed away....
Washington Rules: America's Path to Permanent War
Washington Rules: America's Path to Permanent War by Andrew J. Bacevich Metropolitan Books * 2010/2011 * 304 pages * $25.00 hardcover; $15.00 paperback; $9.99 e-bookReviewed by Ivan ElandIn this excellent book Andrew Bacevich provides an easy- toread...