The evolving debate over personality versus structure in government failure

Anyone who’s ever taken a basic civics class is familiar with the idea that the Founding Fathers drafted the Constitution in response to the systemic weaknesses of the Articles of Confederation. The lies vaunted leaders such as George Washington and James Madison told the public at the time about the Philadelphia Committee simply reforming, rather than replacing, the Articles are justified by the supposed exigency which existed in the federal government’s ability to respond to…

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Funneling money to rogue regimes is always immoral

The reason the Obama administration funneled $400 million to Iran, notorious as a state-sponsor of terror and serial abuser of human rights, is irrelevant; the action is immoral. There can be no moral equivocating about goods offsetting bads in this action. Even if this were a ransom payoff- which the president has vociferously denied- there is nothing to celebrate in the winning of freedom for any other reason than the contrite recognition of their innocence.…

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Elections are not about partisan unity

Elections are not about unity. They are about competing ideas of right and wrong vying for resonance with the populace. They are about individuals exerting their conscience and branding their interests on the way government functions. They are about local actors reminding the federal government that power flows from the bottom up under the American construction of federalism. Coalitions are an end-run to this system, a way of sidestepping the deep and serious issues facing…

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The importance of ideology

Today, society has a decidedly apocalyptic outlook on the state of partisanship, perhaps with some merit. After all the mere mention of an individual’s party or ideological affiliation is generally met with a rancorous, disdainful sneer by those who identify with the opposing position. This is decidedly an unfortunate practice, but it’s hardly a new threat. Factional contentiousness has raged since America’s political antecedents first convened with the aim of practically applying their ideas in…

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The dialectic of the soul

All action stems from either thought or motion- or a lack thereof. Similarly, discretion properly practiced rests on the catalyst of thought or emotion, but subjugated to their own realms. Thus, the discretionary process of an individual depends on the relationship between the head and the heart. The soul is comprised of a dialectic between reason and emotion. Sober, reflective analysis governs thought and passion’s moral-compass informs emotion. A failure to constrain the two- to…

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Only free trade is fair trade

A unit of currency, even those based on elements with empirical worth, has absolute value. But this value is relative, both against other systems of measurement and in context of time and shifting events. Fiat money, like the American dollar, derives its worth as a unit from government-mandates and regulations, making it much more malleable than non-fiat currency, which is based in a commodity, such as gold, with intrinsic value. Yet, even the values assigned…

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The perverse morality of statism

Civilization, with its promises of equal and impartial justice, creates a balance between men. Long-term self-interest mandates that the pursuance of individual betterment not alienate one’s neighbors. One day they may prove imperative to survival. Each person is held in check by fear of righteous vengeance sought by the party they wronged with the help of the state. This fear is aided by the reflexivity of rights, for each man can imagine that the anger…

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