Borders and Neighbors

I used to live near an Orthodox Synagogue. Because of their religious belief, Orthodox Jews do not drive on the Sabbath; they walk to services every Friday night; therefore, they strongly prefer to live in close proximity to their synagogue. Since this synagogue was on a major venue, I walked through often, and came to… Continue reading Borders and Neighbors

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Talk Early, Talk Often

What can you as a parent do to help your children develop their language skills? Workbooks? Flash cards? No, my advice is much simpler. Talk to them. Talk early. Talk often. Talk about all the interesting aspects of your life together. My fans may remember the 30 million word research. Today, I discovered an extensive… Continue reading Talk Early, Talk Often

No Such Thing As Free School

Remember the saying? There's no such thing as a free lunch? This is true for all "free" goods provided by the government. First off, obviously, taxpayers cover the costs. Second, government is seldom or never the most efficient provider of services. But most importantly, "free" school (the topic of this article) comes packaged with a… Continue reading No Such Thing As Free School

Patriotism and the Pledge

What sort of country do we wish to be patriotic about? Should we strive to be like North Korea and Communist China, with their mandatory displays of patriotism? What is it about this country, the United States of America, that we most admire? For me, it's the ideal of freedom, however much the government may… Continue reading Patriotism and the Pledge

Nativism Self-implodes

I've opposed nativist know-nothings for decades, for many reasons. Their theory of wall-building-as-panacea rests on many shifting assertions, including the belief that immigrants necessarily vote for more government, and/or necessarily vote Democrat. Both parts of that theory have always seemed suspect to me. In addition, the last claim - that immigrants tend to vote Democrat… Continue reading Nativism Self-implodes

Against Intellectual Property

This will raise the ire of some libertarians, but I can see no merit in arguments that a copy of the product of one's mental effort is "property." Suppose I make a clay pot. Assuming that the clay was mine, and the tools were mine or were legitimately in my hands, and I had no… Continue reading Against Intellectual Property

Cooperation vs. Interventionism

Henry J. Gomez of buzzfeed recently wrote an article about libertarianism. To his credit, he mostly describes libertarian foreign politics as non-interventionist - except for one awful passage: "libertarians believe [...] less-interventionist, more-isolationist themes." No, no, a thousand times no. I realize that Rothbard used the word "isolationism," but he was wrong. It is not… Continue reading Cooperation vs. Interventionism

Border Collectivization

Government borders are categorically different from private borders. When you and I separately define the borders of our individual properties, we define them for ourselves only. You and I may allow or exclude whomever we please. We may make different choices for ourselves, but may not impose those choices on each other. National immigration controls… Continue reading Border Collectivization

Consent Based Education: What can a flock of Spanish geese tell us about schooling?

We’re doing school entirely wrong, if our goal is to raise people who are free.

Sophie Christophy

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Let’s take a few moments to think about what it means that schools are compulsory and coercive environments and not consensual ones. To do this, we need to think about the many compulsory layers that exist within schools.

Firstly, there is showing up. Unless home educating, young people have to attend school. There is no choice, it is compulsory, and failing to attend is a big issue with attendance data highly monitored. School being a place that you ‘have to be’ is the baseline of a person’s relationship with their school and education.

Then there is the compulsory participation within the school day. Students have to be in certain places at certain times, as decided by the teachers and school leadership. Their time during the day is rigidly structured in terms of the places they are allowed to go, and what they are allowed to do within those places. Again…

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Lies, Damned Lies, and Aggregates

Robert Higgs - one of our most underrated economists - wrote In economic theory, a high level of aggregation conceals a multitude of sins. The more removed a concept is from genuine, individual, economic choice, the more misleading it is likely to be. The highest-level aggregates, such as GDP, are almost impossible to invest with… Continue reading Lies, Damned Lies, and Aggregates