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Thomas Sowell

Government never just ‘asks’ for money

In a recent panel discussion on poverty at Georgetown University, President Barack Obama gave another demonstration of his mastery of rhetoric – and disregard of reality. One of the ways of fighting poverty, he proposed, was to “ask from society’s lottery winners” that they make a “modest investment” in government programs to help the poor. […]

Race, politics and lies

Among the many painful ironies in the current racial turmoil is that communities scattered across the country were disrupted by riots and looting because of the demonstrable lie that Michael Brown was shot in the back by a white policeman in Missouri – but there was not nearly as much turmoil created by the demonstrable […]

Europe infuses fashionable notions into antitrust law

We all make mistakes and some of us learn from them. What is even better is to learn from other people’s mistakes, where they pay for those mistakes while we learn free of charge. Many Americans who say that we should learn from other people, especially Europeans, mean that we should imitate what they did. […]

Chaos in the primaries

Painful as it is to realize that both the Democrats and the Republicans will still be holding their primaries a year from now, that is one of the high prices we pay for democracy. Seldom does the initial “front-runner” in either party’s primaries end up being the actual candidate when Election Day rolls around. However, […]

April 25, 2015 | Posted in State, national columnists | Tagged ,

President a success or failure?

Those people who say that President Barack Obama has no clear vision and no clear strategy for dealing with the ISIS terrorists in the Middle East may be mistaken. It seems to me that he has a very clear and very consistent strategy. And a vision behind that strategy. First the strategy – which is […]

September 14, 2014 | Posted in State, national columnists | Tagged ,

Irresponsible choices have consequences

The latest Gallup poll indicates that 14 percent of the people “moderately disapprove” of Barack Obama’s performance as president and 39 percent “strongly disapprove.” Since Obama won two presidential elections, chances are that some of those who now “strongly disapprove” of what he has done voted to put him in office. We all make mistakes, […]

September 07, 2014 | Posted in State, national columnists | Tagged ,

Facts vs. visions, and real outcomes

The political left has been campaigning against the use of force since at least the 18th century. So it is not surprising that they are now arguing that heavily armed or aggressive police forces only inflame protesters and thus provoke violence. Statisticians have long warned that correlation is not causation, but they have apparently warned […]

August 31, 2014 | Posted in State, national columnists | Tagged ,

Media, mob trample rule of law

Those of us who admit that we were not there, and do not know what happened when Michael Brown was shot by a policeman in Ferguson, Missouri, seem to be in the minority. We all know what has happened since then – and it has been a complete disgrace by politicians, the media and mobs […]

August 24, 2014 | Posted in State, national columnists | Tagged ,

Attacks on achievement leave real problems unchallenged

New York’s mayor, Bill de Blasio, like so many others who call themselves “progressive,” is gung-ho to solve social problems. In fact, he is currently on a crusade to solve an educational problem that doesn’t exist, even though there are plenty of other educational problems that definitely do exist. The nonexistent problem is the use […]

August 17, 2014 | Posted in State, national columnists | Tagged ,

Is thinking now obsolete?

Some have said that we are living in a post-industrial era, while others have said that we are living in a post-racial era. But growing evidence suggests that we are living in a post-thinking era. Many people in Europe and the Western Hemisphere are staging angry protests against Israel’s military action in Gaza. One of […]

August 10, 2014 | Posted in State, national columnists | Tagged ,

Cease the Israel-Gaza cease-fires

Many years ago, on my first trip around the world, I was struck by how the children in the Middle East – Arab and Israeli alike – were among the nicest looking little children I had seen anywhere. It was painful to think that they were going to grow up killing each other. But that […]

August 03, 2014 | Posted in State, national columnists | Tagged ,

We’re bordering on madness

In a recent confrontation between protesters against the illegal flood of unaccompanied children into the United States and counter-protests by some Hispanic group, one man from the latter group said angrily, “We are as good as you are!” One of the things that make the history of clashes over race or ethnicity such a history […]

July 27, 2014 | Posted in State, national columnists | Tagged ,

Lawsuits, impeachment poor ploys for GOP

Whenever Democrats are in real trouble politically, the Republicans seem to come up with something new that distracts the public’s attention from the Democrats’ problems. Who says Republicans are not compassionate? With public opinion polls showing President Barack Obama’s sinking approval rate, in the wake of his administration’s multiple fiascoes and scandals – the disgraceful […]

July 20, 2014 | Posted in State, national columnists | Tagged ,

New book a good primer on race

Back in the heyday of the British Empire, a man from one of the colonies addressed a London audience. “Please do not do any more good in my country,” he said. “We have suffered too much already from all the good that you have done.” That is essentially the message of an outstanding new book […]

July 13, 2014 | Posted in State, national columnists | Tagged ,

Can American get back its rightful spirit?

Birthdays are supposed to be times for celebration and gift-giving. But America’s birthday on the Fourth of July is a time when the gift most needed is an urgent warning about the dangers of losing the things that have made this country America – and have long made “America” a ringing word of freedom, not only […]

July 04, 2014 | Posted in State, national columnists | Tagged ,

Here’s a thought: We are a lame duck country

Pundits are pointing to President Barack Obama’s recent decline in public opinion polls, and saying that he may now become another “lame duck” president, unable to accomplish much during his final term in office. That has happened to other presidents. But it is extremely unlikely to happen to this president. There are reasons why other […]

June 29, 2014 | Posted in State, national columnists | Tagged ,

News out of Iraq leaves bitter after-taste

The news from Iraq that Islamic terrorists have now taken over cities that American troops liberated during the Iraq war must have left an especially bitter after-taste to Americans who lost a loved one who died taking one of those cities, or to a survivor who came back without an arm or leg, or with […]

June 22, 2014 | Posted in State, national columnists | Tagged ,

Put prisoner swap deal in perspective

People are arguing about what the U.S. got out of the deal that swapped five top-level terrorist leaders for one American soldier who was, at best, absent from his post in a war zone. Soldiers who served in the same unit with him call him a deserter. The key to this deal, however, is less […]

June 15, 2014 | Posted in State, national columnists | Tagged ,

Ambassador shows parallels to US post office

At one time, people in India had to get on a waiting list to buy Hindustan Motors’ Ambassador automobile, even though it was an obvious copy of Britain’s Morris Oxford of some decades earlier. The reason was simple: The Indian government would not allow cars to be imported to compete with it. The fact that […]

June 08, 2014 | Posted in State, national columnists | Tagged ,

A little bit of this, a little bit of that

Here are some random thoughts on the passing scene: Will the Department of Veterans Affairs scandal wake up those people who have been blithely saying that what we need is a “single payer” system for medical care? Delays in getting to see a doctor have been a common denominator in government-run medical systems in England, […]

June 01, 2014 | Posted in State, national columnists | Tagged ,

Youth in poverty often blind to options

Many years ago, in upstate New York, there was a woman who was caught in a fierce snow storm that produced conditions called a “whiteout.” That’s when the snow is falling so thick and fast that all you can see in any direction is just sheer white. This woman wandered around in the storm, struggling […]

May 25, 2014 | Posted in State, national columnists | Tagged ,

Kangaroo courts on campus?

There seems to be a full-court press on to get colleges to “do something” about rape on campus. But there seems to be remarkably little attention paid to two crucial facts: (1) rape is a crime and (2) colleges are not qualified to be law-enforcement institutions. Why are rapists not reported to the police and […]

May 18, 2014 | Posted in State, national columnists | Tagged ,

Gary Becker (1930-2014)

Nobel Prize-winning economist Gary Becker was internationally renowned within the economics profession, but was not nearly as well-known among the general public as he deserved to be. More important, his path-breaking ideas, including his analysis of the economics of racial discrimination, deserved to be much more a part of the many discussions of that subject. […]

May 11, 2014 | Posted in State, national columnists | Tagged ,

Politics of education leaves out children

Of all the cynical frauds of the Obama administration, few are so despicable as sacrificing the education of poor and minority children to the interests of the teachers’ unions. Attorney General Eric Holder’s attempt to suppress the spread of charter schools in Louisiana was just one of the signs of that cynicism. His nationwide threats […]

May 04, 2014 | Posted in State, national columnists | Tagged ,

Liberalism comes with a high cost

Liberals advocate many wonderful things. In fact, I suspect that most conservatives would prefer to live in the kind of world envisioned by liberals, rather than in the kind of world envisioned by conservatives. Unfortunately, the only kind of world that any of us can live in is the world that actually exists. Trying to […]

April 27, 2014 | Posted in State, national columnists | Tagged ,

Statistical frauds distort equal-pay debate

The “war on women” political slogan is in fact a war against common sense. It is a statistical fraud when Barack Obama and other politicians say that women earn only 77 percent of what men earn – and that this is because of discrimination. It would certainly be discrimination if women were doing the same […]

April 20, 2014 | Posted in State, national columnists | Tagged ,

Reaction to Supreme Court decision reveals left’s halo of selfishness

The recent Supreme Court decision overruling some Federal Election Commission restrictions on political campaign contributions has provoked angry reactions on the left. That is what often happens whenever the High Court rules that the First Amendment means what it says – free speech for everybody. When the Supreme Court declared in 2010 that both unions […]

April 13, 2014 | Posted in State, national columnists | Tagged ,

How foreign is our policy?

Many people are lamenting the bad consequences of Barack Obama’s foreign policy, and some are questioning his competence. There is much to lament, and much to fear. Multiple setbacks to American interests have been brought on by Obama’s policies in Libya, Egypt, Syria, Crimea and – above all – in what seems almost certain to […]

April 06, 2014 | Posted in State, national columnists | Tagged ,

Republicans need new approach to woo blacks

Former Secretary of State Condoleezza Rice recently added her voice to those who have long been urging the Republican Party to reach out to black voters. Not only is that long overdue, what is also long overdue is putting some time – and, above all, some serious thought – into how to go about doing […]

March 30, 2014 | Posted in State, national columnists | Tagged ,

‘Tiger’ of a book undercuts social mobility mantra

Professor Amy Chua of the Yale law school is better known as a “Tiger Mom” because of her take-no-prisoners, tough love approach to raising children. She and her husband Jed Rubenfeld (a fellow Yale law professor) have written what may turn out to be the best book of this year. It is titled “The Triple […]

March 23, 2014 | Posted in State, national columnists | Tagged ,
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