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Government Shutdown: Did Private Charity Make Up the Difference?

One libertarian response to the cry “heartless!” is to reassure a sentimental critic that they need not worry. Government spending, they say, has “crowded out” private charity. Once government spending on behalf of the poor and suffering is cut back, private charitable contributions will surge to take its place.

Gorfias:

I think public spending crowds [...]

Private-Sector Success? 1 out of 4 Kaplan Students Default on Loans within 3 years

Some Americans are gung-ho about the private sector. They like to say that anything the government can do, business can do better.

How do we then explain the fact (taken from statistics maintained by the Department of Education) 1 out of 4 students at Kaplan University, one of the three largest private for-profit universities in [...]

Except for Ed Markey, Congressional Privacy Caucus Utterly Silent on Drones

A month ago, I noted the apparently ironic declaration of the “Bipartisan Congressional Privacy Caucus”:

The Bipartisan Congressional Privacy Caucus was designed to educate Members of Congress and their staff on matter of individual privacy, to provide a forum for the discussion of these issues, and to serve as a legislative advocate for personal privacy [...]

Useful New Resource on Surveillance Society: Top Secret America

Yesterday morning, a team of Washington Post journalists unveiled a major new resource called Top Secret America: A Hidden World, Growing Beyond Control. A series of connected web pages identify and connected various government agencies and private companies that are engaged in erecting a new classified surveillance structure in the United States.

The amount of [...]

Senate Hides Behind Voice Vote To Make Your Life Transparent

You know what irks me the most about yesterday’s Senate vote to reauthorize Patriot Act Provisions without a single, solitary reform?

Oh, there are so many contenders. But right now, what irks me the most about this decision was that it was made without a moment of public debate on the Senate floor, passed by [...]

Maine Marriage Equality Supporters Include. Anti-Gay Forces Exclude.

Yesterday in the city of Augusta Maine, the Reverend Bob Emich, Roman Catholic Bishop Richard Malone and head of the fundamentalist Family Research Council Tony Perkins gathered for a meeting in favor of ending same-sex marriage in Maine. You’ll notice that those leaders are all Christian religious figures. Indeed, the “Stand for Marriage Maine” organization [...]

Confidentiality Goes Out the Window With the FISA Amendments Act. What Will You Do Now?

Now that the FISA Amendments Act has been passed by both houses of the Democratic-controlled Congress and signed by President George W. Bush into law, a president’s administration can physically search or electronically spy on anyone, inside or outside the United States, doing anything, for periods of up to 67 days, without a warrant, without [...]