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Preview: Cato Daily Podcast

Cato Daily Podcast

The Cato Daily Podcast allows Cato Institute scholars and other commenters to discuss relevant news and libertarian thought in a conversational, informal manner. Hosted by Caleb O. Brown.


Lucia v. Securities and Exchange Commission

Tue, 24 Apr 2018 19:02:00 -0400

Administrative law judges tend to work in obscurity. In Lucia v. Securities and Exchange Commission, the proper role of these administrators is squarely before the U.S. Supreme Court. Andrew M. Grossman comments.

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The Consumer Financial Protection Bureau: It’s Still Unaccountable

Mon, 23 Apr 2018 07:00:00 -0400

The Consumer Financial Protection Bureau is still a bureaucracy that is not accountable to Congress, and largely unaccountable to the President. Mick Mulvaney made that point before Congress. Cato's Diego Zuluaga discusses Mulvaney's appearance.

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Little Pink House and Kelo

Sat, 21 Apr 2018 07:00:00 -0400

The story of Kelo v. City of New London is now in theaters in Little Pink House. Scott Bullock argued the case before the U.S. Supreme Court. Courtney Balaker directed the film, which is now in theaters.

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Cannabis Prohibition’s Waning Days

Fri, 20 Apr 2018 12:19:00 -0400

The President has quietly endorsed an end to federal interference in legal-cannabis states, former U.S. House Speaker John Boehner joins the cannabis industry, and the FDA is seeking input from the public on the plant. Trevor Burrus comments on the accelerating change of cannabis policy.

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"Void for Vagueness" Returns in Sessions v. Dimaya

Thu, 19 Apr 2018 07:00:00 -0400

When lawmakers hand to judges the power to determine the scope of a law, something has gone wrong. Clark Neily discusses the recently decided case of Sessions v. Dimaya.

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Repeal, Don’t Replace, Trump’s War Powers

Wed, 18 Apr 2018 15:32:00 -0400

The Constitution is supposed to make it difficult for a President to take the U.S. to war. Why would Congress want to make it easier? Gene Healy and John Glaser comment.

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Extreme Vetting of Immigrants: Estimating Terrorism Vetting Failures

Tue, 17 Apr 2018 16:35:00 -0400

In his new Cato Institute paper, David Bier details what works and doesn't in keeping likely terrorists out of the United States. Join the conversation on Twitter and stay tuned for updates with #CatoImmigration.

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The Bias to Action and Airstrikes on Syria

Mon, 16 Apr 2018 14:45:00 -0400

The pull to "do something" about Syria is one that the current President did not resist, despite his warnings for years about the folly of engaging more directly in the Syrian conflict. Emma Ashford comments.

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Public Opinion and Counterterrorism Policy

Fri, 13 Apr 2018 19:02:00 -0400

Why is the public so fearful about terrorism more than a decade after 9/11? John Mueller is coauthor of a new Cato paper, "Public Opinion and Counterterrorism Policy."

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FOSTA and the Federal Seizure of

Thu, 12 Apr 2018 15:25:00 -0400

A new law that's supposed to crack down on sex trafficking will likely make sex work less safe and compel internet forums to shut down or spy on their users. Elizabeth Nolan Brown of Reason comments.

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Attorney-Client Privilege, Prosecutorial Accountability, and Overcriminalization

Wed, 11 Apr 2018 15:01:00 -0400

The invasion of the relationship between client and attorney is a very big deal indeed, and should be reserved for only the most special cases. Clark Neily comments on the case of the president of the United States and his personal attorney.

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Checkpoint America: Monitoring The Constitution Free Zone

Wed, 11 Apr 2018 13:25:00 -0400

Checkpoint America is a new website launched by the Cato Institute to detail the implications of a "Constitution-free zone" along the U.S. border. Patrick Eddington explains. Join the conversation on Twitter and stay tuned for updates with #CheckpointAmerica.

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Congress Whiffs on Curbing Civil Forfeiture

Tue, 10 Apr 2018 15:36:00 -0400

When Congress passed that big spending plan, an anticipated reform to civil forfeiture had been curiously abandoned. Darpana Sheth of the Institute for Justice comments.

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POTUS Lacks Authority to Strike in Syrian Quagmire

Mon, 09 Apr 2018 22:11:00 -0400

The President lacks the authority necessary to undertake hostilities in the Syrian conflict. John Glaser explains.

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Is Robert Mueller's Evidence "Fruit of the Poisonous Tree?"

Mon, 09 Apr 2018 14:21:00 -0400

We don't know what evidence Robert Mueller has or how much of it was gathered, but critics of his investigation say much of it is already tainted. David G. Post says that argument is very likely exactly wrong.

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Nobody Wins a Trade War

Fri, 06 Apr 2018 19:37:00 -0400

Proposed tariffs are the responses that both China and the United States have chosen as the battle lines are being drawn in this trade war. Simon Lester and Inu Manak comment.

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From Statutes to Regulations to Guidance to Confusion

Thu, 05 Apr 2018 07:00:00 -0400

Congressional action often leaves regulatory agencies a wide berth under which to issue rules, but sometimes those rules are less than clear. And the guidance to clarify those rules creates its own problems. Walter Olson comments.

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Cops Shoot Woman, SCOTUS Tells Her She May Not Sue

Wed, 04 Apr 2018 07:00:00 -0400

The Supreme Court has told a woman that despite being shot by police eight times under questionable circumstances, no civil jury should ever hear her case. Clark Neily comments.

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Is Cryptocurrency Its Own Asset Class?

Tue, 03 Apr 2018 08:00:00 -0400

The "initial coin offering" has taken on the look and feel of an "initial public offering" for equity investors. Are cryptocurrencies equities or commodities? Are they something different entirely? Diego Zuluaga comments.

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Cambridge Analytica and the Trump Campaign

Mon, 02 Apr 2018 18:27:00 -0400

Will regulation follow the revelations surrounding Cambridge Analytica's acquisition and use of Facebook data? Walter Olson and Julian Sanchez comment.

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A Big-Spending, Big-Borrowing Week in Washington

Sat, 31 Mar 2018 00:05:00 -0400

Is there any way out of the federal spending binge? Jonathan Bydlak is creator of

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Serious Proposals to Reduce Gun Deaths

Thu, 29 Mar 2018 13:30:00 -0400

If lawmakers want to get serious about reducing gun deaths, the War on Drugs and suicide are the best places to start. Trevor Burrus evaluates the proposals from those who march against gun violence.

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Trump’s Tariffs, Retaliation, and Trade Deficits

Wed, 28 Mar 2018 13:47:00 -0400

The number of steel-exporting countries ensnared by the Trump tariffs on steel and aluminum has shrunk. The President also wants to take new action to shrink trade deficits with countries like China. Inu Manak describes the state of play.

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New Fed, Same As the Old Fed?

Tue, 27 Mar 2018 20:44:00 -0400

The Federal Reserve's new leadership may indicate changes in a few policies. Tate Lacey comments.

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It's Bolton Time

Sat, 24 Mar 2018 06:58:00 -0400

John Bolton, an effective communicator of extreme hawkish views, will become the President's new national security advisor. John Glaser and Sahar Khan argue that Bolton articulates views that almost entirely reject serious diplomacy.

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The Awful Consensus in Washington

Fri, 23 Mar 2018 07:00:00 -0400

What politicians agree on is more troubling than the partisan rancor, according to syndicated columnist George Will. He spoke at the Cato Institute's January Policy Perspectives in Naples, Florida.

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Truth and Perception of Homeschoolers

Thu, 22 Mar 2018 21:31:00 -0400

Homeschoolers aren't very ideological. At least, their ideologies vary widely. Author Zak Slayback says politicians should understand that they dismiss or mess with homeschoolers at their political peril.

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The Government (Sorta) Wants Your Input on Nutrition

Wed, 21 Mar 2018 20:53:00 -0400

The feds are taking public comment on nutrition guidelines. Terence Kealey believes the current advice ought to be scrapped.

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Trump’s Disappointing Approach to Opioids

Tue, 20 Mar 2018 19:32:00 -0400

Donald Trump rolled out his approach to handling the opioid problem in the United States: treatment for addicts and execution for drug dealers. Cato's Jeffrey Singer says it's disappointing and almost entirely the wrong approach.

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The Trouble with Paid Family Leave

Mon, 19 Mar 2018 20:25:00 -0400

What can we learn from other countries with mandated paid family leave? Why do so many prominent Republicans view the idea as a conservative one? Vanessa Brown Calder comments.

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Massive Numbers of Untested Rape Kits

Fri, 16 Mar 2018 20:58:00 -0400

Why do police departments allow rape kits to go untested? Clark Neily comments.

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#CatoConnects: NAFTA and the Trump Tariffs

Thu, 15 Mar 2018 20:54:00 -0400

What impact with the Trump tariffs have on renewed negotiations over North American trade policy? Inu Manak and Simon Lester comment.

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The Abolition of Slavery and Libertarian Thought

Wed, 14 Mar 2018 19:36:00 -0400

What does it mean for historical events to be regarded as victories of modern ideologies? Anthony Comegna comments.

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#Rexit at State Department, Mike Pompeo, and Gina Haspel

Tue, 13 Mar 2018 15:11:00 -0400

Mike Pompeo is expected to replace Rex Tillerson at the State Department, and Gina Haspel, a longtime intelligence agent who oversaw black sites for the CIA, may replace Pompeo at CIA. Chris Preble and Emma Ashford comment.

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Risky Business: The Role of Arms Sales in U.S. Foreign Policy

Tue, 13 Mar 2018 04:00:00 -0400

In just his first year in office, President Trump signed arms deals at a record pace. What are the costs and benefits of those sales of U.S. weaponry? Caroline Dorminey is author of "Risky Business: The Role of Arms Sales in U.S. Foreign Policy."

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Trump to Meet with North Korea’s Kim Jong Un

Mon, 12 Mar 2018 19:14:00 -0400

The White House seems substantially unprepared for a planned meeting with North Korean leader Kim Jong Un. Doug Bandow and John Glaser comment.

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A ‘Digital Muslim Ban’

Fri, 09 Mar 2018 21:04:00 -0500

Did the President enact a "digital Muslim ban” in a now-withdrawn executive order? Rachel Levinson-Waldman and Alvaro Bedoya offer their thoughts.

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Criminal Immigrants in Texas

Thu, 08 Mar 2018 20:27:00 -0500

What does new data in Texas tell us about the propensity of immigrants to commit crimes? Alex Nowrasteh is author of a new Cato Institute policy brief, "Criminal Immigrants in Texas."

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Italian Elections Boost Populists

Wed, 07 Mar 2018 21:14:00 -0500

The Five Star Movement and Northern League have shaken the political establishment in Italy, and both groups make protection, cultural and economic, a key element of their platforms. Alberto Mingardi comments on the changes.

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Trump’s Tariffs Will Intensify Trade War

Tue, 06 Mar 2018 22:06:00 -0500

The Trump tariffs on steel and aluminum will punish American manufacturers and invite retaliation from trading partners. The national security rationale for the tariffs is also pretty flimsy. Dan Ikenson comments.

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Putin’s New Deadly Toys

Mon, 05 Mar 2018 21:55:00 -0500

How does the announcement of a new breed of Russian nuclear weapons alter the calculus for defending against the nuclear threat? Emma Ashford and Eric Gomez comment.

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Why Won’t Courts Question Qualified Immunity?

Fri, 02 Mar 2018 23:07:00 -0500

Courts are loathe to take cases that might alter or weaken qualified immunity, the legal doctrine that protects police from some of the consequences of serious misconduct. Why? William Baude of the University of Chicago Law School comments.

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Won't Someone Please Think of the Parents?!?

Thu, 01 Mar 2018 21:51:00 -0500

Parents enmeshed in the child protective services system often are asked to prove a negative, that they've done nothing wrong, in order to get their children back. Dan Greenberg of Advance Arkansas Institute comments on recent legislative efforts.

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The Case against Qualified Immunity

Wed, 28 Feb 2018 05:00:00 -0500

"Qualified immunity" is a doctrine that protects police from misconduct that would send someone without a badge to jail. Clark Neily and Jay Schweikert discuss the controversy.

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Some Bad Reasons to Love/Hate Bitcoin

Tue, 27 Feb 2018 20:36:00 -0500

When fans and detractors of cryptocurrencies talk, they need to understand the economic fundamentals behind what they're saying. Will Luther comments.

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Minnesota Voters Alliance v. Mansky

Mon, 26 Feb 2018 22:19:00 -0500

Can the state ban you from wearing any political message at the polling place? Wen Fa is an attorney at the Pacific Legal Foundation. We discussed his case before the Supreme Court, Minnesota Voters Alliance v. Mansky.

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Clashing over Commerce: A History of U.S. Trade Policy

Fri, 23 Feb 2018 14:06:00 -0500

Trade plays a huge role in the wealth that Americans enjoy, so why has it been so controversial? Douglas A. Irwin is author of Clashing over Commerce: A History of U.S. Trade Policy.

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Realizing A Freedom Philosophy

Thu, 22 Feb 2018 14:16:00 -0500

The struggle over ideas needs people to tell stories to make real the costs and benefits of putting those ideas into practice. Bob Chitester of the Free to Choose Network has spent decades working on this broad project. We spoke this weekend in Chicago.

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Gerrymandered Battle Lines before SCOTUS

Wed, 21 Feb 2018 15:57:00 -0500

The Supreme Court faces two cases of partisan gerrymandering this term. Why hasn't Congress dealt with this issue? Walter Olson comments.

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The Right to Try Unapproved Drugs and the Prohibition of Truth in Marketing

Tue, 20 Feb 2018 09:00:00 -0500

You should be able to try any drug you want to save your own life. And doctors and drug companies should be allowed to converse honestly about potential drug benefits without the fear of jail. Christina Sandefur of the Goldwater Institute comments.

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Free-Range Kids vs. Fretful Mother Magazine

Mon, 19 Feb 2018 09:29:00 -0500

How do give our children the autonomy they deserve without fear? Lenore Skenazy has a few ideas.

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Trump and the GOP Congress Spend Big with Your Money

Fri, 16 Feb 2018 20:54:00 -0500

Despite some substantial plans to privatize some infrastructure and cut other needless federal spending, the infrastructure and other spending plans by Donald Trump and the GOP Congress are substantial budget busters. Chris Edwards comments.

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#CatoConnects: The Nunes Memo, Surveillance, and Secret Courts

Thu, 15 Feb 2018 20:38:00 -0500

Intelligence experts have generally been skeptical of the conclusions of the "Nunes memo," but the fight over this document may do long-term damage to attempts to provide important oversight for the secretive Foreign Intelligence Surveillance Court. Julian Sanchez comments. View full event

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Frederick Douglass: Self-Made Man

Wed, 14 Feb 2018 08:00:00 -0500

It's difficult to overestimate what Frederick Douglass overcame to become one of the greatest advocates for liberty in the 19th century. Timothy Sandefur is author of the new Cato book, Frederick Douglass: Self-Made Man.

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The Republic of Virtue: How We Tried to Ban Corruption, Failed, and What We Can Do about It

Tue, 13 Feb 2018 16:09:00 -0500

What can be done to counter public corruption? Frank Buckley is author of The Republic of Virtue: How We Tried to Ban Corruption, Failed, and What We Can Do about It.

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The Unbelievable Case of McCoy v. Louisiana

Mon, 12 Feb 2018 14:15:00 -0500

Is it unconstitutional for defense counsel to concede the defendant's guilt over that defendant's express objection? In McCoy v. Louisiana, the Supreme Court has an opportunity to affirm that a competent defendant may play an important role in his own defense strategy. Jay Schweikert comments.

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Lives of the Necromancers

Sat, 10 Feb 2018 08:00:00 -0500

Politicians testing the credulity of Americans with outlandish statements is far from unprecedented. Anthony Comegna is editor of the new volume, Lives of the Necromancers by William Godwin.

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The Tax Bill Didn’t Kill Obamacare

Fri, 09 Feb 2018 21:44:00 -0500

Obamacare lives. Sal Nuzzo of the James Madison Institute discusses what that means for states trying to make reforms.

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Cutting Aid and Cutting Remarks over Pakistan

Thu, 08 Feb 2018 21:16:00 -0500

The President's rhetoric and tone don't bode well for getting cooperation from Pakistan, even on shared goals. Sahar Khan comments.

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Bad Math on Counterinsurgency

Tue, 06 Feb 2018 20:15:00 -0500

Killing insurgents on the battlefield in Iraq and Afghanistan seems to end up giving us more of them. Erik Goepner comments on how that math does and doesn't add up.

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Little Nukes, Big Deal

Mon, 05 Feb 2018 18:28:00 -0500

Would expanding low-yield nukes in our nuclear arsenal make us safer? Eric Gomez comments on the new nuclear posture review from the Pentagon.

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Fear of Terrorism Drives Anti-Immigrant Push

Fri, 02 Feb 2018 08:00:00 -0500

Anti-immigration forces would like you to believe that immigrants pose an outsize risk with respect to terrorism. They don't. Alex Nowrasteh explains.

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The Vast Powers of Customs and Border Protection

Thu, 01 Feb 2018 22:10:00 -0500

Customs and Border Protection (CBP) is imbued with vast powers, and evidence shows those powers are used without many of the checks that exist in other federal agencies. Alex Nowrasteh and Matthew Feeney comment.

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A Big-Spending, Flag-Waving State of the Union

Wed, 31 Jan 2018 15:22:00 -0500

The State of the Union is a tradition that probably ought to go, but this one had the big spending plans Americans have come to expect. Cato's John Glaser, Chris Edwards, and Neal McCluskey comment on the substantive policy proposals.

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The New and Old Tech of Border Surveillance

Wed, 31 Jan 2018 08:00:00 -0500

Technology to intercept illegal immigrants can also be used to hassle American citizens. Much of the new technology doesn't work as well as advertised. Meanwhile, the logistical problems with building a massive border wall have barely begun. Matthew Feeney and David Bier comment.

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The New National ID Systems

Tue, 30 Jan 2018 15:00:00 -0500

A world where authorities no longer have to even ask for ID is a scary one, especially if you have no recourse in how that massive collection of data gets used. Jim Harper is author of "The New National ID Systems."

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Trump Immigration Plan Would Dramatically Reduce Legal Immigration

Tue, 30 Jan 2018 08:00:00 -0500

The draconian restrictions on legal immigrants proposed by the Trump White House would exclude nearly 22 million people from the opportunity to immigrate legally to the United States over the next five decades. David Bier comments.

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Puncturing Persistent Myths about Immigrant Crime

Mon, 29 Jan 2018 05:00:00 -0500

If you're worried about crime, worry more about the criminality of your fellow Americans and less about the criminality of immigrants. Alex Nowrasteh discusses the data on immigrants and crime.

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Who Pays the Price When You Don’t Get A Speedy Trial? You Do

Fri, 26 Jan 2018 20:17:00 -0500

Why don't prosecutors and judges pay a price when the right to a speedy trial is violated? Clark Neily comments.

Media Files:'t-Get-A-Speedy-Trial-You-Do.mp3

The 2017 Human Freedom Index

Thu, 25 Jan 2018 05:01:00 -0500

"The Human Freedom Index” presents the state of human freedom in the world based on a broad measure that encompasses personal, civil, and economic freedom. It is co-published by the Cato Institute, the Fraser Institute, and the Liberales Institut at the Friedrich Naumann Foundation for Freedom. Ian Vasquez is the report's co-author.

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That Memo, the Deep State, and the FISA Court

Wed, 24 Jan 2018 21:58:00 -0500

An as-yet-undisclosed memo circulating in the House of Representatives promises to challenge the credibility of some elements in the FBI, but if the claims it contains are substantial, it may pose challenges for the secretive FISA court. Julian Sanchez comments.

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This Year 'Big Content' Likely Won't Push to Extend Copyright

Wed, 24 Jan 2018 15:10:00 -0500

Without action by Congress, a whole class of copyrighted works will fall into the public domain next year. And yet, Big Content isn't fighting to stop it. Timothy B. Lee of Ars Technica discusses why.

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How Not to Subsidize Renewable Energy

Tue, 23 Jan 2018 14:19:00 -0500

The renewable portfolio standard is meant to encourage the production of renewable energy in states. One side effect is higher energy costs for low-income people according to Dave Stevenson of the Cesar Rodney Institute.

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The Public Benefit of Private Schooling

Mon, 22 Jan 2018 21:44:00 -0500

What is the impact of private schooling in countries' quality of public schooling? Corey DeAngelis is author of "The Public Benefit of Private Schooling."

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