Men, Boys, and Guns

This past weekend, I was pulled away from the computer, from a sprinkler system that needs to be fixed, from a garden wall that needs to be built, from grading papers and tests, and from all the other vicissitudes of my life as a hopefully ...

Localism vs. Globalism

CHICAGO, ILLINOIS. Mark Thompson has penned a challenging broadside against skeptics of free trade, including me, and he makes a number of arguments that deserve to be answered. There does not seem to me to be much to the argument that comm...

The Surveillance State and Me

PHOENIX, ARIZONA. Three hundred sixty bucks. Two tickets. Over the course of one month. Handed to me not be an overzealous rookie or a peace officer with a quota to meet or . . . well, even by a human being. But by a camera. A camera with p...

Regionalism in the NY Times

While the pickings are generally slim, the NYTimes can sometimes reveal a glimmer of localism, at least in the only section worth reading, the “City” section on Sundays. A few weeks ago the section featured the recent retirement...

Deadly Vices

Alexandria, VA. In a recent column, E.J. Dionne precedes his praise for a new economic populism – anger of the populace directed at economic elites – with a somewhat gratuitous, but revealing snipe at a conservative position of ...

Where is Our Perpetual Peace?

Devon, PA.  At the root of American and, indeed, western public life rests a fundamental assumption: the specific is dangerous, the particular a menace, the exclusive “unfair.”  Local government is a recipe for injustice; local ...

Beer and Civic Life

Claremont, CA. The news is dreadful: According to the Census, since 2006 we have been living in a republic where, for the first time in the history of the republic, Americans drink more bottled water than we drank beer. Why is this importan...

Farm Stories: Hog Killing

Let this day begin again the change of hogs into people, not the other way around, for today we celebrate again our lives’ wedding with the world — Wendell Berry, “For the Hog Killing” It takes three generations to m...

Friends Abroad: Vandana Shiva

LEXINGTON, KENTUCKY. One of the structural evils of our two-party system and our editorial pages is the inherent bias of both towards two.  If not A, then B.  If not Pro, then Con.  If not Left, then Right: one must be one or the other. But...