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RealClear Radio Hour – Penniless Presidencies

25 Sep

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Penniless Presidencies

September 24, 2016

Alan Axelrod, author of Full Faith and Credit: The National Debt, Taxes, Spending, and the Bankrupting of America, opens the conversation explaining why the U.S.’s perilous gross debt to GDP ratio may be past the point of no return. Axelrod’s stories of our most to least fiscally responsible presidents reveal our trajectory—from the parsimonious George Washington to Thomas Jefferson’s Louisiana Purchase extravagance, Abraham Lincoln’s budget busting Civil War, and modern presidents’ bailouts paving the road to national bankruptcy.

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RealClear Radio Hour – Authenticity’s Rub

19 Sep

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Authenticity’s Rub

September 17, 2016

Glenn Carroll, Laurence W. Lane Professor of Organizations and Senior Associate Dean for Academic Affairs at Stanford University Graduate School of Business, describes how selling “authenticity” became a phenomenon in business and politics. From the microbrewery surge in the 1990s to the insurgent candidates in the current presidential election, Carroll contrasts romanticized attributes and perceived authenticity with objective characteristics and historical context.

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RealClear Radio Hour – Risk, Reward, and Science

18 Sep

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Risk, Reward, and Science

September 17, 2016

Tracey Brown, director of Sense about Science and author of Playing by the Rules: How Our Obsession with Safety Is Putting Us All at Risk, advocates transparent scientific debate and dispelling of misinformation as antidotes to scaremongering. Brown argues that only experience allows us to uncover life’s greatest challenges, and warns that excess risk-aversion will not only halt innovation, but could reverse modern progress.

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RealClear Radio Hour – Criminal Justice Problems & Solutions

11 Sep

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Community Policing and Justice

September 10, 2016

Chief Jim Bueermann, president of the Police Foundation, who served with the Redlands Police Department for 33 years, discusses evidence-based policing and community relations. To encourage public trust and alleviate injustice, Bueermann proposes police work closely with their communities in order to collaborate on implementing crime prevention strategies.

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Soul Fixer

September 10, 2016

Sharon Richardson, founder and CEO of Just Soul Catering, president of Reentry Rocks, and a graduate of Defy Ventures’ Entrepreneurs-in-Training program, tells how, after nearly a decade as a correctional officer at Rikers Island, some tragic decisions landed her in prison for 20 years. Richardson shares her story of successful reentry into society to advocate for victims of domestic violence and criminal justice reform.

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RealClear Radio Hour – American Indian, EpiPen, and Free Speech Fiascos

4 Sep

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Cancelled Reservations

September 3, 2016

Naomi Schaefer Riley, New York Post columnist and author of The New Trail of Tears: How Washington Is Destroying American Indians, details how federal policies have consigned Native Americans to poverty and contributed to their high rates of suicide, domestic abuse, gang violence, unemployment, and drug and alcohol epidemics. Riley argues for repealing both stifling tribal regulations and the loophole economy regulatory exemptions, instead allowing for true property rights and access to capital.

Naomi Schaefer Riley

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Epic Drug Scandal

September 3, 2016

Scott Gottlieb, M.D., former Deputy Commissioner at the Food and Drug Administration (FDA) and resident fellow at the American Enterprise Institute, describes how the FDA’s narrowly prescriptive generic drug approval process creates expensive barriers to market entry that led to the EpiPen drug pricing debacle.

Scott Gottlieb

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Litigating for Principle

September 3, 2016

Victor Bernson, Vice President and General Counsel of Americans for Prosperity (AFP), the largest center-right grassroots advocacy organization, discusses how AFP and groups throughout California became a political target of Attorney General Kamala Harris. Bernson shares how AFP was vindicated in their First Amendment suit, in which AG Harris’ blanket collection and potential public distribution of confidential private donor names was ruled unconstitutional.

Vic Bernson

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FEE – Greatest Hits of the Science Deniers

2 Sep

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 Greatest Hits of the Science Deniers

“And yet, it moves.”

Thus muttered Galileo Galilei under his breath after being forced by the Inquisition to recant his claim that the Earth moved around the Sun, rather than the other way round. The public vindication of Copernican heliocentrism would have to wait another day.

Today, Galileo’s story is a well-known illustration of the dangers of both unchecked power and declaring scientific matters “settled.” Yet, throughout history, Galileo wasn’t alone.

Scientists once knew that light moved through space via the luminiferous aether—how else could its waves travel? In 1887 Albert Michelson and Edward Morley proved that it wasn’t so thanks to a “failed” experiment designed to conclusively demonstrate the existence of this invisible medium. Poor Michelson suffered a nervous breakdown when faced with such unexpected results.

In 1931 a book published in Germany, One Hundred Authors against Einstein, defended the settled science of Newtonian physics, proclaiming Einstein’s theory of relativity a fraud. Einstein was reported to have replied, “Why one hundred? If I were wrong, one would have been enough.”

On these pages I recently recounted the story of the early 20th century belief in Eugenics, a science widely adopted by governments around the world as a basis for social policy, with horrifying results.

Australian physicians Barry Marshall and Robin Warrens were ridiculed when they hypothesized that ulcers were caused by microbes, which every scientist knew couldn’t survive in stomach acid. Doctors were sure that peptic ulcers were caused by stress and spicy foods. In frustration, Marshall drank a Petri dish full of cultured H. pylori, proving the settled science wrong. Hopefully, the Nobel Prize he and Warrens received compensated for the illness that resulted.

And remember the government’s dietary guidelines, including the warnings against salt and the U.S. Department of Agriculture’s Food Pyramid urging Americans to eat more carbs and fewer fats? That didn’t work out so well, did it?

We all grew up knowing that life began in the “primordial soup” of the seas, sparked by lightning. A recent paper in Nature casts doubt on that theory, producing evidence that life may have begun in hydrothermal vents in the ocean floor. The jury is still out on this one.

And that’s the point.

To read the rest of the column click here.

RealClear Radio Hour – Markets, Politics, and Women

28 Aug

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Markets, Politics, and Women

August 27, 2016

Sarah Skwire, Senior Fellow at Liberty Fund, Literary Editor of FEE.org, and poet, charts how markets have elevated and liberated women over the last century, while politics continues to disparage women—from proscriptive minimum wage laws and a tax code bias against working women to today’s rallying cries in support of Hillary Clinton based solely on gender solidarity.

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