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Sheldon Richman is vice president of The Future of Freedom Foundation and editor of FFF's monthly journal, Future of Freedom . For 15 years he was editor of The Freeman , published by the Foundation for Economic Education in Irvington, New York. He is the author of FFF's award-winning book Separating School & State: How to Liberate America's Families; Your Money or Your Life: Why We Must Abolish the Income Tax; and Tethered Citizens: Time to Repeal the Welfare State. Calling for the abolition, not the reform, of public schooling. Separating School & State has become a landmark book in both libertarian and educational circles. In his column in the Financial Times, Michael Prowse wrote: "I recommend a subversive tract, Separating School & State by Sheldon Richman of the Cato Institute, a Washington think tank... . I also think that Mr. Richman is right to fear that state education undermines personal responsibility..." Sheldon's articles on population, federal disaster assistance, international trade, education, the environment, American history, foreign policy, privacy, computers, and the Middle East have appeared in the Washington Post , Wall Street Journal , American Scholar , Chicago Tribune , USA Today , Washington Times , Insight , Cato Policy Report , Journal of Economic Development , The Freeman , The World & I , Reason , Washington Report on Middle East Affairs, Middle East Policy, Liberty magazine, and other publications. He is a contributor to the Fortune Encyclopedia of Economics . A former newspaper reporter and former senior editor at the Cato Institute, Mr. Richman is a graduate of Temple University in Philadelphia.
(4 comments) SHARE Thursday, June 27, 2013 Big Brother, not Snowden and Greenwald, Is the Story
Snowden and Greenwald have not "aided the enemy" -- unless the American people are the government's enemy. What they have done is embarrass the Obama administration by exposing criminal activity. For the media's defenders of power against truth, that's inexcusable.
(7 comments) SHARE Thursday, December 26, 2013 Congress Must Not Cede Its War Power to Israel
Americans should refuse to let Congress give Israel the power to drag the United States into war. American and Israeli intelligence agencies say Iran has no nuclear-weapons program. Israel, remember, is itself a nuclear power. But even if Iran were a threat to Israel, that would not warrant letting any foreign government dictate when we go to war.
(2 comments) SHARE Saturday, February 24, 2018 TGIF: The Tragicomedy of Russiagate
We have a moral inequivalence on our hands. It's okay if we do it to "them" (whomever), but it's not okay if "they" do it to us. Moreover, we can do it to ourselves, but if anyone else tries it, there'll be hell to pay.
(1 comments) SHARE Wednesday, March 4, 2015 America Must Reject Netanyahu's War Cry On Iran
Israeli Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu came to Washington this week to prepare the American people for war against Iran. He has no confidence in President Obama, and his objective is nothing less than to wreck the current negotiations and push America into a regime-changing war against Iran. Netanyahu's narrative is a fabric of lies and omissions.
SHARE Tuesday, February 18, 2020 Anti-BDS Laws Violate Our Freedom
Americans' free-speech and other rights are being violated by state laws aimed at stifling the BDS (Boycott, Divestment, Sanctions) Movement against Israel's illegal rule of Palestinians in the West Bank and Gaza Strip, both conquered over half a century ago.
(3 comments) SHARE Tuesday, November 20, 2018 Art of the Smear: the Israel Lobby Busted
The paid pro-Israel operatives, guided by Israeli government officials and embassy staff, have used social media and other channels in an attempt to destroy the career potential of student activists who work to raise Americans' consciousness about the Palestinians.
SHARE Friday, March 6, 2020 TGIF: Democracy Can't Fix Socialism
The difference between socialism and interventionism is not moral but economic and institutional. Whether politicians and bureaucrats direct our behavior directly though government ownership or indirectly through regulation of nominally private arrangements makes little difference morally. Either way, our rights and freedom are violated.
(2 comments) SHARE Sunday, June 29, 2014 TGIF: Smedley Butler And The Racket That Is War
Butler described who bears the costs of war -- the men who die or return home with wrecked lives, and the taxpayers -- and who profits -- the companies that sell goods and services to the military. (The term military-industrial complex would not gain prominence until 1961, when Dwight Eisenhower used it in his presidential farewell address.
(1 comments) SHARE Tuesday, July 10, 2018 The Trump-Kushner Delusion on Palestine
Americans who rely on the establishment news media for information would not know that the Palestine-Israel story has been carefully crafted to make the Israelis look good and the Palestinians bad. Virtually every commentary assumes it is the Palestinians who must prove they are worthy of peace, security, and self-governance. The burden of proof is entirely theirs. The Israeli have nothing to prove.
SHARE Thursday, December 12, 2019 No US-Israel Defense Pact!
The American people should resoundingly let the politicians know that the proposed collective defense arrangement with Israel should be scrapped. No blood for Israel!
(6 comments) SHARE Tuesday, June 5, 2018 How an Anti-Semitic American Law Helped to Create the State of Israel and a Whole Lot of Trouble
Without Wilson's war, no Versailles Treaty; without the Versailles Treaty, no Hitler; without Hitler, no Holocaust; without the Holocaust, no State of Israel; without the State of Israel, well, you get the idea. I'm not saying everything today would be sweetness and light in the Middle East. The Great Powers would have still wanted to control the oil, but the major source of strife and war would not have materialized.
(3 comments) SHARE Saturday, August 10, 2013 The U.S. Empire Provokes Terrorism
Unrelenting U.S. drone attacks on Pakistan, Afghanistan, Yemen, and Somalia, in which noncombatants are killed, don't win friends. They recruit enemies bent on revenge. It follows therefore that the best way to dramatically reduce, if not eliminate, the threat of terrorism is to dramatically change U.S. foreign policy -- from imperial intervention to strict nonintervention.
SHARE Saturday, March 3, 2018 The Grammar of Russiagate
In the public prints and official pronouncements, it's not enough to say Russians tried to muck around in the American election. It's almost always the Russians. This is a subtle way to convey the idea that Vladimir Putin and his intel agencies were responsible. There's a big difference between Russians and the Russians, even if the grammar seems inconsequential.
SHARE Sunday, February 11, 2018 TGIF: Raining on the Parade
Some people have proposed that Trump's parade be postponed until all the wars the U.S. government is waging are finished and the troops are back home. That would indeed be an indefinite postponement, and I wouldn't want to see a parade even then. But if that's the price for ending those imperial wars, I'll take it.
SHARE Monday, November 20, 2017 Assertions, Facts and CNN
Dissenting views should not be lightly dismissed merely by declaring that a government agency or a "consensus" has decided the case. The news media ill-serve the public when they take government or so-called experts assertions on faith without having those assertions tested in public.
SHARE Monday, January 22, 2018 Trump Versus the World
Trump has a history of trafficking in racially tinged matters, from the Central Park Five to Obama birtherism. It's a little ridiculous for him to declare he is the least racist person around. Isn't it amazing that he's the most or the least of everything, always to his advantage? That's one of the hallmarks of an insecure narcissistic blowhard bullshitter.
(4 comments) SHARE Wednesday, November 21, 2012 Petraeus Fell For The Wrong Reason
David Petraeus has fallen -- but not as he should have. Before being disgraced by an extramarital affair, the retired four-star general and ex-CIA director should have been shamed out of public life for his horrendous military record in Iraq and Afghanistan.
SHARE Friday, June 12, 2015 Abolish Special Ops Forces
We are expected to trust the government that those operations of Special Ops Forces kill bad guys only. But why should we, when it has done so much to earn our distrust? It has long downplayed the civilian deaths inflicted by drones, bombers, and ground operations.
(1 comments) SHARE Tuesday, December 18, 2012 Libertarian Support for Union Rights
It's not widely known, but an earlier generation of libertarians condemned so-called right-to-work laws as anti-market. Milton Friedman and others of the Chicago school were on-board. In this context, the recent right-wing push to de-legitimize union is seen as a recent extremist expression, motivated not by ideology but by greed.
SHARE Tuesday, July 24, 2018 Trump and Putin: How About Getting Rid of Your Nukes?
The United States and Russia remained at odds, continuing military exercises along the borders of NATO, undermining the Intermediate-Range Nuclear Forces Treaty (INF), upgrading their nuclear arsenals, and eschewing arms control negotiations.
(1 comments) SHARE Thursday, September 25, 2014 Will American Ground Troops Be Sent To Fight ISIS?
Obama keeps saying that this is not just an American fight and that ground troops will not be necessary. Yet he also insists that ISIS threatens Americans in the United States. That naturally raises this question: what if the local ground troops that Obama counts on -- the Iraqi and Kurdish armies and the alleged moderate Syrian rebels -- aren't up to the job?
(2 comments) SHARE Thursday, July 23, 2015 No "Compensation" to Israel for Iran Deal
Today we have a new paradigm for chutzpah: the Israeli government's demand for "compensation" from the American taxpayers for the Iran nuclear agreement. Why does Israel deserve compensation (in addition to its $3 billion in U.S. aid every year)? If anything, Israel should compensate American taxpayers!
(4 comments) SHARE Wednesday, January 14, 2015 Understanding The Paris Violence
Muslims and Arabs have legitimate grievances against the U.S. government and its allies -- even if some of their responses are illegitimate. These crimes must not be excused. But the way to end Muslim violence in the West is for the West to end its violence against Muslims.
(9 comments) SHARE Wednesday, May 1, 2013 What If The Tsarnaevs' Motive Was Revenge for U.S. Foreign Policy?
If revenge for U.S. foreign policy was the motive, what will happen next? Will such evidence prompt a national reconsideration of America's decades-old imperial foreign policy? If we wish to prevent such wanton crimes in the future, we'd better understand what motivates the criminals who commit them.
(1 comments) SHARE Thursday, June 26, 2014 U.S.-Egyptian "Historic Partnership" Reeks With Hypocrisy
The coup -- which the Obama administration was reluctant to identify as such -- served U.S. government interests. Its alliance with Egypt's military dictatorship shows the hypocrisy of Barack Obama's paeans to freedom and self-government. Americans should be embarrassed. This is the regime that Kerry and Obama wish to work with in pursuit of their "historic partnership." Do they think the world is blind and deaf?
(2 comments) SHARE Wednesday, May 14, 2014 The Neoconservative Obsession With Iran
As a result of the U.S. government's obsession with undermining Iran's regime, attempts by the Shi'ite government to cooperate with the U.S. government were repeatedly rebuffed, even when rapprochement would have been in an administration's interest, for example, in the battle against a common enemy, al-Qaeda.
SHARE Friday, January 9, 2015 The Ominous Republican Hold On Congress
The national-security state is rotten to the core, having inflicted incalculable death and misery on many foreign populations. Much hard work has to be done to free the world of this monster. In the near term, fortunately, some good things can be done at the margin -- if the new Republican majority doesn't get in the way.
(2 comments) SHARE Wednesday, May 8, 2013 A Modest Gun-Safety Proposal
All gun owners should be required to keep their guns under lock and key at the local police station. Whenever they, or members of their families, want to use a gun -- say, in self-defense against an armed home invader -- they would have to sign a declaration of intent. Guns would be issued only to those who declared they have no criminal designs.
SHARE Friday, May 3, 2013 TGIF: Criminal Government
The task force takes physicians and psychologists to task for their participation, in violation of age-old ethical standards, in the abuse of detainees, both by devising techniques that constituted torture and for failing to report abuses. It's about time a floodlight was shined on this shameful conduct by medical and so-called mental-health professionals.
(5 comments) SHARE Monday, December 10, 2012 Washington's Budget Con Game
Well, all good things must come to an end, and we've reached the point where government borrowing has finally gotten a bad name. People demand that it stop. They say they don't like the debt or the deficit. So politicians must now sing a different, "responsible" tune. They're now against all that -- or say they are. Beware: they can't be trusted.
SHARE Wednesday, February 6, 2013 Hagel's Retreat
The message that came out of the Hagel hearing is unfortunate: Deviation from the narrow range of opinion authorized by the ruling elite is forbidden. If you want respect from that elite, you'd better toe the line. (Whether one should want respect from the ruling elite is another question entirely.)
SHARE Tuesday, February 12, 2013 Drone Trust The Government
Thomas Jefferson and others of his generation understood that government was simply not something to be trusted. Rather, it was a permanent object of suspicion, because it was uniquely positioned to steal our freedoms. This of course is precisely the opposite of the attitude that government officials -- Democrat and Republican -- wish us Americans to hold.