Richard Reinsch

Richard Reinsch is a fellow at Liberty Fund and the editor of the Library of Law and Liberty.

Populism in Europe, Properly Understood

I link to an essay Peter Lawler and I have written now published in the current print edition of the Weekly Standard. We thought it worthwhile to sift through the good and the bad of the populist uprising against the EU. My fundamental conviction is that the EU is a political abstraction oriented to the interests of a meritocratic elite. Members of this cohort rule Europe without substantive accountability or political representation. As we say in the essay, the EU is a technocracy more than it is a democracy. The EU’s ruling class inspires no love or loyalty among Europeans for EU institutions. So a political reckoning, however long delayed and denied, will occur. The question is if it has already started, and the recent drubbing taken by mainstream parties in the UK and France, among other states, is an indication that it has.

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Introducing Joseph Postell

I'm happy to introduce Joseph Postell as this month's guest blogger. Joe is an assistant professor of political science at the University of Colorado-Colorado Springs and the co-editor of two books: Rediscovering Political Economy and Toward an American Conservatism.  Joe has contributed to this site on several occasions, where he has called for an increased judicial role in the administrative state and highlighted the importance of Roscoe Pound's critique of administrative justice.  He looks forward to discussing some interesting aspects of his current project: a manuscript on the historical relationship and tension between American constitutionalism and the administrative state.  He will also…

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An Education for This Republic

Published over a decade ago, Josiah Bunting III’s An Education for Our Time presents the plan of dying, septuagenarian billionaire John Adams, a descendant of those Adamses, for a new institution of higher learning to be built in eastern Wyoming. The broad goal is to provide a unique liberal education. In addition to studying classics, serving abroad, and mastering the outdoors, and classical and modern foreign language requirements, the College will also edify the character of its students through emulation by reading great biographies and engaging in deep historical learning that will form 1/3 of the curriculum.

There is no tuition. The school will operate as best it can free of any regulations from federal or state governments. SAT scores will not be considered for admissions. Grades will matter, but of greatest significance is character, or rather, the committees in each state that evaluate applicants will look for those young men and women who have demonstrated independence by taking risks under difficult circumstances. By this, Adams wants students who have been willing to pursue the good in the face of mockery.

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Introducing May Guest Blogger Frank Buckley

It's my pleasure to introduce Frank Buckley, Foundation Professor at George Mason School of Law, as our guest blogger for the month of May. You might recall his previous work on this site on the rise of executive power and the decline of liberty in America and the recent podcast we did on his latest book The Once and Future King: The Rise of Crown Government in America published by Encounter Books last month. I look forward to his posts on the administrative state, executive power, and other issues.

Announcing Keith Whittington as April Guest Blogger

I am very pleased to announce that Keith E. Whittington, the William Nelson Cromwell Professor of Politics at Princeton University, will be blogging @ Law and Liberty for the month of April. I know that we are in store for an interesting array of posts on constitutional jurisprudence and other subjects. Keith's books include Constitutional Interpretation: Textual Meaning, Original Intent, and Judicial Review (Kansas, 1999); Political Foundations of Judicial Supremacy: The Presidency, the Supreme Court, and Constitutional Leadership in U.S. History (Princeton, 2007), and American Constitutionalism (Oxford, 2012) (with Howard Gillman and Mark A. Graber). He is currently finishing a history…

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Friday Roundup, March 28th

Our Books section featured two great essays this week. In "Jewish Learning, Human Liberty," David Conway evaluates Moshe Halbertal's Maimonides: Life and Thought. Arnold Kling considers the economics and societal implications posed by rapid advances in computer technology in his review of The Second Machine Age. Scott Sumner @ EconLib: Central banks do not deserve our respect or our condemnation; they deserve our skepticism. Rick Garnett @ the Conglomerate on religious liberty and the rights of employees. After oral arguments in the Hobby Lobby case this week, which Marc DeGirolami profiled well, Richard Samuelson's older essay "What Adams Saw over Jefferson's Wall" is…

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The Dead Letter of the Law

A recent report from the Wall Street Journal flatly stated that with “so many unilateral executive waivers and delays . . . ObamaCare must be unrecognizable to its drafters, to the extent they ever knew what the law contained.” As Richard Epstein memorably put it, this amounts to “Government by Waiver.” In the case of Obamacare, the waivers and exemptions go to the heart of the bill itself. Healthcare coverage mandates for companies have been waived until 2015, and now word comes that the individual mandate has been quietly waived indefinitely for those individuals whose plans were cancelled and who cannot find affordable insurance on the exchanges.

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Friday Roundup, March 21st

The current Liberty Law Talk is with Nicholas Johnson on his new book Negroes and the Gun. Paul Rahe pens a compelling review essay in our Books section this week on Mark Blitz's Divine Law and Political Philosophy in Plato’s Laws: [Blitz] thinks Plato’s Laws may be a better guide to the manner in which reason and revelation can to good effect interact (at least where revelation takes the form of law) than the various works dedicated to that subject by Hobbes, Spinoza, Locke, and the leading figures of the 18th century Enlightenment. David Henderson and Jeffrey Rogers Hummel: The Inevitability of a…

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Friday Roundup, March 14th

Comes now Joel Alicea opining in this month's Forum on Richard Epstein's essay "In Defense of the Classical Liberal Constitution." Hank Clark of the BB&T Center for the Study of Capitalism at Clemson provides our feature Books essay this week on George Smith's The System of Liberty: Themes in the History of Classical Liberalism. David Henderson @ Econ Lib catches noted inequality czar Thomas Piketty dodging a straight-forward question on inequality in America. In an interview with New York Times columnist Eduardo Porter Piketty was asked: Might inequality in the United States be less damaging than it is in Europe because the very…

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Introducing Lauren Weiner as Associate Editor of Law and Liberty

Let us introduce Lauren Weiner, the new Associate Editor of Law and Liberty. Our growing enterprise now benefits from the editorial and writing efforts of a self-confessed ink-stained wretch. (Lauren says she is updating, though, and now prefers byte-sodden rogue.) Lauren’s writing life has taken her to jobs as an editor, reporter, and congressional staffer, and to the Pentagon, where she spent three years as a speechwriter to Secretary of Defense Robert Gates. Her interest in U.S. history, foreign policy, politics, and culture is deep and abiding. The publications in which her work has appeared include the Weekly Standard, Commentary,…

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