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Rational Review News Digest » News

the freedom movement's daily newspaper since 1991

Yes, it's a weekend special edition -- five news stories, five commentaries -- for several reasons: First, we have a holiday break coming next Thursday (and possibly Friday), so I figure it's a good idea to get some content out there on other off days to keep you stocked up. Secondly, we may have some shorter than usual editions between now and the new year. That period is known for its "slow news days" and many of our commentary sources pretty much just shut down during the period as well. And, of course, we're continuing to do our year-end fundraising. Trying not to be TOO intrusive with it, but remember: We only get paid if you pony up, so we have to ask now and then. Earlier this month, reader Steven R Linnabary remarked on Facebook: "I haven't needed a daily newspaper in at least a decade since discovering RRND!" That's the kind of thing I love to hear. After all, we ARE "the freedom movement's daily newspaper." That's what we do. Every non-holiday weekday, we put together a digest of the most important news stories and the most compelling political commentaries we can find for the edification of libertarian […]
Author: Thomas L. Knapp
Posted: December 20, 2014, 1:32 pm
"North Korea said U.S. accusations that it was involved in a cyberattack on Sony Pictures were "groundless slander" and that it was wanted a joint investigation into the incident with the United States. An unnamed spokesman of the North's foreign ministry said there would be 'grave consequences' if Washington refused to agree to the joint probe and continued to accuse Pyongyang, the official KCNA news agency reported on Saturday." (12/20/14)
Author: Thomas L. Knapp
Posted: December 20, 2014, 1:30 pm
"The Cuban national assembly announced on Friday that it would back the agreement of President Raul Castro and U.S. President Barack Obama to restore diplomatic ties that Washington severed more than 50 years ago. 'In the name of the Cuban people, we fully back the speech to the president of the council of state and of ministers, Army General Raul Castro Ruz, this past Dec. 17,' read Yolanda Ferrer, the president of the National Assembly's International Relations Commission." (12/20/14)
Author: Thomas L. Knapp
Posted: December 20, 2014, 1:28 pm
"A Turkish criminal court issued an arrest warrant Friday for Fethullah Gulen, a Turkish religious scholar who lives in self-exile in Pennsylvania and has become public enemy number one of Recep Tayyip Erdogan, Turkey’s increasingly autocratic president. The charges paralleled Erdogan’s accusations against his former ally. The court said Gulen had “established an illegal criminal organization with a hierarchical structure that is separate from the state’s own structure” in order to 'seize influential posts that govern Turkey’s social, economic, military and administrative mechanisms.'" (12/19/14)
Author: Thomas L. Knapp
Posted: December 20, 2014, 1:26 pm
"Google on Friday filed a lawsuit trying to block a probe by Mississippi Attorney General Jim Hood, accusing him of violating federal law in a campaign against the search giant. ... The lawsuit cites leaked emails from a high-profile hack against Sony Pictures, which were the source of The Verge's story. The emails suggest Hood worked with the Motion Picture Association of America, which has long been an adversary of Google over piracy issues, in carrying out his campaign against illicit drugs." (12/19/14)
Author: Thomas L. Knapp
Posted: December 20, 2014, 1:24 pm

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Rational Review News Digest » Commentary

the freedom movement's daily newspaper since 1991

Cartoon. (12/19/14)
Author: Thomas L. Knapp
Posted: December 21, 2014, 12:23 pm
"No, simply consolidating school districts will not solve St. Louis’ educational problems. The editorial board of the St. Louis Post-Dispatch realizes as much. When they called for a city-county school district in April 2014, they wrote that their ideal school district would utilize 'some form of open enrollment.' The editorial board implicitly recognized that school choice must be a part of any plan to improve educational outcomes for disadvantaged students in the Saint Louis area. Though the city-county school district will likely never happen, there are ways in which we can expand options for students. For starters, it should be easier for students in low-performing schools to take the dollars allotted for their education to the school of their choice." (12/18/14)
Author: Thomas L. Knapp
Posted: December 21, 2014, 11:23 am
"In my last essay I explained some basic themes found in Bishop Butler’s theory of ethics, much of which includes what we now call 'psychology.' In this essay I recap those themes, expand upon them, and summarize Butler’s theory of conscience. I strongly recommend that you read the previous part before tackling this one." (12/19/14)
Author: Thomas L. Knapp
Posted: December 21, 2014, 10:23 am
"If slavery made cotton especially 'cheap' (meaning especially abundant) -- so cheap and abundant to have supplied the necessary spark for the greatest economic transformation in human history -- we can only wonder why this millennia-old institution failed to supply such a spark at any earlier time and only in Britain. Yet even greater wonder is caused by the data’s failure to show that the price of cotton was lower, and the supplies of cotton higher, with slavery than without it." (12/20/14)
Author: Thomas L. Knapp
Posted: December 21, 2014, 9:24 am
"At long last, we’re going to open a U.S. embassy in Havana and start loosening some of the draconian embargo restrictions that have crushed the Cuban people economically and frustrated most American citizens for more than half a century. We can all thank Pope Francis for his help, and we finally have something to thank President Obama for. After six years in office he got something right." (12/19/14)
Author: Thomas L. Knapp
Posted: December 20, 2014, 1:29 pm

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