Category Archives: Government

Why Can’t America Win Its Wars?

Thursday, March 10, 2016

Editor’s note: This article is part of a Hoover series of essays on military history. 

In his opening speech to an assembled body of troops in the iconic 1970 movie Patton, the title character (played by George C. Scott) intones, “Americans play to win all the time. Now, I wouldn’t give a hoot in hell for a man who lost and laughed. That’s why Americans have never lost and will never lose a war. Because the very thought of losing is hateful to Americans.” The moviemaking moment was full of irony: as the movie character Patton inspired the troops who would soon go on to cinematically annihilate Nazi Germany, a newer generation of American soldiers was fighting and dying in a war in Vietnam that the United States would definitively lose.

Solving Uncle Sam’s Overspending Problem

 Charles Blahous | 03/07/2016

At a time when the presidential campaigns seem to be about everything other than the federal budget, the latest projections from the Congressional Budget Office (CBO) serve as a stark reminder that Americans will suffer grave economic consequences if the federal government does not repair its broken fiscal practices. It is often rightly noted that federal debt is at historic highs and threatening to grow to catastrophic levels. What is too seldom recognized is a point made by Hoover scholar Keith Hennessey (my former boss at the White House): to say we have a problem with deficits and debt is an oversimplification. What we have instead is an overspending problem, and the federal debt is essentially a symptom of that problem.

Foreign Policy and the Constitution

Tom Cotton was elected to the U.S. Senate from Arkansas in 2014, following one term in the U.S. House of Representatives. He serves on the Senate Banking Committee, the Senate Intelligence Committee, and the Senate Armed Services Committee. A graduate of Harvard College, he studied government at the Claremont Graduate School and received his J.D. from Harvard Law School in 2002. In 2005, he was commissioned as a 2nd Lieutenant in the U.S. Army, rose to 1st Lieutenant, and served deployments in Iraq with the 101st Airborne and in Afghanistan with a Provincial Reconstruction Team. His military decorations include the Bronze Star Medal, Combat Infantry Badge, and Ranger Tab.

Judicial Activism Reconsidered

Written by: Thomas Sowell

Like many catchwords, “judicial activism” has acquired so many different meanings as to obscure more than it reveals. Yet it is not a term that can simply be ignored as intellectually “void for vagueness,” for at the heart of it are concerns about the very meaning and survival of law. Abandonment of the term not being a viable option, clarification becomes imperative.
“Judicial activism” and “judicial restraint” raise logically obvious but often ignored questions: Activism toward what? Restraint toward what? Are judges deemed to be activist or restrained toward (1) the current popular majority, (2) the legislature representing the current popular majority, (3) the statutes passed by present or past legislatures, (4) the acts of current of past executive or administrative agencies, (5) the meaning of the words in the Constitution, (6) the principles or purposes of those who wrote the Constitution, or (7) the legal precedents established by previous judicial interpretations of the Constitution?