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Free Minds and Free Markets

How Rail Screws the Poor
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Student Loan Scam
Eating Bugs
August/September 2012

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Old-age entitlements vs. the safety net

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reason Free Minds and Free Markets
August/September 2012
Volume 44, No. 4

Departments 44 Resetting Your Biological Clock

54 Jacob Sullum on the TV show
2 Unthinkable, Predictable frontiers in gender equality. Nurse Jackie
Disasters Ronald Bailey 56 Katherine Mangu-Ward on the art
The disintegration of the euro,
like Americas entitlement 62 How Rail Screws the Poor 58 Peter Suderman on the
bomb, is both unfathomable and As Los Angeles spends billions on documentary Last Call at the Oasis
inevitable. Matt Welch light rail, transit use declines.
Tim Cavanaugh 50 Latter-Day Acceptance
6 Contributors Mitt Romney may inspire anti-
Mormon paranoia, but its
7 Letters and Reaction Features nothing compared to the fears his
forefathers faced. Jesse Walker
unbroken Internet 24 Generational Warfare
Old-age entitlements vs. the 56 Frederick Douglass, Classical
10 Citings safety net. Nick Gillespie and Liberal
Silent Veronique DeRugy A fresh look at the political
Springs shoddy science; rent evolution of a great American.
control reigns; no border crisis; 36 After the Storm Damon W. Root
mobile snacking crackdown; How Joplin, Missouri, rebuilt The Political Thought of Frederick
cellphone tracking following a devastating tornado Douglass: In Pursuit of American
by circumventing bureaucracy. Liberty, by Nicholas Buccola
Tate Watkins
Columns 60 1776, All Over Again
A 1969 musical about the
8 Obama Says I Do to Gay Culture & Reviews Declaration of Independence is
Marriage back. Katherine Mangu-Ward
The president changes his mind 46 Shenanigans!
on gay unions. Again. Jacob Sullum A worms-eye view of what it 64 Bin Ladens Doll House
takes to get someone I can stand
16 Eating Bugs elected president. Peter Bagge a model of the terrorists
The search for new food frontiers Abbottabad compound.
in an era of population growth. Peter Suderman
Greg Beato 50
20 Student Loan Scam 52 Cover Illustration: Terry Colon
Why are todays poor subsidizing Coriolanus
tomorrows rich? Veronique de Rugy

duction or use, without permission, of editorial or graphic content is prohibited. reason

From the Top: Matt Welch

Unthinkable, Predictable Disasters

The disintegration of the euro, like Americas entitlement
bomb, is both unfathomable and inevitable.

Youd have to be willfully ignorant to be

surprised by Greeces potential exit from the contemplate the inevitable. In January 2010,
common European currency. First the famously -
misgoverned country failed to meet the ini- etary affairs commissioner, insisted that we
have no Plan B for Greece. Shockingly, some
eurocrats were still expressing that attitude as
gross domestic product, a national debt below recently as late May of this year. Keeping Greece
60 percent of GDP - in the euro zone, European Central Bank (ECB)
age points of the lowest euro-member countrys
rate, and a stable currency for more than two
were working on. What about the elusive Plan
in 2004 that they had lied when they said they B? Theres already been criticism that there is
did meet those targets.
In late 2009 the newly elected Greek gov- as you start talking about Plan B or Plan C,

was coming in at double its predecessors window.

previous forecast, which was already double You cant plan for disasters by refusing to
what was technically allowed. The news was talk about them. Yet that was the European
approach to monetary disintegration until May
within the euro zone (200108) Greece aver- 6, 2012, when the party won second
place in Greeces parliamentary elections after
of GDP, compared to the other members aver- promising to rip up all post-2009 bailout agree-
age of 2 percent; gorged itself on an extravagant ments with Brussels. Only at that late date did
2004 Summer Olympics; and capped off the -
party in October 2009 by voting in the Panhel- ing of what a euro-less Greece, and a Greece-
lenic Socialist Movement party, which promised less euro, may look like. Unsurprisingly, the
to spend even more money. last-ditch reality check looked grim.
This reckless behavior was in keeping with The National Bank of Greece waited until
Greeces checkered modern history, which late May to warn Greeks that exiting the euro
would result in a 22 percent reduction in GDP,
of the euros main predecessor, the Latin Mone-
tary Union, back in 1908 and suffering through
devaluation of the new currency. ECB President
World War II. That history was why the single Mario Draghi, meanwhile, informed the Euro-

currency as it was being established in the late currency had become unsustainable unless
1990s was whether messy, balkanized Greece further steps are undertaken.
tion-phobic Germany. Since October 2009 we
have had a conclusive answer.
2 | reason | Aug./Sept. 2012
Security payouts by 40 percent. Rom- ing the partys over, you lose. This
mind in the way they talk about, and ney, meanwhile, has attacked Obama
mostly avoid talking about, our own all campaign season for cutting Medi- Rugy points out in her column on
utterly predictable yet practically care, and in May he pledged to keep the Student Loan Scam (page 20),
the countrys grossly excessive level both major-party presidential can-
page 24, Editor in Chief of military spending at 4 percent of didates support subsidizing federal
Nick Gillespie and Contribut- GDP student loans at below-market rates.
debating a debt crisis that is every bit For similar reasons, President Barack
in damning detail what almost every as inevitable as the Greek withdrawal Obamas cut in employee-side payroll
policy thinker knows but almost no from the euro. tax contributions, which has made
politician dares acknowledge: Social Washington does not even have Social Security even more insolvent,
Security and Medicare are bankrupt- the excuse of trying to avoid a bank retained a bipartisan support even
ing the country and jeopardizing our run, which is surely contributing -
ability to provide a social safety net. to European bankers reticence to lican majority took over the House of
The numbers are daunting: In 1940, discuss disaster planning. Instead, Representatives in 2010.
Gillespie and De Rugy note, there We dont know which brave
You cant plan for disasters political soulsoutside of libertar-
in Social Securitys pay-as-you-go ian stalwarts such as Rep. Ron Paul
system; today there are fewer than
by refusing to talk about (R-Texas) and Libertarian Party
three. In 2011 Social Security and them. Yet that was the nominee Gary Johnson, both dis-
European approach to cussed in comic artist Peter Bagges
all federal outlays; that share is pro- monetary disintegration reportage Shenanigans! on page
jected to hit 44 percent in 2020 and 46will dare utter the truth about
until May. the punishing costs of guaranteeing
concluded that confronting our massive payouts based on birth cer-
- demographic demons is a one-way
ing the time bomb of automatic ticket out of power.
entitlement payments going out But thats not the only reason the
to every retiring baby boomer, you inevitable feels so unthinkable. Some May: a reality so brutal that all the
are not serious about public policy. of it, I suspect, is the same reason that usual incentives for kicking the can
Regrettably, though predictably, the Southern Californians keep building down the road no longer apply. When
two major-party presidential nomi- that day of reckoning arrives, the best
nees are not serious about this issue. prone foothills, that New Orleans was that we can hope for is that enough
Democrat Barack Obama claimed in woefully underprepared for Hurri- people will have prepared for it by
May (falsely) that Republican Mitt cane Katrina (for more on that, read mapping out how we can convert
Romney would cut individual Social a disorderly retreat into a sensible
A Notice To Our Subscribers -
From time to time, our subscriber list ing bubbles: We lack the imaginative Editor in Chief Matt Welch (matt.welch@
is rented to others. We carefully screen is co-author, with Nick Gillespie,
those to whom we rent our list and try scope to comprehend the potential of The Declaration of Independents: How Lib-
only to rent to those whose offers we devastation, and life is more fun ertarian Politics Can Fix Whats Wrong with
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4 | reason | Aug./Sept. 2012

Essential reading for

everyone who cares

about our economic
Harvard University

Johan Norberg
exposes the abiding
hypocrisies of policy
that generated this
crisis far better than
an American insider
could. A masterwork
in miniature.
AMITY SHLAES, George W. Bush
Institute, and author of The Forgotten
Man: A New History of the Great Depression

ow was it possible that in a world where thousands of people regulated financial markets, the
whole system crashed down? And should we now give more power to central banks, government
agencies, politicians, and regulators? Now in paperback, with a new chapter on the spreading
global economic crisis, Financial Fiasco guides readers through a world of irresponsible behavior by
consumers, decisionmakers in companies, government agencies, and political institutions.
PAPERBACK: $9.95 E-BOOK: $6.99

Available now at and nationwide on September 16th.

reason Matt Welch
Nick Gillespie
( Editor Jesse Walker -
Katherine Mangu-Ward
( ing tolerance of Mormonism. Once considered
Tim Cavanaugh
( dangerous and bizarre, the Church of Jesus
Brian Doherty (
Christ of Latter-day Saints is now the spiritual
Damon Root (
Peter Suderman (
home of the presumptive Republican candidate
Jacob Sullum (
Jesse Walker ( for president. Walker, 41, coordinates s
Mike Riggs (
book coverage and is working on a book-length
Lucy Steigerwald (
Ronald Bailey
( erCollins. In his book, he chronicles conspiracy
Mary Toledo Jesse Walker
( theories both silly (are manholes really designed
Barb Burch (
Blair Rainey to kidnap pedestrians?) and serious: The Sen-
Peter Bagge, Greg Beato, Gregory Benford,
ates post-Watergate report on the , the FBI,
Veronique de Rugy, James V. DeLong, Charles
Paul Freund, Glenn Garvin, Mike Godwin, David
and other Executive Branch agencies, says
R. Henderson, John Hood, Kerry Howley, Carolyn
Lochhead, Loren E. Lomasky, Mike Lynch, John Walker, is full of demonstrably true stories
McClaughry, Deirdre N. McCloskey, Michael
McMenamin, Michael Valdez Moses, Michael about conspiracies. Walker, a graduate of the
C. Moynihan, Charles Oliver, Walter Olson, John
J. Pitney Jr., Julian Sanchez, Thomas Szasz, Jeff University of Michigan, lives in Baltimore.
A. Taylor, David Weigel, Cathy Young, Michael
J.D. Tuccille J.D. Tuccille
Don Erik Franzen
s news aggregation project, which
3415 S. Sepulveda Blvd., Suite 400 will be launched this summer. Tuccille, 46, lives
Los Angeles, CA 90034-6064
Tel: 310-391-2245 Fax: 310-391-4395

1747 Connecticut Avenue, NW

Washington, DC 20009
City. Libertarianism came naturally, he says,
Tel: 202-986-0916 Fax: 202-315-3623 since there were issues of lying around
Burr Media Group the house growing up and he had freewheel-
Ronald E. Burr, 703-893-3632
Joseph P. Whistler, 540-349-4042
ing family history such as a great-grandfather
P.O. Box 8504, Big Sandy, TX 75755 Ed Krayewski
1-888-reason-8 (1-888-732-7668) Bronx that was said to be the then-police com-
missioners watering hole of choice. Tuccille
Circulation Specialists Inc.

Kable Distribution Services, 212-705-4600

is published by the Reason Foundation,
Some previous jobs include stints at The New
Contributions to the Reason Foundation are York Daily News website and
tax-deductible. Signed articles in
the views of the authors and do not necessarily Hes also the author of the 2011 comic novel
represent those of the editors, the Reason
Foundation, or its trustees; articles should not High Desert Barbecue (CreateShip).
be construed as attempts to aid or hinder the
passage of any bill before any legislative body. Ed Krayewski previously
The claims and opinions set forth in paid adver-
tisements published in this magazine are not worked as an associate producer for Freedom-
necessarily those of the Reason Foundation,
and the publisher takes no responsibility for Watch
any such claim or opinion.
Reason Foundation -
Thomas E. Beach, (Chairman), Baron Bond, Drew ism from Columbia University and a B.S. and
Carey, Derwood S. Chase Jr., James R. Curley,
Richard J. Dennis, William A. Dunn, David W.
Fleming, Hon. C. Boyden Gray, James D.
Jameson, Manuel S. Klausner, David H. Koch, Hall University. He currently resides in Newark,
James Lintott, Stephen Modzelewski, David
Nott, George F. Ohrstrom, Robert W. Poole Jr., New Jersey, where he was born. Before working
Carol Sanders, Vernon L. Smith, Richard A.
Wallace, Fred M. Young, Harry E. Teasley Jr.
(chairman emeritus), Frank Bond (emeritus),
in cable news, Krayewski taught seventh grade
Walter E. Williams (emeritus) social studies and language arts. Krayewski will
David Nott
Nick Gillespie be working on -
Adrian T. Moore
Julian Morris
Victoria Hughes
gation project. He is also adapting his fathers
Mike Alissi novel, Skyliner, which Krayewski says he previ-
Jon Graff
ously translated into English, into comic book
form, with my father doing the art.
6 | reason | Aug./Sept. 2012
Letters Fixing the Unbroken Internet Reaction

properly points out that under (voided) [Haidt] is not a libertarian, but a
1996 legislation, a minor could buy liberal who has come to appreciate
[Howard] Sterns book, Miss America, some aspects of libertarian thought.
in a store, but if that same youngster
reads a profanity-laced quote from the work, but the fact that he is actu-
ally trying to understand is worth
posted it] could go to the slammer. encouraging. The old political divi-
But the piece then attempts to extend sions are being altered, and a lot of
the concept invalidly, describing 2011 liberals are going to be looking for
congressional bills as renewed efforts a new homeperhaps it would be
to give the government broad power good to help them understand alter-
native views.
made of legitimate concerns that gave reason online commenter Alan in
rise to the bills. response to Born This Way? (May)
cal release arrived at an American port, options for approaches to civic life:
- 1. Live and let live
Born This Way? traband. The Stop Online Piracy Act 2. All for one and one for all
While Jonathan Haidts research is (SOPA) and Act ( ) bills
interesting, he missed the core of the were intended to parallel this function
problem (Born This Way? May). in the virtual world, so that foreign- reason online commenter KPres in
The most basic of all ideological response to Born This Way?
questions is not should we preserve stopped at the U.S. border. SOPA and
the present order or change it? Rather were troublesome not in aim but Matt Welch has a nice essay, Why
it is: How much force will we initiate in overkill.
to shape government, society, and David P. Hayes
Washington, DC well-made and deserves to be reiter-
wills? ated often: the more government
Haidt gets close to this issue Dirty Harrys weapon does, the more it offends basic val-
when he observes, Morality binds of choice was a .44 Magnum, not a ues; words to keep in mind as we
.357 Magnum (The Gun Explosion, head into the election season.
each other as though the fate of the May). Georgetown University law professor
world depended on our side winning Randy Barnett, writing at the Volokh
each battle. More important, the fate Conspiracy blog
of every individual can be seriously Letters are welcome and should
altered by these battles. Government be addressed to
achieves essentially unfettered power reason
to initiate force, injuring or destroying 1747 Connecticut Avenue, NW
Washington, DC 20009
course of democracy, which will get fax: 202-315-3623
nastier and bloodier every dayunless
and until we stop initiating political
Bradford L. Warren
Indianapolis, IN

reason | Aug./Sept. 2012 | 7

Columns: Jacob Sullum

Obama Says I Do to Gay Marriage

The president changes his mind on gay unions. Again.

After President Barack Obama -

The New York Times

Meet the Press


New York
- Times/CBS

- -



Senior Editor Jacob Sullum (jsullum@reason.

com) is a nationally syndicated columnist.

8 | reason | Aug./Sept. 2012

Citings Strip search approval held for a week in two different
Spread Em drivers with a choice: a search of
your car now or a search of your
Jacob Sullum
In 2001 the Supreme Court said ity, in an opinion by Anthony
100-mile search the Fourth Amendment does not
preclude a warrantless arrest War on chicken cutlets
exemption; Silent for a minor criminal offense, concerning which policies are Breast Man
such as a misdemeanor seatbelt appropriate to prevent weap
Springs shoddy violation punishable only by a ons and other contraband from Katherine Mangu-Ward
science; rent control Would this
April, when the Court said the hazard does not necessarily
reigns; no border Fourth Amendment allows strip hinge on the seriousness of a drag star Derrick Barry asked a
searches of every detainee who reporter for the Las Vegas Review-
crisis; mobile will be admitted to the general Journal
snacking crackdown; the Fourth Amendments ban player in the Divas Las Vegas

cellphone tracking requires an exception to the

general strip search rule when Security Administration ( )
a prisoner is charged with a when he attempted to board a
minor offense that does not
taining tools of his trade: silicone
breast enhancers, known as

Apparently Barrys enhance

ments were sizable; they
humiliation associated with the exceeded the

Ronald Reagan, Bettman/Corbis/AP Images

arrests for trivial offenses that
the Court approved in 2001; s

Lawyer, Veer/ bnpdesignstudio

it also enhances the already website, the list of permitted
considerable power that police
a New Jersey man who was to augment the body for medi
cal or cosmetic reasons such as
because a database erroneously states that give police discre mastectomy products, prosthetic
showed that he had failed to pay tion to arrest people for minor breasts, bras or shells contain
offenses such as failing to buckle ing gels, saline solution, or other

25 years ago in reason

The Fourth Amendment might as well The great achievement of Ronald Reagan, in fact, was
in making ideology once again respectable in Ameri-
concerned. The IRS, for example, audits can politics. He talked about liberty, about individual
millions of tax returns every year with- rights, about how the Founders established certain
out any probable cause or evidence principles that need to be followed to maintain a free
and prosperous society. And Americans responded
itself is a violation of your right to pri- with enthusiasm.
vacy in your personal papers. The IRS Edward H. Crane, Max Headroom For President
requires you to divulge all sorts of pri-
vate details about your monetary affairs
and, upon audit, demands disclosure of August/September 1987
anything related to a tax issueall with-
out a court warrant.
Mark Skousen, Snooping Sam

10 | reason | Aug./Sept. 2012

As the San Francisco Chronicle Quotes
decide to bring your prosthe
sis or mastectomy bra in your neys said in October that they
accessible property rather than would aggressively prosecute writing that agents could have Politics is weird. And
wearing it, it will be allowed creepy. And now I know
through the checkpoint after it is dants truck, based on its size, lacks even the loosest
contained evidence of alien attachment to anything like
saries in San Francisco, one in reality.
at breast cancer survivors, how Marin County and 50 in the city government applies the border Fox News anchor Shepard
of Sacramento have closed under search exception anywhere Smith on Mitt Romneys
being not a girl and not yet a pressure, along with about 150 within 100 miles of an inter statement that he was
national boundary, the logic of look[ing] forward to work-
After being held for more than Oaksterdam is still operating, ing with Newt Gingrich
an hour while after Gingrich dropped out
Sky Jones, the schools executive to roadblocks aimed at revealing of the presidential race,
him, Barry narrowly managed to chancellor, told , a local violations of any law, as long as May 2
station, that the raids knocked

feds seized all of our computers, I reject her philosophy.

Its an atheist philosophy.
Medical marijuana which we desperately need in Himalayas: still icy It reduces human interac-
tions down to mere con-
Pot Schools Out Glacier Scare tracts, and it is antithetical
Brian Doherty Ronald Bailey to my worldview.
In April dozens of federal 100-mile search exemption The demise of the Himalayan Rep. Paul Ryan (R-Wis.),
agents, including representa Checkpoint Zone glaciers is happening more denying allegations that
he is an Ayn Rand fan,
Service and the Drug Enforce J.D. Tuccille some cases may not be happen despite having gone on the
ment Administration, raided For travelers in the American record many times praising
Oaksterdam University, a trade her work, National Review
school for the burgeoning medi interrogations at highway check Online, April 26
points are a familiar experience, (
raided the home of its founder, courtesy of the border search sive Himalayan ice sheets would
melt away by 2035, dramatically Seniors love getting junk
reducing the amount of water mail. Its sometimes their
in rivers on which hundreds of only way of communicating
specify what they were looking or feeling like theyre part
for at the three Oakland, Cali of the real world. Elderly
fornia, locations, and they made Americans, more than
cally developed to identify trucks anyone in America, rely on
legal under California regula smuggling illegal drugs, Border predictions to be wildly off the the United States Postal
tions, and Lees dispensary had Service.
Senate Majority Leader
Medical marijuana, Veer/ daveh900

dant to a secondary inspection

said there is no conclusive Harry Reid (D-Nev.), arguing
19, the failed 2010 initiative to revealed a hidden compartment
warming with what is happening postal reform bill, The Hill,
suspect him of carrying illegal April 18
stepped down from running his
businesses, fearing he might face As the Supreme Court put it
in the 1985 case United States v.
Montoya de Hernandez, automo but embarrassingly, it turned
tive travelers may be stopped at out that the s own glacier
guesstimate was based on a
der without individualized suspi popular science magazines 1999

Now new research is lend

Indianapolis v. Edmond, the Court ing further support to the
cautioned that we cannot sanc
published in the April 20 issue
of Science bluntly concludes the
possibility that interrogation and statement that most [Himalayan]
inspection may reveal that any glaciers will likely disappear by
given motorist has committed
reports that some glaciers in

reason | Aug./Sept. 2012 | 11

List medical alert pendant while

Silent Springs Shoddy Science No Supreme Court review way audio box, LifeAid called
The 1962 environmentalist classic Rent Control Reigns
Silent Spring by Rachel Carson helped
build the foundation of the green Damon Root
movement. Roger Meiners, a professor In April
of economics and law at the University Court declined to hear a consti
of Texas at Arlington, is the editor of tutional challenge to New York When a bleary and annoyed
a new book, Silent Spring at 50: The Chamberlain, speaking through
False Crises of Rachel Carson (Cato). Landlords James and Jeanne
reason asked him to list Carsons three Harmon argued that the law vio

Roger Meiners Fifth Amendment: nor shall pri

1 She exaggerated cancer rates.
Carson asserted that one person
in four in the United States would die of cancer and that
vate property be taken for public loud noises inside and thought
someone else might be in dan
cancer was becoming epidemic in children, despite public Although this clause is typically
health data to the contrary. The cancer rate was increasing, associated with eminent domain According to Chamberlains
cases, the Supreme Court has son and the familys lawyers,
diseases. This meant they lived long enough to die of cancer, held that it is a taking when a police camera footage shows
the incidence of which rises with age. Carson also ignored the state regulation forces a property
evidence linking tobacco smoking to cancer. owner to submit to a permanent their way in, about an hour after
they arrived, Chamberlain was
2 She ignored the upsides of pesticides. Silent Springs
reporting on the effects of pesticides is entirely negative.
DDT and other
New Yorks rent regulations standing, unarmed, in his boxer

pest controls that saved millions of lives worldwide by con- condition they had come to help,
trolling malaria, typhus, dysentery, dengue fever, and other percent below market, and they
diseases that had previously been common. get to occupy their apartments

3 She promoted the myth of the balance of nature. Rachel

Carsons belief in the still-common concept of a balance
of nature is a misunderstanding of how ecosystems really
own relatives as lease successors
(who must live in the apartment
showed that the bullet entered
through Chamberlains upper
work. There is no equilibrium in nature. Her presentation of right arm and lodged in his right
the environment is teleological or mystical rather than scien- more, the Harmons Upper West lung, where it caused the inter
Side brownstone has been desig
nated a landmark, meaning they
the region appear to be growing may not tear it down, and the threatened them with a knife,
rather than shrinking and that in land is zoned for residential uses,
any case they will persist beyond Movement (VAM), according to so they are forbidden to start Commissioner David Chong
documents released in response over with a grocery store or some deemed the shooting a war
the water in affected Asian rivers
comes from monsoon rains, any request by Foreign Policy maga purposes, the Harmons face a April, after months of complaints
glacial melting due to climate VAM from Chamberlains relatives
change will have only a minor team led by an agent with a back Because the Harmons previ and their supporters, Westches
ground in narcotics working ter County District Attorney
Appeals for the 2nd Circuit, Janet DiFiore announced that
operation, codenamed which upheld the law as a legiti she would present the case to
Not so patriotic mate exercise of state regulatory
FBI Fakers power, New Yorks rent stabiliza
time, the used VAM to track a
Ed Krayewski wide range of radical and fringe criminal charges against any of
Newly released documents
reveal that the Federal Bureau of Helping a man to death
Deadly LifeAid
institutional reluctance to pur No border crisis
movements in the early 1990s, sue investigations based merely Jacob Sullum
Fewer Migrants
crossing paths with Oklahoma Early on the morning of
an review committee warned November 19, Kenneth Cham Brian Doherty
and participating in the infa agents to focus on criminal con As the Obama administra
duct, rather than constitutionally Marine and retired correctional tion deports record numbers of

created a fake the Bureau shut the investigation accidentally set off his LifeAid and the Supreme Court consid

12 | reason | Aug./Sept. 2012

ers whether Arizonas tough law Brickbats
aimed at illegal immigrants is
constitutional, the supposed cri
sis that such policies are meant
against the law to release information about peo-
Fewer illegal immigrants are ple with weapon permits.

Douglas Massey, who runs Juliet Pries wanted to open an ice cream store in
San Franciscos Cole Valley neighborhood. She
eventually succeeded.
in the wake of the recession, net But Pries said it
illegal migration from Mexico took her two
years and tens
illegal immigrants living in the of thousands
United States dropped from 12 of dollars just
million to 11 million or so toward to get all of the
the end of the last decade, and no permits and com-
Parents of some students at Californias plete the paper-
Whats more, Massey argues, work required
the number of illegal immigrants Albert Einstein Middle School are upset
that Sacramento County sheriffs detec- by the various
within our borders probably bureaucracies
would be lower if we had a less tives pulled their children out of class,
interviewed them, and took DNA samples she had to deal
without parental permission as part of a with.
Mexicans to come and work, murder investigation.
then return to home and fam Louie Castro received a less-than-honorable
The state of Nevada and the city of Hen- discharge from the U.S. Army back in 2002. What
the United States became much derson have agreed to pay a total of
$292,500 to Adam Greene and his wife to he got from the Army when he left didnt contain
settle a lawsuit the couple brought after a DD
we werent spending nearly $12 found that out almost a decade later when return-
billion a year on border enforce ing from a trip to Europe. When he went through
ment, those natural patterns of Greene over when they saw him weav- Miami International Airport in January, comput-
return would mean 2 million ing. They thought he was drunk, but he . He spent 12 days in jail
fewer illegal immigrants living was actually suffering a diabetic shock.

they repeatedly kicked the unresponsive

Greene while shouting at him to stop local media outlets picked up the story, the Army
Cyberbullying suspensions resisting. decided it didnt need Castro in Colorado to com-
Troll Patrol plete the paperwork.
J.D. Tuccille In an effort to lobby against laws allow-
Has cyberbullying become Victoria Baca called
the disorderly conduct of the the New Mexico
sent out photos of eight individuals he State Police to
legal bludgeon with which to claimed were outlaw bikers who had report that she
thump innocent people when concealed carry permits. That violated a had been victim-
the authorities dont like what state law against identifying those with ized by an Internet
concealed carry permits as well as a law
takeaway from an incident in barring the release of drivers license her they couldnt
San Francisco, where three high photos. The sheriffs immediately send
school seniors were suspended department
for saying mean things about cleared the asked them to call
captain of before coming.
any wrong-
doing, say- came by without calling
ing he hadnt
George Washington High School realized the jumped a fence with a Beware of Dog sign and
used their home computers to photos shot and killed one of the familys dogs. State
Illustrations by Terry Colon

post parodies and nasty com were

ments about teachers and school drivers defense and no action will be taken against him
principal interrogated them photos Charles Oliver
and decided to suspend them or that it was

reason | Aug./Sept. 2012 | 13

Follow-Up the locations where food trucks
were no longer welcome to offer
their cupcakes, Vietnamese
Gray Markets Forever! noodles, or traditional tacos and
Katherine Mangu-Ward
Vendors are banned from
In November 1993, Contributing Editor
Glenn Garvin introduced reason readers of any stationary restaurant

Mexico. Marta came to the United types of established food ven

States legally in 1971 as the wife of an
American citizen. But she quickly joined protection, as do the convention
the informal economy of Los Angeles, center and the citys two sports
the gray and black markets that help
meet demand for cheap, off-the-books also reminded to stay away from
services of all kinds.
In Americas Economic Refugees, result: precious few areas where
Garvin explained that Marta started
work in a garment factory but, like so We have done our best
many immigrants before her, soon real- to work with all food vendors
ized she would rather be in business for
herself. She sold her jewelry and used spokeswoman for the mayors
St. Louis Post-
of ingredients for tamales, a cornhusk- Dispatch.
wrapped savory treat from home. Soon this map will make it easier for
she was so busy she had to bring a
niece from Mexico to help her keep up parking spot and will alleviate
with the demand. the issues between trucks and
restaurants during the busy sum
Life in the gray market isnt all pork
sausage and roses, though. You have
to watch out for the police, Marta message instructed food truck
told Garvin. They dont always make operators to keep a copy of the
found that of the nations 50 major cities, new map in their vehicles, put
bought a $125 urn so that I could branch out a little 20 ban legitimate mobile vendors from ting the onus on honest entre
bit, offer my customers a chocolate drink. I bought setting up near their brick-and-mortar preneurs to show to any police
competitors, while 19 allow vendors to
sad, but what can you do? stay in one spot for only a short amount of resentatives that you are in an
Not much has changed. Today the Los Angeles time, leaving much of the vending arena to
the unlicensed. The Los Angeles proposal
the inventory and propane-powered mini-carts under consideration when Garvin wrote
of unlicensed folks selling bacon-wrapped hot his article was virtually identical to the
dogs or other taste treats deemed dangerous by restrictions in place today: To go legit, a
the government. Cart owners who fail to dodge vendor must procure nearly $1,000 worth
of permits, plus a cart that costs between
serve up to six months in jail.
A 2011 report from the Institute for Justice, the reach for entrepreneurs like Marta.

for three days, accusing them of First and Fourteenth Amend ary records have been expunged,
bullying and disrupting school they still lost three days of
With the law clear, school
barred from their prom and from
after they were contacted by the penalize cyberbullying remains
American Civil Liberties Union
of Northern California and the Cellphone tracking
Courts ruling in Tinker v. Des Pocket Rat
Moines. lutely recognize and value our Mobile snacking crackdown
Court held that a prohibition Jacob Sullum
Truck-Free Zones
Food truck, Veer/ McHenry

against expression of opinion, Gentle Blythe, spokeswoman for In January the Supreme
without any evidence that the Katherine Mangu-Ward Court said tracking a car by
rule is necessary to avoid sub District, assured the investigative On April 19, food truck own attaching a device to it is
stantial interference with school California
discipline or the rights of others, Watch unwelcome email message from
is not permissible under the While the students disciplin decision hinged on the physical

14 | reason | Aug./Sept. 2012

intrusion required by that tech Soundbite
nique, it left unclear what limits
the Constitution imposes on sur Lynching Charlie Lynch
veillance that does not involve
touching the targets property, Interview by Alex Manning

the absence of clear guidance, a he tried to do this the right way, he ran into
recent report from the American trouble. The federal government wanted to
Civil Liberties Union (ACLU) make an example of him, to show that there
suggests, law enforcement agen is no right way to do medical marijuana in the
cies are making up the rules as United States.
Q: What does this say about the drug war? Its one
ACLU asked 383 agencies mans story, but does it apply to the rest of the
about their policies for obtaining country?
location information from cell
phone providers and received A: reason.
tv hired me to do a short piece about Charlie
enforcement agencies tracking Lynch. I went up, and the producer said were
going to be meeting someone who runs a
medical marijuana dispensary. So in my mind
police departments do warrant I thought, , hes a bit of a stoner, probably;
hes kind of a hippie, maybe sort of a free
ening emergencies, but many do spirit. And Charlie Lynch was a completely
it routinely, while others let cell different kind of man: the kind of person you
phone carriers decide how much would trust babysitting your kids, who looks
just like an ordinary businessman. And [he]
As examples of permissive essentially acts very much like a regular phar-
Rick Ray macist, simply wanting to dispense medicine
policies, the ACLU cited Lincoln,
Nebraska, where police obtain to patients and do it the right way, and do it
even location data (which legally. And so the disconnect was huge. I went
is more precise than cell tower into the interview and thought, Wait a minute,
location information) without Charlie Lynch, operator of a medical mari- ticket, hes never violated any law, and here he
juana dispensary in Morro Bay, California, is about to go to federal prison?
and Wilson County, North Caro was arrested in 2007 for violating federal
lina, where police obtain his drug laws. The following year, reason com- Charlie Lynchs plight is a small example of
torical cell tracking data where it the great chasm between the federal govern-
is relevant to an ongoing inves 10 Questions for the Dalai ment and state law that exists today, especially
Lama as regards medical marijuana. The federal
case. He was so inspired by Lynchs story government considers this to be a Schedule I
police in Hawaii County, Wichita, that he wound up spending four years on a substance, the equivalent of heroin and PCP
and Lexington, Kentucky, have full-length documentary. Lynching Charlie and other serious drugs. Theres almost zero
a general policy of obtaining a Lynch, released on April 20, chronicles tolerance of it being sold or distributed in any
warrant based on probable cause this politicized prosecution. Although sort of storefront or dispensary environment.
Lynch strove to comply with state law [But] California has laws that have legitimized
Attitudes about the privacy and was careful to get the approval of marijuana as a medicine. And so for an ordi-
of cellphone location data nary businessman like Charlie Lynch, to step
vary along with the policies, as appealing a one-year sentence in federal into this divide put him at great risk. Anyone
prison. producer Alex Manning who is trying to do this right can easily fall into
by The New York Times interviewed Ray in April. Check out the rest the chasm between state and federal law.
training notes from the Califor of the interview at Q: What is the current state of medical marijuana?
nia District Attorneys Associa
tion enthused that subtler and Q: Did Charlie Lynch deserve to go to jail? A: -
A: Charlie Lynch is a man who was tration would come in and the persecution and
invading privacy have become determined to open a dispensary the prosecution of dispensaries in California would
right way. California allowed medical be relaxed. In fact, Eric Holder, the attorney
thanks to modern technology, a marijuana dispensaries. He wanted to general, said that as long as dispensaries were
Nevada training manual empha in compliance with state law they would not be
sized that warrantless cellphone there wasnt one [for] 100 miles in any harassed by the federal government. But the
tracking direction. And he got permission to reality has been that dispensaries continue to
open his dispensary. The city attorney be raided. So the current state of medical mari-
wrote an opinion authorizing it. The juana is that it is still in that dangerous limbo
tinued misuse by law enforce mayor blessed it; they had a Chamber between state and federal prosecution or per-
ment agencies will undoubtedly of Commerce opening ceremony and mission.

reason | Aug./Sept. 2012 | 15

Columns: Greg Beato

Eating Bugs
The search for new food frontiers in an era of
population growth

By 2050, the U.N. predicts, our planet will be Crispy Mix appetizer pairs wax moth larvae
inhabited by 2 billion more humans. If income with thin, inch-long slivers of potato cooked in
and body mass continue their current upward duck fat and sprinkled with agave worm salt.
trends, those billions will be richer and fatter Side by side in a tiny square serving dish, the
than we are. That means theyll want meat, not golden-brown insects and stem tubers look like
grain. Theyll also want seconds. But will 2050s brothers from another mother.
concentrated agricultural feeding operations As it turns out, wax moth larvae dont
much less its free-range heritage pig farmsbe taste all that different from potatoes either.
able to produce enough livestock to meet the Theyre a little salty, a little smoky. Mostly,
demand? though, the insect fetuses are light and airy, not
A growing number of optimistic soothsay- exactly stick-to-your-ribs food. It seems such
fare will deliver future food security only if at
of livestock to include such underutilized food least 80 percent of 2050s extra humans are
sources as mealworms, grasshoppers, and Sago supermodels.
grubs. In January 2012, 37 international experts Restaurants around the world are show-
met at the U.N. Food and Agricultural Organi- casing insects in similarly artful ways. At Vijs,
zation (FAO) in Rome to discuss the potential
is made out of roasted crickets. At Typhoon, a
part of a broader strategy to achieve global food pan-Asian restaurant in Santa Monica, you can
security. get silkworm larvae stir-fried in soy, sugar, and
Insects, their advocates enthuse, are high in white pepper. Londons Archipelago serves
protein and other nutrients: A 100-gram por- pan-fried locusts and crickets as a starter and
tion of grasshopper meat contains 20.6 grams chocolate-covered scorpions or baby bee brle
of protein, just 7 grams less than an equivalent for dessert.
portion of beef. In addition, insect farming
requires less water, less feed, and less land per Such dishes suggest the fundamental irony that
calorie than traditional livestock farming, and informs contemporary entomophagy. While
it produces much lower greenhouse gas emis- insect evangelists champion bugs as a poten-
sions. All in all, 2050s squirrels and housecats tial solution to looming food shortages for the
appear to be in luck: When worldwide beef masses, we eat them today largely because food
supplies get tight, well have other options. for the comparatively well-off is so boringly
abundant. For millions of people, food is no
To get a taste of the future, I recently visited a longer just a form of sustenance, comfort, or
tequila bar called Mosto in San Franciscos Mis- sensual pleasure; its a medium for exploration,
sion District, where a local chef named Monica discovery, and self-expression. Like a roiling
Martinez had been operating her Don Bugito army of ants clear-cutting their way through
snack bar on Monday nights throughout the the Amazon jungle, todays foodies devour
spring. Martinez favors gradualism over shock everything in their path on the hunt for new
value in her efforts to introduce people to the
virtues of entomophagy, or insect eating. Her to tweet. Having exhausted the possibilities of
16 | reason | Aug./Sept. 2012

There is one aspect of life that unites, controls, and affects all people.
That one aspect is lifes natural laws. They unite, Do people intentionally refuse to meet the require-
control and affect people no matter what their race, ments of laws of physics: gravity for instance? No, they
gender, creed, or where on this planet they live. try their best to keep their balance or safely recover it
If you are a new reader of this subject matter, be pre- whenever necessary.
pared for a pleasant shock. Scriptures record the first wrong action of the cre-
Whoever or whatever is the creator revealed natures ated beings was their disobedience. It ended the perfect
law of right action to the mind of Richard W. Wetherill situation that had existed and resulted in the predicted
decades ago. The law calls for people to be rational penalties. More shockingly the admonition to obey end-
and honest not only regarding laws of physics but also ed with the creators words, or you will surely die.
in their thinking and behavior toward one another. Whether that account is actual or symbolic, it describes
Wetherill also cautioned that the law, itself, is the final ancient peoples misbehavior still continuing today.
arbiter of right action. It states: Right action gets right Obeying natures law of right action unites people,
results whether it relates to laws of physics or to the law giving them the benefits that then control and favor-
of behavior. ably affect their lives, nullifying that final admoni-
Ordinarily people unknowingly have been conducting tion, or you will surely die.
their relationships to satisfy their purposes; not the pur-
poses of the creator of natural laws. Such behavior ex- For more information visit or for a
plains why the earths population has never been peace- free mailing write to The Alpha Publishing House, PO
fully united and controlled nor favorably affected. Box 255, Royersford, PA 19468

FREE On-Line
eBooks that could
change your life!

This public-service message is from a self-financed, nonprofit group of former students of Mr. Wetherill.
seaweed ice cream and frog-ovary humans and other creatures but fatal expressed much interest in bugs. But
soup, they turn their restless palates to Acheta domesticus, the common given their reputations for relent-
to boiled cockroaches. brown house cricket, has wreaked less cost cutting, its only a matter of
But what will it to take for such havoc on the commercial cricket
fare to cross the chasm from novelty industry in the U.S.)
to staple? Couple the artisanal cachet There will also be a great demand and mealworm burgers.
provided by talented chefs like Mon- for processingincreasing shelf life, Even with such powerful com-
ica Martinez with insect husbandrys ensuring product safety and consis-
tiny environmental footprint, and its tency, and, most of all, making meal- to grow a business from zero to, say,
easy to depict the whole cuisine as worms and crickets look and feel one-third the size of the current live-
a utopian endeavor, a radically out- and taste a little less like mealworms stock industry by 2050. To establish
of-the-box solution to the corporate and crickets. While many people may -
industrial food system and all the never eat insects even after theyve prise so quickly, its practitioners will
plagues it has unleashed upon the been beheaded, declawed, and dew- have to innovate in radical ways. Is
world. it possible, for example, to grow a
Yet who is best positioned to - grasshopper the size of a humming-
make the green, sustainable, cruelty- tein.
free promise of large-scale insect Especially if these products taste A shot of tequila
farming a reality? To augment 2050s good, come in attractive packages, does wonders for the
and are aggressively advertised. A palatability of a roasted
have a real impact on greenhouse gas shot of tequila does wonders for the
emissions, an industry that essen- palatability of a roasted grasshopper,
grasshopper, but
tially doesnt exist today will need but entomophagy isnt going to hit entomophagy isnt going
- the big time on tequila bars alone. It to hit the big time on
dreds of billions of pounds of insect will take experimentation in state- tequila bars alone.
meat per year in just three and a half of-the-art R&D kitchens, consumer
decades. testing, alluring packaging design, bird using growth hormones? Will
massive advertising campaigns, and we need new laws that require TV
Todays insect farms primarily serve probably some help from Shrek and networks to air commercials promot-
the pet food and bait markets. In SpongeBob SquarePants. Indeed, -
the U.S., they produce enough food given that adults are more likely ing shows aimed at children?
to keep approximately 13.6 million than children to harbor longstand- For those who have been envi-
pet frogs, toads, and lizards satis- ing, hard-to-change biases, it makes sioning the future of insect farming
more sense to target kids, positioning as a local, small-scale, farm-to-fork
appetites, and there are a lot more insect gobbling as a fun, rewarding endeavor, a way to exterminate the
of us. In the future, we will not only activity. corporate food system once and for
need far more insect farms; we will all, the idea of using free collectible
need bigger, more productive farms Will Big Food accept the challenge? -
as well. Corporate behemoths like Archer
Regulation of the industry is Daniels Midland, Tyson, and Cargill swallow as a cockroach sandwich. Yet
likely to get more stringent when have more experience killing insects unless 2050 has many more tequila
people replace tarantulas as the tar- than cultivating them, but they also bars than we have now, it seems
get consumer. As insects inch their have the expertise it will take to cre- unlikely that entomophagy will catch
way toward the food pyramid, dis- ate a robust insect farming sector in without Big Food at the table.
ease management capabilities will just a few decades. As do companies
need to improve. (In the last few such as Kraft Foods, General Mills, Contributing Editor Greg Beato (gbeato@ writes from San Francisco.
years, for example, cricket paralysis Walmart, and McDonalds.
densovirus, which is harmless to So far these food giants havent
18 | reason | Aug./Sept. 2012
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Columns: Veronique de Rugy

Student Loan Scam

Why are todays poor subsidizing tomorrows rich?

The interest rate for the main federal stu- While aggregate student debt has reached
dent loan program was set to double on July 1, $829 billion, which is higher than the countrys
from 3.4 percent to 6.8 percent. Even in this collective credit card debt, the burden faced
contentious election year, there was one thing by individual students coming out of college is
everyone in Washington could agree on: The relatively small. According to the Department
rate hike should be avoided at all costs. The of Education, the typical college graduate who
only disagreement was where to extract the $6 borrows money for attendance ends up owing
billion annually that would be needed to make about $22,000. The standard repayment period
up the difference. is 10 years, but terms can be renegotiated if
But extending the lower rate, which was needed, especially by people who choose to go
instituted by the College Cost Reduction and into public service or teaching. According to the
Access Act of 2007, is foolhardy. By keeping stu- repayment calculator at Mapping Your Future,
- an online resource sponsored by student loan
ernment is contributing to the rapid increase guaranty agencies, it would cost $253 a month
in college tuition and forcing todays workers over 10 years to repay $22,000 in principal at a
to subsidize the educational choices of tomor- rate of 6.8 percent.
rows big earners. Everyone wants to borrow money at the
According to the latest data available from lowest rate possible. But it is important to keep
the U.S. Department of Educations National in mind that todays student loan recipients are
Center for Education Statistics, 39 percent of tomorrows big earners. Using the most recent
all undergraduates at four-year colleges had data from the Bureau of Labor Statistics (BLS),
student loans in 200708. For full-time under- the editors of the economics policy website e21
graduates the number was 53 percent. The over- compared the earnings of the most successful
whelming majority93 percentof these loans college graduates with those of the most suc-
are subsidized by the federal government. And cessful high school graduates. A worker in the
even the 6.8 percent rate that Democrats and top 10 percent of bachelors degree holders
Republicans were determined to avoid would earns an average of $2,310 a week. Thats 1.8
times as much as the $1,316 earned by the aver-
similar loans that students obtain in the private age worker in the top 10 percent of high school
market is about 12 percent. degree holders.

There are many other ways to help pay for a The gap between typical workers in those
college education: You can work through col-
lege, choose to attend a cheaper state school, or BLS data show that the weekly earnings of the
take time off to earn money before or during median worker with a bachelors degree is
school. So the decision to take on student debt $1,051, compared to $450 for the median high
is a personal choice, and the reward from get- school graduate.
ting a college degree is also personal. People That means federal student loans force
making this choice have a responsibility to lower-income taxpayers to subsidize the educa-
understand the costs and risks. tion of future U.S. elites. Why should a grocery
20 | reason | Aug./Sept. 2012
Average Weekly Earnings of the Top 10 Percent by Educational Attainment Cumulative Federal Student Loan Debt
(average per person when entering

1,000 10,000

500 5,000

0 0
No High High School Some College Bachelors Advanced 1990 2000 2010
School Degree Only (inc. A.D.) Degree Degree Source: U.S. Department of Education, FY 2013
Source: budget

store clerk pay taxes to help the rate for second mortgages reached its education bubble, like the housing
stores owner send his kids to a selec- high-water mark two months earlier bubble before it, will eventually pop.
tive out-of-state school? at 4.7 percent. Meanwhile, large numbers of stu-
This burden is not trivial. As e21 There is another reason to look dents will graduate with more debt
noted, since 2008 the Federal Gov- twice at the massive subsidies for than they would have in an unsub-
ernment has effectively socialized the education loans. As it did in the hous- sidized market. More important,
student loan market by enacting laws ing market, free or reduced-priced taxpayers face two equally bad out-
to eliminate private lender participa- comes: They are subsidizing millions
tion in administering Federal loans. price of a college education. of dollars in interest for student loans
As a result, e21 notes, the amount of Federal student aid, whether in that they shouldnt have to shoulder,
outstanding student loans owned by the form of grants or loans, is the and they likely will pick up the tab
the federal government has grown main factor behind the runaway for underpaid student loans.
from $111 billion at the end of 2008 cost of higher education. As Cato Given that President Barack
to $425 billion in 2011, a compound Institute economist Neal McCluskey Obama and his presumptive oppo-
annualized growth rate of 56 percent. explained in an April 2012 article nent, Mitt Romney, agree that the
for U.S. World & News Report: The student loan rate should not rise,
Unfortunately, taxpayers probably basic problem is simple: Give every- it is unlikely that Congress will let
one $100 to pay for higher education
of those outstanding loans. In a Sep- and colleges will raise their prices by enterprise of federally subsidized
tember 12, 2011, press release, Sec- $100, negating the value of the aid. college loans is dysfunctional and
retary of Education Arne Duncan should be ended. American taxpayers
announced that the share of federal of it federalhas certainly gone up, especially todays working poor
student loan borrowers who default ballooning from $4,602 per under- should not have to subsidize tomor-
- graduate in 199091 to $12,455 in rows big earners while pricing them-
ment is 8.8 percent. The overall 2010-11. selves out of a better education.
default rate for those receiving a fed-
eral student loan is 23 percent. Thats Thus begins a classic upward price Contributing Editor Veronique de Rugy
( is a senior research fel-
huge. To put this number in perspec- spiral caused by government inter- low at the Mercatus Center at George Mason
tive, at the peak of the housing crisis vention: Subsidies raise prices, lead- University.
ing to higher subsidies, which raise
rates reached 5.7 percent; the default prices even more. Yet this higher
reason | Aug./Sept. 2012 | 21
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22 | reason | Aug./Sept. 2012
Nadine Strossen, Nick Gillespie, Matt Welch, Jacob Sullum Eli Noam, director,
professor of law, editor in chief, editor in chief, senior editor, Columbia Institute
New York Law and magazine magazine for Tele-Information
School, former
president, ACLU

Thaddeus Russell, John Tooby and Leda Cosmides, co-directors, Peter Suderman, Veronique de Rugy,
historian and Center for Evolutionary Psychology, UCSB senior editor, senior research
author, magazine fellow, Mercatus

Explore magnificent vistas and the rugged

wilderness of the wild Alaskan coastline
how evolutionary psychology explains
our understanding of free markets

why delinquents did more for our

personal freedom than you realize

why health care price controls always fail

how independent voters are changing

the political landscape

how drug prohibition breeds corruption

and undermines civil liberties
reason | Aug./Sept. 2012 | 23
Generational Warfare
Old-age entitlements vs. the safety net

Nick Gillespie and Veronique de Rugy

In 1964 a young Bob Dylan released The

Times They Are a-Changin, an anthem that

as the generation gap. With a mix of sympa-

thy and sneerCome mothers and fathers /

Great Depression, World War II -

Terry Colon

24 | reason | Aug./Sept. 2012

reason | Aug./Sept. 2012 | 25
In 1984, reports the Pew Research Center,
households headed by people 65 or older
had 10 times the wealth of households
headed by people under 35. By 2005 the gap
had increased to 22 times, and by 2009 it
was 47 times.


LBJ said as


sible system.

Gourmet Cat Food


as a proportion of -


It Takes a Village.
26 | reason | Aug./Sept. 2012
- -


New York Times -

The Clash of Generations -


Median Net Worth by Age of Householder (2010 dollars)

AGE 1984 1995 2002 2009 CHANGE


All $ 65,293 $ 57,511 $ 71,400 $ 71,635 10%

35 and Younger 11,521 10,627 7,925 3,662 -68

35 to 44 71,118 45,338 49,928 39,601 -44

45 to 54 113,511 87,622 99,921 101,651 -10

55 to 64 147,236 130,658 160,727 162,065 10

65 and Older 120,457 132,187 158,182 170,494 42

Sources: Pew Research Center, U.S. Census Bureau

reason | Aug./Sept. 2012 | 27

checks, America was still in the throes of
the Great Depression. Retirement was a rare
and wonderful thing, as most people worked
pretty much until the day they died.

tion of unsustainable
Entitlements Forever

- -



s or promises by

28 | reason | Aug./Sept. 2012

system the highest priority of my administra-

The Myth of Mandatory Spending


billion. -


Social Security and Medicare As a Percentage of the Federal Budget

- 100%
Actual Projected

Other Spending
years past, held as
ties, is drained a bit
Social Security
more. The payroll 40%

- 20%
on both the employee
1970 1980 1990 2000 2010 2020 2030 2040 2050 2060 2070 2080

reason | Aug./Sept. 2012 | 29

Ponzi scheme is over the top,
unnecessary, and frightening to many

but it doesnt change the reality that current

workers are paying for current retirees, not for
their future selves.

mandatory and discretionary are mislead- -



30 | reason | Aug./Sept. 2012


Ponzi scheme

Who Pays?



reason | Aug./Sept. 2012 | 31


- -

Underfunding the Future

- -
Medicare Costs Over Time -

fare slightly better than men,

32 | reason | Aug./Sept. 2012
In 1940 there were 159 workers for each

fewer than three.

- of a dilemma. The retirement entitlement offers nothing

- -

- Old vs. Young


- -

reason | Aug./Sept. 2012 | 33

Social Security and Expected Medicare Benefits vs. Taxes

Single man earning the average wage ($43,500 in 2011 dollars)

If you Annual Lifetime Lifetime Total Lifetime Lifetime Total Social

turn 65 Social Social Medicare benefits Social Medicare Security &
in Security Security benefits received Security taxes Medicare
benefits benefits over a (OASDI) taxes paid
lifetime taxes

1960 $9,300 $113,000 $15,000 $128,000 $18,000 $0 $18,000

1980 $15,100 $203,000 $62,000 $265,000 $96,000 $8,000 $104,000

2010 $17,500 $265,000 $167,000 $432,000 $294,000 $58,000 $352,000

2030 $20,500 $336,000 $251,000 $587,000 $398,000 $87,000 $485,000

2011 $17,500 $266,000 $170,000 $436,000 $299,000 $60,000 $359,000

Single woman earning the average wage ($43,500 in 2011 dollars)

If you Annual Lifetime Lifetime Total Lifetime Lifetime Total Social

turn 65 Social Social Medicare benefits Social Medicare Security &
in Security Security benefits received Security taxes Medicare
benefits benefits over a (OASDI) taxes paid
lifetime taxes

1960 $9,300 $146,000 $23,000 $169,000 $18,000 $0 $18,000

1980 $15,100 $249,000 $81,000 $330,000 $96,000 $8,000 $104,000

2010 $17,500 $290,000 $185,000 $475,000 $294,000 $58,000 $352,000

2030 $20,500 $363,000 $275,000 $638,000 $398,000 $87,000 $485,000

2011 $17,500 $290,000 $188,000 $478,000 $299,000 $60,000 $359,000

34 | reason | Aug./Sept. 2012

A single man earning the average wage who
retired in 1980 would have paid $96,000 in

the average wage but retiring in 2010 would

Flemming v. Nestor, the -



- -

Nick Gillespie ( is editor in chief of

and He is co-author with Matt Welch of The Declaration of
Independents: How Libertarian Politics Can Fix Whats Wrong with
- America, just out in paperback (PublicAffairs). Contributing Editor
- Veronique de Rugy ( is a senior research fellow at the
Mercatus Center at George Mason University.

reason | Aug./Sept. 2012 | 35

After the Storm
How Joplin, Missouri, rebuilt following a devastating
tornado by circumventing bureaucracy
Tate Watkins
On May 22, 2011, a tornado ripped through the many strings attached, New Orleans and the surrounding
town of Joplin, Missouri. The multi-vortex storm area to this day remains hamstrung by federal, state, and
cut an eerily straight west-east line through Jop- local bureaucracy. Joplins experience offers a powerful
lins downtown street grid, growing to three
quarters of a mile wide at its peak. In the end, thanks to government.
the Category 5 twister physically picked up and
slammed down about one-quarter of the town, This Isnt the FEMA of Katrina
tened big-box stores such as Home Depot and
Walmart and left a desert of concrete foundation to fathom their losses. But they were certain about one
slabs covering a six-mile stretch of destruction. FEMA of
The storm killed 161 people, displaced 9,000 Katrina. Which was good, because after Hurricane Katrina
more, and completely wiped out more than 4,000 the Federal Emergency Management Agency (FEMA) stalled
structures while damaging another 3,000. It was the recovery and rebuilding for millions of Gulf Coast resi-
the deadliest tornado since modern recordkeep- dents. In the months and years after the hurricane and
ing began in 1950, according to the National -
Oceanic and Atmospheric Administration. tions, and government reports excoriated the agency for
But as the one-year anniversary of the storm its inept response. Indecision at local, state, and federal lev-
approached, Joplin found itself in startlingly els of government, as well as rigid regulations concerning
- everything from occupational licensing to debris removal,
ance claims will total $2 billion, yet the towns delayed or hindered Gulf Coast rebuilding efforts. FEMAs
business tax revenues are actually up for the
year. School enrollment is 95 percent of what it criticism for a slow and ineffective response was well

Previous page: People go through what is left of their home in Joplin,

was before the tornado, and the vast majority of deserved.
displaced residents have secured lodging in or One reason the FEMA of 2011 did not perform like the

Missouri, on May 24, 2011. Tom Uhlenbrock/UPI/Newscom

near the area. FEMA of 2005 was that Joplin residents were determined
not to let that happen. Founded by lead and zinc miners in
fraught response to the destruction wrought by the 19th century, this small southwestern Missouri town
Hurricane Katrina in New Orleans, 700 miles
to the south, in 2005. The two storms, like the in overall freedom from burdensome government regula-
two cities, were different in nature and scale. tions, according to a 2011 study by the free market Merca-
tus Center (which sponsored my trip to Joplin as part of
a broader tornado recovery research project for which I
While the people of Joplin largely took matters handled logistics). The community has the close-knit feel
into their own hands, pushing aside burdensome youd expect of a small Midwestern town, with a network of
rules and refusing help when it came with too active voluntary organizations and church groups that col-

A lot of the residents are staying here, Assistant City

Manager Sam Anselm tells me. Its a testament to the
spirit, the way the community responded to this.

38 | reason | Aug./Sept. 2012

laborate regularly. And as Beloit College economist Emily with donated material such as tarps, clothing,
Chamlee-Wright concluded after leading more than 400 and food.
interviews with Katrina survivors, the best approach once Most displaced people found refuge with
emergency gives way to recovery is to reduce government nearby family or friends; the city estimates that 95
involvement and devolve power to disaster victims, who percent of people displaced by the storm stayed
nal noise that inhibits the response from markets and civil are staying here, Assistant City Manager Sam
society, Chamlee-Wright writes in her 2010 book The Cul-
tural and Political Economy of Recovery way the community responded to this.
levels should scale back its efforts as soon as possible to The city registered 130,000 volunteers from
make room for markets and voluntary organizations to around the country and estimates that at least
provide basic supplies, food, clean-up, and construction that many helped and werent counted. One even
services. came from Japan and stayed two weeks, citing the
Despite its small size, Joplin, home of St. Johns Regional way Americans donated to his country after the
Damaged main entrance of Joplin High School. AP Photo/Mark Schiefelbein

Medical Center and battery manufacturer EaglePicher, earthquake and tsunami of March 2011. (Some-
is a regional hub for commerce, providing jobs and con- one found the Japanese volunteer a bicycle that
nections to residents of nearby Arkansas, Oklahoma, and he rode 12 miles each day to and from his cleanup
site.) In October, ABCs Extreme Makeover: Home
city of a quarter-million during the day, goes the local Edition rolled into town and built seven homes
in seven days. Habitat for Humanity built 10 the
After the tornado, emergency response teams from around next month.
the state streamed into town. Four hundred and thirty The tornado sucked nine-story St. Johns a
few inches off its foundation before setting it
search and rescue, cleanup, and debris removal. Doc- back down. The medical center erected tempo-
tors and nurses, many of whom worked at one of Joplins rary structures in open space next door, com-
two hospitals or in the medical services sector clustered plete with an emergency room, and managed to
around them, came from around the four-state area. A keep nearly all of its 2,200 employees on payroll.
handful of warehouses around the city are full to this day Along with medical jobs, Joplin is home to a
reason | Aug./Sept. 2012 | 39
handful of big businesses, such as building mate- pace, we needed to give our superintendent authority to
rials company TAMKO, a PotashCorp animal feed make decisions as quickly as possible, says Joplin Board
plant, and a General Mills factory. of Education President Ashley Micklethwaite. The worst
Joplin Schools Superintendent C.J. Huff thing we can do as a board is get down into the weeds and
didnt want what he dubbed the Hurricane worry about minute details. We had to look at the big pic-
- ture, and the big picture was getting our schools back up
manently, so the school district established a and running.
program for volunteers to adopt students and Huff s new powers included the ability to make emer-
provide them with school supplies. Private dona- gency procurement decisions instead of, for example,
tions poured in; the United Arab Emirates gave $1 adhering to a mandatory two-week minimum for posting
million, enough to issue a MacBook to every high bids. The superintendent also successfully lobbied Missouri
school student. TAMKO donated $500,000. Other Gov. Jay Nixon, who signed a handful of executive orders
sources, from Lions Club International to singer granting the district emergency permission to speed up the
Sheryl Crow (who auctioned off a Mercedes) to contracting process faster than state regulations usually
a 9-year-old Nevadan who raised $360 with a allow. Huff gathered a team of architects and contractors
car wash, combined to contribute $3.5 million of he had used for previous district jobs and began planning
private money to the district by September 2011. temporary construction for the approaching school year.
Within a few days, he says, they were able to choose which
Better to Ask Forgiveness Than Permission subcontractors and building materials to use, a process
Two days after the tornado, when 4,200 kids that would normally take up to one month. City Hall also
had nowhere to go to school, Superintendent responded to the needs of the school district and its build-
Huff stood up at a staff meeting and said, Were ers, agreeing to receive and approve plans and blueprints
going to start school in 84 days. On August 17, piecemeal rather than requiring the usual single master set.
they did just that. The tornado had destroyed the A process that would typically take months took only a few
towns only public high school and 50 percent of weeks.
- The school system now houses most of its students in
lion worth of damage. When school re-opened as temporary structures or leased space. Joplin High Schools
scheduled in the fall, enrollment hit 95 percent. juniors and seniors attend class in a decade-vacant Shopko
How did they do it? Sometimes, Huff store in a mall that has been refurbished with modern class-
explains, its better to ask for forgiveness than rooms, a spiffy computer and video lab, and Joplin Eagles
permission. A day after the storm, once Huff artwork on the walls.
had canceled the remainder of the school year, Getting students in classes improved community
the Joplin school board granted him emergency morale and has been among the most consequential steps
authority to circumvent usual bureaucratic pro- in Joplins recovery. It would not have happened if Huff
cedures in order to deal directly with the disaster.
We knew that to keep things moving at a rapid bureaucracy as usual.

Two days after the tornado, when 4,200 kids had nowhere
to go to school, Superintendent C.J. Huff stood up at a staff
meeting and said, Were going to start school in 84 days.
On August 17, they did just that.

40 | reason | Aug./Sept. 2012

A Different Set of Rules
East Middle School is a less happy story than Joplin High. bid architects, its much more open, Mickle-
Having opened only in 2009, the school was declared a -
eral government and FEMA into it, they have
involved the federal government, the project initially was
bids or anything else. Micklethwaite recalls sit-
ting around a table with fellow school board
Most taxpayers appreciate government procurement members and FEMA representatives after the tor-
Temporary high school in a converted big-box store

and contracting regulations designed to limit waste, fraud,

in Joplin, Missouri. AP Photo/Charlie Riedel

and abuse. But those safeguards can exasperate locals who like three inches thick with tiny, tiny print, and
are racing against the clock to make important decisions in its all the rules and regulations about federal

federal funds that well need to rebuild, Board of Edu-

statutes and rules that we have to follow, and at
their procedures, which are quite frankly slower than what that point I really thought, OK, this is going to
weeven in a normal situationwould have to do in the be challenging.
state of Missouri. Micklethwaite is quick to add that FEMA
reason | Aug./Sept. 2012 | 41
has been helpful, providing among other things three weeks ahead of schedule once all but 300 lots had
been cleared.
schools damaged by the storm, as well as 600 David Glenn, a local commercial real estate broker, said
trailers for displaced residents. But the feds are -
by nature bureaucratic.

to do it our way, or youre not going to do it all. But Joplin

allowed for expedited processes in emergency doesnt have that attitude. City administrators brought
events, and thats not the case. So were wading in extra inspectors to deal with the massive demand for
- building and repair permits. Meanwhile, Glenn says, most
cally, the district could have broken ground on local businesses turned down the $10 million in rebuilding
a new East Middle School in late summer of 2011. loans offered by the federal Small Business Administration,
because they deemed the lower interest rates not worth the
could have online next fall for our kids, and now red tape that comes with a government-backed loan.
its probably looking more like next Christmas at
We Just Keep Moving Forward
if not unrealistic. The school board has since Much of Joplins recovery success to date is thanks to asser-
approved a reconstruction schedule that predicts tive local leaders and coordination between government
an East Middle School ribbon-cutting ceremony and voluntary organizations. Hurricane Katrina wrought
in December 2013. devastation on a much greater scale, but even accounting
for that difference, stories of red tape and bureaucratic
Get the Hell Out of the Way inertia are much rarer in Joplin. Freedom and discretion to
Owners of houses that were declared a total loss rebuild have been the default setting for locals.
faced a daunting obstacle to rebuilding: The city Mistakes after Katrina caused much delay, despair, and
government would not let them build even a tem- suffering. They also revealed lessons that have improved
porary structure to protect their property from FEMAs disaster response. Joplin provides more learning
the rain, for fear that it would obstruct debris- material. If successful disaster recovery relies upon having
removal efforts. Joplin faced a hard August 7 good people in power, many if not most municipalities will
deadline from FEMA to have the wreckage cleared fare much worse in the event of a catastrophe than Joplin
in order to get 90 percent of cleanup costs reim- has so far. We have a government of laws, not men. The
bursed from Washington. good men and women of Joplin have pushed those laws to
On June 20, 2011, after contentious debate, promote recovery, but in the absence of such people, and
the Joplin City Council voted 7 to 2 for a 60-day especially in the absence of improved laws, victims of future
moratorium on new construction. City Council- disasters are more likely to be saddled with something
man Bill Scearce, an insurance salesman, was closer to the Katrina recovery.
one of the votes against, fearing displaced resi- Micklethwaite went through the tornado not just as
dents would simply settle somewhere else, as president of Joplins school board but also as a resident of
many Gulf Coast homeowners did after Katrina. her hometown, to which she returned 20 years ago. She

house on site and protect their property, Scearce after the storm, she did laundry in a neighbors house while
hers was being repaired, and people on her street held
do that?We need to put up ways that people can
get things done instead of making them jump
through hoops. City employees, he says, should moving forward.

the way. Tate Watkins ( is a 2012 Phillips Founda-

In the end, the moratorium itself got out of tion fellow and a former reason intern. He lives in Port-au-Prince.
the way: The council lifted the ban more than
42 | reason | Aug./Sept. 2012
Columns: Ronald Bailey

Resetting Your Biological Clock

Egg freezing opens up new frontiers in gender equality.

More and more American women are wait- aged 3539 was 46.5 births per 1,000 women.
ing until they are older to have children. Why? In fact, more children are now being born to
Because they are building their careers and women over age 35 than to women under 20.
waiting for Mr. Right. But what if Mr. Right fails Every advance in assisted reproduction
to come along before they turn 35? comes with ethical questions, and this one is no
As the biological clock ticks along, the different. First, should eggs be set aside at all?
chances of having biologically related children In her 2009 Bioethics article, Egg Freezing: A
diminish steeply, especially as women pass their Breakthrough for Reproductive Autonomy,
mid-30s. So some women are now taking out North Carolina State University philosopher
fertility insurance by having clinics retrieve Karey Harwood notes that infertility occurs
and freeze their youthful eggs. when a normal biological process is impeded
In May The New York Times devoted some by disease or defect. Thus assisted reproduction
front-page real estate to a new twist on this techniques are used to treat the illness of infer-
practice: would-be grandparents subsidizing tility.
the freezing of their daughters eggs. Fertility
specialist Daniel Shapiro, medical director of But women who decide to have their eggs
Reproductive Biology Associates in Atlanta, told frozen are not infertile. They are making an
the Times his egg-freezing patients often say, elective or social choice to take advantage
My parents want me to have this as a gift. of a new technology. Does this make any ethi-
cal difference? No, argues Harwood. She points
While many women put off childbearing as out that contraception and nontherapeutic
their careers develop, others are stuck waiting abortion are both elective and do not treat an
for their relationships to reach the next level, illness. The analogy to a contraceptive pill is
thanks to the fecklessness of modern men. apt because both egg freezing and the pill can
Many women in their late 20s and early 30s are effectuate delayed reproduction, writes Har-
in long-term relationships with men whom they wood. Because egg freezing may be reasonably
think will eventually father their children. Occa- interpreted as another form of family planning,
sionally, the relationships dont work out, and it can be considered a legitimate exercise in
reproductive autonomy.
later without a promising partner. One ethical upside to freezing eggs is that it
Things have been trending this way for a gets around moral concerns about whether fro-
zen embryos are persons, since uninseminated
has increased from 21.4 in 1970 to 25.2 in 2009, eggs do not have two sets of genes derived from
according to the most recent vital statistics parents. That issue is apt to come up eventu-
from the Centers for Disease Control and Pre- ally, however, if the frozen eggs are later used
vention. In 2009, the CDC reports, the rate of to create embryos via in vitro fertilization (IVF)
39.1 births per 1,000 women aged 1519 was techniques for implantation into a womans
the lowest ever reported in the nearly seven womb. Standard IVF techniques often involve
decades for which a consistent series of rates producing extra embryos that are frozen as
is available. By contrast, the rate for women backups to be used if those initially introduced
44 | reason | Aug./Sept. 2012
into a womans womb fail to implant zen eggs might be disproportionately
or if patients later want additional at risk of various physical and mental of sexual inequality. They argue that
children. Consequently, there are harms. Already some 2,000 children the ethical thing to do is to change
often frozen embryos left over once may have been born using frozen
IVF treatments have been completed. eggs. Preliminary evidence indicates between bearing children and having
Clinics could avoid the issue of what that the rate of birth defects among a career. They also say public policy
to do with spare embryos by freezing such children is comparable to that should encourage women to avoid
eggs and sperm separately. among children born by means of the problem of age-related infertility
conventional IVF techniques. For by having children at younger ages.
The biological clock is relentless. example, a 2009 study looked at The case of France suggests
936 live births from frozen eggs that attempts to shift public policy
probability of getting pregnant dur- and reported, Compared with con- in directions friendly to childbear-
ing a year, falls from 86 percent at age genital anomalies occurring in natu- ing and rearing may have limits. In
20 to 52 percent at age 35. Thereafter rally conceived infants, no difference pronatalist France, the average age
it drops ever more steeply to 36 per- was noted.
cent by age 40 and 5 percent by age 25.2 in the U.S.), and despite all sorts
45. Some ethicists argue that egg freez- of social programs aimed at easing
Ethicists fret that egg freez- ing amounts to an illegitimate tech- the burdens of child rearing, French
ing as fertility insurance women have a lower labor
engenders false hopes, in part force participation rate than
because women may over- American women.
estimate the real chances of Furthermore, egg freez-
having a baby using this tech- ing actually promotes equality
nique. If the relevant standard between the sexes. In a 2009
is the success rate of other IVF paper for the journal Bioethics,
techniques, recent data from Oxford University philoso-
several clinics indicate that phers Imogen Goold and Julian
the rate of live births using Savulsecu note: Men already
frozen eggs is comparable, enjoy the choice of when they
with about one in three cycles have children. Women should
resulting in a live birth. have the opportunity to enjoy
Another concern is that the same choices as men, if
women who hear of the tech- we can provide them, unless
nique will wait too long before there are good reasons not
taking advantage of it. Clini- to. Instead of dismissing egg
cal evidence strongly suggests freezing as a mere biomedi-
that the chances of having a cal work-around, we should
baby are greater for women celebrate it as another way in
who choose to freeze their which technological progress
eggs before age 35. Eggs fro- is reducing and ameliorating
Biological clock, iStockphoto/ Ultra_Generic

zen after that age do not grow inequalities between men and
and implant as readily. Older women.
eggs are far more likely to
Science Correspondent Ronald Bailey
( is the author of
from developing into babies Liberation Biology (Prometheus).
than younger eggs do.
Another ethical concern is
that children born from fro-
reason | Aug./Sept. 2012 | 45
Culture and Reviews

46 | reason | Aug./Sept. 2012

reason | Aug./Sept. 2012 | 47
48 | reason | Aug./Sept. 2012
reason | Aug./Sept. 2012 | 49
Latter-Day Acceptance
Mitt Romney may inspire anti-Mormon
for describing rival candidate Mitt
paranoia, but its nothing compared to
Romneys religion as the cult of
the fears his forefathers faced.
Jesse Walker to do some public squirming when a

For many Americans Mormons are scary,

or weird, or at least not the sort of folk youd
- that Mormonism has always been
lup poll found that 22 percent of the country considered a cult by the mainstream
A Beautiful Oil Spill would not support a Mormon candidate for -
Pathetic birds with crude- MSNBC
coated wings are the usual foul claimed in early April that Mormonism was
photographic emblems of oil created by a guy in upstate New York in 1830 who warns that electing this hor-
spills. Seattle-based photogra- when he got caught having sex with the maid rendous Romney Manchurian Can-
pher Daniel Beltr complicates
the story implied by those sad Zion will most assuredly be pulling
news photos in his gallery show barometer of center-left conventional wisdom,
SPILL. wrote during the run-up to the last presidential Keller, the self-proclaimed worlds
Beltr spent two months campaign that he wouldnt vote for someone -
photographing the 2010 who truly believed in the founding whoppers
Deepwater Horizon blowout
from high up in the air over the Anti-Mormonism haunted this cycles
Gulf of Mexico. The exhibition,
which ran in March and April at
the Catherine Edelman Gallery All of which obscures something
important: By historical standards,
gorgeous large-format photos Mormonism enjoys an amazing level
emphasizing the luminous
colors of oil spread abstractly
across the seas surface.
(Images from the show can be denounced Mormon polygamy as a
seen online at edelmangallery.
com.) Working boats lost in the slavery, is about to nominate a Mor-
vast windrows of crude reveal mon bishop as its presidential candi-
the scale of the incident. Bel- -
tr, a conservationist, hopes vailing in November have very little
SPILL. Courtesy of Catherine Edelman Gallery, Chicago
Brigham Young, C.R. Savage Picture History/Newscom

to provoke outrage, but he to do with his religious beliefs and

attenuates that goal with the almost everything to do with how the
seductive sublimity of his pho- unemployment numbers look come
tographs. Ronald Bailey
tial changes in Mormonism itself,
which has given up the polygamist
and separatist ways that alienated
so many Americans in the churchs

50 | reason | Aug./Sept. 2012

SiteworksReasonY 10/10/08 2:33 PM Page

fact that non-Mormon Americans had visited their ancient American

sometimes call ushave gotten used As Smith attracted followers, he The Enduring
moved his churchs base from upstate
still hear strange conspiracy theories Elegance of
about the church today, but we are a Missouri frontier, where its adher-
long way from the 19th century, when ents faced heavy harassment from

Smiths faith featured a wild mlange

of mind control, assassinations, secret and it was in that state that an angry
sexual lodges, and plots to subvert mob killed Smith while the prophet

To Yield Themselves Entirely tradesman named Brigham Young,

who led the Mormons west to estab-
century, a spiritually rambunctious

like the opponents of other new reli-

thousands of Americans to multiday
festivals of prayer, with worshippers
Dozens of lurid novels
falling into trances and speaking in depicted Danite
- assassinations, church-
ers were often alarmed at the deliri- sanctioned white slavery,
Some of them denounced the revival
and other alleged LDS
preachers as puppet masters engaged crimes.
gions, took old anti-Catholic themes
outskirts of the excitement, unusual and updated them for a younger faith:
creeds attracted new followers: Smith and then Young were imagined
- as the all-powerful popes of a cult,

followers allegiance, furthermore,

was allegedly achieved through a sort
religious visions in the 1820s and of mind control, not unlike the mass
hypnosis purportedly on display at

Live Free
had nothing to do with the family the best-selling Female Life Among the with Beauty, Style
Mormons and the Enduring
a Mormon doctrine until several as the memoir of a woman hypno- Elegance of Limestone.
sure hunter, claimed to have found
Custom Limestone Mantels
a holy book engraved on golden 1-800-599-5463
revelations, he reported, including You
y For talog!
- narrative the author asks another ex- da Ca
l To r
- Cal E Colo
elites and the new idea that Christ to master Franz Mesmers mind-con-
reason | Aug./Sept. 2012 | 51
trol methodMesmerismbefore its general been expelled from the Church as a
- -
mant replies that Smith obtained his informa-
tion, and learned all the strokes, and passes, and
Grim, Hidden, Secret Power
notwithstanding his reduced circumstances,
was a man of distinguished intellect and exten- location, the fear that they might steal
Christian bodies and souls through
kidnapping and conversion was
joined by another anxiety: the fear
that they would steal American insti-
Shakespeare Security tutions by voting en masse, installing
Theater it, are generally sent out to preach among unbe- a government that would replace the

of Coriolanus, now out on DVD, you couldnt expect such a subversive

marries Shakespeares dia- privately in 1843, and it acknowledged the prac- menace to limit its efforts to the bal-
logue to a 21st-century setting - lot box, another story began to take
to retell the story of the Roman ened the sexual dimension of stories like Female hold as well: that the church com-
general Caius Marcius, nick- Life Among the Mormons - manded an army of assassins, dubbed
named Coriolanus for his valor nation, Mormon men were out to add gentile
during a siege of the city of women to their harems, by hypnotic seduction
Corioli. Fiennes Roman Repub- - vigilante group created in 1838 to
lic is thoroughly contemporary. riage was perceived as a threat to the traditional compel dissenting Mormons to exit
Troops are equipped with high- family, and the anxieties it inspired unleashed the area and, subsequently, to pro-
tech accoutrements, senators tect Missouri Mormons from their
are strikingly Washingtonian,
and protesters are drawn from proven that the organization lasted
stock Hollywood movie tropes - longer than a year, but it became a
of the last decade. central part of anti-Mormon rhetoric
Still, Coriolanus remains a for decades afterward, its reputation
quintessentially Roman story detail about the orders found within the lodge growing ever more fearsome with
paigns in which Coriolanus a group of minutemen in Utah, say-
made his name were not the example, were a degree composed of females, ing that they were to battle rustlers
same as the easily recognizable whether married or unmarried, who, by an
imperial follies that followed. group was quickly nicknamed the
Its tricky to transplant to the -
modern day the story of a -
general spurned by his govern- viduals, as secret, spiritual wives -
ment who allies with a national Saints of the Black Veil, and
enemy to seek revenge; such
things dont happen much upon meeting a Mormon painted
these days. But depictions -
of political ineptitude and ing the variety of sexual experiences suppos- of the churchs fanatical renegade-
national security theater are destroying angels, whose mission was
unfortunately timeless. themselves exposed to similar temptations, they to kill every white man not belong-

Ed Krayewski assumed they could know how priests and Mor- ing to the sect, and particularly those

52 | reason | Aug./Sept. 2012

were grounded in more than mere
rumors could point to a memoir writ- famous American yarn about Mor-
mon conspirators is probably Zane
after he was arrested for murder Riders of the Purple Sage Jesus Isnt on the Ballot This Year
a book often credited with setting the
Mormon ideasand Mormon weap-
Saints a few years earlier, claimed to
have carried out several murders on -
steen, one of the books protagonists, constant harassment, the Mormons
on how much of what he wrote was has been enmeshed in Mormon had started to identify with the
accurate and how much was blame-
shifting or braggadocio, but all of it occupies a high place in the commu- had its limits, though, as one group
was incorporated into anti-Mormon - of natives learned on September 11,
ment, and she is one of the towns

the American imagination, read Mark marry an elder who wants her, and
the consequences of that decision
supposedly spent with a Mormon demonstrate just how little autonomy
assassin, a tale calculated to puncture Mormons thought the feds, who
the minutemens image as a sinister hovered the shadow of grim, hidden,
- troops to the region, were plotting to
set apart by the Church to conduct doesnt just lurk above - sphere of mutual distrust, a group of
permanent disappearances of obnox-
Rough- at every level of the social hierarchy;
ing It it isnt an authority bearing down
on her so much as an all-enveloping
dark and bloody deeds they had done, system that is almost impossible to

and her ranch is haunted by spies

all our romances, he was nothing but -
a loud, profane, offensive old black-
women spied and listened; they
received and sent secret messen-
but would you have any kind of an
Angel devoid of dignity? Could you
abide an Angel in an unclean shirt
By David Lampo
By this time Mormon conspira-

no single move of yours, except when

youre hid in your house, that aint
sanctioned white slavery, and other

A Study in Scarlet rodethe sage was full of sneakin

reason | Aug./Sept. 2012 | 53
Mormonsit is not known whether they were the church with suspicion, but in the
following Brigham Youngs wishes or acting culture wars of the late 20th century
on their owncombined forces with a group -

unarmed migrants passing through Mountain

Afterward the Mormon hierarchy tried to scape-

goat the natives, claiming the assault had been
2004 book Americas Right Turn

Nurses Little Helper all going to work together to stop

The fourth season of Nurse -
Jackie, the Showtime TV series Mormons deserved a portion of the outrage and ting the Baptists and the Catholics
starring Edie Falco as a super- - to work together, and getting them
competent emergency-room ing in Mormon country was open and basically all to work with the Mormonsthis
nurse with a fondness for pain benign: a concerted effort to construct a com-
pills, begins with her charac- they did, because a socially conserva-
ter in rehab. It is a thoroughly schools, temples, courts of arbitration, an elabo-
predictable outcome for a TV rate private welfare system, and a network of had more in common with a socially
addict, except that Jackie Pey- conservative Mormon than either did
tons drug-related problems organizations that Americans often celebrate, with the secular world or with the
stem almost entirely from but they appeared to be entwined with civil
the fact that the drugs she government in predominantly Mormon areas
favors are legal only for doctor-
approved medical use. a Mormon bishop has a substantial
Jackie is very good at her chance of becoming the next presi-
job, which never seems to be
compromised by her drug use subversion, and it led to some stunning restric- his candidacy has dragged the anti-
except to the extent that she Mormons out of the woodwork, their
lies and cheats to get painkill- angry rhetoric may be a sign of frus-
ers (along with the occasional
stimulant) and to cover up her
habit. Hence she invents inju- conspiracy theories, but lurking behind those in April endorsed the Romney cam-
ries, deceives friends, swipes exotic charges were more ordinary resentments: -
medication, and starts an ill- opposition to plural marriage, jealousy of the
advised extramarital affair with Mormon co-ops economic clout, and, above on the ballot this year, so we have to
the hospital pharmacist. all, Republicans eagerness to disenfranchise a -
If Jackie could simply walk
into a store and buy the oxy- -
codone, hydrocodone, and
amphetamine that help get her can overlook a little cultism when the
through the day, those prob- the next couple of years its leaders dissolved alternative is another four years of
lems would disappear. Which -
raises the question: Does cal group in Utah, and they pledged not to vote
Jackie have a drug problem or a Senior Editor Jesse Walker (jwalker@reason.
Nurse Jackie

com) is writing a history of American political

prohibition problem? paranoia for HarperCollins.
Jacob Sullum Conventional Christians continued to regard
54 | reason | Aug./Sept. 2012
for NOOK Color.

Available at today.

NOOK Color is a trademark of Barnes & Noble, Inc.

Frederick Douglass, lass wrote to his old master, the

Classical Liberal out repeatedly with the tenets of

A fresh look at the political evolution of
a great American
Damon W. Root
belonged to me, and in no way less-
The Political Thought of Frederick Douglass: In Pur- ened your means for obtaining an
suit of American Liberty, by Nicholas Buccola, New
York University Press, 225 pages, $49 wasnt just an act of self-preservation,

The Past of the Future In April 1865, -

of Space its bloody climax, the abolitionist leader and
Elevator to the Moon: Retro-
Future Visions of Space is a before the Massachusetts Antislavery Society
petite, uneven show hiding in
a back hallway at the massive,
quirky bar-and-art venue Arti- have always been anxious to know what they
sphere in Arlington, Virginia.
The exhibit offers 15 artists the description of private property
chance to create work that emerging from man mixing his labor
ideas from the 20th century ued, if the Negro cannot stand on his own legs, pointed to slaves plowing, plant-
about what the 21st would be ing and reaping, using all kinds of
The quality of the work var- proof that they too deserved the full
ies tremendously. Dana Ellyns -
acrylic-on-canvas depiction of have me argue that man is entitled to
jetpack-equipped astronauts been accused of harboring certain libertarian
zooming toward a glowing
Space Jesus in Rapture Rock- -
eteers, for example, is a crime - a man beneath the canopy of heaven,
against kitsch. - that does not know that slavery is
But intrepid artonauts will
be rewarded by Steve Strawns -

D Todd Gardner, The Love Gun or Bang Bang, Kiss Kiss. Courtesy Artisphere.
three Space Invadersinspired lass for preaching a laissez-faire individualism ouglasss arguments against
photo prints, where familiar bit- slavery are, in a very impor-
map Atari aliens become sinis-
ter shadows glimpsed through - -
a haze of battle smoke and ously championed both civil rights and eco- entist Nicholas Buccola in The Politi-
rain. Other highlights include a - cal Thought of Frederick Douglass, his
travel poster in which a friendly engaging new study of the great abo-
robot cruise ship captain bids
Aloha from Mare Tranquillita- worldview was the principle of self-ownership, dual commitment to both a robust
tis, the moons waterless Sea of which he understood to include both racial
Tranquility. equality and the right to enjoy the fruits of ones and the ideas of universal self-own-
Katherine Mangu-Ward ership, natural rights, limited govern-

56 | reason | Aug./Sept. 2012

Buccola offers a nuanced portrait that -
The new book from the
place in American intellectual his-
FOX Business News Host

can solve our
hoe, Maryland, to a slave mother and

a white, likely slaveholding father,

can solve our

bondage at the age of 20, making his problems


got married, and then to the whaling -

port of New Bedford, Massachusetts, lass disregarded the misguided views

had been known as Frederick Bailey notes, throughout his development

presented with a series of ideological

As far as Douglass was

only government he recognized was
concerned, the former
slaves had been robbed,
not just of the fruits of general director of the Massachusetts
their labor but of their Antislavery Society, who believed
that private property was the root of
very minds and bodies.
consistently rejected these in favor

earningsplaced me in a state of

abolitionist lectures and subscrib-

S ocialism was then becoming
particularly attractive to many
ing to The Liberator, the abolition- lass rejected the socialist case against
private land ownership, saying it
antislavery leader, who became a possess it in that way in which its
energies and properties can be made The New York Times
to share his own remarkable story, bestselling author and
Fox News commentator
the abolitionist lecture circuit, cap- debunks the most sacred cow
tivating audiences with his gripping sin to accumulate property, it is the of all: our intuition and belief
account of the outrages he suffered plain duty of every man to lay up that government can solve
and witnessed under the peculiar
our problems.
black crowd in Rochester, New York
Pick up or download
of both worlds and making the best your copy today!
My Bondage and My Freedom
second of his three autobiographies, -
it didnt take long before he started
reason | Aug./Sept. 2012 | 57
he also considered economic liberty an essential public education for African Ameri-

Since most labor unions at the time excluded these programs and the arguments
blacks from their ranks, while lobbying the gov- made today by advocates of welfare-

the former slaves had been robbed,

- not just of the fruits of their labor

proof almost every day of their mischievous

Water Wrongs serious compensation from the fed-
Last Call at the Oasis is a slickly eral and state governments that had
produced but conventionally
liberal documentary about the
worlds ongoing water crisis. face of the state-sanctioned outrages perpe- about redistribution; he was talking
The movie spends considerable trated under the slave system and later under about restitutionpaid directly to the
time and effort trying to con-
vince viewers that water access us have peace, but let us have liberty, law, and

The Political Thought of Frederick Douglass (cover detail)

is a problem, across the globe
but also in the United States.
Proposed solutions, how- -
D ouglass also immediately recog-
nized that the end of slavery did
not mean the end of racist govern-
ments, fairly interpreted, faithfully executed,
Institute hydroclimatologist
Peter Gleick argues that its states began passing a series of laws,
The Political Thought of

Last Call at the Oasis

wrong for California to pursue regulations, and ordinances aimed
- Frederick Douglass is Buccolas sharp analysis of at restricting or even eliminating the
new political, civil, and economic
why. Any solutions that do not rights enjoyed by African Americans,
come directly from the stan-
dard progressive playbook are men could be so devoted to freedomthe value
summarily rejected.
Where property rights and systemthat they would be moved to action on
privatization are mentioned,
its only to dismiss them. Mar-
ket pricing for watertradition- always work out that way, and his optimism
ally a very useful way to ration
valuable things we dont want Buccola is slightly less persuasive when it
to wastegoes unmentioned,
as do decades of labyrinthine
state-level distribution rules, liberals sensitivity to the ways in which social
waste-encouraging subsidies, and economic inequality can undermine the
and pricing controls that have
contributed to water shortages defended an active role for the state to combat
in the American West.
Peter Suderman
federal government, including subsidized land
grants by the Freedmens Bureau and universal
58 | reason | Aug./Sept. 2012
including their right to vote, earn a
living, and defend themselves from

example, declared that no freedman,
free Negro, or mulattoshall keep

every negro is required to be in the online store

regular service of some white per-
son, or former owner, who shall be
responsible for the conduct of said

enforced in blatant violation of the

trouble never was in the Constitu-

tion, but in the administration of the

urged the government, including the

stitutional responsibility to safeguard
the life, liberty, and property of all

lass famous statement that the gov-
Visit the new
reason store for
he favored the aggressive enforce-
t-shirts, sweatshirts,
ment of federal civil rights legisla- mugs, caps, and
Consider the way he phrased that

entire agenda in a nutshell, a perfect

liberal approach: protect individual

rights, pay restitution for past crimes,
and let black Americans get on with
the business of seeking happiness as

Damon W. Root ( is a senior

editor at .

reason | Aug./Sept. 2012 | 59

1776, All Over Again great nation grounded in a sincere
shared belief in liberty must have
A 1969 musical about the
been appealing to an American pub-
Declaration of Independence
lic stunned in the aftermath of the
is back
1968 election, in which Alabama
Katherine Mangu-Ward

1776 debuted on Broadway in 1969, -

just as Richard Nixon was taking up
eternal, but the shows positive recep-
tion has yet to be duplicated in the
that year, beating out the naked hip-
pie romp Hair, despite two aston-

T he most famous song in a show

full of decidedly non-famous

Franklin squabble over the appropri-

Founders, plucked from their solemn

trait and forced to tread the boards, up a staunch case for the turkey, and

in a fudged timeline as they squabble

their way through the summer of
day morning in this / congressional

over and over, is obnoxious and dis- But the best song is actually
ington sends dispatches from the quasi-minuet in which the conserva-
- tive faction vows to dance only to
the right, ever to the right / Never
Accusations of treason swarm like
whole thing is horrifyingly anachro-
about, and everyone complains about nistic; the political usages of left and
right have their origin in the National
possibly have lyrics that revolve Assembly of the French Revolution 1947, naming a dozen screenwriters
around the word humid of 1789, which took place many years
vote for independence is an act of
cowardice, not bravery, by a compos- But it wasnt out of concern for his- requested a special showing, only to
ite character who simply doesnt want torical accuracy that the song was cut demand the removal of that right-
to be remembered as the guy who by the time the show was made into a wing minuet, as well as the touch-
put the kibosh on American freedom
ers became increasingly human
self-obsessed, and frequently rac- and complex, common soldiers are

ist jerks could manage to forge a American Activities Committee in

60 | reason | Aug./Sept. 2012
ilk as hypocritical schemers, more in
line with the mood of a nation about them there, or what resonates more
- with the current climate: the musical
restored in later laserdisc, , and spectacle of enemies coming together
three years before couldnt even man- to forge a new nation, or the bunting-
But by the time the movie came Cabaret
out, America was in no mood for a was shot?
lighthearted romp through American 1776
Burr - - Katherine Mangu-Ward (
is managing editor of .
away bestseller, offered a vision of
house was packed with tourists, not
reason | Aug./Sept. 2012 | 61
sor Zev Yaroslavsky came up with an bus has an enforcer, a driver
who collects the standard fare of

MTA is claims to
simultaneously increasing operating conduct occasional spot checks and
costs, reducing operating revenue,
cutting service for working-class and revenue numbers suggest very few
poor customers, and dismantling is planning
a functioning mass transit system, to add gating at rail platforms later
all in the service of a fantasy that

authority want to reduce its number

Since 2009 the has added of paying customers while adding
eight miles of train service, at a capi- -

How Rail Screws the Poor - of the answer lies in the nations light

As Los Angeles spends

carry a total of about 39,000 people added or planned in Austin, Cincin-
billions on light rail, transit
nati, Minneapolis, and other cities
use declines.
strapped authority radically reduced buffs have a special complex rooted
The dirty secret
- by 4 percent in 2010 and 12 percent

though buses move more than four

times as many Angelenos as trains Senate Antitrust Committee report
buses carried about A Proposal for Restructuring the Auto-
miles, the mobile, Truck, Bus & Rail Industries,
buses every weekday, operates trains that by 16 percent, we can estimate the evolution of modern car-friendly
over 87 miles of track, and carries more than 180,000 people had their
more than 1 million passengers a service canceled while fewer than consumer choice or technological

ot surprisingly, the result is that
- fewer people are using mass lush palm trees, fragrant orange
ver City, rides like a dream along
ing to - treesdying from petrochemical

more than 80 miles of railroads have popular if historically dubious anti-

Unfortunately, we also found very been built, but mass transit ridership rail conspiracy theory informed the
as a percentage of county population plot of the 1988 movie Who Framed
calculations, we estimated total daily Roger Rabbit?
ridership could not exceed 13,000 Bus riders get screwed in another Using transit policy to right
Terry Colon

alleged historical wrongs salves the

- consciences of well-heeled liberals,
62 | reason | Aug./Sept. 2012
provides plenty of room for doling cuts, adding that his group is launch-
out political pork, and pleases plan- by the left-wing Bus Riders Union ing a national campaign to get
successfully sued the , alleging
discrimination in transit decision and restore 1 million hours of bus
want to remake Angelenos into hub-
centered, vertically living New York- questionable idea that subsidized
public transit is a human right, but but this civil rights bean counting
it had a good effect: Under a 10-year wouldnt be necessary if the
consent decree, the authority beefed were even minimally responsive to
Why would a public transit up its bus service and saw rider-
authority want to reduce on infrastructure and end up with
its number of paying and bus service since then has been fewer people using mass transit is an
customers while adding

that is destined to be
severely underused? T to
does not, as rail buffs claim, get peo-

perverse dream from the ivory tower,

one that vanishes when it hits the
Bus riders are overwhelmingly

Tim Cavanaugh ( is

managing editor of .
Mann says the instead should
robotic voice that announces upcom-


Shouldnt you have one?
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reason | Aug./Sept. 2012 | 63

Scale model of the Abbottabad, Pakistan, compound where Osama bin Laden
was killed. AP Photo/National Geospatial-Intelligence Agency
Bin Ladens Doll House 2011 raid that killed the terrorist

Peter Suderman
practiced operations in a full-scale
Imagine playing with your toy sol-
diers in this: a 1/84th scale miniature Made of clay, Styrofoam, and how large the compound actually is,
- other materials, it was constructed or was, sorry, because it no longer
based on satellite imagery gathered
by a team of staff model makers at - Fouche told the Agence France-
tures a wealth of tiny details, includ-
van parked out front and true-to-life
measures one inch for every seven foliage in the compounds inner
feet of real-world compound, was Peter Suderman (
is a senior editor at .

forces in preparation for the May

64 | reason | Aug./Sept. 2012
From Reason Magazine Senior Editor
Brian Doherty


The indispensible
guide to this
most enigmatic
of politicians.

Available Wherever Books

and E-Books Are Sold

Read our blog and join in the discussion

The federal government has teamed up with my local police department to take my business
using civil asset forfeiture.

But I have done nothing illegal or wrong.

I am fighting to protect my rights and my property.

I am IJ.

Russ Caswell
Tewksbury, Mass. Institute for Justice

Property rights litigation