social control / compulsion

Storms Over the Emerald Isle

On the weekend of February 8, 2020, a storm ripped through Ireland. Storm Ciara was one of the worst of its kind for many years. Its winds, snows, and driving rains caused havoc with landslides and flooding. At the same time, a political storm ripped through the Irish political landscape. Sinn Féin up-ended the political [...]

Coming Out of the Closet

It was the late 1990s, and I went up to Rolling Stone on Sixth Avenue in Manhattan to say hello to my old friend Bobby Love who was the longtime managing editor. I had worked at Rolling Stone for a short while many years before and had made many friends and drinking buddies, including Bobby [...]

The Human Gated Community

They have become ubiquitous: communities of the living that can be entered only by passing a guard house or punching some numbers into an electronic pad. They are brazenly distinct from the rest of the world where communities grow organically and one can pass freely into a neighborhood or onto a street without challenge. Punching in [...]

The Abuse of Science Leads to Liberal Social Engineering

A couple of months ago I commented on how modern ways of thinking make it hard to understand human life. I didn't say so specifically, but a big part of the problem has to do with the relation between law and freedom. The problem comes up in the scientific approach to knowledge. Scientists pursuing their investigations view [...]

Liberalism, Choice and Compulsion

Social liberals consider traditional moral restrictions cruel in their very essence. Each of us, they believe, should be as free as possible to pursue his happiness as he sees it, consistent with the equal ability of others to do the same. To reject that position, as Catholics and other moral traditionalists do, is either intentionally [...]

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