Current Affairs

"Venezuela’s Future — and Ours"

Kevin Williamson:

Progressives will consider the case of Venezuela or North Korea (the American Left’s longstanding admiration of Castro’s Cuba, and its celebration of Hugo Chàvez only a few years ago, has been memory-holed) and say that the problem with those countries is not socialism but a lack of democracy, political violence and instability, etc. But repression on the Venezuelan model is not extraneous to socialism — it is baked into the socialist cake. Lenin, Stalin, Mao, Castro (and Castro!), Chàvez, Maduro, Honecker, Ho Chi Minh, Pol Pot, the Kim dynasty, Shining Path: No ideology is that unlucky. Violence and oppression is not something that just happens to accompany efforts to impose political regimentation on the economy — which is to say, on private life — but is an inescapable accompaniment to it.

"We’ve Gone Too Far: Income Redistribution, Effective Marginal Tax Rates, and Our Angry Middle Class"

Economist David Tufte, extending recent work by Greg Mankiw, argues for reducing marginal income tax rates on the 2nd, 3rd, and 4th quintiles, while raising the marginal rate a bit on the highest quintile

I'd prefer cuts in government spending followed by decreased marginal rates across the board. "You may say I'm a dreamer. But I'm not the only one."


"Progressives Should Back Up Their Rhetoric on Immigration"

Victor Davis Hanson has some excellent suggestions for Liberals. But I won't hold my breath.

Why not use the thousands of currently half-empty residence halls at American colleges and universities to help house families from Central America and Mexico who await adjudication of their asylum claims?

The federal government could contract out to universities such as UCLA, Stanford, Cal-Berkeley, and large public universities in Colorado, Arizona, and New Mexico to offer migrants temporary summertime shelter and sustenance. Law schools could offer pro bono legal counseling, and medical schools could offer health services.