Thursday, April 26, 2012
Pew asks an either-or question on gun rights. They want people to say what is “more important” to them, “control gun ownership” or “protect the right of Americans to own guns.” In 2000 66% picked “control gun ownership” and only 29% wanted to protect Second Amendment rights. The most recent poll shows that the percentage wanting to protect gun rights has jumped 20 points while those supporting gun control has declined by 21 points.
Posted by Moorfield Storey Institute at 1:00 AM
Thursday, April 19, 2012
Friedrich Hayek, the Nobel prize winning philosopher and economist, argued that many traditions and institutions of modern civilization “which are clearly the results of human action” are often erroneously assumed to be “consciously designed by a human mind.” Such institutions, he said, should not easily be tampered with by political powers as they were not designed, but rather evolved to fill certain functions. We often have very limited understanding of what those functions may be. On the surface, Hayek’s warnings seem to bolster the conservative case against marriage equality, as they appear to be a presumption in favor of the status quo—a sort of precautionary principle for conservatives. 1
Yet, Hayek himself said he was “not averse to evolution and change” and that when “spontaneous change has been smothered by government control, it [classical liberalism] wants a great deal of it.”2 Hayek’s own liberalism was in conflict with the “conservative attitude” which was “fear of change, a timid distrust of the new as such.”3 Hayek said his view “is based on courage and confidence, on a preparedness to let change run its course even if we cannot predict where it will lead,” all of which sounds contrary to Hayek’s precautionary principle.