The Power of Independent Thinking

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Mary L.G. Theroux | Childhood Poverty, Government Failures, and the Need for Economic Liberty
Posted: Fri. March 27, 2015

Independent Institute Senior Vice President Mary L. G. Theroux testified on "Childhood Poverty, Government Failures, and the Need for Economic Liberty", before the California State Senate's Budget Subcommittee on Health and Human Services, at the request of State Senator Jeff Stone. The witnesses spoke about California's Maximum Family Grant rule for families on welfare. The rule caps grants and does not increase grant money to mothers on welfare when they have more children. Mary testified about the causes of poverty and of the need for other, non-government options for poor families. She introduced ideas for helping the poor through private resources and organizations, instead of government agencies where families and women often find themselves trapped in a cycle of poverty.

Recorded: Thu. March 26, 2015
Experts: Mary L. G. Theroux
Type: Television
Issues: Bureaucracy and Government, Business, Culture/ Society, Economic Policy, Family, Health Care, Housing, Labor and Employment, Politics, Privatization, Public Health/ Consumer Protection, Regulation and Deregulation, Taxes, Welfare, Women’s Issues

Stephen P. Halbrook on the Tom Woods Radio Show to Discuss Gun Control
Posted: Tue. March 24, 2015

Research Fellow Stephen P. Halbrook, author of Gun Control in the Third Reich, talks with radio host Tom Woods about the events in Germany in the 1920s and 1930s that led to the disarming of Jews and other so-called "Enemies of the State" beginning with gun registration policies of the Weimar Republic, to the Nazis use of that information to disarm and eliminate any opposition.

Recorded: Mon. March 23, 2015
Experts: Stephen P. Halbrook
Type: Radio
Issues: Civil Liberties/ Human Rights, Constitutional Law, Crime, Criminal Justice/ Prisons, Culture/ Society, Freedom, Government Power, Gun Control, History (International), Law Enforcement, Nationalism, Political Ideology and Philosophy, Privatization, Religion, Terrorism and National Crises

C.S. Lewis on Mere Liberty and the Evils of Statism
Posted: Fri. March 20, 2015

Originally aired Feb 27, 2015

Independent Institute Founder, President and CEO David Theroux is introduced by Julian Charles on the United Kingdom's Revelations Radio Network's program “The Mind Renewed.” In an address from the Christians for Liberty Conference in August 2014, David Theroux talks about Lewis' world view championing truth, excellence, liberty and other similar virtues, as opposed to the state which often tramples on individual rights and freedoms.

Recorded: Sat. August 2, 2014
Experts: David J. Theroux
Type: Radio
Issues: Religion

Censorship and Propaganda in the Gulf War: How Government Can Mold Public Opinion
Posted: Thu. March 19, 2015

What happens when government goes unchallenged, and when questions regarding present or proposed policies go unasked? With the collapse of the Soviet Union at the end of the Cold War, for example, Americans are increasingly wary of foreign conflicts. Yes, American forces are still active in Somalia and are being called for in the Balkans and elsewhere. To understand how government officials may seek to shift public opinion on unpopular programs, John MacArthur has found understanding the precedents set during the war against Saddam Hussein to be most insightful.

In his presentation, Mr. MacArthur will draw upon his widely acclaimed book, Second Front: Censorship and Propoganda in the Gulf War, to scrutinize the government's campaign to tightly control the American media during Operation Desert Storm. With a reporter's critical eye and a historian's sensibility, he will trace decades of press-government regulations – during Vietnam, Grenada, and Panama – which helped set the stage for restrictions on Gulf War reporting and for a government public-relations triumph.

In his talk, Mr. Macarthur will detail the behind-the-scenes activities during Operation Desert Storm by the U.S. and Kuwaiti governments as well as the media's being co-opted while its rights to observe, question, and report were heavily restricted far beyond and needs to protect American lives. He will demonstrate how, despite a torrent of words and images from the Persian Gulf, Americans were systematically and deliberately kept in the dark about events, politics, and simple facts during the Gulf Crisis.

Drawing upon frank and startling interviews, Mr. MacArthur will discuss how the Pentagon, after locking out the press in Grenada and Panama, pooled, censored, and escorted the media under armed guard in the gulf to a degree seldom seen before in America's wars. As a result. the media may have merely become glorified government stenographers, uncritically accepting such stories as the Kuwaiti babies being snatched from incubators by Iraqui soldiers, the precision of "smart bombs," the exaggerated size and morale of Hussein's forces, and the nature of losses on both sides. In revealing the workings of propoganda, Mr. MacArthur will question the impact and need for such extraordinary government power.

Recorded: Thu. October 7, 1993
Experts: John R. MacArthur
Type: Independent Institute Event
Issues: Bureaucracy and Government, Civil Liberties/ Human Rights, Defense and Foreign Policy, Diplomacy and Foreign Aid, Entertainment, Government Power, Government Secrecy, History (International), Terrorism and National Crises

Secrecy, Freedom and Empire: Lessons for Today from Vietnam and the Pentagon Papers
Posted: Mon. March 16, 2015

Daniel Ellsberg began his Vietnam-era career as a U.S. Marine company commander, a Pentagon official, and a staunch supporter of U.S. global interventionism. But, in October 1969, Ellsberg—fully expecting to spend the rest of his life in prison—smuggled out of his office and made public a seven-thousand-page top secret study of decision making in Vietnam, the Pentagon Papers. At this upcoming Independent Policy Forum, Ellsberg will tell the story of his becoming the most important whistle-blower of the last fifty years, risking his career and his freedom to expose the deceptions and delusions of U.S. leaders from Truman onward. Based on his new book, Secrets, Ellsberg provided an insider’s view of the secrets and lies that have shaped decades of U.S. foreign policy to the present. His exposure began on his first day at the Pentagon, August 4, 1964, which was also the day of the infamous Gulf of Tonkin incident. In time, the more he learned from top decision-makers, confidential documents, and reports of secret maneuvers, the more skeptical he became about the conduct and impact of U.S. foreign policies.

The release of the Pentagon Papers set in motion a chain of events that included a landmark Supreme Court decision, the arrest and trial of Ellsberg, the crimes of Watergate, and the end of the Nixon presidency and the Vietnam War.

As the U.S. pursues the current War on Terrorism, Ellsberg’s insights into governmental intoxication with power could not be more timely or important.

This special evening with Daniel Ellsberg and a distinguished panel of scholars, Barton J. Bernstein, Edwin B. Firmage, David R. Henderson, and Jonathan Marshall discussed “Secrecy, Freedom and Empire: Lessons for Today from Vietnam and the Pentagon Papers.”

Recorded: Wed. October 23, 2002
Experts: E. Daniel Ellsberg
Type: Independent Institute Event
Issues: Defense and Foreign Policy, History (International)

Sr. Fellow Ivan Eland, author of "Recarving Rushmore," appears on the Lars Larson radio show
Posted: Mon. March 9, 2015

Sr. Fellow Ivan Eland, author of the newly updated book "Recarving Rushmore," appears on the nationally syndicated Lars Larson radio show to discuss how he ranks the U.S. Presidents in terms of peace, prosperity and liberty. The updated version of the book includes President Barack Obama.

Recorded: Thu. March 5, 2015
Experts: Ivan Eland
Type: Radio
Issues: Bureaucracy and Government, Democracy, Freedom, Government Power, History (U.S)

Peter A. Thiel | Courage Is In Far Shorter Supply Than Genius
Posted: Fri. February 27, 2015

In this clip from "Peter Thiel | Developing the Developed World: Entrepreneurship, Liberty, and the Future," Peter Thiel describes how courage to stand out from the crowd is in far shorter supply than great minds.

Recorded: Tue. January 27, 2015
Experts: Peter A. Thiel
Type: Independent Institute Event
Issues: Bureaucracy and Government, Business, Culture/ Society, Free Market Economics, Freedom, Government Power, Government Waste/Pork, Political Ideology and Philosophy, Politics, Privacy, Privatization, Regulation and Deregulation

The Political Economy of Drones
Posted: Fri. February 27, 2015

Research Fellow Abigail Hall joins the Larry Conners USA radio show to talk about the use of drones both domestically and internationally. What are the implications of the use of drones by law enforcement and military? Hall, who has written her dissertation on the subject, talks about the ramifications of the use of Unmanned Aerial Vehicles (UAVs) also known as drones.

Recorded: Thu. February 26, 2015
Experts: Abigail R. Hall
Type: Radio
Issues: Government Power, Law Enforcement, Political Ideology and Philosophy, Technology, Terrorism and National Crises