The Power of Independent Thinking

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Sr. Fellow Richard Vedder, author of Restoring the Promise appears on the Carolina Journal Radio show
Posted: Mon. April 6, 2020, 12:37pm PT

Sr. Fellow Richard Vedder, author of Restoring the Promise appears on the Carolina Journal Radio show to talk about the problems facing higher education today.

Recorded: Mon. April 6, 2020
Experts: Richard K. Vedder
Type: Radio

Fear: The Fuel of Government Power—Coronavirus Panic | Mary L. G. Theroux and Graham H. Walker
Posted: Thu. March 19, 2020, 10:19am PT

In response to 400 known cases and 5 deaths from coronavirus in the San Francisco Bay Area, on March 16th Bay Area city and county governments panicked and overreacted by ordering a "Shelter in Place" mandate that compels work from home, restricts free assembly, and imposes rules on residents and communities in which only "essential businesses" can operate. The order was proclaimed after private events were already and voluntarily being canceled, prudent telework arrangements were becoming common, and proper health precautions were being widely adopted.

The original order extends until April 7th and involves San Francisco, Santa Clara, San Mateo, Marin, Contra Costa and Alameda counties—a combined population of more than 6.7 million. Since then a total of 16 counties have joined in the edict, and California Governor Gavin Newsom has warned of declaring martial law.

[3/19/20 Update: "Progressive" Gov. Newsom has extended the edict to all Californians statewide affecting 40 million people, and he claims the right to announce more drastic measures as he sees fit.]

In this video, Graham H. Walker (Executive Director) and Mary L. G. Theroux (Senior Vice President) at the Independent Institute examine the folly and hypocrisy for this edict, which falls just short of a full lockdown. As reported by the San Francisco Chronicle, "The orders call for county and city sheriffs and police chiefs to 'ensure compliance,' and local authorities said they would not 'rush to enforce' the directives as residents adjusted to understand what activities are no longer allowed. Violation of the orders is considered a misdemeanor punishable by a fine or jail time."

Meanwhile, the strict monopoly control by the CDC (the federal government's Centers for Disease Control and Prevention) over coronavirus test kits, as an example of the failure of "single-payer healthcare," produced faulty kits, bureaucracy and massive shortages. In contrast, private firms in South Korea and Taiwan have been free to innovate and make effective kits widely available, and cases of coronavirus are declining there.

This edict along with the threat of extensive, new federal and state government restrictions, spending and debt have already sent the U.S. economy into a recession, which will only deepen if continued and create enormous social and economic hardships far greater than the epidemic itself.

Recorded: Thu. March 19, 2020
Experts: Mary L. G. Theroux, Graham H. Walker
Type: Independent Institute TV

The Irreproducibility Crisis and the Lehman Crash | Barry Smith
Posted: Wed. March 18, 2020, 10:05am PT

Many headline scientific findings in recent years have turned out to be false. They can’t be reproduced—and if you can’t reproduce a result, it isn’t science. The headlines are just the tip of the iceberg. A huge amount of ordinary scientific findings published in peer-reviewed journals doesn't replicate. Something has gone terribly wrong in contemporary scientific procedures.

Science’s failure is called the "Irreproducibility Crisis." It is the result of improper use of statistics, arbitrary research techniques, lack of accountability, political groupthink, and a scientific culture biased toward producing positive results. By some estimates, half of recent scientific research could be irreproducible.

In his presentation, Barry Smith discusses the irreproducibility crisis in ontological terms of misuse of data analysis or p-hacking (selective reporting of data, data fishing, data dredging) and how to restore the scientific enterprise. Dr. Smith is the SUNY Distinguished Professor of Philosophy and Julian Park Chair, Philosophy Department at the University at Buffalo.

Recorded: Fri. February 7, 2020
Experts: Barry Smith
Type: Independent Institute Event

Protecting the Second Amendment
Stephen P. Halbrook and Amy E. Swearer at CPAC

Posted: Thu. March 12, 2020, 11:38am PT

With the many new attacks on the Second Amendment on the federal, state, and local levels, this special session examines these threats and how to protect your right to self-defense. Indeed, the Democratic Party’s major candidates for nomination for President are unanimous in their agreement that your constitutional right to own and bear arms should be radically reduced, and in many cases, completely eliminated. In response, Stephen P. Halbrook (Senior Fellow, Independent Institute) and Amy E. Swearer (Senior Legal Policy Analyst, Heritage Foundation) discuss "Protecting the Second Amendment" (2/27/20) at the Conservative Policy Action Conference (CPAC), in the Gaylord National Resort and Convention Center, National Harbor, MD. The session is moderated by Jonathan Hofer (Research and Marketing Associate, Independent Institute)

Recorded: Thu. February 27, 2020
Experts: Stephen P. Halbrook, Amy E. Swearer
Type: Other Event

“Books for Skepticism about Socialism” Sr. Fellow Williamson Evers appears on WRVA radio
Posted: Fri. March 6, 2020, 11:57am PT

Sr. Fellow Williamson Evers appears on WRVA radio to talk about his list of “Best Books on the Folly of Socialism.” Evers discusses how socialism stagnates innovation and is a recipe for collapsing an economy. Students and young people should especially be wary of politicians that promise everything to everyone.

Recorded: Fri. March 6, 2020
Experts: Williamson M. Evers
Type: Radio

“Socialism’s Folly” Sr. Fellow Williamson Evers appears on the Lars Larson radio show
Posted: Fri. March 6, 2020, 9:42am PT

Sr. Fellow Williamson Evers appears on the Lars Larson radio show and talks about his list of “Best Books on the Folly of Socialism” which has been downloaded thousands of times. The books on the list detail the pitfalls of socialism and how it stifles innovation, freedom, and liberty.

Recorded: Thu. March 5, 2020
Experts: Williamson M. Evers
Type: Radio

“Books on Socialism’s Folly” Sr. Fellow Williamson Evers appears on FreedomWorks radio
Posted: Wed. March 4, 2020, 9:40am PT

Sr. Fellow Williamson Evers appears on FreedomWorks radio to talk about his list—“Best Books on the Folly of Socialism- What everyone should know about the practical and moral failures of the socialist project.” The list has been downloaded thousands of times and is required reading to understand Bernie Sanders’ “Democratic Socialism” he touts in his presidential campaign.

Recorded: Wed. March 4, 2020
Experts: Williamson M. Evers
Type: Radio

“Best Books on the Folly of Socialism” Sr. Fellow Williamson Evers appears on KFMB radio
Posted: Tue. March 3, 2020, 8:44am PT

Sr. Fellow Williamson Evers appears on KFMB radio to talk about Bernie Sanders and socialism. Evers' list of suggested books on the folly of socialism has been viewed thousands of times and discussions about socialism and Bernie Sanders are heard in the media daily. Evers discusses how socialism has always failed despite its promise of equality.

Recorded: Mon. March 2, 2020
Experts: Williamson M. Evers
Type: Radio