Defining Ideas

Defining Ideas

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Defining Ideas: The Surprising International Consensus on Healthcare

by Scott W. Atlasvia Defining Ideas
Thursday, June 19, 2014

Unlike our government, the Europeans are starting to understand that the cure to failed nationalized health systems is privatization. 

A Win For Students

by Richard A. Epsteinvia Defining Ideas
Tuesday, June 17, 2014

A California court that recently dealt the teachers unions a massive blow did not go far enough. 

Protest against Bashar al-Assad

The Consequences of Syria

by Lee Smithvia Defining Ideas
Thursday, June 12, 2014

The United States's foreign policy in the Middle East will embolden our adversaries and lead to instability all throughout the region. 

Hot Air on Climate Change by Terry Anderson

Hot Air on Climate Change

by Terry Andersonvia Defining Ideas
Thursday, June 12, 2014

Unlike bureaucrats in Washington, entrepreneurs aren’t just talking about the weather, they are doing something about it.

US Money Ladder

Rewriting the First Amendment

by Richard A. Epsteinvia The Libertarian
Monday, June 9, 2014

Democrats are pushing a proposal to throttle the political speech of their opponents.

Podcast: Amending the First Amendment
The New American Isolationism

The New American Isolationism

by Russell A. Bermanvia Defining Ideas
Wednesday, June 4, 2014

The Obama administration’s foreign policy will have dangerous consequences in the Middle East.

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The Futility of Gun Control

by Richard A. Epsteinvia The Libertarian
Tuesday, June 3, 2014

To stop mass killers, we should let people like off-duty police and security guards carry concealed weapons.

Podcast: The Second Amendment and Mass Shootings
Narendra Modi

Ronald Reagan Is Alive in India

by Allan H. Meltzervia Defining Ideas
Thursday, May 29, 2014

Republicans could learn a lot from the election of Narendra Modi.

California’s Primary Dilemma

California’s Primary Dilemma

by Carson Brunovia Defining Ideas
Thursday, May 29, 2014

Jerry Brown’s clear path to re-election may be a disservice to the Golden State.

Lincoln Memorial

The Case Against Reparations for Slavery

by Richard A. Epsteinvia The Libertarian
Tuesday, May 27, 2014

For true racial justice, let's promote the rule of law, deregulate the labor market, and embrace the charter school movement.

Podcast: The Reparations Debate


With its distinct intellectual assets and ongoing programs of policy-oriented research, the Hoover Institution at Stanford University is a uniquely distinguished contributor to the marketplace of ideas.

Defining Ideas builds on the strength of Hoover’s research: publishing on-line the original work of Hoover fellows and affiliated scholars, as well as that of task force and working group members, whose scholarship lies within the fields of economics, history, law, and political science.

This online journal is the result of our concerted efforts to be part of America’s most important conversations, conveying to the public and to lawmakers an in-depth understanding of key public policy issues. Crucial to this effort is a commitment to develop enduring solutions for the challenges that face our nation and our world—in effect, to advance ideas defining a free society.

Throughout history, ideas have had consequences for the human condition, both beneficial and detrimental. The Hoover Institution’s working groups have been convened to promote ideas that advance freedom, peace, and prosperity. Defining Ideas is intended to illuminate the work of these groups.



While Defining Ideas welcomes comments from readers, we exercise the right to monitor the comments we receive. We will not publish comments that include obscenities, swear-words and vulgarisms; ad hominem attacks; racist expression; rudeness or discourtesy; violations of copyright; or any other transgression of taste or civility that the editors deem unpublishable on a Hoover Institution Web site. We reserve the right, also, to close down comments on a particular essay if the editors believe we have reached "saturation" point.