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Sun Tzu And The Coronavirus

by Tunku Varadarajanvia Defining Ideas
Wednesday, April 1, 2020

A brand new translation of an ancient Chinese text.

Statewide Lockdowns And The Law

by John Yoo, Harmeet K. Dhillonvia Defining Ideas
Tuesday, March 31, 2020

Hasty infringements on individual rights at a time of coronavirus.

The Grim Costs Of Total Lockdowns

by Richard A. Epsteinvia Defining Ideas
Monday, March 30, 2020

The purported health gains from shutting down the economy do not begin to justify these radical initiatives.

COVID And Non-Pharmaceutical Interventions

by Paul R. Gregoryvia Defining Ideas
Sunday, March 29, 2020

America's lessons from the 1918 Spanish flu pandemic. 

How To Hobble The Economy—And How To Revive It

by David R. Hendersonvia Defining Ideas
Wednesday, March 25, 2020

In our desire to make things better, we shouldn’t forget basic economics.



Coronavirus Overreaction

by Richard A. Epsteinvia Defining Ideas
Monday, March 23, 2020

The hasty and disproportionate responses to COVID-19 will prove far more devastating than the disease.

Coronavirus Perspective

by Richard A. Epsteinvia Defining Ideas
Monday, March 16, 2020

The evidence does not support our panicked inferences.

Oil Drilling

The Drop In Oil Prices: Good Or Bad?

by David R. Hendersonvia Defining Ideas
Wednesday, March 11, 2020

OPEC, the United States, and the rules of economics. 

Playing Politics With Coronavirus

by Richard A. Epsteinvia Defining Ideas
Monday, March 9, 2020

Short-term crises are bad times to advance discredited progressive reforms.

The Revenge Of The Paris Agreement

by Richard A. Epsteinvia Defining Ideas
Monday, March 2, 2020

A British court uses global warming fears to block an airport expansion.


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Richard Epstein presents his classically libertarian perspective on national developments in public policy and the law. The Libertarian archives »


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The Caravan

Visit the Caravan, a periodic symposium on the contemporary dilemnas of the greater Middle East.

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.



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The opinions expressed in Defining Ideas are those of the authors and do not necessarily reflect the opinions of the Hoover Institution or Stanford University.