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FOR WHOM THE BELL TOLLS: The Spanish Civil War

with Ronald Radoshvia Uncommon Knowledge
Wednesday, March 29, 2000

In 1937, thousands of Americans from all walks of life volunteered to fight in a poorly equipped army overseas, with no support from their own government. What was it about the Spanish Civil War that inspired such idealism and courage? And was the fight to defend the Spanish Republic against General Franco and the powers of international fascism as pure and noble as it seemed to these Americans? We examine the role that Soviet aid and influence, under Stalin's direction, played in supporting or undermining the Republican cause.

THE RAVAGED CENTURY: A Look Back at the Twentieth Century

with Robert Conquestvia Uncommon Knowledge
Tuesday, March 28, 2000

For much of the one hundred years just past, the forces of freedom and democracy found themselves at war with two books, Das Kapital, by Karl Marx which, of course, gave rise to communism. Mein Kampf, by Adolph Hitler which gave rise to Nazism. Nazism and communism, how is it that these two totalitarian ideologies gained such a hold on tens of millions of people. If you had to decide the matter as a historical question, which one, Nazism or communism, did more damage to the fabric of our civilization?

THE WEDDING ZINGER: The Definition of Marriage

with Mike German, Andy Pugno, Felicia Park Rogersvia Uncommon Knowledge
Tuesday, March 28, 2000

The traditional notion of marriage, that of a union between one man and one woman, goes back thousands of years in cultures from around the world. But at the beginning of the 21st century, a debate is building in this country over the definition of marriage, specifically over the issue of same sex marriage. Are two men, or two women, in a committed relationship entitled to the sanctions and legal benefits of marriage? What roles will popular sentiment and judicial activism have in the struggle to redefine marriage?

THAT '70S SHOW: The Meaning of the 1970s

with David Frum, David M. Kennedyvia Uncommon Knowledge
Tuesday, March 14, 2000

Some argue that all of the major cultural trends that we associate with modern America entered the mainstream in the 1970s. What was unique about the 1970s? Should we emphasize the impact of '70s over that of the '50s and '60s?

PRIMARY COLORS: The Presidential Primary System

with Newt Gingrich, Shanto Iyengar, Nelson W. Polsbyvia Uncommon Knowledge
Tuesday, March 14, 2000

In the 2000 presidential campaign, Gore and Bush locked-up their nominations almost six months before their parties' conventions. The Democratic and Republican national conventions, formerly full of high-stakes drama as the party delegates chose their presidential tickets, are now little more than formalities. Is the presidential primary system in need of reform or is it working just fine? Does the front-loading of the primary season make it impossible for a dark horse candidate to build a campaign? Do the political parties have too much power in the process or not enough?

THIS OLD HOUSE: The U.S. House of Representatives

with Newt Gingrich, Nelson W. Polsbyvia Uncommon Knowledge
Tuesday, March 14, 2000

The House of Representatives is a venerable institution, now more than 200 years old. Is the structure of the institution itself appropriate to the demands of our modern, rapidly changing democracy? What reforms did Newt Gingrich and the Republican Congress of 1994 make to the House? Were his reforms just partisan fix-it jobs or were they much-needed repairs for the long-term? Is it even possible to make long-term changes to the House?

Former Hoover fellow and Nobel laureate Milton Friedman.

MILTON'S PARADISE GAINED: Milton Friedman's Advice for the Next President

with Milton Friedmanvia Uncommon Knowledge
Friday, March 10, 2000

What the next President decides to do with the federal budget will impact the lives of each and every one of us. For example, what should the next President do with the current budget surplus—pay down the national debt, set aside money to strengthen Social Security, or cut taxes? Milton Friedman answers these questions as well as addressing how the next President should approach the issues of education, health care, and the future of Social Security.

Former Hoover fellow and Nobel laureate Milton Friedman.

THE ECONOMY'S NEW CLOTHES: Milton Friedman on the New Economy

with Milton Friedmanvia Uncommon Knowledge
Friday, March 10, 2000

Internet technologies are transforming the way we communicate and do business. But, are we, as some claim, in the midst of the "long boom," a new era of unparalleled prosperity driven by unprecedented technological change or are we merely enjoying a bull market that has yet to begin its inevitable correction? What does the current economic boom have in common with the "Roaring Twenties" and how can we avoid an economic contraction as severe as the Great Depression?

SALES OF A DEATH PLAN: Capital Punishment

with Sam Jordan, Kent Scheideggervia Uncommon Knowledge
Tuesday, February 15, 2000

Is America on the wrong side of the death penalty debate? The worldwide wide trend is against the death penalty: more than half the countries in the world have abolished it, including more than 30 nations since 1990. So why do we have a death penalty in America? Is it to deter people from committing murder? If so, does it work? Or is the death penalty fundamentally a matter of justice, of punishing appropriately those guilty of the worst crimes?

NO NUKES IS GOOD NUKES: Nuclear Proliferation

with Sumit Ganguly, William Potter, Scott Saganvia Uncommon Knowledge
Tuesday, February 15, 2000

For decades the United States, the former Soviet Union, China, Britain and France were the world's only nuclear powers. But that is changing. When India and Pakistan conducted nuclear weapons tests in 1998, they demonstrated that they had both the ability and the will to build nuclear weapons. Is the United States doing enough to prevent the proliferation of nuclear weapons? Are we prepared for the very real possibility that nations such as North Korea and Iran may soon be able to build nuclear weapons?

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For more than two decades the Hoover Institution has been producing Uncommon Knowledge with Peter Robinson, a series hosted by Hoover fellow Peter Robinson as an outlet for political leaders, scholars, journalists, and today’s big thinkers to share their views with the world. Guests have included a host of famous figures, including Paul Ryan, Henry Kissinger, Antonin Scalia, Rupert Murdoch, Newt Gingrich, and Christopher Hitchens, along with Hoover fellows such as Condoleezza Rice and George Shultz.

“Uncommon Knowledge takes fascinating, accomplished guests, then sits them down with me to talk about the issues of the day,” says Robinson, an author and former speechwriter for President Reagan. “Unhurried, civil, thoughtful, and informed conversation– that’s what we produce. And there isn’t all that much of it around these days.”

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