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NMD ON TARGET? National Missile Defense

with Frank Gaffney, Jonathan Granoff, Dean Wilkeningvia Uncommon Knowledge
Tuesday, November 28, 2000

Should the United States build a national missile defense (NMD) or not? What are the technical challenges that NMD must overcome in order to be effective? Would a working missile defense system protect against large-scale attacks from a nation like Russia or China? Or would NMD only work against a limited strike by a smaller rogue nation or terrorist group? Is NMD worth the money it would cost or does it needlessly destablize our relationship with Russia?

ON THE AMERICAN PLAN: American Foreign Policy

with Ken Jowitt, Michael Nacht, Jane Walesvia Uncommon Knowledge
Tuesday, November 28, 2000

From the Monroe Doctrine through the Truman Doctrine, from containment to détente, the principles behind America’s boldest foreign policy initiatives were straightforward and easy to understand. These simple principles told the rest of world what to expect from the United States and what we expected from the rest of the world. What were the principles behind American foreign policy in the 1990s? Did President Clinton apply those principles rigorously or haphazardly? How can President Bush do better?

SO SUE ME: Tort Reform

with Deborah R. Hensler, H. Joseph Escher III, Thomas J. Brandivia Uncommon Knowledge
Thursday, November 16, 2000

Does our system of tort law need to be reformed or would reforms restrict a fundamental right to legal redress? Are trial lawyers taking advantage of the system, to the detriment of both citizens that have been harmed and the companies that are sued? Are limits on punitive damage awards and restrictions on class-action lawsuits good ideas or not?

LOST FOR WORDS: Politics and the English Language

with Andrew Fergusonvia Uncommon Knowledge
Thursday, November 16, 2000

In 1946, George Orwell wrote a famous essay deploring the decline in the level of modern political discourse. Many would argue that in the following fifty years, the problem has only gotten worse. But why is this the case? Our politicians all have teams of professional speech writers and pollsters, working with focus group data and the latest research to figure out just what the public wants to hear. So why doesn't it work? Why does the political discourse of our modern politicians pale against those of our forefathers?

SI, CHANGE: Mexico Transforming

with Stephen Haber, Denise Dresservia Uncommon Knowledge
Wednesday, October 25, 2000

In 2000, Vicente Fox became the first opposition candidate ever to win the Mexican presidency. His election was preceded by a decade and a half of economic and political reforms in Mexico. How significant are these changes? What are the prospects for resolving some of Mexico's enduring problems, including political corruption, entrenched poverty and a state-controlled economy? What challenges will Fox have to overcome to bring Mexico into a new era of prosperity and freedom?

SMOKE GETS IN YOUR EYES: The EPA and Cost-Benefit Analysis

with Bill Curtiss, M. Reed Hopper, James Strockvia Uncommon Knowledge
Wednesday, October 25, 2000

Almost everyone agrees on the importance of keeping our air and water pollution-free. But how much are we willing to pay and for what measure of protection? The Environmental Protection Agency (EPA) has been criticized for setting clean air standards without regard for the costs of meeting those standards. Critics of this approach argue that failing to weigh costs and benefits could threaten economic growth, which has its own implications for public health. How should the EPA set its standards? Can cost-benefit analysis lead to standards that are both efficient and effective?

ELEPHANTS ON PARADE: Conservatism in Modern America

with David M. Kennedy, Sam Tanenhausvia Uncommon Knowledge
Tuesday, October 3, 2000

For the last half of the twentieth century, the conservative movement in the United States was defined by two prominent doctrines: first, containment of the Soviet Union, and second, an effort to roll back the expansion of the federal government that began with the New Deal. With the first adversary out of existence, and the second in retreat, what does American conservatism stand for today? We look back to the roots of the conservative movement, its guiding principles and its leading proponents, including William F. Buckley, Barry Goldwater, and Ronald Reagan. We look to the future of American conservatism: Will it remain a unified movement or will internal tensions break it apart?

UP IN ARMS OVER THE SECOND AMENDMENT: The Meaning of the Second Amendment

with Jack Rakove, Eugene Volokhvia Uncommon Knowledge
Tuesday, October 3, 2000

Does the Second Amendment to the Constitution confer an individual right to bear arms or not? Why is there so much disagreement about the meaning of this Amendment? What does the historical evidence tell us about the intentions of the framers of the Constitution in writing this amendment? To what extent does our interpretation of the Second Amendment effect efforts at gun control today?

THE THIN BLUE LINE: United Nations Peacekeeping Missions

with Abraham D. Sofaer, Stephen Stedmanvia Uncommon Knowledge
Wednesday, September 27, 2000

Are peacekeeping missions undertaken by the United Nations a good idea? Is there a difference between peacekeeping and peacemaking? What sort of conflicts should the UN become involved in and which should it avoid? What are the alternatives to UN peacekeeping missions? Why have the number of UN missions increased so dramatically since the beginning of the 1990s?

SEE JOHNNY CLICK: Computers in Education

with Charles Garvin, William L. Rukeyser, Alan Warhaftigvia Uncommon Knowledge
Wednesday, September 27, 2000

Will computers revolutionize education or not? President Clinton called for connecting every classroom in America to the Internet. School districts across the country are spending billions of dollars on computers for the classroom. Will all of this effort pay off or is it misguided? Just how should computers be used in the classroom? Is it possible that computers can actually harm the educational process?

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