A Nation Silenced: The Fallout from Unchecked Cancel Culture
Disagreement, debate, and discourse are critical principles that have resided at the center of the American experience for over 200 years. But these foundational components of free speech are under real threat today. Cancel culture runs rampant on social media, and it has now left the digital space and crept into all facets of American life so that virtually no corner of the nation has gone untouched. This is a cancer on our democracy, and it is not just reserved for people of note. Americans are now collectively afraid to raise questions, speak their minds, and share many of their views — even if well intentioned — for fear of a woke-mob coming for them, their families, their livelihoods, and their privacy.
As a society, we must address this omnipresent threat, because a genuine marketplace of ideas — where facts, reason, and divergent strains of thought can be discussed and questioned without fear of significant reprisal and personal consequences — is what enabled our nation to genuinely be great, innovate, and a leader in the world.
Why Do We Forget Pandemics?
Until the Covid-19 pandemic, the catastrophe of the Spanish flu had been dropped from American memory.
The second Moderna shot made me sick—as predicted. A 24-hour touch of what an alarmed immune system feels like left me all the more grateful for my good fortune in avoiding the real thing and for being alive at a time when science had devised a 95 percent effective vaccine in record time.
The great forgetting
The second Moderna shot made me sick — as predicted. A 24-hour touch of what an alarmed immune system feels like left me all the more grateful for my good fortune in avoiding the real thing and for being alive at a time when science had devised a 95% effective vaccine in record time.
To distract myself from the fever as I tried to sleep, I visualized strands of synthetic messenger RNA floating into my cells to produce the alien spike protein that attracted my warrior T-cells. I drifted off envisioning an epic micro-battle underway in my blood and had a series of weird nightmares. At about two a.m., I woke up sweating, disoriented, and fixated on a grim image from one of the studies I had consulted while writing my own upcoming book, Virus: Vaccinations, the CDC, and the Hijacking of America’s Response to the Pandemic, on the Covid-19 chaos of our moment. In his Vaccine: The Controversial Story of Medicine’s Greatest Lifesaver, Arthur Allen described how, in the days of ignorance — not so very long ago — doctors prescribed “hot air baths” for the feverish victims of deadly epidemics of smallpox or yellow fever, clamping them under woolen covers in closed rooms with the windows shut.
The Price of Liberty: Paying for America’s Wars
In a bracing work of history, a leading international finance expert reveals how our national security depends on our financial security
More than two centuries ago, America’s first secretary of the treasury, Alexander Hamilton, identified the Revolutionary War debt as a threat to the nation’s creditworthiness and its very existence. In response, he established financial principles for securing the country–principles that endure to this day.
The Great Influenza: The Story of the Deadliest Pandemic in History
Magisterial in its breadth of perspective and depth of research, The Great Influenza provides us with a precise and sobering model as we confront the epidemics looming on our own horizon. As Barry concludes, “The final lesson of 1918, a simple one yet one most difficult to execute, is that…those in authority must retain the public’s trust.
The way to do that is to distort nothing, to put the best face on nothing, to try to manipulate no one. Lincoln said that first, and best. A leader must make whatever horror exists concrete. Only then will people be able to break it apart.”
A Theory of Justice: Original Edition
John Rawls aims to express an essential part of the common core of the democratic tradition―justice as fairness―and to provide an alternative to utilitarianism, which had dominated the Anglo-Saxon tradition of political thought since the nineteenth century. Rawls substitutes the ideal of the social contract as a more satisfactory account of the basic rights and liberties of citizens as free and equal persons. “Each person,” writes Rawls, “possesses an inviolability founded on justice that even the welfare of society as a whole cannot override.” Advancing the ideas of Rousseau, Kant, Emerson, and Lincoln, Rawls’s theory is as powerful today as it was when first published.
All the Laws but One: Civil Liberties in Wartime
In All the Laws but One, William H. Rehnquist, Chief Justice of the United States, provides an insightful and fascinating account of the history of civil liberties during wartime and illuminates the cases where presidents have suspended the law in the name of national security