Merck and Pfizer: Time for a Drug Binge?

In turbulent times, tastes typically turn to the tried and true. For instance, investors usually flee volatile stocks in favor of shares in the big drug companies, which keep churning out good profits, whatever the economic conditions. After all, people get sick during recessions, too, and, while they can put off a new car, they […]

Campus Diversity Fraud

Anyone familiar with the argot of modern identity politics should be able to fill the blanks in this quotation from the student newspaper at Amherst College. The speaker is explaining why the minority group he belongs to should be granted its own “diversity” seat on the student senate: “It ought to go without saying that […]

Media Bias on Media Bias

After Senator Tom Daschle created a stir by attacking Rush Limbaugh and other conservative voices in the media as somehow responsible for death threats to politicians like himself, his total absence of any evidence made him look ridiculous. However, this charge was followed within days by another attack on the conservative media by former Vice […]

The Uncertainty Principle

“There remains an illusion among investors, especially professional money managers and analysts, that with enough digging and number-crunching, uncertainty can be conquered.” Unfortunately, it can’t. That’s the thrust of one of the best essays on investing I have ever read. The essay is the October letter to clients from Sam Mitchell, managing director of Marshfield […]

Terrorist attacks in Kenya

The recent terrorist attacks in Kenya (and in Bali on Oct. 12) should be a wake-up call to all those who want to fight terrorism. Islamic terrorism will continue and worsen as long as there exists dictatorial regimes — Iran, Iraq, Saudi Arabia, Syria, etc. — that sponsor and harbor terrorists. Some of these regimes […]

Judging Judges, Part 2

Although Republicans have regained control of the Senate, in a numerical sense, controlling the Senate in reality is a much tougher job. The ability of a minority in the Senate to filibuster things they object to means that real control may require 60 votes to shut off debate and allow votes to be taken. The […]

Simplify the Tax Code with a Flat Tax

It’s come to this: The federal government has accumulated such a huge backlog of uncollected tax debts that the IRS is thinking about hiring private bill collectors to help track down the missing funds. They’re also offering deals to taxpayers who use certain tax shelters–methods marketed by accounting firms for years, The Wall Street Journal […]

Red-Tape Conservationists

Environmentalists are up in arms about a recent Bush administration proposal to reduce red tape on logging in federal lands. But what this controversy is really about is not just the “conservation” of forests, but the conservation of the vast, arbitrary authority of federal regulatory agencies — an authority environmentalists are accustomed to exploiting for […]

Judging Judges

While the most immediate effect of the Republicans’ election victories has been to strengthen President Bush’s hand in dealing with the threat of Saddam Hussein, the most important long-run effect may be on the kind of federal judges who will shape the direction of American law over the next generation. Now that the Democrats can […]

War and Morality

The hallmark of our political leaders today is moral uncertainty–a quality that is shaping President Bush’s shapeless policy toward Iraq. Despite his repeated assertions about the dangers posed by Saddam Hussein, Mr. Bush chose to embrace the appeasing resolution recently passed by the U.N. Refusing to condemn Saddam Hussein as a vicious dictator whose government […]

Which Way Will the Democratic Party Go?

Given the unequivocal rout in the Nov. 5 election, there’s been no shortage of friendly advice on how the Democratic Party can resuscitate itself. From Sen. Zell Miller, a Georgia Democrat, looking at the prospect that Rep. Nancy Pelosi of San Francisco will become the new public face of the Democratic Party in the House […]

A Physician Comments on Abortion and the Morning After Pill

I was recently confronted in the Emergency Department with a situation I rarely encounter: a woman requesting “the morning after pill.” Since I practice in a largely conservative state, for a few minutes I introspectively debated whether I should provide her with such a prescription. Anti-abortionists often claim that the fetus is a human being […]