Gumshoe weblogger Julian Sanchez explains how "dilettante swarms" on the Net, himself among them, quickly unraveled a gun research riddle and solved "The Mystery of Mary Rosh" (page 16). Sanchez, who works as a staff writer and researcher at a Washington, D.C.-based think tank, admits having had a "gotcha moment" when he first made his chuckle-inducing discovery that gun scholar John Lott's biggest online fan was, indeed, John Lott, writing under a female pseudonym. Uncharacteristically self-effacing for a blogger, Sanchez describes his Notes from the Underground (accessible at www.juliansanchez.com/notes.html) as "a collection of political commentary, philosophical BS, and personal details, probably uninteresting to 99 percent of those who look at them."
With April 15 in sight, Leigh Jenco takes on the argument that without taxation, property rights could not exist ("Property Wrongs," page 58). Has she ever had to duke things out with the taxman, too? "Fortunately, I don't make enough money for the IRS to pick on me," says Jenco, a doctoral candidate in political theory at the University of Chicago. "Yet somehow, I always seem to owe at the end of the year." The Pittsburgh native has spent time living and studying in China, and plans to return there in 2004 to begin researching her dissertation on neo-Confucian individualism.
Reason Web Editor Tim Cavanaugh is pleased to announce that in February, Reason online logged yet another record-breaking month, topping out at 658,000 visits -- a 40 percent increase in traffic since September 2002. Quips Cavanaugh, who joined the staff last August, "It's either the growing popularity of laissez-faire, post-state principles, or my promise of a free toaster with every page view." It may also have something to do with Hit & Run, reason's popular staff blog that debuted in December, online at www.reason.com/hitandrun/. In this issue, Cavanaugh takes a break from writing for the Web to write about a Web magazine, the defunct dot-com glossy The Industry Standard ("Standard Issue," page 61).