January 2007


Contributing Editor Julian Sanchez covers both the cutting edge of technology and the cutting edge of the law in "The Pinpoint Search" (page 20), his report on new gadgets and programs that pose a challenge to Americans' legal and cultural expectations about privacy. Sanchez, who is writing a book about the politics and psychology of disobedience, says he has no personal stories to tell about the shifting frontiers of privacy—or at least, none that "aren't too self-incriminating to put into print."

Marian L. Tupy, an analyst at the Cato Institute's Center for Global Liberty and Prosperity, returned recently to his native Slovakia, where the newly elected government is combining "left-wing" economic statism—11 out of 16 members of the cabinet, including the prime minister, are former Communists—with "right-wing" social intolerance. Similar movements, he notes in "Is Liberalism Dead in Central Europe?" (page 30), are rising across Central Europe, as citizens get fed up with the corruption and cronyism of the previous regimes. "The transformation in Central Europe is really not finished—yet," he says. "It wasn't a revolution in many ways, because many of the people who were responsible for taking those countries into economic meltdown mode continue to enjoy money and power."

John McClaughry, the president of Vermont's Ethan Allen Institute, has been a Reason contributing editor for, in his words, "umpty-ump years." He couldn't resist the chance to review former Reason staffer Bill Kauffman's Look Homeward, America ("Paradise Lost," page 62), since he feels an affinity for the unorthodox political characters profiled in Kauffman's book. During McClaughry's brief stint as a policy adviser in the Reagan White House, from 1981 to 1982, presidential spokesman Lyn Nofziger once asked him to characterize his political views. "It's simple," he replied. "I'm a Jeffersonian Tertium Quid Locofoco Western Progressive Decentralist Libertarian Distributist Reaganaut."