From the Archives: February 2021
Excerpts from Reason's vaults
20 years ago
"We have come a long way toward a diverse society that respects both the maleness and the individuality of boys and young men. This diversity will always have room for conservative subcultures that uphold traditional ideals of manhood, as well as for feminist-pacifist communes in which a little boy who uses a stick as a toy sword immediately has the weapon confiscated. But I'd like to think that the future belongs to the feminist who can respect her son the career soldier and to the career soldier who can respect his son the hairdresser."
"Where the Boys Are"
"As three tired, unshaven men struggling over the Montana mountains at 45 miles per hour in a 1969 Volkswagen bus, we meant only one thing to the authorities sworn to protect the public from the Rainbow Family Gathering of Light. Hippies. Worse: hippies without permits, a combination that put The Man in a particularly grumpy state of mind."
"Take Me to Your Leader"
25 years ago
"By making it virtually impossible to collect meaningful data about juvenile delinquents, expungement also makes it difficult to evaluate crime-prevention and rehabilitation programs. Outside of the criminal justice sphere, the policy has other deleterious effects. Employers, for instance, can't know whether potential employees are prone to stealing or other criminal behaviors. Given these various costs, it's not surprising that a number of states are seriously reevaluating the sealing of juvenile records."
"Young & Arrestless"
"The embrace of top-down institutions can thus be seen as a kind of industrial counterrevolution. The legacy of this counterrevolution was to magnify and prolong the harshest and least attractive features of the industrial economy, and squelch its most benign and hopeful ones. We have moved away from the rough edges of the early industrial era in spite of, not because of, the grand designs of social engineers and technocratic elites."
"Crushing tax burdens are just over the horizon. When the baby boom generation retires, younger workers will have to pay 84 percent of their income to support federal spending, an obviously uncollectable amount. Even if the Republican balanced budget is enacted, that rate will fall only to the low 70s."
35 years ago
"Utility PR people and government regulators continue to recite the 'free enterprise lost in a fair fight' tale. That story won't wash any longer. Vail and Insull and their cronies managed to hornswoggle several generations of Americans, but their modern-day counterparts have a tougher battle on their hands. American consumers are getting wise to the regulated-monopoly con, and it doesn't take subterfuge for them to make their case—only open information and honest analysis. Let's hope that it's enough."
Marvin N. Olasky
"I ask you, what good are such ordinances and regulations if we allow the denizens of these communities or their guests to dress in disaccord with the understated tastefulness that select alderpersons have so wisely legislated into place? Of what use is a beautifully regulated house, with its beautifully regulated landscape nestled into a beautifully regulated hill, in a beautifully regulated community, if all that beautifully regulated eye appeal might be so easily and capriciously set awry by careless and unregulated pedestrians who have little if any sense of fashion?"
"Let's Hear It for the Fashion Police"
"I live here in Berkeley where my old comrades are now in power, and I find myself struggling against them. And this is the legacy, that the left became so ideologically attached to anti-Americanism and pro-communism and Third Worldism that I believe that we have a problem on our hands."
"Reason Interview: Eldridge Cleaver"
50 years ago
"The power crisis now facing this country consists in a peculiarly interlocked group of shortages, not only of electrical generating capacity but also of every major fuel supply. Behind these shortages lies a system of controls and interventions which not only have failed individually to achieve their intended purposes but have also worked at cross-purposes with one another. In short, if one wished to wreak havoc in the field of power generation, it would be difficult to design a system that would succeed better than the current patchwork of interventions."
Robert Poole Jr.
"The Power Crisis"