Mike Munger – Bleeding Heart Libertarians http://bleedingheartlibertarians.com Free Markets and Social Justice Wed, 15 Nov 2017 17:16:21 +0000 en-US hourly 1 https://wordpress.org/?v=4.8.3 http://bleedingheartlibertarians.com/wp-content/uploads/2016/09/cropped-site-icon-BHL-32x32.png Mike Munger – Bleeding Heart Libertarians http://bleedingheartlibertarians.com 32 32 22756168 Truthiness and the Problems of Knowing, REALLY Knowing http://bleedingheartlibertarians.com/2017/11/truthiness-problems-knowing-really-knowing/ http://bleedingheartlibertarians.com/2017/11/truthiness-problems-knowing-really-knowing/#comments Wed, 15 Nov 2017 17:16:21 +0000 http://bleedingheartlibertarians.com/?p=12071 Ten years ago, I published a piece in Public Choice. I wish I had been wrong. My claim was that we are pretty good at exposing falsehoods, but terrible and...

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Ten years ago, I published a piece in Public Choice.

I wish I had been wrong. My claim was that we are pretty good at exposing falsehoods, but terrible and in fact progressively more terrible at having a consensus on things that are real.

Here are my thoughts now.

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Anderson V. Munger Cage Match!!! http://bleedingheartlibertarians.com/2017/11/anderson-v-munger-cage-match/ http://bleedingheartlibertarians.com/2017/11/anderson-v-munger-cage-match/#comments Mon, 06 Nov 2017 18:29:04 +0000 http://bleedingheartlibertarians.com/?p=12068 Okay, no. It was orderly and respectful. And she’s probably right. But Liz Anderson WAS kind enough to have a discussion/debate about her new book, Private Government. The video is...

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Okay, no. It was orderly and respectful. And she’s probably right.

But Liz Anderson WAS kind enough to have a discussion/debate about her new book, Private Government.

The video is here. Thanks to Bookmarks/Public Square for the opportunity!

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Permissionless Innovation http://bleedingheartlibertarians.com/2017/10/permissionless-innovation/ http://bleedingheartlibertarians.com/2017/10/permissionless-innovation/#comments Mon, 30 Oct 2017 21:33:24 +0000 http://bleedingheartlibertarians.com/?p=12065 Some time ago, I wrote this little piece. For Learn Liberty. Russ Roberts and I got to talk about it. A very interesting conversation, from my perspective. I always learn...

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Some time ago, I wrote this little piece. For Learn Liberty.

Russ Roberts and I got to talk about it. A very interesting conversation, from my perspective. I always learn a lot from Russ.

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It’s not nice to stair, especially in Canada…. http://bleedingheartlibertarians.com/2017/09/not-nice-stair-especially-canada/ http://bleedingheartlibertarians.com/2017/09/not-nice-stair-especially-canada/#comments Fri, 01 Sep 2017 12:56:12 +0000 http://bleedingheartlibertarians.com/?p=12011 So, there was this slippery, muddy slope. But it was much faster as a way down to the gardens, or the soccer fields. The city thought about building a stairway....

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So, there was this slippery, muddy slope. But it was much faster as a way down to the gardens, or the soccer fields.

The city thought about building a stairway.  But it was expensive to obey all the rules the city council had imposed on public structures.

So a social entrepreneur built a stairway for $550.

But the city tore it down. And the city was quite right to do so.  Because rules.

Or so say I….

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Sharing Economy http://bleedingheartlibertarians.com/2017/06/sharing-economy/ Fri, 23 Jun 2017 12:24:42 +0000 http://bleedingheartlibertarians.com/?p=11871 One of the reasons I have been worried about UBI or some process of accounting for the very least well off is that I think the middleman/sharing economy is going...

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One of the reasons I have been worried about UBI or some process of accounting for the very least well off is that I think the middleman/sharing economy is going to be so disruptive.

My new book, TOMORROW 3.0, is (it appears likely) to be published by Cambridge Press. This rather optimistic preview was reprinted by my friends at FEE.

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Supreme Court responds to Matal v. Tam, regarding “The Slants” http://bleedingheartlibertarians.com/2017/06/supreme-court-responds-matal-v-tam-regarding-slants/ http://bleedingheartlibertarians.com/2017/06/supreme-court-responds-matal-v-tam-regarding-slants/#comments Thu, 22 Jun 2017 23:20:42 +0000 http://bleedingheartlibertarians.com/?p=11866 In 2011 a young musician and polymath, Simon Tam, got a suggestion from a lawyer friend. Simon’s band, “The Slants,” was blowing up quite a bit, and the lawyer friend...

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In 2011 a young musician and polymath, Simon Tam, got a suggestion from a lawyer friend. Simon’s band, “The Slants,” was blowing up quite a bit, and the lawyer friend was pointing out that they had not trademarked their name. The lawyer said that it shouldn’t be a big deal, a couple of hundred dollars and some paperwork.

Mr. Tam was pretty busy, but since the lawyer said he could take care of it Tam said to go for it. They had already been using the name for a while; in fact, their album “Slants! Slants! Revolution” in 2009 had taken for granted that the ironic use of the slur, based on the imagined shape of Asian eyes, was something they could own and take back. (I should note that, if you are older than 40 or younger than about 25, there was this thing called “Dance! Dance! Revolution” in arcades…oh, never mind.)

The group wasn’t really worried much about their trademark application; it all seemed pro forma. But one day (according to the version told here:  Meredith Bragg (Interviewer), “The Slants: The Band Who Must Not Be Named,” Reason, April, 2017, http://reason.com/archives/2017/03/11/the-slants-the-band-who-must-n ) the lawyer friend called and said they had a problem. “They said your [band] is disparaging to persons of Asian descent….[meaning that] a substantial composite of the reference group has to find it disparaging.”  The reference given by the trademark office was that great legal authority Wikipedia, and a photo of Miley Cyrus pulling her eyebrows back and sticking her teeth out.

That was it. The trademark Nazis said, “No trademark for you!” To be fair, I can understand being offended by Miley Cyrus, but that’s hardly a problem for Mr. Tam’s band.  And offensive, “let’s own this!” band names have a long tradition in rock. Right off the top of your head, you can think of Courtney Love’s band, “Hole” (it was all women; OMG!); the “Butthole Surfers” (I don’t know if that’s offensive to surfers, but they still have a MySpace page, and that should offend anyone); and “The Dicks.” You might think that “The Dicks” would go on tour with “Hole,” but The Dicks did an album called “Dicks Live!  Hungry Butt,” so they might not really be on that team.

Yes, that was a really offensive paragraph. Rock music, punk music, hip hop if it’s real, all of it should be pretty upsetting and offensive. (I imagine that by this point my good friend Jacob Levy is clutching at his pearls and fanning himself with a copy of Spirit of Laws, muttering, “Wah, wah, ah NEVah!”)

Well, Mr. Tam and the other Slants went to court. They managed to take the issue all the way to the Supreme Court.  The case was heard in January.  And it was decided on Monday.

And the Court was quite properly offended by the decision of the trademark office.  Here’s the decision (http://www.npr.org/sections/thetwo-way/2017/06/19/533514196/the-slants-win-supreme-court-battle-over-bands-name-in-trademark-dispute ), and here is Damon Root with some commentary. [ Damon Root, “In Major Free Speech Victory, SCOTUS Rules for ‘The Slants’ and Strikes Down Federal Trademark Restriction,” Reason, Jun. 19, 2017 11:18 am, http://reason.com/blog/2017/06/19/in-major-free-speech-victory-scotus-rule ]

Now why doesn’t somebody do something about Miley Cyrus?

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Jessica Flanigan’s “Hayek Lecture” at Duke http://bleedingheartlibertarians.com/2017/04/jessica-flanigans-hayek-lecture-duke/ Thu, 13 Apr 2017 17:40:06 +0000 http://bleedingheartlibertarians.com/?p=11728 With thanks to Jonathan Anomaly for (as always) doing all the actual work and making all the important arrangements.  Thanks also to Bruce Caldwell, for doing the Hayek Lecture Series...

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With thanks to Jonathan Anomaly for (as always) doing all the actual work and making all the important arrangements.  Thanks also to Bruce Caldwell, for doing the Hayek Lecture Series through H.O.P.E.

Prof. Jessica Flanigan of U of Richmond, giving the final Hayek Lecture of the year….

“Pharmaceutical Freedom”

 

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Safe Space and Controversial Speakers http://bleedingheartlibertarians.com/2017/03/safe-space-controversial-speakers/ http://bleedingheartlibertarians.com/2017/03/safe-space-controversial-speakers/#comments Sat, 25 Mar 2017 11:49:06 +0000 http://bleedingheartlibertarians.com/?p=11686 We (the academy) are not doing a very good job of educating students on what it is universities do, or why. This was published in the Duke student newspaper, The...

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We (the academy) are not doing a very good job of educating students on what it is universities do, or why.

This was published in the Duke student newspaper, The Chronicle.

My reply tried to explain why that was really quite mistaken.

 

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Safe Spaces, Snowflakes, and my Man Crush on J. T. Levy http://bleedingheartlibertarians.com/2017/03/safe-spaces-snowflakes-man-crush-j-t-levy/ http://bleedingheartlibertarians.com/2017/03/safe-spaces-snowflakes-man-crush-j-t-levy/#comments Fri, 10 Mar 2017 00:41:00 +0000 http://bleedingheartlibertarians.com/?p=11647 I’m sorry Jacob had to find out this way.   But I have to come out:  I was wrong, and Jacob was right. About “safe spaces.” Jacob’s piece was here.

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I’m sorry Jacob had to find out this way.   But I have to come out:  I was wrong, and Jacob was right.

About “safe spaces.”

Jacob’s piece was here.

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Wait, What About….? http://bleedingheartlibertarians.com/2017/02/wait-what-about/ http://bleedingheartlibertarians.com/2017/02/wait-what-about/#comments Wed, 22 Feb 2017 15:57:22 +0000 http://bleedingheartlibertarians.com/?p=11622 I have come to believe that my “whataboutism” is a cop-out, rather than a useful response. As I say here….

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I have come to believe that my “whataboutism” is a cop-out, rather than a useful response.

As I say here….

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