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Entries Tagged as 'Obedience and Insubordination'

Torture and the Postmodern Right

August 28th, 2009 · 6 Comments

Charles Murray chides those who found his analysis of the politics of torture investigations by the Justice Department disturbingly amoral: To those who were dismayed, I’ve got worse news: I think it is permissible to talk about murder and rape in amoral terms. To talk about the Inquisition, the Holocaust, and the genocides in Armenia […]

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Tags: Horse Race Politics · Obedience and Insubordination · Sociology · War

Liberté, égalité, paternalisme

June 29th, 2009 · 3 Comments

Yglesias has a good point on the proposed French burqa ban: [T]his sort of ban seems extremely unlikely to actually help anyone who’s genuinely in need of help. A woman whose husband and/or other male relations have enough power over her to force her into a burqa against her will is only going to be […]

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Tags: Law · Nannyism · Obedience and Insubordination · Religion

Make Him Make It Up

June 19th, 2009 · 3 Comments

ZP Heller at HuffPo wonders: The contrary argument, of course, is that if Obama or Congress speak out more aggressively, it will endanger the reformists in Iran and give ammunition to Khamenei and his allies. Khamenei’s speech today pushed me to reexamine this line of thinking. He didn’t need an incendiary line from Obama to […]

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Tags: Journalism & the Media · Obedience and Insubordination


April 17th, 2009 · 6 Comments

Assistant Attorney General Jay Bybee, 2002: You would like to place Zubaydah in a cramped confinement box with an insect. You have informed us that he appears to have a fear of insects. In particular, you would like to tell Zubaydah that you intend to place a stinging insect in the box with him. You […]

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Tags: Language and Literature · Obedience and Insubordination · War

The Shock Doctrine

November 10th, 2008 · 4 Comments

Naomi Klein, call your office: “Rule one: Never allow a crisis to go to waste,” [Rahm] Emanuel said in an interview on Sunday. “They are opportunities to do big things.”

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Tags: Economics · Obedience and Insubordination

Zimbardo Event at Cato

June 13th, 2008 · 2 Comments

Social psychologist Phil Zimbardo—the guy behind the (in)famous Stanford prison experiment—spoke at the Cato Institute yesterday, and Will Wilkinson and I offered up some brief commentary after his presentation. It’s a great short summary of the ideas in his book The Lucifer Effect, so if you’re interested in how social situations and roles can induce […]

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Tags: Obedience and Insubordination · Self Promotion

Live Sanchez

May 26th, 2008 · Comments Off on Live Sanchez

Philip Zimbardo, best known for staging the famous Stanford Prison Experiment, is coming to Cato on Thursday, June 12. And, if that weren’t enough reason to show up, I’ll be offering comments.

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Tags: Obedience and Insubordination · Self Promotion

The Perils of Virtue

February 22nd, 2008 · 5 Comments

J.P. Freire zooms in on a point that was presumably supposed to be central to the New York Times‘ big McCain story, but has been largely neglected: The NRA and the ACLU both can’t buy ad time in the days before an election because doing so, by virtue of the ethical senator’s own philosophy, is […]

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Tags: Obedience and Insubordination

When Good People Do Bad Things

November 2nd, 2007 · 9 Comments

Looking over the comments to the essay linked in the previous post, I’m reminded of one of the rhetorical problems facing opponents of torture. If you point out that some interrogation method we’ve used at some point is a cruel, abhorrent tactic better suited to Kim Jong Il’s North Korea than the United States, someone […]

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Tags: Obedience and Insubordination

The “Oh Yeah / So What” Dilemma

November 7th, 2006 · Comments Off on The “Oh Yeah / So What” Dilemma

I owe it to John Doris’ fascinating book Lack of Character to say something at length about his general—and unsettlingly compelling—argument for a deep psychological situationism and skepticism about broad and consistent personal character. But for now I just want to call out an amusing phrase—I’m not sure whether it’s his original coinage—he invokes in […]

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Tags: Obedience and Insubordination