What is the Far-Right’s Endgame?

Historian Nancy MacLean, author of an intellectual biography of James McGill Buchanan, explains how this little-known libertarian’s work is influencing modern-day politics. “Democracy in Chains: The Deep History of the Radical Right’s Stealth Plan for America” examines Buchanan’s vision that MacLean says has become a playbook for a network of people looking to override democracy in order to shift more money to the wealthiest few.

Read More in Slate

Debunking Republicans’ Main Argument For Obamacare Repeal

“Honestly, the marketplaces are in OK shape,” says David Anderson, a research associate at the Margolis Center for Health Policy who studies the individual market. “The amount of competition isn’t where some people would like it to be, but this isn’t collapse.”

Read More in Vox

Obamacare Gave Me Peace of Mind the AHCA Would Take Away

“I know what it’s like to be unable to see a doctor for even serious injuries. I know what it’s like to constantly hope that you are not sick or injured because the costs would simply be too high. Those are stresses the American Health Care Act will force on millions of Americans – stresses that no American deserves,” writes Ashley Arnold, a master’s student in public policy.

Read More in The News & Observer

HONEST Act Needs Honest Engagement of Scientific Community

“The bill as written could have far-reaching consequences that would ultimately hamper or undermine the scientific process generally and EPA’s work specifically,” writes statistician Jerry Reiter and a colleague. “The goals of transparency in government and data accessibility must be balanced with the necessity to protect individuals’ and businesses’ privacy.”

Read More in The Hill

Trump’s Faith In Military Does Not a Strategy Make

After five months in office, President Trump has still not articulated a strategy for the conflicts. That’s a greater cause for concern than how he chooses to delegate to a military for which he remains ultimately responsible, says political scientist Peter Feaver. “They haven’t figured out what their strategy is going to be, so there’s a cart-before-the-horse aspect,” says Feaver.

Read More in TIME

Is North Carolina the Future of American Politics?

What really distinguishes North Carolina is that it is a quintessentially purple state, with voters almost evenly split between Democrats, Republicans and unaffiliateds. “That’s what contributes to the meanness and paralysis of North Carolina politics,” says public policy professor Mac McCorkle, a former Democratic political consultant. “… We’re so closely pitted, everything’s a battle.”

  Read More in New York Times Magazine

U.S. Climate Policy in the Trump Administration

In a newly released policy brief, law professor Jonathan Wiener, Kenan Institute for Ethics’ Rethinking Regulation co-director, provides context on the complex web of climate change policy, written for the Climate Economics Chair in Paris. Wiener’s essay covers a range of topics related to U.S. climate policies in the wake of President Trump’s decision to withdraw the country from the Paris Agreement on climate change.

Read More at Kenan Institute

NC Sex Offender Social Media Ban Ruled Unconstitutional

Law professor Stuart Benjamin discusses a decision in the Supreme Court case Packingham v. North Carolina, which ruled that the state’s ban on sex offenders using social media platforms violated the First Amendment of the Constitution.

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Senate Republicans Plan Even Harsher Cuts To Medicaid Than House GOP

The Senate is contemplating a change in Medicaid that would cut it even more than the $830-billion proposed by the House, according to a proposal leaked from an Obamacare repeal bill. Lowering the growth rate of Medicaid is “a massive cut of future growth,” says health insurance expert David Anderson, a researcher at the Margolis Center for Health Policy.

Read More in The Los Angeles Times

 

The Architect of the Radical Right

Historian Nancy MacLean’s new book, “Democracy in Chains,” examines the Southern roots of modern conservatism. A reviewer notes that what sets it apart from other recent books on this topic, “is that it begins in the South and emphasizes a genuinely original and very influential political thinker, the economist James M. Buchanan.”

Read More in The Atlantic

The Hardest Part of Trump’s National Security Strategy to Write

Sometime this year, the Trump administration intends to release the legislatively mandated National Security Strategy (NSS). “… The very act of drafting the NSS serves as a (modest) disciplining device on an administration, obliging the team to confront hard truths about previous policy statements and efforts,” writes political scientist Peter Feaver. “Which brings me to the question I have been pondering for quite a while: how hard will it be for President Trump’s team to draft such an NSS? The answer I keep coming to is: pretty hard.”

 

Read More in Foreign Policy

Is Trump ‘Disrupting’ His Own Foreign-Policy Team?

“What’s unusual here is that the Trump team is facing this significant diplomatic challenge before they’ve got their roster on board,” says political scientist Peter Feaver. “It’s like attempting to do a difficult synchronized swimming maneuver, with half the team not yet in their bathing suits and others not even named to the team yet.”

Read More in The Christian Science Monitor