Lauren Hall is associate professor of political science at Rochester Institute of Technology. Her recent book, Family and the Politics of Moderation, came out with Baylor University Press in April 2014 and she edited a volume on the political philosophy of French political thinker, Chantal Delsol. She has written extensively on the classical liberal tradition, including articles on Edmund Burke, Adam Smith, and Montesquieu. She serves on the editorial board of the interdisciplinary journal Cosmos+Taxis, which publishes on spontaneous orders in the social and political worlds. She serves as the faculty advisor for the RIT College Libertarians. Her current research is on the politics of women and the family in classical liberalism, and she also writes on related areas in evolutionary theory and bioethics.
Competition is often considered a dirty word, with many critics of free market ideas emphasizing the cutthroat competition of Wall Street as an example of how competition brings out the worst in people, encourages us to cut corners, and undermines our altruistic tendencies. Proponents of competition often talk in terms of innovation: competition spurs innovation, giving consumers options they didn’t have before. But even that defense isn’t enough for people who don’t understand the true importance of competition and innovation. Take Bernie Sanders’s derision of innovation as just a way
Senate Democrats are taking advantage of Republican disorganization on health care to push a single-payer platform, and the Dems seem excited about the momentum they’ve gained. The main proposal comes from Senator Bernie Sanders (I-VT) and is formatted as a “Medicare for All” policy that essentially eliminates private insurance, replacing it with federally provided and paid-for coverage.Critics like Sanders have long bemoaned the “capitalist” health care system in the United States as proof that we need a single-payer system and more government involvement in health care. What Sanders’s
I recently had a conversation with my health insurance company that gave me some interesting perspective on the current US health care system. I’m pregnant, so I called to figure out whether my insurance covered a new breast pump for when I return to work while nursing. There was good news and bad news.Good news: insurance covers (most of) a new breast pump!Bad news: Due to federal regulations and insurance bureaucracy, I cannot simply order the pump I want from Amazon, where prices are clearly laid out, the pump I want is in stock, and I know what I am getting. Instead, my insurance gave me
When Caroline Malatesta went to Brookwood Medical Center in Alabama to give birth, nurses physically restrained her against her will and held her baby inside her for six minutes before a doctor arrived. The baby survived without injury, but Malatesta suffered permanent and debilitating nerve damage as a result. She sued after multiple attempts to get answers from the hospital went nowhere, and in 2016, she won $16 million.I’ve written previously about violations of women’s rights in childbirth, and one of the most common responses I get to arguments like those I have made here and here is that
This article contains stories of medical abuse that may be disturbing for some readers.Most of us understand the importance of knowing our rights against the coercive force of the state. Yet there are other ways in which authority and power intervene to control people in dangerous ways. Coercion can be particularly pernicious when it comes to health care, where tragic violations like those of the Tuskegee experiment have demonstrated that medical authorities are no more trustworthy than political authorities in determining what happens to other people’s bodies.Unfortunately, such violations are
In one of the wealthiest and most technologically advanced countries in the world, how could maternal mortality be increasing? The United States has the worst rate of maternal deaths in the developed world, NPR reports. Some of these deaths are due to poor maternal health, but a big part of the problem is high rates of intervention. We often talk about the US health care system being broken, but usually the focus is on the problem of uninsured Americans or the costs of care in general. What gets less attention are the ways our health care system harms some of our most fundamental rights, including
As we wrap up Women’s History Month, it’s worthwhile discussing some of the major policy proposals intended to help women enter and stay in the workforce on levels equal to men. Many of these proposals are meant to address (1) the wage gap between men and women, (2) the lack of mandated maternity leave, and (3) the high cost of child care. All three of these issues can operate together to make it more financially sensible for women to stay at home after they give birth. But these supposedly woman-friendly policy proposals misunderstand women’s working lives and women’s choices. And some
March is Women’s History Month, and many of the discussions we’re seeing center on issues like women’s suffrage and maternity leave. Those are good things to know about, but they tend to lead us into a narrow celebration of a few legislative and policy victories: examples of places where government “helped” secure women’s rights in a variety of ways. There’s also a long and storied history of government involvement in women’s lives, choices, and bodies that demonstrates the danger of government power. So in honor of Women’s History Month, I want to highlight three stories of women
Trump’s executive order barring entrance to the United States for citizens of seven predominantly Muslim countries has caused quite the uproar. The resulting conflict between the courts and the president has many people concerned about an approaching constitutional crisis of potentially massive proportions. Politico ran a piece titled “Scenes from a Constitutional Crisis,” and a prominent Medium blogger even went so far as to question whether this order was a “Trial Balloon for a Coup?” Many other commenters see us on the precipice of something either very dangerous or very ugly. Perhaps
Trump’s victory has triggered a spate of post-hoc analysis about what went wrong. One of the major narratives to take root is that Trump’s win was fueled by a rejection of PC culture and identity politics broadly. I’m agnostic on this point. I see a lot of reasons to think it might be correct in some way, at least from talking to Trump voters themselves, but I also think the narrative is probably a lot more complicated than “liberals hurt my feelings”. At the same time, having taught hundreds of college students over ten years, I can say that certain aspects of liberal America are grating
J.K. Rowling came down hard on Twitter two days ago, destroying the bonafides of orphanage volunteering programs (from here on out to be known as the “orphan industrial complex”), whereby wealthy college students volunteer to “help” at orphanages in the developing world. Rowling rightly calls such interventions “voluntourism”, created not to actually help impoverished children but to provide feel-good experiences for idealistic elites. The problem is not just the poverty-voyeurism involved, but that such experiences harm the very children they were meant to help. Such study abroad
Want to know more about Student For Liberty’s impact, new initiatives, and other efforts made to advance liberty around the world?
Sign up for our email newsletter to stay connected.Subscribe Now