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Neither Pandemic Nor Panic Supersede the First Amendment

Neither Pandemic Nor Panic Supersede the First Amendment

  By Thomas L. Knapp Rodney Howard-Browne, pastor of The River church in Tampa, Florida, strongly believes that God wants his church to continue holding live services for hundreds of parishioners even in the middle of the COVID-19 pandemic. Hillsborough County sheriff Chad Chronister and state attorney Andrew Warren strongly believe that they’re entitled to […]

Congress Declares Itself Non-Essential

Congress Declares Itself Non-Essential

    By Thomas L. Knapp Around the US, “essential” workers are going to work everyday and doing their jobs, COVID-19 pandemic or not. Factory workers are producing things. Truck and delivery drivers are transporting those things. Grocery store employees and food service workers are making sure food reaches our tables. Congress, not so much. […]

Decarceration: COVID-19 is Opportunity Knocking

Decarceration: COVID-19 is Opportunity Knocking

    By Thomas L. Knapp On March 23, 14 US Senators from both major political parties asked US Attorney General William Barr and Michael Carvajal, director of the Federal Bureau of Prisons, to “transfer non-violent offenders who are at high risk for suffering complications from COVID-19 to home confinement.” It’s a smart idea, and […]

Paul Krugman, COVID-19, and Broken Windows

Paul Krugman, COVID-19, and Broken Windows

    By Thomas L. Knapp The jury is still out on which of two things — COVID-19 or the panic over COVID-19 — will cost more lives and do more damage to the global economy. My money’s still on the latter. In the meantime, I’ve developed a surefire, Groundhog Day type test for whether […]

Yes, the COVID-19 Panic Does Call for Drastic Measures

Yes, the COVID-19 Panic Does Call for Drastic Measures

  By Thomas L. Knapp As an old saying goes, it’s not the fall that kills you, it’s the sudden stop at the end. The world’s politicians are innovating on the fly (pun intended) by trying to combine the fall — the COVID-19 epidemic — with the sudden stop, bringing life and commerce to a […]

Don’t Let Politicians Use Pandemic as an Excuse for Dictatorship

Don’t Let Politicians Use Pandemic as an Excuse for Dictatorship

  Thomas L. Knapp By invoking the Defense Production Act, which “authorizes the President to require acceptance and priority performance of contracts or orders and to allocate materials, services, and facilities to promote the national defense or to maximize domestic energy supplies,” US president Donald Trump has declared himself America’s economic dictator. He’s also moved […]

A Proposal for Real Coronavirus “Stimulus”

A Proposal for Real Coronavirus “Stimulus”

  By Thomas L. Knapp On March 12, the New York Federal Reserve announced a $1.5 trillion injection of money into the US financial system. Three days later, it cut its benchmark interest rate to zero and announced it would be buying at least $500 billion in government bonds and another $200 billion in mortgage […]

Freedom: Don’t Let Politicians Tell You to EARN IT

Freedom: Don’t Let Politicians Tell You to EARN IT

  By Thomas L. Knapp The Wile E. Coyotes of the Internet — US Senators Lindsey Graham (R-SC) and Richard Blumenthal (D-CT) — are sure that THIS time  they’ve finally found a made-to-order tool that can take out the Roadrunn … er, those meddling ki … er,  the First Amendment and  Section 230 of the […]

Happy National Tired and Grouchy Week

Happy National Tired and Grouchy Week

  By Thomas L. Knapp On Sunday, March 8, millions of Americans woke up an hour early, having set their clocks ahead by an hour the night before, and dug in for a week or so of bleary-eyed, irritable attempts to tweak their bodies’ natural sleeping and waking rhythms. This fatuous semi-annual “spring forward, fall […]

Coronavirus: Politically Created Panic is the Real Pandemic

Coronavirus: Politically Created Panic is the Real Pandemic

  By Thomas L. Knapp As of early March, there were fewer than 200 confirmed cases of the COVID-19 coronavirus in the United States. Nonetheless Congress passed, and US president Donald Trump signed, an $8.3 billion “emergency funding” bill theoretically related to containing the disease. Had the federal government done nothing at all, the “beer […]

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