Surprise, Security, and the American Experience

This paper was written in my “Introduction to American Politics” course during my sophomore year of college. It is a review of this book.

A Review and Debate

President George W. Bush’s new policies of preemption and unilateralism are not new — they are American traditions beginning early in the 19th century with roots in the Revolutionary War. This is the bold claim of John Lewis Gaddis’ book Surprise, Security, and the American Experience. Throughout the book (adapted from a lecture series he gave in New York), Gaddis comments on the motivations and implementations of these policies in our nation’s history, explains how and why they were discarded by Franklin D. Roosevelt, and discusses why President Bush has revived them and whether the choice was correct. The result is an intelligent and provocative work, which prompts you to rethink and refine your views of President Bush, the policies he advocates, and the reasoning, which leads many to discard or accept his plan for the War on Terror. This paper will review and debate the arguments and history Gaddis brings up.

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Paper: Capitalism & Freedom

Milton Friedman is a genius. This I don’t doubt. I do think he got it pretty wrong in Capitalism & Freedom, though. This paper I wrote (the second in my “Political Analysis” class) explains why.

On reposting I’ve noticed a few points left out of my argument, so don’t take this as a definitive description of my current beliefs on the subject.

The Fallacy of Capitalism And Freedom

A Response to Milton Friedman

Since the beginning of the Cold War, communism has been anathema to the people of the United States. The free market is worshiped as the God all free nations must follow; despite the popularity of such programs as Social Security, a policy accused of being socialist is barely more likely to pass than one legalizing murder. In the beginning chapters of Capitalism And Freedom, Milton Friedman promotes the basis for this position. Unfortunately, while his individual arguments are well-founded, as a whole they are misapplied and neglect to engage other valid world views that oppose them on their very foundational assumptions. Throughout this essay I discuss the foundational reasons his arguments might be considered void, the inconsistencies within the arguments themselves, and why modern socialism is exempt from many of his arguments against it.
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