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  • Commentary posted May 6, 2013 by Matthew Spalding, Ph.D., Stuart M. Butler, Ph.D. Opportunity Conservatism

    A robust debate is under way about the future of conservatism, and there are plenty of lessons to be learned from the 2012 election and current trends in American politics. Unfortunately, the conversation so far has largely consisted of calls for modifying basic conservative positions, especially on social policy, and for targeting government spending and programs to…

  • Issue Brief posted March 8, 2013 by Matthew Spalding, Ph.D. A Defining Moment for Marriage and Self-Government

    What was once an important debate over the legal status of marriage has emerged as a critical national issue, the resolution of which will shape the future of our society and the course of constitutional government in the United States. Family is and will always remain the building block of civil society, and marriage is at the heart of the family. Redefining marriage…

  • Commentary posted February 13, 2013 by Michael Franc, Matthew Spalding, Ph.D. Obama Takes a Liberal Turn

    There was a time when President Obama felt the need to hide behind Ronald Reagan's view of the proper role of government. "I've never believed," he said repeatedly on the campaign trail in 2010, "that government has all the answers to our problems." Nor is it the government's role "to create jobs or prosperity." Rather, it is "the drive and ingenuity of our entrepreneurs"…

  • Issue Brief posted January 17, 2013 by Matthew Spalding, Ph.D., Jessica Zuckerman, James Jay Carafano, Ph.D. Immigration Reform Needs Problem-Solving Approach, Not Comprehensive Legislation

    In his upcoming State of the Union Address, President Obama will very likely address our nation’s broken immigration system. Unfortunately, the President is expected to call for “comprehensive” immigration reform legislation. This very same approach has failed to garner support in Congress time and time again, and is likely only to foster greater division. We invite the…

  • Commentary posted September 21, 2012 by Matthew Spalding, Ph.D. Why the U.S. Has a Culture of Dependency

    For most of American history, the average farmer, shop owner or entrepreneur could live an entire life without getting anything from the federal government except mail service. But those days have gone the way of the Pony Express. Last year, the Wall Street Journal reported that 49% of the population lives in a household where at least one person gets some type of…

  • Commentary posted September 12, 2012 by Matthew Spalding, Ph.D. A New Beginning For Old Ideas

    Throughout history, privilege belonged to the most powerful. Kings, barons and lords controlled property, keeping wealth in the hands of a few. Poverty was widespread and almost all were subjects to someone else. But 225 years ago this coming Monday, a group of political entrepreneurs charted a different course.   These revolutionaries proclaimed that all are…

  • Makers of American Political Thought Series posted September 4, 2012 by Matthew Spalding, Ph.D. American Statesman: The Enduring Relevance of George Washington

    George Washington was by all accounts “the indispensable man” of the American Founding. He was the military commander who led a ragtag Continental army to victory against the strongest and best trained military force in the world. Crucial to the success of the Constitutional Convention, his personal support of the new Constitution, more than anything else, assured its…

  • Commentary posted July 2, 2012 by Matthew Spalding, Ph.D. Independence Forever

    Many political documents are nothing more than statements of a moment. They're outdated almost as quickly as a daily newspaper. Consider the ridiculous Post Huron statement, drafted 50 years ago by the far-left Students for a Democratic Society. "We are people of this generation, bred in at least modest comfort, housed now in universities, looking uncomfortably to the…

  • Commentary posted June 20, 2012 by Matthew Spalding, Ph.D. White House Lacks Authority to Implement Immigration Laws That Congress Won't

    It's not often that a presidential administration admits it doesn't have the authority to do something it's doing. But that's what the Obama administration's immigration policy boils down to. "This memorandum confers no substantive right, immigration status or pathway to citizenship," a DHS memo issued last week says. "Only the Congress, acting through its…

  • Commentary posted June 18, 2012 by Matthew Spalding, Ph.D. Charting a Better Path to Avoid Government Control

    A hundred years ago, the crew of Titanic learned just how difficult it can be to turn a great vessel. They spotted an iceberg and tried to turn the ship, but couldn't change course quickly enough to avoid a collision. A wonder of human engineering was doomed; not because of its design but because of the way it was handled. The 2012 elections could mark a similar…

  • Commentary posted June 15, 2012 by Matthew Spalding, Ph.D. Fall Elections Could Change Government's Reach, Course

    A hundred years ago, the crew of Titanic learned just how difficult it can be to steer a great vessel. They spotted an iceberg and tried to turn the ship, but couldn’t change course quickly enough to avoid a collision. A wonder of human engineering was doomed; not because of its design, but because of the way it was handled. The 2012 elections could mark a…

  • Dr Matthew Spalding on Audio Recorded on June 6, 2012 Dr Matthew Spalding on "Changing America's Course" and the Wisconsin Recall: Heritage in Focus Podcast

    In this week's Heritage in Focus podcast, Dr Matthew Spalding discusses his new book, "Changing America's course," and the Wisconsin recall election. David Weinberger hosts. To get regular updates on Heritage in Focus podcasts, visit our RSS feed or subscribe on iTunes. To listen to more Heritage Foundation podcasts, visit our podcast page.…

  • America at Risk Memo posted May 1, 2012 by Matthew Spalding, Ph.D. The Price of Liberty: Providing for the Common Defense

    Throughout history, as in many other parts of the world today, political rule was the privilege of the strongest or the most powerful. Property was the possession of kings, barons, and lords. Each was born to his or her destiny, and almost all were subject to someone else. America is different because it is uniquely dedicated to the universal principles of human…

  • Dr Matthew Spalding on the Meaning of Presidents' Day: Heritage in Focus Podcast Audio Recorded on February 16, 2012 Dr Matthew Spalding on the Meaning of Presidents' Day: Heritage in Focus Podcast

    In this week's Heritage in Focus podcast, Dr Matthew Spalding discusses the meaning of Presidents' Day. David Weinberger hosts. To get regular updates on Heritage in Focus podcasts, visit our RSS feed or subscribe on iTunes. To listen to more Heritage Foundation podcasts, visit our podcast page.…

  • Commentary posted January 26, 2012 by Matthew Spalding, Ph.D. Economic Fairness? It Doesn't Mean What You Think it Does, Mr. Obama

    “Economic fairness” was the topic of President Obama’s State of the Union address Tuesday night. But while he spoke of this as a return to American values, his blueprint for getting us there runs counter not only to the core principles on which our nation was founded but also the very idea of the American Dream. America is exceptional because it is dedicated…