H a r r y  B r o w n e
June 17, 1933  -  March 1, 2006

Articles by Harry Browne, 2002


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A Gift for My Daughter
December 24, 2002 — In 1966 I wrote this article to my 9-year-old daughter, hoping to arm her with an important truth that would make life much easier for her.

Politicians Snooker Us Again with the Lott Affair
December 19, 2002 — Condemning Trent Lott for wanting Strom Thurmond to have been elected president overlooks whom Thurmond was running against. And the whole fiasco once again diverts our attention from the most important issue of the day: getting government off our backs.

A Day to Remember
December 12, 2002 — This Sunday is Bill of Rights day. What a shame that the Bill of Rights is no longer honored strictly; it was the only thing that made America unique.

I Want My Country Back
December 5, 2002 — The U.S. government has transformed America from a republic to an empire — causing us to have to choose between liberty and security, a choice we never had to make before. I want the America of peace and freedom, not the head of a world government.

'If You Aren't Guilty, What Are You Afraid of?'
November 28, 2002 — Why the innocent have more to fear than the guilty from the Homeland Security Act, and why it always seems to work out that way.

Do You Know What You're Voting For?
November 21, 2002 — A conservative writer admonished Libertarians that their votes were allowing some Democrats to defeat Republicans. Should we care?

What We Can Learn from World War II
November 14, 2002 — A review of Richard Maybury's excellent book, which punctures a number of myths about the Second World War — myths that politicians use today to get us into new wars.

Elections Provide a Boost for Big Government
November 7, 2002 — How your vote for a Republican or Democrat provided an endorsement for every big-government program you can think of.

Why Bother Trying the Snipers?
October 31, 2002 — Journalists and TV hosts, with no understanding of the Bill of Rights, lead us down the garden path of abandoning the principles that made America unique in the history of the world.

An Anniversary Worth Celebrating
October 24, 2002 — The Statue of Liberty once stood for something — an America unique in not having an income tax or welfare state, not embroiled in foreign wars, not in love with "national greatness." October 28 is the anniversary of the Statue's dedication, and it should remind us that America wasn't always like it is now, and it doesn't have to be like it is now.

Getting Rid of the Snipers
October 17, 2002 — Snipers, rapists, serial killers, and lunatics have a much harder time operating in a society in which innocent citizens haven't been disarmed by thousands of gun laws. Here's how to make America a peaceful society again — as it was before the 1960s.

Iraq: 'A War Waiting for a Pretext'
October 10, 2002 — President Bush still has presented no evidence to back up all his assertions about Iraq. He believes if he keeps saying the same things over and over, we'll have to believe him. Should we have faith in a politician's word? 

Will Massachusetts Repeal its Income Tax?
October 3, 2002 — Libertarians finally have a chance to take the offensive against big government, instead of trying to ward off new government schemes.

'What Can I Do?'
September 26, 2002 — How you can do your part to help stop the growth of big government.

America, Meet Your Leaders
September 19, 2002 — The war-mongers aren't looking for peace in the Middle East, disarmament, or any other of the high-flown objectives they mention. The object is war. They have proven they can't be trusted. I choose not to believe them.

The Republican Sickness
September 13, 2002 — Here's how someone who wants small government, low taxes, and the free market can wind up supporting big government, high taxes, and government intrusions.

Is It Finally Over?
September 12, 2002 — Is the week-long maudlin celebration of the 9-11 tragedy finally over? If so, maybe it's safe to turn on the TV again. In the meantime, here's a repeat of what Harry Browne said on September 11, 2001.

Overlooking the Obvious
September 5, 2002 — It's understandable that people look to government to solve their problems, but they overlook the most important characteristic of government programs: they don't work.

Should We Trust George W. Bush?
August 29, 2002 — So much of what we believe about the so-called War on Terrorism emanates from the Bush administration with no evidence to back it up. How honest has George Bush been about other things, and should we trust what he says about terrorism?

How to Oppose Terrorism
August 22, 2002 — Here's a list of "do"s and "don't"s covering the best and worst ways to fight terrorism.

How to Destroy America in One Easy Lesson
August 15, 2002 — There's only one circumstance in which Saddam Hussein would launch a nuclear or biological attack against the U.S., and George Bush seems determined to make that happen.

Why the Income Tax Must Go
August 8, 2002 — Here are five benefits you'll get when we repeal the income and Social Security taxes. They probably far outweigh any subsidy the politicians could promise you.

Say 'Bye, Bye' to Prescription Drugs
August 1, 2002 — The politicians have made a mess of what was once the best health-care system the world has ever seen. Now they want to apply their expertise to prescription drugs. Better stock up now.

Who Cares about the Civil War?
July 31, 2002 — The Civil War laid the foundation for most of the ills of big government we face today. It's a fascinating subject. Here's a brief introduction.

What Should We Do about Terrorism?
A series of articles proposing ways to deal with the September 11 attacks, and a foreign policy that would make future attacks on America less likely.

Government Knows Best, Doesn't It?
July 25, 2002 — When government sets "standards," you lose the ability to choose. That's why health care, education, and investment innovation have suffered. And now the FCC is going to put some TV stations out of business for not agreeing to new standards. You can't increase liberty by supporting government programs of any kind.

Welcome to the War on Terrorism, Comrade
July 18, 2002 — If you object to the government's new program to have people spying on you, perhaps you should have been complaining when the government was taking the steps leading up to this.

What Should We Do about Terrorism?
A series of articles proposing ways to deal with the September 11 attacks, and a foreign policy that would make future attacks on America less likely.

The Unpleasantness in Inglewood
July 14, 2002 — The apparent case of police brutality in Inglewood this past week is reminiscent of the Rodney King case in 1992. Today — as then — no trial is necessary, because the politicians and the press have already convicted the culprit. Thus this look back at how the Rule of Law has been discarded in America. 

Making Your Investments Safe
July 11, 2002 — We can't expect government to protect us from the Enrons and WorldComs. The very people who claim to protect us — the politicians — use "creative accounting" that's worse than that of any corporate executive. So how can you assure that your investments are safe?

Do You Really Want to Pledge Allegiance to the Flag?
July 4, 2002 — The problem isn't religion, and it isn't "under God." The problems are twofold: government-run education and pledging our allegiance to the state. The Founding Fathers would be dismayed that your children are being asked to pledge allegiance to a government that had "become destructive" of the "unalienable rights" of "Life, Liberty, and the Pursuit of Happiness.".

Saving the Forests & Saving our Money
June 27, 2002 — To end the forest fires and end widespread pollution, we have to get property out of the hands of government. If we do that, we can privatize Social Security completely, pay off the national debt, and do it all very quickly. 

Free to Plan a Secure Retirement 
(from The Great Libertarian Offer)
A plan to end Social Security immediately and completely, without anyone left holding the bag. 

Why I Am a Libertarian
June 20, 2002 — Why libertarians are the only ideological activists who live up their principles. A rebuttal to Joseph Farah's "Why I Am Not a Libertarian.

Let's Just Scrap the Bill of Rights
June 13, 2002 — The only sections of the Constitution that still provided any protection were some parts of the Bill of Rights. But now the Bush administration has decided it can lock anyone up and throw away the key — without providing any public proof. What happens when some government agent decides you need to be locked up?

Where Have All the Conservatives Gone?
June 6, 2002 — There used to be a considerable difference between conservatives and liberals. Now the only difference is that conservatives oppose big government only when there's a Democrat in the White House. This article explains why a vote for George Bush was a vote for the greater of two evils. It also includes an interesting contrary view from a reader.

National Defense vs. National Offense
May 30, 2002 — Do we need a bigger defense budget? Yes. But we also need a much smaller offense budget. And, by the way, what are we getting for the $2 trillion a year the federal government takes from us?

Defending our 'Freedoms'
May 23, 2002 — Those who claim the terrorists are upset with our freedoms, rather than American foreign policy, don't specify what freedoms the terrorists dislike. If only America really were the free country it used to be, the terrorists would be trying to live here — rather than trying to hurt us.

Beware of Politicians with Good Intentions
May 16, 2002 — The politicians claim the deaths of innocent people in the bombing of Afghanistan were unintentional. But when have politicians ever had anything but the best of intentions? That didn't stop them from ruining our health-care system, education, welfare, and defense.

There's a Better Target than Iraq
May 9, 2002 — George Bush is champing at the bit to attack Iraq. But all the reasons given for attacking Iraq apply much more to a juicier target.

Let's Make Health Care Inexpensive Again
May 2, 2002 — The politicians have made health insurance too expensive for many people, and now they're are working to make it even more so. Here's a proposal to reverse the trend and restore what was once the best health-care system the world had ever known.

Improving Airline Travel
April 25, 2002 — Pity the poor airlines. They take the heat for all the problems the government creates. Let's improve air travel by getting the government out of the picture.

Shouldn't We Support George Bush?
April 18, 2002 — George Bush has made statements in favor of gun rights, providing a missile defense, rejecting environmental extremism, and partial privatization of Social Security. Does that mean we should tolerate his passionate drive to make government bigger?

A Solution for the Middle East
April 11, 2002 — I know of only way the antagonistic sides in the Middle East can live in peace. Unfortunately, such a solution has only one chance in a billion of being enacted.

Compassion of the Mind
April 4, 2002 — Why it's important to reject all efforts to express compassion through government programs. Compassion can't be coerced.

What If Al Gore Were President Today?
March 28, 2002 — There's an important difference between having George Bush in the White House and having Al Gore there, but it probably isn't the difference you were thinking of. 

How Terrorist Profit from Drugs
March 21, 2002 — Do drug-users finance terrorism? Or is it the Drug War that helps the terrorists? This article includes a link to an amazing webpage that contains stark evidence of an America less afraid of drugs than of prohibition — an America before drugs were illegal.

This Just In: Bin Laden Wins the War in Afghanistan
March 14, 2002 — Americans are congratulating themselves on destroying Afghanistan. But the only one who achieved his objectives is Osama bin Laden.

What the Enron Scandal Means to You
March 7, 2002 — The Enron scandal calls attention to the failure of government regulation, the difference between big business and big government, the dangers of letting government help business, and one more evil created by the income tax.

Libertarians and Civil Liberties
March 5, 2002 — The nature of Constitutional rights is often misunderstood, even by some Libertarians. This article tries to clear up some of that misunderstanding — and identifies what may be the most important issue in the current War on Terrorism. 

Seeing through Economic Fallacies:
Is America in Trouble for Lack of Manufacturing?

February 23, 1992 — The belief that the rise of the service economy is a bad sign for America calls attention to some techniques you can use to recognize economic fallacies. This article, written in 1992 for Harry Browne's investment newsletter, explains those techniques and shows why we should be happy that manufacturing is declining in importance.

What the Enron Scandal Means to You 
March 7, 2002 — Why did the Enron employees lose their retirement money? Is the Enron failure an example of the free market run amok? How can such scandals be prevented?

For Real Reform, Repeal All the Campaign Laws
February 28, 2002 — Campaign laws don't make elections fairer; they make them more one-sided. Here's the path to real reform.

How to Make People More Responsible
February 21, 2002 — Some people object to libertarian ideas because there are too many irresponsible individuals in the world. Well, there's a simple way to make those individuals more responsible. 

The 16 Golden Rules of Financial Safety
from Fail-Safe Investing — When people go broke from their investments, it's usually because they've failed to follow the same simple rules of life that enabled them to acquire their wealth in the first place. Here are 16 rules that will make sure you never share their fate.

Promises, Promises
February 14, 2002 — When you hear politicians claim that new laws will clean up campaign finance, or the government will win the War on Terrorism, or the government can provide prescription drugs without creating price inflation or shortages, it would be well to reflect on all the promises politicians have made in the past.

Arguing over Non-Existent Budget Surpluses
February 7, 2002 — Some Democrats are alarmed that the Bush budget and its tax cuts eat into the budget surpluses. But, in fact, there haven't been any budget surpluses. If there had been, the government's debt wouldn't be rising every year.

How Did We Lose America?
January 31, 2002 — So long as children are taught in government schools, we are fighting an uphill battle for freedom. 

American Foreign Policy Hasn't Changed in 25 Years
October 20, 1976 — Just as today, in the 1970s American politicians and diplomats were imposing their will on foreign countries, and paying no attention to the terrible consequences of their bullying. This article appeared in Harry Browne's newsletter in 1976.

What is America?
January 24, 2002 — We've already lost the three pillars that made America unique among all nations. So what are we fighting to preserve?

Ignorance Is Dangerous
January 17, 2002 — Americans judge the War on Terrorism and other national issues with very limited knowledge of history or what is going in the rest of the world.

What Has 'Victory' Achieved?
January 10, 2002 — The warmongers said that treating the September 11 attacks as criminal acts would achieve nothing. But what has four months of bombing achieved?

What is war? (from Why Government Doesn't Work)
The reality of war is far different from the picture presented on TV and in the movies.

What Kind of Century Will This Be?
January 3, 2002 — The 19th century was one of progress, relatively small government, and mostly peace; the 20th was one of coasting on the previous progress, much bigger government, and continual conflict. Which will the 21st most resemble? 

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