Ilya Somin


Last quote by Ilya Somin

Today is the 100th anniversary of the Bolshevik seizure of power, which led to the establishment of a communist regime in Russia, and eventually in many other nations around the world. It is an appropriate time to remember the vast orgy of oppression, tyranny, and mass murder that communist regimes unleashed upon the world. While historians and others have documented numerous communist atrocities, much of the public remains unaware of their enormous scale. It is also a good time to consider what lessons we can learn from this horrendous
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Nov 07 2017
This page is completely dedicated to what Ilya Somin has to say. All of Ilya Somin’s quotes are organized here by date and topic. The most recent quote attributed to Ilya Somin came from an article called Is libertarian skepticism about democracy a major cause of our current ills - or a part of the cure?: “In an interesting recent essay for the Niskanen Center, Will Wilkinson argues that libertarian skepticism about democracy is a major cause of the current pathologies of the political right in the United States. More specifically, he contends that, as a result of embracing an absolutist conception of property rights, libertarians have become hostile to democracy to the point of seeking a total “escape from politics.” While earlier “classical liberals” sought only to put constitutional “trigger locks” on democracy, today’s libertarians seek to eliminate it entirely.”.
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Ilya Somin quotes

Jun 23 2017

New York University law Professor Roderick Hills has posted a thoughtful response to my post criticizing the Supreme Court’s just-issued decision in em>Murr v. Wisconsin. Rick makes two interesting arguments. Neither persuades me that Murr was rightly

Jun 20 2017

Harvard economist Edward Glaeser, perhaps the nation’s leading expert on the economics of zoning, has an interesting Brookings Institution essay on how cutting back zoning can expand the availability of housing and job opportunities, particularly for the

May 26 2017 - Trump Presidency

Conservatives in other contexts often take a hard line against any kind of government discrimination (based) on race or religion or the like, even if the motivation may be benign. Also conservatives have concerns about government infringements on

Apr 13 2017 - Syria conflict

A recent Washington Post-ABC poll found that 51 percent of Americans approve of Donald Trump’s recent missile strike on Syria, while 40 percent disapprove. As James Hohmann of the Post points out, the really interesting aspect of this poll is the partisan shift relative to the breakdown of opinion the last time a strike like this was contemplated, back in

Apr 11 2017 - Sanctuary cities

If California is able to do this and Trump isn't able to do much to prevent them, that will give momentum to other sanctuary

Apr 07 2017 - Syria conflict

Yesterday’s US missile strike on Syria raises a number of questions going forward. Perhaps the most important is whether President Trump plans further military action against the Assad regime, and if so whether he will first get the constitutionally required congressional

Apr 06 2017 - Chemical weapons

Earlier tonight, the United States launched cruise missiles against a Syrian military base in retaliation for the Assad regime’s brutal use of chemical weapons against civilians. Assad’s atrocities are appalling. Perhaps they even justify US military intervention. Nonetheless, it is essential to remember the constitutional requirement that initiating war requires congressional authorization. That is both legally necessary, and the right choice from a prudential point of

Apr 06 2017 - Immigration

Widespread political ignorance is a serious problem, and affects public opinion on many issues. Immigration figures prominently on the list of those issues. During the 2016 campaign, Donald Trump effectively exploited public ignorance about the number of immigrants and their effect on the crime rate. Similar ignorance likely had an impact on the Brexit referendum in Britain. One of the most pernicious aspects of political ignorance is that many people, both right and left, tend to reject new information that conflicts with their preexisting views. Such “motivated reasoning” is particularly likely on emotionally charged issues, such as immigration. That reality makes it difficult to break through misinformation when it does arise. Even otherwise intelligent and knowledgeable people tend to process new political information in a highly biased

Mar 25 2017 - Supreme Court

Perhaps the most distinctive aspect of Supreme Court nominee Neil Gorsuch’s jurisprudence is his opposition to “Chevron deference”: the doctrine (first imposed by a 1984 Supreme Court decision) that requires judges to defer to administrative agencies’ interpretations of federal law in most cases where the law may be “ambiguous” and the agency’s position seems “reasonable.” In what is probably his best-known opinion, Judge Gorsuch denounced Chevron deference as “a judge-made doctrine for the abdication of the judicial duty.” He’s absolutely right about

Mar 20 2017 - Supreme Court

Earlier today, the Supreme Court heard oral arguments in Murr v. Wisconsin, an important takings case. If the oral argument is any indication, the case might well result in a muddled ruling that fails to provide clear guidance for either government regulators or property

Mar 20 2017 - Supreme Court

Today is the first day of confirmation hearings for Judge Neil Gorsuch, Donald Trump’s nominee to the Supreme Court. George Will recently published a thoughtful column with a list of questions he hopes senators might ask Gorsuch at the hearings. Most of Will’s questions are ones I would very much like to hear the answers too, as well. Here are a few additional suggestions of my

Mar 19 2017 - Supreme Court

If property owners prevail in the case of Murr v. Wisconsin, currently before the Supreme Court, the government will no longer be able to avoid paying compensation for a taking merely because the owner of the parcel of land in question also happens to own the plot next door. To most people - myself included, that seems like a clear win for property rights. But leading land use scholar Roderick Hills

Mar 16 2017

Over the last 24 hours, two federal courts have issued rulings suspending President Trump’s revised executive order temporarily banning citizens of six majority-Muslim nations from entering the United States. One of the decisions was issued yesterday by a federal district court in Hawaii, as a result of a lawsuit brought by the state of Hawaii and other plaintiffs. The second ruling, issued just this morning, comes from the federal district court in

Mar 12 2017 - Supreme Court

The Supreme Court recently refused to hear Baston v. United States, a case involving the scope of the Foreign Commerce Clause, which gives Congress the power to “regulate Commerce with foreign Nations.” Justice Clarence Thomas filed a forceful dissent to denial of certiorari (beginning at pg. 28 of the linked document), arguing that the Court should have taken the case in order to pare back federal overreach in this field and “reaffirm that our Federal Government is one of

Mar 10 2017

Several states have now filed legal challenges to Donald Trump’s revised travel order temporarily banning citizens of six Muslim-majority nations from entering the United States. The first of the new lawsuits was filed by Hawaii, and now Washington, Oregon, and other states have also challenged the order. Hawaii’s legal team challenging the order is led by Georgetown law professor Neal Katyal, a well-known and widely respected constitutional law scholar, and former deputy solicitor general in the Obama administration. Hawaii’s complaint and other documents related to the case are available

Mar 08 2017 - Republican Party

On congressional Republicans rolled out their new health care plan which is supposed to “repeal and replace” Obamacare. Donald Trump hailed “our wonderful new Healthcare Bill.” But his enthusiasm for the proposed American Health Care Act is not widely shared. In addition to the expected critiques from the left the bill has been forcefully condemned by a wide range of conservative and libertarian health care experts. These leading critics of Obamacare argue that the GOP proposal is just as bad and possibly even

Mar 05 2017

In order to build his much-ballyhooed wall across the Mexican border, Donald Trump is likely to have use eminent domain to seize large amounts of private property. But as legal scholar Gerald Dickinson explains in a recent Washington Post article, that may not be

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