Independence Articles

Michelle Obama Touts Her Own Independence: I Made 'My Own Choices About My Body'

6:57 PM, Jun 29, 2015

First Lady Michelle Obama is thankful for her life. At the More magazine Impact Awards at the Newseum in Washington, D.C., the first lady credits her good life--and independence--to education.

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John Kerry's State Dept. Silent on Israel's Independence Day

7:01 AM, Apr 24, 2015

Despite issuing statements commemorating the National Days or 

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An Energy Revolution in Our Midst

11:00 PM, Oct 10, 2014

Anyone who doubts that the deployment of the technologies we have come to call fracking constitutes a revolution should consider this. U.S. oil production has soared by 70 percent in the past six years. American refineries have cut in half their imports from the OPEC cartel, setting off a scramble by those countries to find new markets.

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Anything But Great

8:16 AM, Sep 18, 2014

In the late 17th century, times were tough in Scotland.  The Stuarts, the Scots’ royal family, had been tossed off the throne of England for a second time, and the country had been excluded from the burgeoning English system of international trade regulated by the Navigation Acts.  Even the climate was more miserable than usual: these were the worst years of northern Europe’s “little ice age.”

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Why Americans—and the West—Should Care About Scottish Secession

5:15 AM, Sep 18, 2014

This week’s referendum on Scottish independence may seem like an obscure, perhaps even Ruritanian quarrel to many Americans, but it has profound implications not just for the U.K. and Europe but also for the United States.

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Scotland the Brave

Scots debate independence
Sep 01, 2014

If at first you don’t secede, try, try again. This might be the motto of Alex Salmond’s Scottish National party, which since 1934 has been advocating the proposition that Scotland should be an independent country, governed not from London but from Edinburgh and able to make its own policy decisions about defense, immigration, taxation, and spending. On September 18, Scots will finally face a referendum about their future.

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July 4th: Abraham Lincoln and Lou Gehrig

12:09 PM, Jul 04, 2013

Over at Powerline, Scott Johnson reminds us of perhaps the greatest speech about July 4th—Lincoln's remarks on July 10, 1858, in response to Stephen Douglass. Here's the key passage:

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A Hot Dog for the 4th!

10:11 AM, Jul 04, 2013

The hot dog is in decline in America, writes Paul Lukas at Bloomberg, and one thinks, "What isn't?" What institution, anyway.  If everything were not in decline, then what would there be for journalists to write about (see Andrew Ferguson  on George Packer and Haynes Johnson) and what would politicians have to campaign about?

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‘We Will Not Go Quietly Into the Night!’

9:50 AM, Jul 04, 2013

On this 4th of July, I presume that TWS readers are soberly re-reading their Jefferson and carefully studying their Lincoln. But this shouldn't be a day of too much solemnity. So here's a stirring cinematic moment to revisit, from the 1996 hit Independence Day, and enjoy:

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Happy July 2!

11:00 PM, Jul 01, 2013

On July 2, 1776, the Continental Congress declared independence. George Washington declared that day that “The time is now near at hand which must probably determine whether Americans are to be freemen or slaves....The fate of unborn millions will now depend, under God, on the courage and conduct of this army.” A useful reminder for us, in a week when we rightly celebrate a Declaration, a document embodying a great idea, that speech needs to be backed up by arms, and that all still depends on the "courage and conduct" of our armed forces.

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Our Dignified Constitution

Fourth of July reflections on the Queen’s Jubilee.
Jul 16, 2012

It was perhaps inevitable that our Fourth of July celebrations last week might have seemed anti-climactic after the four-day festivities a month ago accompanying the Queen’s Diamond Jubilee. Fireworks, however spectacular, cannot compare with the thousand-boat flotilla on the Thames cheered on by masses of river-side spectators (shivering and soaking in torrential rain) or the horse-drawn carriage procession (again, the streets lined with people) from Westminster Hall to Buckingham Palace, the Queen regally bedecked and costumed.

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Douglass, Lincoln, Gehrig

11:00 PM, Jul 03, 2012

If you're in the mood for reading a bit this July 4th, there are many fine Independence Day speeches and orations to choose from. Here are three that I find particularly moving:

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CalTrans (Sort of) Relents: Orcutt Will Fly an American Flag on the Fourth

5:30 AM, Jul 04, 2011

Two months ago, I wrote about the plight of a private, Tocquevillian-style civil association in the small town of Orcutt, California. That group, the Old Town Orcutt Revitalization Association (OTORA), has raised $60,000 in private donations to build a flagpole — from which the American flag would fly — encircled by a memorial to the U.S. armed forces. The flagpole and monument would be located between a highway exit and an adjacent park-and-ride lot, at the entrance to the community’s Old Town section. But the California Department of Transportation (CalTrans) refused to grant approval for the project. Finally, citing a 9th Circuit Court ruling, CalTrans declared that hanging an American flag on public land constitutes an impermissible act of “public expression.”

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‘Let Facts Be Submitted to a Candid World’

In the new issue of National Affairs.
4:15 AM, Jul 03, 2011

You've reread the Declaration of Independence. You've once again enjoyed Jefferson's extraordinary 50th anniversary letter of June 24, 1826, addressed to Roger Weightman. But you're up for still more reading this weekend, and you think you wouldn't mind something that deals seriously—but also in a lively way—with the current problems of the nation founded by the Declaration 235 years ago. After all, the Declaration itself, by submitting facts to a candid world in order to justify the claim of independence, implies that self-government depends on argument and reflection, not just willful or arbitrary choice.

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