The Week: Most Recent from Zack Beauchamp recent posts.en-usThu, 13 Mar 2014 10:05:00 -0400http://theweek.com Recent from Zack Beauchamp from THE WEEKThu, 13 Mar 2014 10:05:00 -0400Humankind is better off than it has ever been -- and it's thanks to government<img src="" /></P><p>There has never been a better time to be a human being than in March 2014. People live longer, wealthier, happier lives than they ever have. Each of the Four Horsemen &mdash; disease, famine, war, and death &mdash; are being beaten back.</p><p>This isn't just my opinion. The data is incontrovertible. Life expectancy is the highest it's ever been, and getting higher. Global GDP has never reached our present heights. The number of humans in poverty has never been lower. Wars between nations are almost extinct, and wars in general are getting less deadly.</p><p>The notion of human progress isn't a grand theory...</p> <a href="">More</a>By <a href="/author/zack-beauchamp" ><span class="byline">Zack Beauchamp</span></a>Thu, 13 Mar 2014 10:05:00 -0400Russia's Ukraine invasion is a moral crisis<img src="" /></P><p>Thanks to the last few days of Ukraine hysteria, you might be forgiven for having to think twice about what century we're in. A <em>Los Angeles Times</em> headline dubbed this "the dawn of Cold War II." <em>The Atlantic</em>'s Peter Beinart declared that the future will be "more like the 19th century" than anything we've seen since. Both analyses assume that the basic problem in Ukraine is great power jockeying between the Western alliance and Putin's Russia.</p><p>Nonsense. The Ukrainian crisis is distinctively 21st century. The main issue is neither survival nor security, but rather a moral obligation to protect the...</p> <a href="">More</a>By <a href="/author/zack-beauchamp" ><span class="byline">Zack Beauchamp</span></a>Thu, 06 Mar 2014 10:00:00 -0500Arizona's anti-gay bill shows why conservatives struggle to win over minorities<img src="" /></P><p>It's a sweet coincidence that Arizona Gov. Jan Brewer vetoed her state's bill protecting Jim Crow-style discrimination against LGBT Americans at the end of Black History Month. The legislators who pushed the bill are in many ways segregation's modern heirs, and their defeat was richly deserved.</p><p>But even the well-meaning conservatives who supported the bill out of a sincere concern for religious liberty should take notice of the timing. The defenses of S.B. 1062 revealed a profound conservative blindspot about power and identity in American life, one animated by their fantasy of a race-blind and...</p> <a href="">More</a>By <a href="/author/zack-beauchamp" ><span class="byline">Zack Beauchamp</span></a>Thu, 27 Feb 2014 09:55:00 -0500Ban the Second Amendment<img src="" /></P><p><em>Sleepy Hollow</em>, an absurdly entertaining new show recasting Ichabod Crane as a time-traveling Revolutionary War hero who fights evil with George Washington's Bible, took some time near the end of its first season to address gun rights.</p><p>"Crane, remind me to later have a chat about what your founding friends were thinking when they crafted our rights to bear arms," police lieutenant Abbie Mills tells the aforementioned Ichabod.</p><p>"There was concern among us that it could lead to perverse consequences," he concedes.</p><p>Did it ever. About 32,000 Americans are killed each year using guns (murder or suicide...</p> <a href="">More</a>By <a href="/author/zack-beauchamp" ><span class="byline">Zack Beauchamp</span></a>Thu, 20 Feb 2014 09:10:00 -0500China has not replaced America -- and it never will<img src="" /></P><p>Many people seem to think it's simply a matter of when, not if, China takes the reins of world leadership. How, they think, can America's 314 million people permanently outproduce a population that outnumbers the U.S. by over a billion people?</p><p>This facile assumption is wrong. China is not replacing the United States as the global hegemon. And it never will.</p><p>China faces too many internal problems and regional rivals to ever make a real play for global leadership. And even if Beijing could take the global leadership mantle soon, it wouldn't. China wants to play inside the existing global order...</p> <a href="">More</a>By <a href="/author/zack-beauchamp" ><span class="byline">Zack Beauchamp</span></a>Thu, 13 Feb 2014 09:25:00 -0500The GOP establishment is dying -- but libertarian ideas could save the party<img src="" /></P><p>Chris Christie, the politician who built his rep beating his political opponents into rhetorical pulps, has become a human punching bag.</p><p>Indeed, the former political pugilist has been reduced to assassinating the character of a man he appointed to office. And Christie's latest "unequivocal" denial of responsibility for Bridgegate is a desperate guard that will hold only so long as no prosecutor or journalist finds something incriminating in the thousands of outstanding documents.</p><p>The general irony of the harasser become the harassed probably isn't amusing Republican Party bigwigs all that much...</p> <a href="">More</a>By <a href="/author/zack-beauchamp" ><span class="byline">Zack Beauchamp</span></a>Thu, 06 Feb 2014 09:05:00 -0500Liberalism's quiet revolution<img src="" /></P><p>Let's face it: Day-to-day politics can be boring.</p><p>Take the State of the Union. It was a perfectly lovely speech, but the most-talked about policy proposal the day after was something called MyRA, a small-bore proposal for reforming retirement accounts. Not exactly the Great Society.</p><p>When we zoom in too much on these sorts of moments, we miss the bigger tectonic changes that are transforming our political world for the better. Take a step back, and you'll notice we live in a profoundly exciting, even revolutionary political age. And it's a liberal revolution.</p><p>Many people aren't used to thinking...</p> <a href="">More</a>By <a href="/author/zack-beauchamp" ><span class="byline">Zack Beauchamp</span></a>Thu, 30 Jan 2014 09:05:00 -0500The toxic cult of America's national interest<img src="" /></P><p>In getting a handle on the basic foreign policy issues of our day &mdash; how to think about the NSA leaks, or what the hell to do about Syria &mdash; the basic intellectual divide isn't the one you'd immediately think of. It's not the split between Left and Right, or civil libertarians and security state hawks, or interventionists and non-interventionists.</p><p>It's between those who buy into the cult of America's national interest and those who don't.</p><p>The cult worships at the altar of American selfishness, the idea that the United States is justified in doing anything &mdash; including invading...</p> <a href="">More</a>By <a href="/author/zack-beauchamp" ><span class="byline">Zack Beauchamp</span></a>Thu, 23 Jan 2014 07:45:00 -0500