From Charles Murray, Thought-Provoking Words. Now What?

Here, in a Cato podcast featuring Charles Murray,we are presented with a troubling—and, I think, accurate diagnosis of a growing problem within American society. Murray worries that because of increasing social isolation and a removal from actual rather than remote and virtual life experiences, the American public is losing touch with core values essential to what makes this culture unique and productive.

The interview is 15 minutes, and raises two issues. The first is what Murray is directly discussing. The second is whether someone like Murray raising them can have any positive impact at all. Charles Murray is a bête noire. of the Left. The Southern Poverty Law Center calls him a white nationalist. Many liberals regard him as a racist. I have read many of his works: I would call him someone who makes a good living pointing out unpleasant theories that wouldn’t help us solve society’s problems even if we could prove they are true. Continue reading

The Message or the Messenger: The Mysterious Foundation For A Better Life

Does it matter who's behind the curtain?

The Foundation for a Better Life sponsors those slick TV spots promoting ethical values like kindness, sportsmanship, charity, and sacrifice. I have long wondered where they came from, and belatedly visited the organization’s website,, where I spent quite a while clicking through their extensive links to descriptions of core ethical values and inspiring stories. Not bad. The only deficiency I could see with the site was the lack of any explanation regarding how the Foundation was funded, who ran it and who was responsible for it. The site describes itself thusly:

“The Foundation is a non-profit 501(c)(3) organization, started in 2000. Our sole objective is to promote positive values, using print and broadcast media.

We want the stories we share about the positive actions and values of others to serve as inspiration for someone to do one thing a little better, and then pass on that inspiration. A few individuals living values-based lives will collectively make the world a better place.

The Foundation does not have a political or religious agenda. Our values are selected with the hope that most individuals would find these values universal, encouraging, and inspiring. The Foundation acknowledges that each person has a unique lens through which he or she views the world. Naturally there are religious, nonreligious, political, and cultural views that give meaning to our lives. Our objective is to provide a wide spectrum of values without any intended agenda or slant and provide an uplifting message around each one.”

And this appears to be exactly what the Foundation does. Continue reading