Magazine May 2, 2011, Issue

Trial by Fire

Rev. Terry Jones in Gainesville, Fla., September 8, 2010 (Scott Audette/Reuters)
The world reacts to a Koran-burning

The greatest advocate of book-burning in history was probably the skeptical philosopher David Hume. In his Enquiry Concerning Human Understanding, he wrote: “If we take in our hand any volume; of divinity or school metaphysics, for instance; let us ask, Does it contain any abstract reasoning concerning quantity or number? No. Does it contain any experimental reasoning concerning matter of fact and existence? No. Commit it then to the flames: for it can contain nothing but sophistry and illusion.”

Hume was employing his famous and habitual irony, of course: He did not really expect people to set fire to whole libraries

To Read the Full Story
Anthony Daniels — Mr. Daniels, a retired doctor who worked in several parts of the world, is the author of Mass Listeria, a book about health scares.

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The market functions well enough to bring Walmart to its senses. Alas, for Big Government, there are no such corrective mechanisms.

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