PLAYING FAVORITES: Politicians say "we're all equal" and pretend that they represent everyone, but in fact they constantly pick winners and losers. Newsday columnist Ellis Henican admits that leads to cronyism, but says "you can't use that as an excuse to not do important things for our society." Mattie Duppler of Americans for Tax Reform and I argue that he's wrong.
RUNAWAY PRODUCTION: "Zombieland" movie producer Gavin Polone explains how filmmakers and politicians collude to rip off taxpayers.
PHILLY FIGHT: The City of Philadelphia says it has the right to use "eminent domain" to take a building from artist James Dupree so a developer can build a supermarket. Ryan Briggs of the Philadelphia City Paper explains why that's cronyism, and wrong.
RAISED IN PRIVILEGE: In Hollywood, kids of famous people get good roles: Charlie Sheen, Angelina Jolie and Drew Barrymore were all born into the industry. Adam Bellow, author of "In Praise of Nepotism," defends nepotism.
LESSONS FROM EUROPE: Anne Jolis of the Wall Street Journal says European politicians are worse than ours. A Hungarian firm received $560,000 from the EU to develop a hydrotherapy system for dogs. Tyrolean farmers got money to "reconsider their relationship with the landscape and become more aware of their emotional reactions to it."
MOVE THE CAPITAL: Nebraska Senatorial Candidate (R) Ben Sasse says we could reduce cronyism and the evils of bloated government by moving the capital to Nebraska.
MY TAKE: There are only two ways to do things in life: voluntarily--or by force. Washington is dangerous because it can force people to give money and privileges to politicians' cronies. They force us to subsidize farmers, green energy companies, race tracks and congressional staff. That's why it's evil when government gets bigger, and gives even more special privileges. It's one more reason to shrink the $3.5 trillion beast.