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AEI event watch

Here are some upcoming AEI events in the Washington, D.C. area that might be of interest to our citizenship readers. Hope to see you there!

  •  “The Story of ain’t: America and its language.”
  • “Have we become a nation of takers?” Debate between Nicholas Eberstadt, AEI, and William A. Galston, the Brookings Institution.
  • “What will the 2012 election mean for education?”
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    Are entitlements corrupting us?

    Writing in The Wall Street Journal‘s “Saturday Essay,” AEI’s Nicholas Eberstadt raises the question of what will happen to the American character as the United States increasingly becomes “a nation of takers.”

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    A Nation of Takers: Are Americans Getting More Than They Paid For?

    America’s national debt now exceeds $15 trillion, which is roughly equal to the value of all goods and services the U.S. economy produces in one year. If left unchecked, America’s debt will have catastrophic consequences for the future of the nation. How did we arrive at this point?

    At a Program on American Citizenship event at AEI on Wednesday, June 20, 2012 , AEI’s Nicholas Eberstadt demonstrated how government entitlement spending has dramatically increased over the past 50 years–with nearly half of U.S. households receiving some sort of government benefit–and explored the implications of this trend for a self-governing citizenry. Using the American Civil War and the Great Depression as historical examples, The Weekly Standard’s Jay Cost expressed concern that the U.S. democratic system is ill-suited to address long-term problems until a crisis point has been reached, warning that such a crisis point for entitlement spending is rapidly approaching.

    Lawrence M. Mead of New York University also raised concerns about the lack of seriousness with which Americans seem to view the debt crisis. Dependency on the government, he noted, is not just a financial problem, but reveals an abdication of citizens’ responsibility to bear the “burdens of freedom.” Addressing these burdens head on, he encouraged, is the only way Americans can be truly worthy of their claims to a great and free society.

    Yuval Levin of National Affairs stressed that citizenship extends beyond simply paying taxes, cautioning against the notion that only individuals who pay the largest percentage of income taxes have “skin in the game.” Levin instead suggested that a healthy body politic demands that all citizens take to heart the problems of unsustainable entitlement growth and government spending.

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    Event re-cap: A nation of takers

    At a Program on American Citizenship event at AEI on Wednesday, AEI’s Nicholas Eberstadt demonstrated how government entitlement spending has dramatically increased over the past 50 years –with nearly half of U.S. households receiving some sort of government benefit–and explored the implications of this trend for a self-governing citizenry.

    Read More...

    Event tomorrow: Nation of Takers

    America’s national debt now exceeds $15 trillion, which is roughly equal to the value of all goods and services the U.S. economy produces in one year. If left unchecked, America’s debt will have catastrophic consequences for the future of the nation. How did we arrive at this point?

    Read More...

    Citizenship abroad: a quest for democratic citizenship in Russia

    We have noted before Leon Aron’s look into Russian civic society based on his trip to the country last July. On the trip, Aron interviewed leaders of different grassroots organizations and democratic movements in an effort to better understand civic culture and citizenship in Russia.

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    Upcoming event: A nation of takers

    America’s national debt now exceeds $15 trillion, which is roughly equal to the value of all goods and services the U.S. economy produces in one year. If left unchecked, America’s debt will have catastrophic consequences for the future of the nation. How did we arrive at this point?

    Read More...
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