Bruce Chapman

Cofounder and Chairman of the Board of Discovery Institute


Make the Seattle City Council Great Again

This city used to build dams, now it just taxes
There seem to be cycles in city politics. Fifty years ago a small band of Young Republicans and Young Democrats came together in an unusual alliance to overturn the existing Seattle City Council. They called themselves CHECC: Choose an Effective City Council. It took a couple of elections, but they prevailed and it was then — in the 1970s — that formerly ...

Darwin, Marx, and Something Called Political “Science”

The materialist influence of 19th-century thinkers still chills 21st-century thinking. It is true in biology, economics, culture, and government. In much of  the popularization and misuse of the claims of natural science and in much of modern German philosophy, tendencies toward atheism and gnosticism (searching for hidden meanings) are found. So are economic determinism and a serene resolve to change human nature. It was considered foolish by many 19th- and early 20th-century intellectuals to believe in God or self-evident truths, but “advanced” to aspire to the perfectibility of man.


The Worst Kind of People to Run the Government, Except for All the Others
About the Book Americans love to trash their politicians as corrupt and self-interested, but they don’t agree on a solution. How can America attract good leaders to the thousands of elective offices in the land? In Polticians: The worst Kind of People to Run the Government, Except for All the Others, Bruce Chapman lays out a bold plan for the changes we need Read More ›

The Man Who Could Be King

This lecture was recorded as part of Discovery Institute’s Gorton Series Lecture. Former U.S. Congressman John R. Miller discusses his new book The Man Who Could Be King, a historical novel about George Washington’s struggle over whether to heed the call of his officers to become king. Archived August 28, 5:00 pm Event Page at TVW

Remembering Eleanor Roosevelt Video Now Available

The Center for Citizen Leadership is presenting a unique film interview with Patricia Baillargeon, one of the last people to work directly with Eleanor Roosevelt in the varied and fast-paced last decade of Mrs. Roosevelt’s life.

Remembering Eleanor Roosevelt

An Interview with Patricia Baillargeon
Eleanor Roosevelt was one of the most consequential figures in American politics and international relations over the past century. Here, Discovery Institute Chairman Bruce Chapman interviews Mrs. Roosevelt’s former assistant, Patricia Baillargeon. Ms. Baillargeon gives a first-hand account of someone who sees Eleanor Roosevelt from the standpoint of history, but also from that of personal friendship.

George Gilder and the Scientific Foundations of the Gold Standard

Discovery Senior Fellow George Gilder’s recent monograph on gold and the economy, commissioned by the American Principles Project, continues to attract curiosity and praise, especially in light of the debt crises in places like Greece, China—and the USA one day. At Forbes, Ralph Benko praises Gilder’s monograph and traces the gold standard from its inception—crediting both Sir Isaac Newton and Nicolas Copernicus—to modern-day, writing that “Gilder reveals anew the gold standard’s deep scientific foundation.” This week, George Gilder will keynote the Innovation Summit in Silicon Valley, followed by several talks at Freedom Fest in Las Vegas, then the Money Show in San Francisco. There will be media following all of them. While at Freedom Fest, Gilder also will be involved Read More ›

Why “Gold in the 21st Century”?

Discovery Sr. Fellow George F. Gilder delivered his monograph, Gold in the 21st Century, today at the Princeton Club in New York City. The book length paper was the product of the American Principles Project and represents a next step in George’s thinking on the issue of money as it changes in our time. His next book, Life After Google (working title), will incorporate his insights on gold into a discourse on fulfilling the Internet’s promise–and resolving its ailments.

Tech “Elders” Oppose Obama Internet Grab

Discovery Sr. Fellow George Gilder and other “elders” of the privatized Internet era expressed their alarm over drive by the FCC and Obama Administration to put Internet innovation under federal regulation in the name of “Net Neutrality”. They want an “open Internet” instead. The Daily Caller said, “Tech elder George Gilder, a futurist author and co-founder of the Discovery Institute, told TheDCNF that businesses have no incentive to interfere with Internet freedom. ‘Their interests are aligned with an open Internet,’ he noted, ‘and the idea that Title II can impose an open internet is just quixotic.'” A sizable media contingent covered the “elders” presser, and noted the significance of leaders such as Bob Metcalf, John Perry Barlow, Mark Cuban and Read More ›

Valuable, Under-Reported Protection from Nuclear Attack

You have plenty to worry about, don’t you, without turning your anxious eyes to the problem of possible nuclear attack on the U.S. Even less worrisome for most people is the chance of an electro-magnetic pulse (EMP) attack that would close down electricity, computers–everything but pre-modern infrastructure–for half or more of the country. Both kinds of danger have been described eloquently by Discovery Sr. Fellow John Wohlstetter (Sleepwalking with the Bomb), among others. Yet the possible can become the probable without preventive measures. The point of missile defense is to make it clear to adversaries that an attack is likely to fail and to lead to a very successful counter-attack. The good news that is not being widely reported is Read More ›

Science and Faith and Alaska

Some 150 members of the Discovery Society, including speakers and staff, are finding that there is more to the island expanses of Southeast Alaska than can be covered in a week.

A New Freedom, Both Free and Important

The government expansionists have had their eyes on the Internet ever since Al Gore claims he invented it. Of course, the Feds’ DARPA did help birth the Internet, but there is no reason why Washington now should imitate the Iranian mullahs or the Chinese and start restricting access and imposing financial or technical controls. It is not just because the technology is new that it has made such a huge contribution to our economy; it’s also because the new technology has been relatively unfettered by the government. The whole subject of federal regulation re-emerges in a major way in coming weeks. Watch this space. Meanwhile, Mark Landsbaum of the Orange County Register (in a column that I missed when it Read More ›

Israel is Now “The Startup Nation”

When it comes to technology, entrepreneur Jonathan Medved told George Gilder’s Telecosm 2009 conference in Tarrytown, New York this week, Israel is the world’s “startup nation,” now eclipsing everyone else in the world (even the U.S. on a per capita basis). There was great enthusiasm for Medved and other speakers at this year’s Gilder show, which was built around The Israel Test, George’s new book. A video greeting from Israeli Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu opened the conference.

The Israel Test: a Substitute for the Ad Campaign Israel Needs?

John Wohlstetter is prejudiced in his praise of The Israel Test; he’s a friend of the author, George Gilder. Of course, a review by an author’s friend has never happened anywhere else, has it? Regardless, John is a friend and colleague of mine, too, and I know what he does when he disapproves of a friend’s views: he goes silent. This article in The American Spectator is, in fact, a very good introduction to the George Gilder’s book. The best lines are these, at the end: Israel could be the economic engine for the entire Mideast. This is the new Israel, no longer a financial ward of America. It is this Israel that most Americans know not of. “Israel Inside” Read More ›

Buzz Building on The Israel Test

George Gilder’s new book, The Israel Test, is starting to get around. We ourselves have already filled over 1,000 book orders in house. (Actually, we recommend that purchasers go to to order. For both orders you can still come to us.) Mona Charen had a terrific column a few days ago on George’s appearance at the AEI. David Pryce Jones has a fine article out in the National Review, and The American has published a long excerpt of the book. The growing buzz may have somthing to do with the fact that there really is an Israel test going on right now in international affairs. We definitely are on the case — led by George.

Now a Democracy Joins Internet Blockers

Authoritarian regimes from China to Iran have made it their business to try to control what their peoples can see or do on the internet. It is usually about politics. Now Turkey joins the pack, even while its leader quips about how easy it is to thwart the government’s censorship efforts. In this useful article from Radio Free Europe, Claire Berlinski wonders how Turkey thinks it is going to get into the European Union when it employs such behavior.

North Koreans May be Attacking U.S. Cyber Sites

What George W. Bush named “The Axis of Evil” included Iraq, North Korea and Iran. Iraq is relatively, if perhaps deceptively, quiet, but Iran is “hot” and North Korea seems bent on getting into our faces whether we want to see them there or not. This AP story by Lolita Baldor should push the federal government–as well as the private sector–to greater defensive action. Computer security is national security, and in that light it is worth noting that cyber attacks have increased almost three fold in three years. This is the kind of story that, in retrospect, may be seen as a lot more significant than what is daily emphasized in most of our hedonistic, anesthetized media. Both hardware and Read More ›

Who is Going to do Investment Banking Now?

The answer, George Gilder tells me, may be hedge funds. The disappearance of Lehman Brothers and the transformation of Morgan and Goldman Sachs into heavily regulated commercial banks presents an opportunity for entrepreneurial risk taking by someone else. Such as hedge funds. New technologies make it possible for them to stay in touch with clients and handle trades quickly. The turmoil in the markets world-wide disagregates the economy and makes new entitites possible. Dispossessed “animal spirits” will surely find a new home. It is worth pausing here to recall that Fannie Mae and Freddy Mac helped over several decades to get home ownership up to 70 percent in this country. Very good, up to a point. They were distinguished by Read More ›