Whatever Happened To Equality Of Opportunity?

Buffeted by new challenges, a fundamental American value still stands. Editor’s note: This essay is adapted from a new book, Equality of Opportunity: A Century of Debate, by David Davenport and Gordon Lloyd, just released by the Hoover Institution Press. Americans have consistently said they believe in the principle of equality of opportunity.  As the authors of a […]


A Century of Debate: Equality of Opportunity June 1, 2023 “The dichotomy between liberty and equality has remained the question most relevant in the American experiment. Dr. Davenport and Dr. Lloyd give us the best chronological examination of the question.” —J. R. Carman, founder, New Jersey Constitutional Republicans Equality of Opportunity: A Century of Debate When […]


HOOVER INSTITUTION – STANFORD UNIVERSITY For Immediate Release Contact: Jeffrey Marschner 202-760-3187, jmarsch@stanford.edu June 1, 2023 Hoover Institution Press Publishes Equality of Opportunity: A Century of Debate by David Davenport and Gordon Lloyd   Hoover Institution (Stanford, CA) – The Hoover Institution has published Equality of Opportunity: A Century of Debate by David Davenport and […]

What The Presidential Candidates Tell Us About Equality In America

As the 2024 presidential election shapes up, one important issue — equality of opportunity — sounds very much like the 1932 campaign between Herbert Hoover and Franklin Roosevelt. In the throes of the Great Depression, Herbert Hoover maintained that the American system of individualism coupled with equality of opportunity was not broken and need not […]

Things I Heard Gordon Lloyd Say

As you will know from an earlier post, my coauthor and friend Gordon Lloyd passed away recently.  Many wonderful essays and posts have been written about him, one of my favorites by our friend Steve Ealy at “Law and Liberty,” a site where Gordon authored a number of important essays.                 It occurred to me […]

Dr. Gordon Lloyd, RIP

The School of Public Policy is saddened to announce the passing of Professor Emeritus Gordon Lloyd, who passed away on April 30, 2023, at his home in Malibu. Lloyd was the inaugural Robert and Katheryn Dockson Professor of Public Policy and the founding faculty member at SPP. An accomplished author, intellectual, and constitutional scholar, Lloyd […]

Go Back To The Great Depression To Understand Federal Climate Change Policy

We were offering a Saturday seminar on the Great Depression and the New Deal to high school history teachers in Chicago, showing them how to use primary documents to improve their teaching.  They had read three speeches by Franklin Roosevelt and three by Herbert Hoover, framing the debate.  One participant raised her hand and said, […]

Go Back to Come Back:  The Homelessness “Emergency”

One thing political leaders are good at is declaring wars and emergencies.  Starting with Lyndon Johnson’s war on poverty in the 1960s, presidents have declared war on several domestic policy challenges including crime, drugs and terror, to name a few.  Notably, none of the wars has been won and all continue in some form or […]

A Federal Debt Bubble Waiting To Burst?

Three related terms are very much in the news today:  the federal deficit, the federal debt and the debt limit.  The deficit, or the annual amount of new debt the government incurs, has reached all-time highs, as has the federal debt (the cumulative debt of all the years) at $31 trillion and counting.  The debt limit, or the amount of money the federal government can “borrow” has become a political leverage point, with the specter of a government shutdown and its payments halting at stake. 

It is difficult to know where to “go back” to better understand all this since, alas, government debt has always been with us.