Please select any of our free short courses listed below.
They are short, easy reads. Try them on your own, then share them with your friends, book club, or organization!
America: Republic or Democracy?
Is the US system of government a democracy or a republic? What is illiberal democracy? What kinds of government systems do other countries have?
Democracy is Precious
Compare non-democratic and illiberal systems of government with our system. Why is democracy precious, and why is our Republic, even with its faults, worth protecting and improving?
What Should Governments Do for Us?
Get an overview of what most governments typically do, with links to comparative data around the world.
Fear and Fear-Mongering
Fear-mongering is used a lot these days. Learn how detect it and how to handle it.
Political Trust & Distrust: Part 1 of 2
There is rarely agreement within a population on policy priorities and methods. Yet, someone has to make decisions. Who can we trust to do that? Is there a trustworthy system for choosing our leaders, policies, and projects?
Political Trust & Distrust: Part 2 of 2
After the Constitution was ratified, some politicians started pushing against the new system they had created to win their political contests. Gaps have opened up between how things were supposed to work and how they actually work.
Trust & The Presidency: Part 1 of 7
How did the framer’s trust and distrust shape their views on the presidency? What does the Constitution say about what presidents must and must not do?
Trust & The Presidency: Part 2 of 7
How did the formation of political parties and changes in the way states instructed their electors at the Electoral College affect the presidency? What are the implications for presidential power, partisanship, and accountability?
Trust & The Presidency: Part 3 of 7
The president’s powers for war-making, treaty-making, and supervising the federal bureaucracy deepened over time. What were the changes and what are the consequences?
Trust & The Presidency: Part 4 of 7
Delegation of powers. What budgetary, regulatory, and emergency powers did Congress delegate to the presidency?
Trust & The Presidency: Part 5 of 7
Implied constitutional powers, including the ability to issue executive orders and use discretion in which laws to enforce and how.
Trust & The Presidency: Part 6 of 7
Accountability, executive privilege, and immunity in the criminal and civil courts.
Trust & The Presidency: Part 7 of 7
Learn two things we can do to make the Executive Branch serve us well. One is about keeping the republic. The other is about getting good results.