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BOOK SUMMARY

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Dr. John Cobin has the following books available

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Policy books by Dr. John Cobin


Title

Format

ISBN

Publisher and Year

Pages

Price

Building Regulation, Market Alternatives, and
Allodial Policy

347.3'0644 Library of Congress Catalog Card Number 96-79120

Paperback

5-951413-7-4

iUniverse 2001

248


$16.95


Building Regulation, Market Alternatives, and
Allodial Policy

347.3'0644 Library of Congress Catalog Card Number 96-79120

PDF e-book

0-9725418-4-5

Alertness Books 2003

248


$3.95



Building Regulation/Allodial Policy Book


This book provides evidence (via two case studies) of government's failure (USA) to regulate building safety and quality, at least insofar as the public interest is concerned. Market regulatory alternatives are suggested that could conceivably replace government regulation. In addition, allodial policy is suggested as an alternative to replace current real property policy. 248 pages. More complete summaries and reviews are available via the links below.


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Also see:
University Catalogs with the book:
Hastings
American University Law School

Reviews mentioning it:
Otto Scott's Compass, vol. 6, issue 66, February 1, 1996
"Mr. Cobin's dissertation makes appallingly clear by citing a long line of court decisions, property rights in a real sense have ceased to exist in this land [of the United States]. To be allowed mere possession of our homes and land only as long as we pay taxes has been to reduce us to the condition of serfs."
Book Review Service (Book News, Inc.)
"Explores the potential for market forces to take over at least some of the regulation of building safety and quality that has been assumed by governments for the past two centuries. Draws on theoretical work in such areas as product safety and quality, public goods and choice, and Austrian knowledge theories. Also presents new evidence about building regulation and some obscure aspects of legal philosophy, and analyzes the cost of public decisions on a theoretical level."

Amazon.com author interview:
Amazon.com Interview with Dr. Cobin


This book demonstrates that government regulation of building safety and quality does not always improve either safety or quality. Dr. Cobin suggests that market alternatives, which work well in other sectors, like the purely market regulated rare coin industry, could be used instead to improve effectiveness and efficiency. Moreover, allodial real property policy would be a viable alternative for alleviating many of the problems that might have led to government failure, including public choice and knowledge problems. This book will be of interest to academics and people in the architecture and building industry, or in urban planning.

Contents
Introduction
1 A case study on building fire safety (Baltimore)
2 A case study on building quality (mostly rural counties in West Virginia and Pennsylvania)
3 Market-regulatory alternatives (rare coin and gemstone industries)
4 A policy overview of American allodialism
5 Concluding implications for public policy
App. A Shepardizing results of important cases
App. B Chronological important case citations with topics


Foreword by Walter E. Williams, Ph.D.
Chairman, Economics Department, George Mason University


In contemporary society, people increasingly rely on government to provide many goods and services. Those who champion government allocation of resources fail to consider both the effectiveness of government allocation and the moral questions involved. In the last century, resistance to government intervention, from paper money to economics regulation, was far more pervasive and effective than it is today. Indeed, today's Americans only have a faint understanding of the Constitution and its envisioned restraints on government activity. The Constitution and its philosophical underpinning are rarely taught and understood by most Americans. That is a remarkable change from the time of our nation's founding when a large percentage of Americans were conversant with the ideas of Locke, Cato, Paine and the Federalist Papers.

The Declaration of Independence, one of America's most important political documents, contains statements that are today greeted with hostility, or at best, viewed as extremist. The motif of America's inauguration has become too radical to discuss without extreme qualification, and those who want to use it to assail the present political process are labeled 'radicals.' Of course, the liberty-loving American founders also carried this sobriquet. Another characteristic of the modern age is that Americans have become carelessly oblivious to the historical struggle for the vast liberties they enjoy but the preservation of which they now seem to disregard.

Dr. Cobin's book is part of the growing literature of case studies legal-philosophical treatises that provide economic analyses of public policy. While many other studies about regulation have been produced, Dr. Cobin has provided a major contribution to local regulatory issues. Building regulation and the modern system of private property rights are areas which are taken for granted by most people. However, this book reveals that there are more than trivial policy defects in our system of private property rights. Dr. Cobin has established that there is a real need to re-examine how private property rights are regulated. In the same way that public choice theory has exploded the notion of altruistic bureaucrats and politicians, who serve the interest of the public to the disregard their private interests, Dr. Cobin's book unmasks local building regulations whose ostensible purposes are to serve the public interest.

The results of Dr. Cobin's work lead us into a new dimension of public policy deliberation, i.e., whether government regulations produce more or less safety than that provided through the market 'regulation.' If government regulations reduce the safety and quality of goods or services, then it is in the public interest to revise or eliminate such regulation. Dr. Cobin has also done a commendable job of demonstrating that market provision can produce efficient and effective regulation, even for informational services that are assumed to be public goods. After demonstrating the failings of government regulation and provision of information about quality, Dr. Cobin shows us that markets can do in building and safety regulations what it has done the rare coin and gemstone industries.

Dr. Cobin's work goes even further. In addition to suggesting an adequate policy alternative for a failing system of building regulation, he also resurrects an alternate legal philosophy of real property. This system, known as 'allodialism,' is not a novel concept but has deep roots in Western civilization. However, it has been obfuscated over the years in favor of feudalism. It may surprise many readers that the American system of real property, not to mention the rest of the world's is essentially feudalistic. This fact should be repugnant in America where the Founding Fathers sought to abrogate all fetters of tyranny and oppression. An allodial real property system would make private property rights absolute and not subject to any form of coercive taxation or regulation. Subsequently, allodialism would serve to secure rights to property as guaranteed by the Bill of Rights and the Declaration of Independence.

Hopefully, this study will provide the impetus for scholarship, in both case studies of local regulation and renewed discussion and analysis of allodial property rights. Not only can this book be added to the annals of regulatory studies which support market over government provision, but its philosophical basis can be used in basic disciplines, including law, economics, philosophy, political science and history. Dr. Cobin has made an important contribution to an important public policy area in a novel and frequently overlooked way.



Title

Format

ISBN

Publisher and Year

Pages

Price

Pro-Life Policy:
A Perspective for Liberty and Human Rights

PDF E-book

0-9725418-6-1

Alertness Books 2003

131


$2.95


Política Pro-Vida: Una Perspectiva de Libertad y Derechos Humanos

PDF E-book

0-9725418-9-6

Alertness Books 2003

124

$2.95


Abortion thumb suckingAbortion suction resultsAbortion salt resultsAbortion bomber wantedFetal parts for saleUnborn Child at 21 weeks grabs the doctor's finger while he operates to repair his fetal spine


Photos: (1) unborn child sucking his thumb, (2) results of suction procedure on 10 week old fetuses, (3) results of salt poisoning on a 19 week old unborn child, (4) FBI Director Louis Freeh announces at FBI Headquarters in Washington Tuesday May 5, 1998 that Eric Robert Rudolph, a suspect in the nation's first fatal bombing of an abortion clinic in Birmingham, Ala., has been added to the department's 10-most-wanted list (AP Photo) , (5) fresh fetal tissue for sale, and (6) unborn child (a fetus of 21 weeks) clasps - from his mother's womb - the surgeon's finger who operates to repair his spine (another doctor could have aborted him legally). Click here to read the story and search for page 1, section A, "Amazing prenatal photo changes a family for life", by M.A.J. McKenna, The Atlanta Journal-Constitution, Saturday, April 8, 2000. He was subsequently born December 2, 1999.


What is the legal reasoning, or should I say legal ruse/charade, why public policy permits people to "legally" butcher unborn children as in the two photos above? From a policy and legal point of view, justification may be based not only on the famous Supreme Court case Roe v. Wade, but on an even more fundamental and ancient legal doctrine. Consider the following excerpts from the entry "Person", Black's Law Dictionary, 4th ed., page 1300.


"A person is not such because he is human, but because rights and duties are ascribed to him. The person is the legal subject or substance of which the rights and duties are attributes."

"A child en ventre sa mere [in the womb] is not a person. Dietrich v. Northhampton, 138 Mass. 14, 52 Am.Rep. 242: but an infant is so considered; Madden v. Springfield, 131 Mass. 441."

"Persons are the subject of rights and duties; and, as a subject of a right, the person is the object of the correlative duty, and conversely. The subject of a right has been called by Professor Holland, the person of inherence; the subject of a duty, the person of incidence. "Entitled" and "bound" are the terms in common use in English and for most purposes they are adequate. Every full citizen is a person; others human beings, namely, subjects who are not citizens, may be persons [cf. Dred Scott v. Sandford]. But not every human being is necessarily a person, for a person is capable of rights and duties, and there may well be human beings having no legal rights, as was the case with the slaves in English law."


This book provides a non-religious, classically liberal defense of the pro-life position derived from economic and public policy analysis, as well as moral philosophy. The debate over abortion at an academic level is quite different that what is popularly discussed. In my experience, it is rare to find pro-choice academics who reject the fact that the zygote/fetus is a life and a human being -- and that abortion is the taking of a life and the killing of a human being. The debate is over personhood. Academic abortion-rights advocates argue that some human beings, notably unborn ones, are not persons because public policy or some other social convention has not conferred rights upon them. This philosophy is not new, but it is well thought thought-out. Jews were not considered persons under Hitler, nor were enslaved negroes in the ante-bellum United States. The rationale for such policies always revolves around some genetic or development criteria, such as the ability to reason (among many others). I argue that this position must be rejected by classical liberals (and conservatives) because it is not in the public interest, because there should be no division of human beings by their peers into rights-bearers and non-rights-bearer (on the contrary, there should be equality among human beings), and because public policy must not be the source of human rights to life. Indeed, we become slaves of the state if the state is able to define who has rights and if it is permitted to grant us rights to our bodies and lives. I make a careful argument based on ideas that are not common in the debate literature and I hope you will take time to consider what I have to say. I would also highly recommend the excellent essay by philosophy Professor Peter Kreeft, "Personhood Begins at Conception", to be read in conjunction with my book. Check the links section to read this essay online.

The argument I make in my book may be summarized as follows (taken from page 11 of
the book):

"The pro-life position opposes abortion (1) because abortion violates the rights of a human being, who should all share natural rights equally, (2) because it is in the public interest (a) to protect people who want to live and (b) to promote an increase in the number of human minds (the ultimate economic resource), and (3) because abortion relies on inefficient and problematic proactive public policy (a) to implement and enforce it and (b) to determine which human beings have rights and when."

"In this volume, John Cobin persuasively illustrates that the pro-life position is essentially liberal, from both economic and philosophical perspectives. The exposition is clear and simple and the many appendices make this work suitable for use in the classroom as well. Dr. Cobin was instrumental in refining my thinking on this subject and his book is highly recommended.” Joseph S Fulda, CSE, PhD


Contents
1 Introduction
2 Policy overview: the prolife perspective
3 The fundamental issues
4 Responses to criticisms
5 Matters of public policy

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The Spanish version direct links will be:

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Title

Format

ISBN

Publisher and Year

Pages

Price

Bible and Government: Public Policy from a Christian Perspective

Paperback

0-9725418-0-2

Alertness Books 2003

246


$10.95



Diskette/E-Book PDF

0-9725418-1-0

Alertness Books 2003

246


$3.95


Biblia y Estado: Políticas Públicas Desde una Perspectiva Cristiana

Diskette/E-Book PDF

0-9725418-5-3

Alertness Books

To be published late 2003




Bible with Goldwater on topRomans 13



This book provides an analysis of the Christian's relation to government and public policy. The task is undertaken by using both economic analysis and biblical exegesis that lead to both scientific or logical conclusions as well as advocacy ones. I should warn the reader in advance that this book does conforms to neither mainstream Evangelical thought about government nor theonomy. On the contrary, it challenges received statist orthodoxy and often revered cherished state institutions. During my doctoral studies in Public Policy, I realized the necessity to have a complete basis for understanding my field, i.e., a extension to my Christian world view to better deal with public policy. This first edition of this book in 1999 was the result of that quest. The revised edition (2003) reflects far greater thought and analysis. I believe it provides the necessary basis for both doing economics and public policy work as well as providing an fundamental understanding for Christians dealing with their relationship to civil government. At times the book is polemic and advocacy-oriented. At other times it is objective and scientific. At any rate, even if it is unlike my other written work in terms of topic, the book serves its purpose well and I hope you will have an interest both in reading it and thinking more about this complex but vital issue.


Church buildingBible on standBritish Parliament and Big Ben


A few excerpts from the book:
"...the biblical evidence suggests that non-theocratic government acts are evil 90.2%" of the time, theocratic ones are evil 60.3%" of the time, and overall government acts were evil 78.4%" of the time."


"...the earthly institutions of God for the expansion of His kingdom must at least resemble God's ways and serve His cause. Government, which is eminently wayward, cannot fall into this category. Moreover, since there is no unclaimed "territory" in the spiritual world, if a government is not in God's realm then it belongs to Satan's as a matter of simple logic."


"If there is a proper use of collective action, then it must be limited to reactive policies of defense and justice. However, considering the practice of many centuries, governments have only occasionally provided such functions well. Instead they typically become predators themselves, and are often led by the "basest" or "lowest of men" (Dan. 4:17). It is the officials in government who usually become the greatest beneficiaries of a rent seeking society, at the expense of their constituents"


Church buildingCross on a hill at sunsetStained glass


Contents
Introduction Questions Christians raise about public policy
Terminology: 'state' and 'government'
Prominent Christian philosophies about policy
I Samuel 8:4-20
Civil government is a lethal institution
Difficulties in doing Christian policy analysis
Toward a new Christian perspective
1 Public policy
Four categories of public policy
Negative and positive rights
Reactive policy
Policies of inefficient public provision
Proactive policy aimed at changing behavior
Proactive policy aimed at redistribution
Clarification of often misunderstood welfare policies
Social Security and unemployment benefits
Student loans
Ready to use the policy analysis toolkit
2 Modern public policy in biblical perspective
Government is not inherently good
The peccadillo of nationalism
Policy that can be justified biblically
Biblical principles regarding welfare statism
The perpetual problem of man's sinful nature
Particular ways God uses government
The proper role of government
3 Public policies in the Bible and history
The legitimacy of government policy
Public policy in history
Anarchy, chaos, and liberty
The end of the romantic view of the state
Legitimate types of governance and anarchy
Government is a minister of judgment
Where does governmental power come from?
Revelation 13:1-8
Government's satanic nature
A new perspective of civil government
Christian involvement in the political process
Creating civil government is a poisoned process
Government actions in the Bible
Implications of the biblical evidence
Attempts to revitalize a divinely ordained state
How much virtue is needed to justify the state?
Good institutions bear some resemblance to God
When is a policy or institution appalling?
Appendix: policies recorded in the Scriptures
Good policies
Ambiguous policies
Bad policies
4 Public policy in view of Romans 13:1-7 and I Peter 2:13-17
Romans 13:1-7
I Peter 2:13-17
Titus 3:1-2
Understanding these key parallel passages
Divine right: a popular but errant view
Definition of 'good' and 'evil' in the passages
The source of government's moral code
Etymology of the word 'evil' in the passages
Public choice issues in translating the Bible
The apostolic choice of words
The Apostles' pragmatic doctrine
The historical setting of Rom. 13:1-7 and I Pet. 2:13-17
Dating the passages and their historical context
Would the apostles have ignored welfarism?
There was no Roman welfare state
A satanic plot to promote welfarism?
There is no divine right of kings
Its practical impossibility
Is legal ignorance bliss?
Not all authority must be obeyed without question
Debility of Evangelical teaching on government
Critique of the standard Reformed Baptist view
The inane 'holy grail' perspective of authority
Is getting a good government possible?
5 The Christian's response to public policy
Summary of insights on Christian duty
The Christian's duty to the welfare state
Insidious problems caused by welfarism
Inefficient provision is preferable to welfarism
A Christian's relationship to civil government
Policy to be desired and prayed about
No right to make demands or hurl insults
Taxes and the Christian
Matthew 17:24-27
The 'Render therefore to Caesar' passages
Matthew 22:15-22
Luke 12:13-17
Luke 20:20-26
Discussion about the tribute money
Determining what taxes are just and must be paid
Would Paul mandate support of the welfare state?
Emigration by Christians
Christian allegiance and tribulation
Policy evaluation and the Christian
Revolution and the Christian
A special note for Christians in America
Responsibility of pastors
6 Policy analysis: the Christian and the American public school
Purpose and scope of discussion
The founding of the government school
Biblical principles of education
Analogies from other evil institutions
Compromise and hypocrisy in the church
A lesson from Judges
Difficulties in seeing the teacher as missionary
What should Christians do about it?
7 Concluding remarks


Scholarly and pastoral praise for the book.

“Dr. Cobin is effective in explaining what the Bible says about the relationship between Christians and government. I found his distinction between reactive and proactive policy responses to be especially useful. And his prescriptions for Christians with respect to public schools are thought-provoking. Christians who are serious about public policy should read this book.” —D. Eric Schansburg, Ph.D., Professor of Economics, Indiana University (New Albany) School of Business.

“Dr. Cobin provides a valuable paradigm for analyzing public policy and understanding the state from a stridently Calvinistic worldview. Thinking Reformed Christians will greatly profit from this book. Especially noteworthy are Dr. Cobin's scathingly accurate critique of the government school and his application of standard public policy principles and methods to real world circumstances.” —Carl Robbins, Senior Pastor, Woodruff Road Presbyterian Church, Simpsonville, SC.

“Dr. Cobin has done a commendable job of fleshing out a theme that has been lacking in the Christian Community. He provides a valuable paradigm for biblically analyzing public policy and understanding the nature and role of civil government. It is a book that every serious Christian should read. I especially liked Dr. Cobin's dismantling of the notion of Christian involvement in the public school system.” —Franklin López, Ph.D., Professor of Economics, University of New Orleans and Adjunct Professor at Tulane University.

“Dr. Cobin has done a thorough job of outlining and analyzing critical issues related to public policy and the Christian's relationship to government. Especially helpful is his four-fold grid in regard to evaluating public policy. His assessment of government's role is both historically unassailable and biblically accurate. The Americanized Christian will be challenged at many points with Cobin's penetrating insight and thought-provoking candor. The biblical exegete will be compelled to wrestle further with Rom. 13:1ff and 1 Pet. 2:13ff among other texts. Those committed to the government school system will have to evaluate their position further. This book is a must read for those who see the value of thinking through issues, and particularly for those who understand the Christian obligation to think about all things biblically. Regardless of one's conclusions at the end of the read, Dr. Cobin has provided a valuable work that we might be reformed and always reforming.” —Dr. Paul J. Dean, Pastor/Teacher at Providence Baptist Church in Greer, SC; Adjunct Professor at various colleges and seminaries.

>Click here to BUY the Paperback or PDF E-BOOK version direct from Alertness Books.

The book will also available from:

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The Spanish version direct links will be:

Amazon logo Powell's logo B&N's logoB&N's logo
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Title

Format

ISBN

Publisher and Year

Pages

Price

Life In Chile:
Personal Observations of an American Expatriate Academic

PDF E-Book

0-9725418-7-X

Alertness Books 2003

83


$1.95


La Vida en Chile:
Observaciones de un académico norteamericano expatriado

PDF E-Book

0-9725418-8-8

Alertness Books 2003

89


$1.95



Kids at Torres del Paine parkAssault on Moneda 1973Santiago TrafficKids and Penguins near Punta Arenas 1998


A non-academic booklet, full of personal and scenery photos, which gives my perspective on the costs and benefits of living in Chile on account of its culture, tradition, economic standing, and public policies. 83 pages (89 pages in Spanish)


Contents
1 Why I came to Chile
2 Nice things (benefits) about Chile
3 Unpleasant things (costs) in Chile
4 Overall evaluation and the future
5 Photos and articles

Click here to BUY the PDF E-BOOK version direct from Alertness Books.

The book will also available (English version CD) from these direct links:

Amazon logo Powell's logo B&N's logoB&N's logo

or Spanish version CD direct links:

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