Reason: Free Maye and Not-So-Free Ova

cover.jpgYou’ve probably noticed that I don’t plug books or magazines at HoT very often. To be sure, I only subscribe to two magazines: Reason and Campaigns and Elections.

There have been three recent editions of Reason that stand out in my mind. One of them, which came out before all of us techno-geeks became obsessed with Google Maps, had a satellite image of each subscriber’s unique house on it. It’s the only issue I didn’t receive in the mail in a timely manner. I assume some postal worker was as impressed as I was with their timely techno-gimmick. When I called to inform them I missed my copy, they sent me another one — albeit without my house on the cover.

The recent issue featuring immigration issues was superior to any coverage of the topic I’ve seen in any print media. They covered the immigration issue from many angles in an interesting (and often thought provoking) manner.

This latest issue is even better. Perhaps the most important reason is that Radley Balko covered the entire Cory Maye issue — from the historical perspective to his unique view after visiting Prentiss, Mississippi to his indictment of no-knock raids in general. Anyone who follows this blog knows how important I find the Cory Maye story and how hard I’ve pushed it. Not only is it one which unites the left, right and libertarians on a single issue, it also highlights a lot of what’s wrong with the drug war, racism, and southern justice in general.

BTW, I got an opportunity to thank Balko in person at a DC event last month for his work on the Cory Maye issue. If not for his dedicated work, there wouldn’t even be any hope for justice in this case. Also, if you live in Mississippi and happen to read this, make sure you don’t (even if a dedicated Republican) ever vote for Haley Barbour. His indifference to life and death as well as right and wrong should make him unpalatable to any rational person in the state. Keep in mind that I’m not some northern carpet-bagging interloper — I come from right next door in Alabama.

Another highlight of this month’s Reason is an adaptation from something John Stossel wrote about how difficult it is to terminate crappy (or criminal or sexually deviate, in some cases) public school teachers. They flow-charted the process, one which consumes four entire pages. In other words, there is one more fold on the chart than for a Playboy centerfold.

For any of you involved in education reform, the graphic is something which can be used in school board, city council, or state legislative sessions or hearings. It’s also a great campaign tool for those of you engaged in politics.

The cover story is interesting, too. I’ll go ahead and spoil the end as the article in the middle is much more interesting. A mystery writer dubbed “Donor #15″ described the process of selling her eggs (or aigs for the weekends I spend in Alabama) for $10K. In other words, she got thousands of dollars to let a doctor take some of the waste material that mother nature expels every lunar month. It really put a free market perspective to the phrase “that time of the month.”

I’d just started reading the article and thought the person writing it might be Kerry Howley. After she described her physical appearance, I was more convinced that #15 might be Howley. The cover picture could be of her, but I’m not sure though, as her skin seems a bit darker in real life. My wife and I are still betting on this one.

I’m not getting paid to suggest that you subcribe to Reason. However, everyone has time they need to read something in print, as opposed to online. It could be on the train on your way to work, the airplane before they let you fire up your electronic devices (sex toy innuendo not intentional or even suggested, in some cases at least), or simply when sitting on the can (I’m sure Nick Gillespie will beat up on me for this one the next time we meet).

There’s a place for online publications and a place for printed media in today’s world. In general, the new theme for monthly print publications which wish to survive is to ensure that the depth and analysis in the issue lives longer than the time increment before the next one arrives in the mail. Unlike most print publications, Reason is consistently accomplishing and generally exceeding this goal.

posted by Stephen Gordon
  • Michelle Shinghal

    My little sis- model beautiful and incredibly smart- is seriously considering an egg sale. She offered her eggs before she knew she wanted her own kiddos and has been talking with potential parents. (She has two little ones now and is the best mother I have ever known.) I asked if it would be weird knowing that there is one of hers walking around and she said no. She has something that somebody else wants- young, healthy eggs. She will feel fairly compensated if everything works out, and the recipients will know the joys and trials of parenthood. Win-win situation I think.

  • DAP

    I suggest you subscribe to The Economist as well. It is an excellent publication.

  • Michael H. Wilson

    Also suggest subscribing to Liberty magazine.
    I was going to drop Reason, but they have improved much in recent months and Balko deserves a huge thanks for the Maye story.
    M.H.W.

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  • http://gomental.blogstream.com frogman302

    Why don’t we all just shear pieces of skin off of ourselves and sell em to burn clinics?

    Why don’t we all just cut off our legs and sell them to people in wheelchairs, and then get in their wheelchair?

    Selling your eggs is like selling pieces of you. It’s probably the most literal prostitution of self that there is.

  • IanC

    frogman — what makes anything you just suggested so inherently damaging to society that they must be made illegal? Hell — what even makes them *reprehensible* if no coercion of will is used? You use ‘prostitution’ like it’s a dirty word. Yet in a very real sense every single 9-5′er in the nation is doing *PRECISELY* that; and if someone *WANTS* to sell off portions of themselves, don’t they deserve the RIGHT to do so?

    Further — your argument that selling eggs ‘prostitutes the self’ in a very real and literal sense obviates the possibility of your holding a ‘right-to-life’ position on the matter; one cannot consider something both a part of the parent *AND* an independant life. I’m not implying your position here … just that the two positions are mutually exclusive.

  • paulie

    Why don’t we all

    Because not all of us want to. But if some of us do, to each their own. If you don’t own your own body, who does? If you can’t sell it, do you really own it?

    Selling your eggs is like selling pieces of you. It’s probably the most literal prostitution of self that there is.

    Assuming you are correct, do you have a problem with it, and if so, why?

  • http://www.hammondsmartvote.org John Delano

    I don’t think an egg can be considered an individual. It hasn’t become an embryo. So what if people sell their own body parts? I think cutting one’s leg off is really stupid, but a kidney? So what? People give them away every day. And eggs are something that women produce every month but rarely use anyway. I personally don’t like it because I don’t like the idea that I would have kids out there somewhere like Michelle Shinghal mentioned above.

  • Michael H. Wilson

    Re John Tierney of the NY Times. His column is published twice a week, usually on Tuesdays and Saturday.
    Today’s column is excellent.
    M.H.W.

  • Timothy West

    I got some cancer cells for sale cheap. Get it now before I change my mind.

  • IanC

    Tim — don’t laugh. Celebrities cell their cancer cells in lumps all the time.

    Anyone got good rates on John McCain’s recursive melanoma? I’m thinking evil-scientist goodness here. (Cancer-clone Mr. McCain… get a libertarian version, plus goattee?)

    … god, I’m a geek. :)

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