Cato Institute Press

On the first page of his book, You Can’t Say That!: The Growing Threat To Civil Liberties from Antidiscrimination Laws, David Bernstein wrote this

One problem I confronted in starting this book was that I understood that outside of the academic press market, the market for serious nonfiction is limited, and that authors who take politically incorrect positions, as I knew I would, face a particularly difficult time finding publishers among leading trade presses. David Boaz and the Cato Institute came to the rescue.

Isn’t that interesting? For me, what Bernstein said raises all sorts of question. Why did the author forgo publishing his book with an academic press? Do leading trade presses have a preference for politically correct tracts? Is “politically correct” a stand-in for “liberal-leaning”? If so, do big publishing houses have a liberal bias? Assuming the answer is yes, is the bias due to internal factors, e.g. the editorial staff vote Democrat, or external, market-based factors, e.g. not very many readers buy politically incorrect serious nonfiction books?

In any case, I’m glad the Cato Institute Press published Bernstein’s book. I’m even more thrilled the Press sells its e-books DRM-free, so I was able to buy You Can’t Say That! for my Kindle reading. I’m not sure if the eponymous Marcus Porcius Cato Uticensis ever thought about copyright, but the Cato Institute sure seems to have and come out on the side of copyright minimalist. Hooray!

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