FUSION: In the Tradition of Liberty
FUSION is a journal inspired by the belief that Western civilization is defined by intertwined threads of freedom and tradition, innovation and order, rights and duties. Our goal is to revive appreciation for these productive tensions and show how they can help us achieve greater peace, prosperity, and cultural achievement today.
Launched in Fall 2023, Fusion explores pressing issues from a perspective rooted in the tradition of liberty.
Once a month, Fusion will publish a significant essay on a theme related to the origins, challenges, and prospects of a free society. These essays will often be accompanied by responses from leading writers, reflecting the ideal of civil debate that is essential to a constitutional republic. Fusion will also publish shorter occasional pieces, including arts criticism and historical investigations as well as political commentary.
Why another journal of ideas in an already saturated media environment? Awash in “hot takes,” we believe there is unmet demand for thoughtful, deliberate commentary informed by genuine expertise. That is particularly true when it comes to arguments that emphasize the indispensable, although not exclusive, roles of individual liberty and constitutional government in securing political, economic, and moral flourishing. Once ubiquitous to the point of cliché, such arguments have become distinctly unfashionable against a rising tide of identity politics, counterproductive nationalism, and dumbed-down populism.
Such challenges are not unprecedented, though. Fusion is inspired by the intellectual journalism of the mid-20th Century, when scholars, writers, and activists also confronted attacks on liberal principles and institutions from both the Left and the Right. Our name is a tribute to Frank S. Meyer, who argued that the twin imperatives of freedom and virtue, rights and obligations are not mutually exclusive. Instead, they constitute a productive tension that drives the unique accomplishments of Western Civilization.
We will not impose any party line on its contributors or their arguments. Taken as a whole, though, Fusion is an attempt to demonstrate both the political salience and the intellectual seriousness of a continuing tradition, involving both practice and theory, that cannot be reduced to shopworn policy proposals or familiar rhetorical gestures. Today’s widespread doubts about the relevance and even possibility of that tradition do not mean that enterprise is doomed from the outset. To the contrary, they remind us why the defense of freedom must be renewed—and revised—in every age.
Fusion is published by the American Institute for Economic Research.
Editor: Samuel Goldman
Samuel Goldman is an associate professor of political science at George Washington University, where he is also executive director of the John L. Loeb, Jr. Institute for Religious Freedom and director of the Politics & Values Program. His most recent book, After Nationalism: Being American in a Divided Age was published by University of Pennsylvania Press in spring 2021. Goldman received his Ph.D. from Harvard, and taught at Harvard and Princeton before coming to GW. In addition to academic work, his writing has appeared in The New York Times, The Wall Street Journal, and many other publications.
Publisher: William Ruger
William Ruger serves as the President of the American Institute for Economic Research. Ruger earned his Ph.D. in Politics from Brandeis University and an A.B. from the College of William and Mary. His scholarship has appeared in a number of academic journals including International Studies Quarterly, Review of Political Economy, Economics of Governance, Civil Wars, and Armed Forces and Society. His most recent scholarship examines the relationship between military service, combat experience, and civic participation. Ruger is the author of the biography of Milton Friedman and co-author of two books on state politics, including Freedom in the 50 States (now in its 6th edition).
Associate Editor: Jacob Bruggeman
Jacob Bruggeman is Associate Editor of FUSION and a PhD candidate in history at Johns Hopkins University. His dissertation examines the political practices of computer hackers, from the phone phreaks in the 1970s to hacktivists during the dot-com boom in the 1990s. At Hopkins, Jacob is also the Research Coordinator and an Associate Fellow at the Institute for Applied Economics, Global Health, and the Study of Business Enterprise, and a Graduate Fellow at the SNF Agora Institute and Center for Economy and Society. His writing has been published in The Wall Street Journal, The Chronicle of Higher Education, City Journal and several other publications.