Tag: Economics

Richard Epstein reacts to the tax plan released by congressional Republicans and explains what steps are most essential for jumpstarting economic growth.

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I feel selfish, because I haven’t shared sales of potentially great nonfiction recently. By the time I get a chance to start a new post, I’m out of energy for the day. But, you’re in luck, because I have both time and inclination right now. Today’s interesting offering (as typical for these sales, at a […]

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Richard Epstein responds to the Trump Administration’s proposals for revising NAFTA, answers some frequent criticisms of free trade, and explains whether a legal challenge to a NAFTA withdrawal would hold up in court.

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Contributor Post Created with Sketch. Dr. Art Laffer and Michelle Balconi on Tax Reform

 
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Richard Epstein explains the contents of President Trump’s new executive order on healthcare, explores the controversy around a White House proposal to cut subsidies to insurers, and explains why conservatives who fretted about President Obama’s use of executive orders shouldn’t be bothered by this exercise of executive power.

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Richard Epstein grades the Trump Administration’s proposal for tax reform, explains the first principles of effective tax systems, and challenges the notion that progressivity is essential to an equitable tax code.

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Recorded on September 26, 2017

The largest nation on the other side of the Pacific Rim plays an outsized role in economic and geopolitical matters, including trade, global aspirations, and finding a solution to the escalating tensions with North Korea. Michael Auslin, Hoover’s inaugural Williams-Griffis Fellow in Contemporary Asia, discusses just how communist China is, decades after Mao and the changed state of US relations with Donald Trump in the White House.

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According to Steve Bannon, it was the revenge of the “rubes” in Alabama as voters sent Trump the hero they wanted, not necessarily the one Trump needed.

Of course the GOP tax reforms are going to “cut taxes for the rich.” They’re the ones who PAY taxes.

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Contributor Post Created with Sketch. An Unworthy Pope

 

When Catholic prelates and popes make idiots of themselves or engage in misconduct, Catholics are inclined to respond to Protestants who are scandalized by saying that the presence of fools and scoundrels in high ecclesiastical offices only goes to show that the Catholic church is the one true church. How could it have survived and flourished otherwise?

Not everyone is persuaded by this argument, but everyone must concede that fools and scoundrels sometimes find their way to high ecclesiastical office — and in this particular, our time does not differ from other times.

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Richard Epstein traces the origins and evolution of his libertarian thinking over a half-century in the spotlight.

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The notion that the Federal Reserve can enhance the growth of the economy is unsupported by any empirical evidence.  The fallacy in the Fed’s thinking becomes clear when one recognizes that in prosperity, it credits the wise planning of regulators who supposedly guided us to wealth, yet in crisis insists even the best efforts of […]

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To know her is to love her and Art Laffer’s mission; teach kids economics early. More

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Contributor Post Created with Sketch. Recommended by Ricochet Members Created with Sketch. Slave Lives

 

Phil Salin(On several occasions I have been rebuked in discussions on Ricochet for referring to the various flavours of collectivists as “slavers”, it being argued that doing so makes of light of the abomination which is human bondage. Well, I’m going to go on calling them slavers, because in my opinion there is no clear moral distinction between appropriating a fraction of a person’s life by coercion and threat of force and taking the whole thing. This view is informed by the concept of “slave lives”, to which I was introduced by my late friend and business associate Phil Salin, in a discussion of large government-funded technology projects such as the Space Shuttle and what was to become the International Space Station. Ever since, I’ve always thought of “projects worthy of public funding” in terms of slave lives, and perhaps you’ll find the perspective as enlightening as I have. Here is an essay I wrote in 2012 explaining the concept.)

In each of our long and tedious traverses through life, we’re lucky if we have the privilege to encounter at least one Wild Talent—a person so endowed with the ability to see things as they are and project their consequences into the future that you feel yourself in the presence of what, in ages before rationality rang down the curtain on the miraculous, one would have called a seer. This was the case when I made the acquaintance of Phil Salin, initially as a spokesman and negotiator in Autodesk’s alliance with the Xanadu project, and then Autodesk’s investment in the American Information Exchange (AMIX) which he invented—the world’s first electronic open auction market for knowledge. A few years after Autodesk terminated its involvement in Xanadu and AMIX, I remarked “In 1989, we had the prototypes of both the World-Wide Web and eBay working in our laboratory and we walked away from both of them because they weren’t within our ‘core competency’ ”.

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Richard Epstein analyzes President Trump’s new plan for Afghanistan, the threat from
North Korea, and how the US should respond to trade tensions with China.

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Contributor Post Created with Sketch. Recommended by Ricochet Members Created with Sketch. Contra Caplan on Physical Illness, Too

 

In 2006, insouciant economic imperialist Bryan Caplan published a paper outlining a consumer-choice model of mental illness designed to rehabilitate the anti-psychiatry of Thomas Szasz. Caplan claimed this model shows that mental illness should not to be understood as a “real illness” (and therefore as a matter for medical rather than moral treatment) at all, but that mental illness should be understood as a weird preference rational actors persist in despite their preference being a poor match for functioning in society.

From the perspective of Caplan’s model, mental-health treatment is a form of rent-seeking designed to paper over the interpersonal conflicts that arise when somebody won’t relinquish a preference grievously at odds with society, rent-seeking that, on the one hand, provides the “mentally ill” with official-sounding excuses for their weird preferences while, on the other hand, providing the families of the “mentally ill” with medical justification for treating sufficiently “ill” family members against their will. In October 2015, the blogger Scott Alexander, himself a psychiatrist, published “Contra Caplan on Mental Illness”, an essay pointing out why, from his perspective, it seems so strange to call mental illness merely a weird preference. Given Caplan’s framework, I would like to point out how strange it is to call physical illness not a “weird preference”, albeit a weird preference most of us take pity on out of belief that it arises from physical derangement that we don’t expect sufferers to be able to compensate for completely.

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Richard Epstein reacts to the Trump Administration’s exhortations to “buy American” and tackles common misperceptions about international trade, NAFTA, trade deficits, and manufacturing.

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Richard Epstein looks at the policy changes that would most effectively cure what ails American health care — and responds to progressives calling for the adoption of a single-payer system.

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In this AEI Events Podcast, AEI’s Jeffrey Eisenach hosts Federal Communications Commission (FCC) Chairman Ajit Pai for a discussion on the chairman’s first 100 days and his vision for the future of US communications policy. Chairman Pai emphasizes the need to close the digital divide, modernize rules, eliminate unnecessary regulatory burdens, promote entrepreneurship and innovation, protect consumers and public safety, increase agency transparency, and reform agency processes.

In a follow-up discussion, Dr. Eisenach and Chairman Pai discuss the Open Internet Order proceedings and the role of Congress and the courts in addressing the controversial issue, in addition to the importance of ensuring that FCC policies enable competition and empower innovators.

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In this AEI Events Podcast, AEI’s Peter J. Wallison hosts Chairman Jeb Hensarling (R-TX) of the House Financial Services Committee at AEI to discuss the Financial CHOICE Act. They evaluate the causes of the 2007–08 financial crisis and how the Dodd-Frank Act fails to address those causes.

Mr. Wallison and Chairman Hensarling consider the Dodd-Frank Act’s role in reducing lending activities — especially among small and community banks — and the ensuing slow recovery. They then discuss the challenges for the CHOICE Act in the House and Senate.

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