Market failure is often cited as a justification for policy intervention. However, one always faces the possibility that the costs of government failure may be greater than the costs of market failure. In the end, there must be a weighing of the costs and the benefits of policy. We witnessed a great example of government … Continue reading The Costs of Creating a “Federally Facilitated Market”
Governments behaving badly... We've all seen it. Get a bunch of libertarians from around the world together, and each seems to take perverse pride in proving that her own government is the worst of all. How can we quantify governments' badness? On the economic side, we might look to the Economic Freedom of the World … Continue reading A New Measure of Political Risk: The DOG Factor
The editorial board of the New York Times has supported liberty twice in the past few days. First, there was the editorial calling for a repeal of the federal ban on marijuana. There are no perfect answers to people’s legitimate concerns about marijuana use. But neither are there such answers about tobacco or alcohol, and … Continue reading The New York Times
I know of quite a few people who harbor rather dark conspiratorial theories of how government works. There is this sense that the government possesses some malevolent genius and the technical expertise to execute the most complex strategies with speed and accuracy. Yet, I always respond: “show me the evidence.” There is ample evidence of … Continue reading Close Enough for Government Work
I predicted Oklahoma would win its case against federal exchange subsidies. The D.C. Circuit Court of Appeals has now ruled against the government on this issue. For more on this breaking news story, check out Jonathan Adler at Volokh.
The always entertaining P.J. O’Rourke has some reflections on the recent FreedomFest in Las Vegas (DailyBeast). Much of the piece is good fun (as one might expect). But O’Rourke does end with an important question that has bedeviled libertarians for quite some time: how do you make the leap to mass politics? In O’Rourke’s words: … Continue reading Let Us All Not Get Together!
I have not read something new on the New Deal in some time, so I turned with some anticipation to Ira Katznelson’s Fear Itself: The New Deal and the Origins of Our Times as one (of many) books I am reading this summer. It is a wonderfully interesting analysis that devotes a good deal of coverage … Continue reading Summer Reading