Finally! Some Bipartisan Support for the 10th Amendment

Early Friday morning, the House passed an important amendment to the ¬†appropriations bill for Commerce, Science, Justice and Related Agencies. As Billy House reports (National Journal): Using states' rights as a bipartisan rallying cry, the House voted 219 to 189 early Friday to prohibit the Justice Department from using federal funds to conduct raids or … Continue reading Finally! Some Bipartisan Support for the 10th Amendment

Evidence Shutdowns Increase Government Spending

A few days ago, I gave the theoretical logic for why the availability of the government shutdown results in growing government spending. Advocates of smaller government should advocate a default budget rule that is far milder than shutdown. Now, I have come across academic research by David Primo finding just this at the state level. … Continue reading Evidence Shutdowns Increase Government Spending

Working Papers on Federalism & Public Policy

I have just posted a couple of my working papers to SSRN for those who are interested. They are as follows: "Public Policy and Quality of Life: An Empirical Analysis of Interstate Migration, 2000-2012" Abstract: Individuals and households choose their political jurisdiction of residence on the basis of expected income differentials and jurisdiction-specific characteristics covered … Continue reading Working Papers on Federalism & Public Policy

Does Status Quo U.S. Federalism Advantage Progressives?

Is federalism for progressives? Libertarians, who are generally enthusiastic about the competitive federalism model, have tried to argue that the model provides, at the very least, a kind of modus vivendi for all ideological camps, allowing citizens in each state to have roughly the kind of government that they want. Relative to a single national … Continue reading Does Status Quo U.S. Federalism Advantage Progressives?

Pay Politicians More?

At Econlog, the very sharp Garett Jones makes an argument for paying politicians more: There's some evidence that when it comes to politician quality, you get what you pay for; Besley finds that higher pay for U.S. governors predicts governors with more experience in politics, and Ferraz and Finan look at Brazilian data and find … Continue reading Pay Politicians More?

Freedom and Prosperity: Some Comparative Historical Reflections on State Policies and Performance

In his 1982 book, The Rise and Decline of Nations, economist Mancur Olson argued that over time, stable societies accumulate "distributive coalitions," narrow special-interest organizations that complexify social life and burden the economy with overregulation and opaque forms of wealth redistribution. The notion that distributive coalitions are more often bad than good for economic performance, … Continue reading Freedom and Prosperity: Some Comparative Historical Reflections on State Policies and Performance

What the Freedom Index Considers and Why

Cross-posted to freedominthe50states.org The recent release of the 2013 edition of Freedom in the 50 States has sparked a great deal of interest and comment among academics, students, the media, and the general public. Since the goal of our study is really to spark a conversation about freedom and state policies, William and I have … Continue reading What the Freedom Index Considers and Why