We often hear political groups advocate for economic regulations to address an externality or “protect” some group – usually consumers and labor. They only consider the initial and visible outcomes with little or no regard for the secondary and indirect consequences. At the same time, they fear America’s “unregulated capitalism”.
It is often thought that without regulation, corporations MIGHT carry out destructive acts that result in social externalities. Many of these regulations are crafted on the grounds of what MIGHT happen, as opposed to what has happened. Net neutrality is an excellent example. (more…)
CHILD LABOR is one of the more controversial topics in economics. At face value, most people probably support restricting or banning it. Understandably, child labor evokes emotional responses and images of horrendous working conditions of the Industrial Revolution. Times have changed, however, and this discussion is worth revisiting. (more…)
NARRATIVE: Redistributive measures, such as social welfare spending, are necessary adjustments to “fix” wealth inequality.
REALITY: Politicians and pundits often advocate for policies to “fix” a supposed ill. More often than not, these policies are supported without consideration for the unseen, unintended effects. (more…)
The Human Freedom Index was released recently by Fraser, Cato, and other think-tanks. It is an important evaluation of personal, civil, and economic freedom (1). It uses 76 indicators to rank 152 countries around the world, one of the most comprehensive. (more…)
I constantly see the left demand “free” stuff be provided to everyone at the expense of everyone else. Underlying their demands is a serious moral contention worth discussing. In essence, they would coerce a producer into service and compel other people to pay the costs. (more…)
In discussions about politics and economics, we see a lot of one stage thinking. Virtuous arguments are made without considering factors below the surface or beyond stage one. If we consider these factors, we can fully articulate the issue at hand and make an informed opinion.
Google “college degree compensation” and most of the results will tell you that college degree holders unquestionably earn more than high school. Although true, there are other factors that may change your opinion on the value of a college degree. (more…)
Economist Robert Reich, former labor secretary for President Clinton, recently posted a video called “Three Myths of the Economy”. In it, he attempts to debunk three “myths” about how our economy works, suggesting that acceptance of these myths leads to socio-economic injustice. Here are his claims and my rebuttals. (more…)
Pundits often claim that racial disparities in the United States are the result of racist capitalism and freer markets. While they are certainly correct in observing socioeconomic disparities, they often attribute said disparities to a lack of government intervention. But as we’ll demonstrate, from poverty and income to unemployment and education, many things have actually gotten worse for blacks since the interventions of the 1960s. “Racism” is a politically convenient excuse that undermines millions of people and seeks to absolve politicians from their failed programs. But as you’ll see, it has actually been government intervention that perpetuated these racial disparities, not free market capitalism. (more…)
MISLEADING CLAIM: “Nebraska ended their private utility model in favor of publicly owned. That’s why they now have extremely low cost electricity.” This claim was made in an article authored by the founder of US Uncut. It’s misleading for a few reasons. Let’s take a look with more in-depth analysis.