Archive for September, 2010

Gold to Go: Coming to a Town Near You? »

“Toward gold throng all, to gold cling all, yes, all!”—Goethe (Faust) Federal Reserve Chairman Ben Bernanke has offered reassurances (here and here, for example) that inflation won’t become a big problem over the next few years, but investors aren’t exactly buying it. Instead, they’re buying what they always buy as a hedge against inflation:...
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The Obama Administration Makes BP Look Good »

Two months ago I said the Obama administration was making a mistake to demand that BP turn over to the federal government the responsibility for compensating victims of its oil spill in the Gulf of Mexico. My reasoning was that the move would shift what should be an adversarial position between claimants and BP...
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Here’s the Ballot in Florida’s Fascinating Senate Race »

Florida’s U.S. Senate seat that was vacated by Mel Martinez last year has generated an interesting race. Conventional wisdom was that if former Governor Jeb Bush wanted that seat it was his for the taking. After he said he wouldn’t run, current Governor Charlie Crist announced he would run for the Senate. Crist was...
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Credit Shortage or Regime Uncertainty? »

We are now mired in the third year of a recession produced when a housing bubble inflated by easy credit finally burst—as it was bound to do sooner or later. From the very beginning, government officials, among whom I include the people who run the Federal Reserve System, have proceeded as if the way to...
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Higgs Comes to the University of Alabama (Liberty and Power Lectures, October 5) »

I am delighted to announce that our own Robert Higgs will be appearing at the University of Alabama on October 5 to do what he does best. He will offer his legendary insights into the origins of the American Military-Industrial Complex. The talk will be in Room 205 at the Gorgas Library at 6:00...
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Laptop Bombardiers, circa 1942 »

The Kosovo war in 1999 gave us the term “laptop bombardiers,” used for those journalists and intellectuals who, safely ensconced in their Manhattan and Georgetown apartments, called relentlessly for more and heavier ordinance to be dropped upon the hapless Serbs. The laptop bombardier flourished during the Afghanistan and Iraq adventures of George W. Bush,...
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Good Riddance to President Obama’s First Economic “Brains Trust” »

Larry Summer’s announcement that he will return to Harvard’s faculty at year end, following hard on the heels of the resignations of budget director Peter Orszag and of Christina Romer, chairwoman of the Council of Economic Advisers, has summarily taken down the ornaments of President Barack Obama’s Christmas tree appointments to positions of influence...
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Bootlegger-and-Baptist Alert, Reefer Madness Edition »

Guess who recently donated $10,000 to Public Safety First, a California group lobbying against marijuana decriminalization? The California Beer & Beverage Distributors. The beer guys are, of course, concerned only with public safety. Says a spokesperson for Public Safety First: “Let’s keep in mind the beer and beverage distributors are the folks who deliver...
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This Week in The Lighthouse: Government’s Cost | U.S. Economy | Fourth Amendment | Venezuelan Elections »

This week’s Lighthouse discusses the Independent Institute’s new Government Cost Calculator at www.MyGovCost.org, Robert Higgs on regime uncertainty, Joseph R. Stromberg on the decline of the Fourth Amendment, and Alvaro Vargas Llosa on next week’s elections in Venezuela. Here are links to the individual items: 1. What Is Washington’s Spending Costing You? 2. It’s...
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Another Crisis Over, Thanks to the Government »

It’s all over the news. “The recession is over.” The mainstream economists say so. This was the longest recession since World War II, I heard on the news (say, I thought the economy was just dandy throughout that war—oh, never mind). The end of this terrible recession into which the free market plunged us...
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