Archive for May, 2011

Immigration Myths »

Immigration is often a contentious public policy issue and there are legitimate hard questions that surround the issue. Unfortunately, all too often, public debate is centered around a few economic misconceptions people have about immigration instead of focusing on the tougher issues. Immigrants are not a drag on the economy, they don’t steal jobs...
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Australian Government Climate Scientist: Carbon Warming Too Minor to Be Worth Worrying About »

A self-described former climate alarmist, now skeptic, Dr. David Evans served as a full-time consultant for the Australian Greenhouse Office (now the Department of Climate Change) from 1999 to 2005, and part-time from 2008 to 2010, modelling Australia’s carbon. He is a mathematician and engineer, with six university degrees, including a Ph.D. from Stanford...
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Backlash Builds Against TSA »

In the aftermath of my own encounter with the TSA Thugs, I submitted complaints to “my” representatives: Barbara Lee, Dianne Feinstein, and Barbara Boxer. To paraphrase a favorite poet, I didn’t get no satisfaction, and Dianne Feinstein had the gall to include this line in her emailed response: As a frequent traveler, I understand...
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CARTOON VIDEO: What About Bob? Social Security Talk in 2035 »

In 2011, the state of Illinois public pension was on the brink of disaster, with unfunded liabilities upward of $100 billion. By adjusting the benefits and contributions of current workers, the disaster was averted for those then retired. Those workers of 2011 “did their part” and are still working today, many of them into...
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Robert Higgs Speaks on the U.S. Government’s Ethanol Scam »

Here is Independent Institute Senior Fellow Robert Higgs speaking on “Ethanol Subsidies Have Many Bad Consequences,” from the Mises Circle seminar, “Agricultural Subsidies: Down on the D.C. Farm,” held May 14th in Indianapolis. Download audio file (27:51 minutes) Please also see the following books: Plowshares & Pork Barrels: The Political Economy of Agriculture, by...
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Alex Tabarrok Interviewed on Freakonomics Radio: The Economics of Bounty Hunting »

Independent Institute Research Director Alex Tabarrok is interviewed by Stephen Dubner of Freakonomics Radio in “To Catch a Fugitive,” on the enormous advantages of private bounty hunting over government police enforcement of bail jumping. Download audio file (20:14 minutes) Here also is a transcript of the interview. Please also see the following books from...
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Where’d the Patriot Act’s Malcontents Go? »

It seems like only yesterday that a power-hungry president and administration, bent on starting preventive wars, shredding due process rights, stripping detainees of habeas corpus, and asserting executive supremacy in almost everything was trying to push the Patriot Act through an executive-friendly Senate and complacent House of Representatives. Members of his party were using...
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Some Suggestions for Jerry Brown on the Prison Situation »

Conditions for California prisoners are so bad that the Supreme Court has ruled that the overcrowding amounts to unconstitutional “needless suffering and death” (it almost goes without saying that the conservative justices dissented). California is supposed to release 38,000 to 46,000 prisoners. Unfortunately, Matthew Cate, head of California Corrections, indicates that the Brown administration...
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Lobbying and the Financial Crisis »

A new NBER paper finds that, before the financial crisis, the more a financial institution engaged in lobbying, the riskier its loan portfolio and the worse its performance during and after the crisis. The idea that bank regulation creates moral hazard is so well-known, almost trite, that hardly anyone talks about it any more....
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Students: Enroll in an Independent Institute Summer Seminar! »

This summer, the Independent Institute is excited to host “The Challenge of Liberty”, two student seminar programs, one geared toward college students and the other for high school students. The high school session runs from June 20 to 24 at our offices in Oakland and the college program will be held at a Bay...
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