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Archive for May, 2012

Bishops Sue Over Religious Liberty »

Harvard’s Mary Ann Glendon has a good op-ed in the WSJ dealing with the Catholic Bishops’ suit opposing the contraception mandate. Here is a snippet: The main goal of the mandate is not, as HHS claimed, to protect women’s health. It is rather a move to conscript religious organizations into a political agenda, forcing...
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Hate Crimes and Rutgers Webcam Case »

It appears that state prosecutors will appeal the 30 day sentence handed down to Dharun Ravi. (See this news article from the Christian Science Monitor) Judge Glenn Berman ordered Ravi to be imprisoned for 30 days in jail for spying with a webcam on his gay Rutgers University roommate, Tyler Clementi, who killed himself days...
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JPMorgan’s $2 Billion Loss: A Case for Regulation? »

When JPMorgan announced it had sustained a $2 billion trading loss a few weeks ago, some commentators, including Paul Krugman, argued that their irresponsible investing was more evidence that we need stronger financial regulation. The evidence in the JPM case actually shows the opposite. Krugman’s column presents the arguments on both sides. The correct...
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Even Worse Than Democracy »

“Democracy is the theory that the common people know what they want, and deserve to get it good and hard.”—H. L. Mencken Mass democracy and individual liberty do not mix, despite the propaganda. Surely, if a majority can vote against the rights of the minority, the libertarian case against democracy becomes clear enough. This is why...
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Krugman’s Mythology of U.S. Banking History »

Do the banking panics of the late 19th century prove that a safe and sound financial system requires government oversight of banks? Paul Krugman (and most every pundit) seems to think so. In his New York Times column of May 13, he writes: “Current right-wing mythology has it that bad banking is always the...
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The Property Tax Panacea »

One of the biggest targets of liberal acrimony in California is Proposition 13, the 1978 ballot initiative that capped property taxes at 1% and requires 2/3 of legislative approval to increase most tax rates. It also caps the reassessment of real estate value by 2% per year, barring new construction or a change in...
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California’s Budget Woes »

California’s state budget is now facing a $16 billion shortfall, much larger than it appeared in a January forecast. In a recent post I compared California’s recent budget growth with Florida’s, and noted that while California’s budget has grown by 5.6% since 2006, Florida’s state budget shrank by 5.3%. If California’s budget shrank during...
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Economists Testify on Federal Reserve Before House Committee Chaired by Ron Paul »

On May 8th, five economists, including our Research Fellow Peter Klein, appeared in testimony before the U.S. House Committee on Financial Services Domestic Monetary Policy and Technology Subcommittee, chaired by Congressman Ron Paul. The panelists included two economists from the Austrian School, two Keynesians, and one monetarist: Peter G. Klein, Research Fellow, The Independent...
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Water and Markets Flow Together in Aquanomics »

Water shortages and poor water quality are looming threats in many developing countries. By contrast, water supplies and water quality have increased in much of the United States due to a specific policy innovation: water markets and market-like exchanges. The growing participation of wildlife agencies and conservationists in water markets and exchanges is especially...
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Surprise, Surprise »

When over the weekend the media began breathlessly repeating claims from unnamed intelligence officials that the CIA had foiled a deadly terrorist plot, I immediately suspected this would turn out like all the other cases, in which the episode is at least partly manufactured by some intelligence agency then used to demonstrate the need...
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