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Carl Close Archive

Carl Close is Research Fellow and Senior Editor for The Independent Institute and Assistant Editor of The Independent Review and editor of The Lighthouse, The Independent Institute’s weekly e-mail newsletter.
Full Biography and Recent Publications

Fascinating Questions from The Independent Review



The Spring 2013 issue of The Independent Review—the Independent Institute’s flagship scholarly journal, edited by Robert Higgs—is hot off the press. Below you’ll find links to articles and book reviews that address a host of intriguing questions: Why have domestic police agencies across the United States resorted increasingly to “no-knock” raids and other military-type...
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Are You a Victim of Environmental Cancer Hype?



When is a cancer cluster the result of environmental contamination—and when is it a misleading statistical artifact? Science journalist George Johnson deals with this question in his latest article for Slate, “Cancer Cluster or Chance?” Johnson’s skill in explaining why we often misinterpret epidemiological data can be seen in his opening paragraphs: Lay a...
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Fire Safety Lessons from Nigeria



No one would mistake Lagos, Nigeria, for paradise. Litter blankets the streets, blackouts occur daily, and traffic moves at a snail’s pace. Yet, in one realm chaotic Lagos performs well above average: fire safety. Despite a dearth of fire-fighting equipment, building fires seem to be relatively uncommon. Why? Lagos’s success in fire prevention isn’t...
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Regime Uncertainty and Firearm Purchases



In a post entitled “Regime Uncertainty on Display—Gun Version,” George Johns at Sleepless in Midland argues that the White House’s rhetoric on gun control has been good (so far) for the firearms industry: Gun and ammo manufacturers and sellers are thriving like never before. And the reason is fear of Barack Obama’s ambitious drive...
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Should Insurance Regulation Be Used as a Political Pawn?



New Book Examines the ‘Risky Business’ of Insurance Regulation “Insurance is too important to society and to commerce to be left as a political pawn,” writes Lawrence S. Powell, the editor of the newest Independent Institute book, Risky Business: Insurance Markets and Regulation. Powell’s words are timely because, as with so many natural disasters,...
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World War II Didn’t End the Great Depression



The notion that the Second World War is responsible for ending the Great Depression has met growing skepticism among economic historians, thanks in no small part to the work of Independent Institute Senior Fellow Robert Higgs. Beginning with an article that first appeared in the Journal of Economic History in 1992, Higgs has argued...
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Nixon and Buchanan: Power versus Principle



James M. Buchanan toiled in the academic trenches for more than half a century, plowing vital new ground that advanced our understanding of the untamed beast that is government (and, by extension, the rascals who grasp at its reins). His passing yesterday should be a solemn occasion for all who value a free and...
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Greatest Hits of 2012



Which articles on the Independent Institute’s websites and blogs received the most views last year? We thought you might be wondering! To satisfy your curiosity, we’ve put together two lists—each one shedding light on what most attracts the attention of our Internet audience. The first list of “articles” includes blog posts from The Beacon...
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Robert Bork (1927-2012)



Robert Bork has passed away. The author of two bestselling political commentaries, The Tempting of America and Slouching Towards Gomorrah, Bork is perhaps best remembered for his ill-fated nomination to the Supreme Court in 1987—and for the wrath it provoked from many on the left. But the controversial jurist was also a lightning rod...
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The Fiscal Cliff and Policy Uncertainty



In today’s issue of the Wall Street Journal, economics editor David Wessel has a useful column about policy uncertainty—worries about government spending, the expiration of provisions in the tax code, inflationary expectations, and the like—and its role in hampering economic growth by discouraging private investment. (The piece is available online to WSJ subscribers here.)...
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