The Independent Institute

 
        

Robert Higgs Archive

Robert Higgs is Senior Fellow in Political Economy at the Independent Institute, author or editor of over fourteen Independent books, and Editor at Large of Independent’s quarterly journal The Independent Review.

Full Biography and Recent Publications

Tariffs, Pickpockets, and the Nationalist Snake in the Moral Grass



Like nearly all economists, I am inclined to explain to people who favor tariffs that such taxes entail inefficiencies. They make the consummations of otherwise desirable trades more costly and hence discourage people’s actions that, absent the tariffs, would result in the creation of new wealth. After all, people who voluntarily purchase goods and...
Read More »

Trump’s Wall—an Attempt to Insult and Humiliate Mexicans



Suppose the Canadians were to build a wall to keep Americans out of their country, making it clear that Americans are simply not decent, productive, peaceful people and therefore the fewer of them who enter Canada the better. Might Americans take justifiable offense at such treatment? Why does anyone imagine that Mexicans feel any...
Read More »

Hate Corporations and Love Governments—an Ideological Monstrosity



Many Americans (and others) obviously fear corporations more than they fear governments. Indeed, they look to governments to “save” them from grave harm at the hands of vicious corporations and to punish corporations for their evil, destructive actions. On such a mindset a large part of modern Progressivism and other leftist ideologies rests. R....
Read More »

Ideology, Identity, Solidarity, and Collective Action



The interrelated complex of ideology, identity, solidarity, and collective action form the ground level in fruitful social analysis. Leaving out this complex, as both mainstream and Austrian economists usually do, means that one sacrifices the opportunity to understand what otherwise seems inexplicable or gets explained only by bizarrely twisting the standard model.   At...
Read More »

Fake News, Fake Politics, and Fake Policy



Fake news has been a hot topic recently. All sides of the political sound and fury surrounding the recent presidential election have leveled charges and counter-charges against their opponents in this regard. Democrats, embracing a newfound, touchingly naive faith in the CIA and the other agencies of the so-called intelligence community, have claimed that...
Read More »

Identity Politics, Public Choice, and Ideology



Identity politics is hardly a new development. In one form or another, it has been around for millennia. But beginning in the 1960s in the United States of America, identity politics began to take on greater importance in the marshaling of support for political candidates and policies. The civil rights movement represented a revolt...
Read More »

The Military-Industrial-Congressional Complex Takes No Holidays



Peace on earth, goodwill Sounds ideal to you and me MICC has other plan

USA to Crown Absolute Monarch



  King Donald the First A bad reality show Say it ain’t so, Joe

The Season of Giving and the Economic System that Fosters Great Generosity



Christmas will soon be here, and preparations for this holiday are proceeding apace. People are buying gifts for family members and friends and making preparations for great feasts at which family, friends, and other loved ones will gather to share the joy and love of the occasion. Notice how much effort and expense are...
Read More »

Trump’s Tactic Is Certain to Create “Regime Uncertainty”



President-elect Donald Trump’s so-called Carrier deal, which seems to amount to a threatening conversation he had with Carrier’s managers, combined with some tax concessions by the state of Indiana, exemplifies the approach he has more or less announced he will take in dealing with U.S. companies that propose to move operations abroad. He threatens...
Read More »

  • MyGovCost.org
  • FDAReview.org
  • OnPower.org
  • elindependent.org