Tag: Federal Reserve

Toward a Better Balanced Budget Amendment »

On Wednesday morning President Obama unveiled his 2014 budget and urged the nation to reduce the federal deficit “in a balanced and responsible way.” Predictably, his opponents in Congress are offering a vastly different interpretation of what this sensible-sounding proviso should entail. Some may even reach across the aisle and succeed in recruiting members...
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The Federal Reserve’s First Century »

One factor often cited as contributing to the decline of the Roman Empire was the debasement of the currency. In a period of about 150 years following Emperor Nero’s reign (from 54 to 68 AD) the value of Rome’s currency fell by 50%. By 250 AD, 200 years after Nero, the value of Rome’s...
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Monetary Policy and Heightened Price Volatility in Raw Materials Markets »

Despite the Fed’s breathtaking increase of base money since the autumn of 2008, the money stock as measured by conventional concepts such as M2 has not increased greatly, and hence, as ordinary quantity-theory-of-money thinking would lead us to expect, inflation as measured by conventional concepts such as the consumer price index (CPI) has been...
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Don’t Know Much About History: Colleges Teach U.S. History with Politics Left Out (Is that Good or Bad?) »

The good news from the NAS study of American history survey courses: if Hayek was right, then American college graduates–the next generation–will learn a lot about racial oppression, class, and gender (all from a left-wing perspective) but precious little about State Power. Forget what you think of State Power (force for good or source of evil). Americans will know NOTHING. I’ll venture they know nothing already. . .

What do readers think? Is it better that Americans know little about history? Is it better than having them learn Zinn-style history on issues unrelated to race, class, gender?

A Vulgar Keynesian Visits My Chamber »

I heard a noise that seemed to come from my chamber door. I opened it, and then . . . Deep into that darkness peering, long I stood there wondering, fearing, Doubting, dreaming dreams some Austrians dared to dream before; But recession was unbroken, and the darkness gave no token, And the only words...
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Krugman’s Coin »

Paul Krugman has made a tongue-in-cheek proposal that has set tongues wagging—having the U.S. Treasury Department mint a $1 trillion platinum coin in order to circumvent the federal debt ceiling. Actually, Krugman was not the first to propose this solution he himself calls “silly” but he has given it wider exposure. In these weird...
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Unprecedented Household Deleveraging since 2007 »

For decades, American families espoused the not-quite-Cartesian ontology: I go into debt; therefore I am. Household debt climbed ever higher through good times and bad. Since the onset of the current recession, however, household debt has contracted substantially for the first time in more than half a century. After reaching a peak at $13.82...
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Krugman Attacks Us »

When Paul Krugman starts attacking us, we know we’re doing something right. John Maynard Keynes’s presumptive heir, Krugman apparently doesn’t like the findings of our recent book edited by Research Fellow David Beckworth, Boom & Bust Banking: The Causes and Cures of the Great Recession, exposing the profound fallacies of Lord Keynes’s love affair...
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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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Crisis and Leviathan, 25th Anniversary Edition »

The Independent Institute is delighted to announce the publication of the 25th Anniversary Edition of Crisis and Leviathan: Critical Episodes in the Growth of American Government, by Independent Institute Senior Fellow Robert Higgs. First published in 1987, this classic work introduced to the reading public the notion that national crises—the Great Depression, the two...
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