Tag: Russia

Saudi Arabia Pressures Russia »

One remarkable aspect in the recent fall in global oil prices is that Saudi Arabia has not cut production to prop them up. Much of the speculation about why the Saudis have sat by passively and allowed the oil price decline has been that they are trying to undermine higher-cost producers in the US...
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The Power of Ideas »

Today marks the twenty-fifth anniversary of the most thrilling event of my lifetime: when oppressed individuals came together and laid claim to their birthright of liberty. Also known as “The fall of the Berlin Wall.” It wasn’t supposed to have happened this way. “Everyone” knew the Soviet Union was the strongman. The intellectuals dismissed...
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Imposing Costs on Russia: How about a Food Embargo? »

President Obama has threatened to impose costs on Russia for their intervention in Ukraine, but so far, his involvement has been high on rhetoric but low on action. Here’s a proposal that ought to hit Russia where it hurts: impose a food embargo on them. Americans and Europeans of a certain age can remember...
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Your Tax Dollars at Work at the Ex-Im Bank »

Following up on my nationally syndicated column on the pending re-authorization of the Export-Import Bank (“Let the Ex-Im Bank Fail”), the Financial Services Committee of the U.S. House of Representatives issued a press release on July 21, 2014, stating that “Two of the four Russian firms targeted with new sanctions announced last week by...
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Dining with Stalin »

“In the socialist commonwealth every economic change becomes an undertaking whose success can be neither appraised in advance nor later retrospectively determined. There is only groping in the dark. Socialism is the abolition of rational economy.” —Ludwig von Mises When I was driving to work earlier this week, I heard a fascinating story on...
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U.S. War on Poverty Failed While Global Poverty Declined 80%: Economic Liberalization Begets Prosperity and Equality »

50 years after LBJ declared a “War on Poverty,” the U.S. would do well to take a page from the global playbook—whereby economic liberalization and more open trade has resulted in an 80% decline in abject poverty since 1976. The graphs below, taken from the National Bureau of Economic Research Working Paper, “Parametric Estimations...
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The Republic of Georgia’s Uncertain Economic Future »

Over the past ten years the Republic of Georgia has seen a remarkable amount of economic progress. Twenty-one years ago, Georgia was one of the Soviet republics, and struggled economically after the break-up of the Soviet Union. Its economic turnaround came with the election of Mikheil Saakashvili as president in 2004. He fired all...
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The Stalinization of Amerika »

In the immediate aftermath of 9/11, rather than hold accountable and roll the heads of the bunglers at the U.S. intelligence agencies who failed to follow up on multiple reports of possible terrorist activity, students learning to fly but not land, and possible hijacking plots, such as— In a memo from the Phoenix FBI...
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How Policymakers Can Act Smarter: Simple Lessons about Complex Systems »

In my previous post I argued that low-income populations suffer disproportionately when lawmakers and bureaucrats fail to grasp that healthcare and other complex systems present special challenges. Now I would like to step back from particular examples and draw general lessons for policymakers trying to deal with complex systems. (I offer additional guidelines in...
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Regime Change Coming in the Republic of Georgia »

Economic and political reforms have had mixed results in the former Soviet republics following the breakup of the Soviet Union in 1991. One of the success stories is the Republic of Georgia. Elections held October 1 will replace the party responsible for that success, raising questions about Georgia’s future. Many of the former Soviet...
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