Tag: Technology

Every Single Day, Every Word You Say, I’ll Be Watching You »

The Department of Homeland Security has declared its intention to gather personal data on journalists or others who might use “traditional and/or social media in real time to keep their audience situationally aware and informed.” I suppose that would include those of us at the Independent Institute who blog, tweet, and update Facebook. New...
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Alex Tabarrok Interviewed on Restoring Innovation and Entrepreneurship »

Independent Institute Research Director Alexander Tabarrok is interviewed here by Ray Lehmann on the FIRE (Finance, Insurance & Real Estate News) Podcast for the Heartland Institute. The interview discusses many government barriers that exist that block innovation and what policy reforms could be adopted now to restore entrepreneurship and prosperity. Issues addressed include patents...
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Build It and They Might Not Come »

An article in a recent issue of The Economist (“Sweet Land of Subsidy,” December 3rd to 9th, 2011, p. 42) tells the story of Iuka, Mississippi, a small community (2000 pop. 3,059) in Tishomingo County, where the local economic development foundation “invested” an unreported sum of the taxpayers’ money in the mid-1990s to build...
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More “Green” Energy Cronyism and Corporate Welfare »

The New York Times reports in “A Gold Rush of Subsidies in Clean Energy Search” that NRG Energy is receiving nearly $1.6 billion in government subsidies for its new compound in California of almost one million solar panels. The Times further notes that: Similar subsidy packages have been given to 15 other solar- and...
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Fisker Karma: Solyndra on Wheels? »

The title of this post comes from the fantastical Andrew Fox, who laments another case of corporate welfare promoted in the name of energy conservation: the Fisker Karma, a new electric luxury automobile touted by its manufacturer as “a bold expression of uncompromised responsible luxury.” Mr. Fox caught wind of the farce as he came...
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Internet Taxes »

The following updates a column published in the Utah Statesman on September 14, 2011: Proposals to allow the collection of taxes from consumers making purchases online are like vampires or zombies. They apparently cannot be killed unless stakes are driven through their hearts or their heads are blown off. I don’t know how to...
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Steve Jobs and John Kenneth Galbraith on the Dependence Effect »

John Kenneth Galbraith coined the term “dependence effect” in his 1958 book, The Affluent Society. Galbraith argues against satisfying a person’s demands for goods that are “...contrived for him. And above all, they must not be contrived by the process of production by which they are satisfied. ... One cannot defend production as satisfying...
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168 Children »

That is the estimated number of kids who have been killed by US drones in Pakistan, during a war whose purpose no one can clearly explain, much less justify. The Bush-Obama war on terrorism has been raging for nearly ten years now, and virtually none of it has anything to do with keeping Americans...
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The Profound Hypocrisy of a Clintonian State Department »

Hillary Clinton, whose State Department has been involved in overseeing renditioning, who ran for president in 2008 on a more pro-torture platform than John McCain, has condemned Turkey for human rights abuses. In particular, Turkey has cracked down on journalists and has plans to restrict internet freedom. In 1998, responding to the internet gossip...
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War’s Unbelievable Price Tag »

Operation Odyssey Dawn—the bizarrely named military attack upon Libya—is a relatively small war. It is only because of this that Obama partisans are getting away with not calling it a war at all. It is indeed tiny compared to the operations in Iraq and Afghanistan. It pales in comparison to the great U.S. wars...
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