Tag: Welfare

Liberalism’s Legacy, Part II »

What is liberalism? By that term I mean the intellectual effort to apologize for and defend economic programs primarily associated with Franklin Roosevelt and Lyndon Johnson. There are four main ones: The substitution of regulation for markets, The substitution of social insurance for private provision, The nationalization of welfare, and The manipulation of the...
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Not Even Achieving an Impossible Libertarian Dream Will Suffice »

Libertarians dream of cutting back the bloated Leviathan under whose weight people now struggle simply to catch their breath—breathing freely being almost beyond imagination. A few of us dream of eliminating the state altogether, however much we recognize the impossibility of doing so. Many more libertarians, however, believe that in propitious circumstances, the state...
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Robert William Fogel (July 1, 1926 – June 11, 2013) »

Robert Fogel died a few days ago. He was a prominent figure in the academic economic history profession for five decades, virtually from the time he burst onto the scene with the publication of a polished-up version of his Johns Hopkins Ph.D. dissertation, Railroads and American Economic Growth, in 1964. This book was the...
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Healthcare and the Poor: Why Money Works Better than Waiting »

What I call health policy orthodoxy is committed to two propositions: (1) The really important health issue for poor people is access to care, and (2) to ensure access, waiting for care is always better than paying for care. In other words, if you have to ration scarce medical resources somehow, rationing by waiting...
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Did Lefty Need to Apologize for Tax Comments? »

Phil Mickelson is being targeted for his comments on California’s and the Feds’ tax hikes. The offending statements, as reported by the Chicago Tribune, are as follows: “Well, it’s been an interesting offseason, and I’m going to have to make some drastic changes,” Mickelson told reporters Sunday after tying for 37th place at 17 under...
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Federal Government Debt Undermines the Programs It Finances »

Just looking at the rate at which the federal government’s debt is growing is unnerving. If you’re brave, you can look here. The table shows federal debt on September 30 of each year, the end of the federal government’s fiscal year. The numbers almost speak for themselves. About 37.6% of that debt was accumulated...
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The Case for Abolishing Medicaid »

In my previous post I discussed the case for replacing the current Medicaid system with block grants to the states; the states would spend this money on indigent healthcare, and nothing more. But must we think only in terms of keeping the poor in a separate healthcare system? Is there any reason to partition...
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The Salmon Trap: An Analogy for People’s Entrapment by the State »

A salmon trap (also known as a pound net) is a setup for catching salmon as they return to their spawning places in the gravel beds of shallow inland streams. Such traps were used in Washington and Oregon until they were outlawed—by Oregon in 1926 and by Washington in 1934—and in Alaska until they...
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Obama to Charities: Bite the Hand that Feeds You, or Else! »

Does President Obama hate private charity, or does he think only the government should take care of people? Does he just hate the idea of anyone directing their own money as they choose, or what? For whatever reason, for now the fifth time in his administration, he’s proposing eliminating or limiting the tax deductibility...
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Mayor Bloomberg: “Let Them Eat Cake” »

Mayor Michael Bloomberg would apparently prefer his storm-ravaged city’s homeless eat nothing at all than benefit from the generosity of private individuals—declaring that only items his food police pass inspection on can be donated to city homeless shelters: Another example of why the government does not belong in the business of charitable relief. If...
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