Posts by Abigail R. Hall Blanco
Abigail R. Hall Blanco is a Research Fellow at the Independent Institute and an Associate Professor of Economics at Bellarmine University in Louisville, Kentucky.
Socialism Kills Your Sex Life


A few years ago the New York Times published an article claiming that women who lived under communism in East Germany reported more sexual satisfaction than their capitalist counterparts in West Germany. The study, which found that women behind the Iron Curtain reported more orgasms, was used to suggest that communism benefits women in...
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Manufacturing Militarism: US Government Propaganda in the War on Terror


The stands at Super Bowl LV were filled with cardboard cutouts. The half-time show by the Canadian singer known as “The Weeknd” had some of us wondering where he spent that extra $7 million. A man streaking in a skimpy pink leotard ran for more yards than the Kansas City Chiefs. If Tampa Bay...
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Remember When the CIA Set Back Polio Eradication?


Recently I wrote about the origins of vaccine hesitancy among the African American population. While working on the piece, a friend and former colleague reminded me of another instance of the U.S. government thwarting vaccination efforts. This time it was polio. That may seem strange, given that the U.S. government desperately wanted a vaccine...
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Black Americans’ COVID-19 Vaccine Hesitancy? Blame Uncle Sam.


Chatting with a friend the other day we came upon the topic of vaccines. We discussed states’ differing approaches to distributing the COVID-19 vaccine, when we thought our elderly relatives might receive it, and our hopes for getting the vaccine ourselves. During our conversation, my friend mentioned that he heard Black Americans are less...
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Venezuela Goes Digital–It Won’t Fix the Problem


Venezuelan President Nicolas Maduro recently announced that the country will be moving toward a “fully digital” economy. The South American nation has struggled in recent years with rampant shortages of staple goods, civil unrest, and hyperinflation. According to the opposition-controlled National Assembly, consumer prices rose more than 65 percent in November, placing the interannual...
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Voice, Loyalty, Exit, and BLM


Like many Americans, I watched the events at the U.S. Capitol last week in disbelief. My husband, an immigrant, commented that what we witnessed was “why [my family] left Venezuela. This doesn’t happen in the United States.” He and others have also remarked at the stark difference between the police response to the mostly...
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France’s New Organ Registry and the New Paternalism


Social media never fails to create drama. Several months ago, an acquaintance on Facebook posted a video discussing France’s new law regarding organ donation. Specifically, the French government revised its policies on organ donation such that everyone is considered an organ donor upon their death unless they officially opt out of the program. As of...
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A Plea to My Male (and Female) Colleagues in Economics


In a recent blog post, Jeffrey R. Brown, a Professor of Business and Dean at the College of Business at the University of Illinois Urbana-Champaign, published a “public plea” to his “male senior colleagues in economics.” In the post, he references the research of an undergraduate student who looked at the words used to...
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Sex and Economics: Is Capitalism Less “Bang” for Your Buck?


Several months ago, I wrote a piece titled, “My Vagina Doesn’t Care for Your Identity Politics,” in which I discussed how the most recent presidential election played directly into the idea of identify politics—that an individual should engage in or refrain from certain activities based on a particular group to which they belong. Alas,...
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Atomic Bombs: What My Momma (Never) Told Me


Some 72 years ago this month, the United States dropped atomic bombs on Hiroshima and Nagasaki, Japan. An estimated 60,000 to 80,000 people were killed instantly in Hiroshima and another 40,000 were immediately killed when Nagasaki was bombed. In the coming days, weeks, months, and years, thousands more would die as a result of...
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