Posts by Randall G. Holcombe
Randall G. Holcombe is a Senior Fellow at the Independent Institute, the DeVoe Moore Professor of Economics at Florida State University, and author of the Independent Institute book Liberty in Peril: Democracy and Power in American History.
Are We Too Distracted to Notice Inflation?


The Consumer Price Index was up again in September. The annual rate of inflation, from September to September was 5.4%, and is likely to go higher by year-end. The Federal Reserve claims to have an inflation target of 2%, but seems to be in no hurry to enact policies to slow the rise in...
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August Inflation Lower than Expected: Look at the Numbers


The Consumer Price Index numbers for inflation showed a lower-than-expected increase in August, but as this article notes, we still have a lot of inflation. I’m drawing my information from the Bureau of Labor Statistics, the government’s official measure of prices. The good news is that prices increased by only 0.2% in August, but...
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Entrepreneurial Economies


Academic institutions increasingly are recognizing the importance of entrepreneurship to the performance of an economy, and in response, many (including my own institution, Florida State University) have established entrepreneurship programs to give students some skills that can help them succeed as entrepreneurs. I’m supportive of these efforts, but the degree to which individuals in...
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Afghanistan: Two Implications for National Defense


The United States did not have a Department of Defense until 1947. Prior to that time, the nation had a Department of War. The name change is somewhat ironic and Orwellian, in that since the name change the Department has done little to actually defend the nation’s borders but has fought war after war...
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To Mask, Or Not? A State of Resistance


The state of resistance, in this case, is Florida. Many readers will be aware that Florida Governor Ron DeSantis has prohibited mask mandates in the state, and faced some resistance from local school boards that have imposed mask mandates in defiance of the governor’s prohibition. Meanwhile, where I teach, at Florida State University, the...
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To Mask, Or Not? Should I Yield to Authoritarians Who Resist Authority?


I am a faculty member at Florida State University, and for several months we have been told that the fall semester would be a return to normal campus operation. Last year, I taught in-person classes all year, wearing a mask, and was looking forward to teaching without one. The university’s announced policy was that...
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It’s Time to End the COVID Mandates


As everyone is aware, governments have been mandating restrictions on people’s behavior in response to the COVID pandemic for more than a year. Cases are on the rise around the US, and in response, governments are retaining existing mandates and reimposing mandates that had previously been repealed. COVID is not going away, but the...
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Is Our Current Inflation Temporary? Look at the Numbers


Jerome Powell, Chairman of the Board of Governors of the Federal Reserve System, has said that the current uptick in inflation is temporary, and he expects inflation to subside in 2022. Despite rising inflation, the Fed is not in an inflation-fighting mood. Powell’s view rests heavily on interruptions in the supply chain that have...
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Who’s With Me?


Humans are an inherently tribal species. People have always lived and worked in groups. In primitive times, they recognized those in their group as allies and cooperated with them. Those outside their group were viewed with hostility. Strangers were potential predators and potential prey. Better to take their stuff when the opportunity presents itself...
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Tax Havens, or Intergovernmental Competition


President Biden and Treasury Secretary Janet Yellen have convinced the other G-7 countries to implement a 15% minimum global corporate tax rate. The argument in favor is that some countries (the linked article names Ireland) are establishing themselves as tax havens–lowering their tax rates to attract businesses from higher-tax countries. Another way to view...
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