Tag: political pork
Bastiat on “Cash for Clunkers”

My old friend John Chapman channels Bastiat in a new op-ed: A lesson from the parable is that government spending cannot create wealth; it can at best redistribute it, often accompanied by waste. The clunkers program certainly helps auto manufacturers, sellers and participating buyers, today; this is what’s seen. But it hurts used-car buyers,...
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Let the Market Determine the Best Use of Oakland’s Waterfront

Way back in 2002, as part of the process of closing Oakland’s historic Army Base, 303 acres of Army-owned land were transferred to local government entities—168 acres to the Port Authority and 135 acres to the City of Oakland itself. Located just south of the Bay Bridge, the two properties have remained in limbo...
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Budget Crunches Supply Golden Opportunities for Governmental Reform

Unprecedented budget deficits at the local, state and federal levels of government should not be cause for despair, but rather taken advantage of to force the public sector to confine itself to its constitutionally delegated powers. In last Thursday’s (June 18, 2009) Orange County Register, columnist Shawn Steel jumped on a bandwagon I’ve been...
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As if a Forced Cable Transition Isn’t Silly Enough

For anyone still lingering in the “dark ages” of rabbit ears (Wait, do we have to switch yet? Don’t we? Is there a right answer?), the president has developed a “coupon program” to help subsidize the cost of the converter box needed for the upgrade. In fact, he has set aside an additional $650...
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Fair Weather Friends of the Market

It’s hardly a news flash that many people who are widely regarded as lions of the pro-market side have gone over to the dark side in recent months. I am not going to name any names; if you are one of the guilty parties, you know who you are; and the rest of us know, too,...
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Credit Is Flowing, Sky Is Not Falling, Don’t Panic

In democratic societies, every great surge of the government’s size, scope, and power rests on a foundation of fear, and the present occasion is no exception. The president, the secretary of the treasury, congressional leaders, and the vultures now swarming Washington to pick the remaining flesh from the taxpayers’ bones would have us believe that unless the...
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