Tuesday , October 23 2018
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Ryan McMaken

Ryan McMaken

Ryan W. McMaken is the editor of Mises Daily and The Austrian. He has degrees in economics and political science from the University of Colorado, and was the economist for the Colorado Division of Housing from 2009 to 2014.

Articles by Ryan McMaken

Socialized Medicine Won’t Solve America’s Obesity Problem

16 hours ago

Last week, researchers at the the University of Washington released a new study predicting that US life expectancy would fall further and further behind other countries over the next twenty years. Life expectancy will continue to increase, but at a slower rate than many other countries. Whether or not these predictions ever come true, depend …

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3 Reasons Why the Federal Government Should Handle Only Foreign Affairs

4 days ago

In an 1800 letter to Gideon Granger, Thomas Jefferson wrote: “The true theory of our constitution is surely the wisest and best, that the states are independent as to everything within themselves, and united as to everything respecting foreign nations. Let the general government be reduced to foreign concerns only…” In other words, the only …

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Global Warming: The UN’s Plan Ignores Real Costs of Implementation

6 days ago

Last week, the United Nations’ Intergovernmental Panel on Climate Change (IPCC) released a sizable new report titled “Global Warming of 1.5°C.” The basic premise of the report is that if the governments of the world do what the UN tells them to do, then global temperature rise will be limited to 1.5°C. The report comes …

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It’s OK To Buy Your Pet a Halloween Costume (and Other Luxuries)

6 days ago

One of the more persistent myths about capitalism is that wealth and resources are “wasted” when spent on luxuries. But now this waste has reached a new level. Thanks to our abundant wealth in the developed world, we’re no longer just spending money on luxuries for ourselves. We’re “wasting” it on our pets too. For …

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Yes, Inequality Is a Problem — When Caused by the Government

11 days ago

When the topic of inequality comes up, some libertarians and conservatives tend to approach the issues as something that doesn’t matter at all. “I don’t care about inequality,” they say. “Inequality occurs naturally, and its just an obsession of leftists…if anything it’s a good thing.” Part of this appears to be a natural reaction to …

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Conflicting Government Data Shows the Importance of Sound Economic Theory

11 days ago

On Tuesday, I looked at some recent research suggesting that both wealth and incomes are declining — all while the Fed’s monetary policy has become ever more interventionist and regulatory. The conclusions involved were premised on some assertions about Fed policy. Fed regulatory changes now favor large Wall-Street-centered borrowers over smaller Main-Street-centered borrowers. This has …

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New Data Shows Federal Reserve Is Causing More Inequality

14 days ago

Back in August, Bloomberg interviewed Karen Petrou about her research on quantitative easing and the Fed’s policies since the 2008 financial crisis. What she has discovered has not been encouraging for people who aren’t already high-income, and in recent research presented to the New York Fed, she concluded “Post-crisis monetary and regulatory policy had an …

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Good Ideas Are Key in the War Against Bad Ideas

18 days ago

Writing decades ago, Friedrich Hayek observed: “In all democratic countries … a strong belief prevails that the influence of the intellectuals on politics is negligible.” Hayek conceded this was true to “the extent to which they can sway the popular vote on questions on which they differ from the current views of the masses,” but …

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Our International Movement

19 days ago

One of the great things about working at the Mises Institute is the opportunity to work and correspond with people from around the world. Whether we’re looking at Mises University students, Fellows, Senior Fellows, or Mises Wire writers, we can find writers and scholars from Poland, Britain, France, Brazil, Hong Kong, Spain, Mexico, and many …

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Don’t Expect Any Spending Cuts Under Trump

20 days ago

Even before Trump was elected it was already clear that no one should expect him to cut spending and rein in annual budget deficits. Trump has always been about buying votes with more and more spending. Moreover, there is no evidence that Republicans are any more fiscally restrained than Democrats when in control of the …

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Trump Signs an Enormous New Military Spending Bill

21 days ago

Last Thursday, Donald Trump signed into law a massive new military budget for fiscal year 2019, which began on Monday. The 2019 National Defense Authorization Act, or NDAA, includes $616.9 billion for the Pentagon’s base budget, $69 billion for overseas contingency operations funding and $21.9 billion for nuclear weapons programs under the Energy Department. The …

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In a Blow to Media Gun Narrative, Homicides Down in 2017

27 days ago

The FBI released new homicide data this week, and at the nationwide level, the 2017 homicide rate fell slightly, dropping to 5.3 homicides per 100,000 from 2016’s rate of 5.4. According to the report, there were 17,284 homicides in 2017. For context: drug overdoses killed 63,632 Americans in 2016 and more than 37,000 people were …

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So Many Cars: Why American Life Expectancy Falls Short

28 days ago

Often, when pundits and activists look at life expectancy data, they often find that the US has a lower life expectancy at birth than other wealthy countries.The common response is to then immediately assume that the United States must have lower life expectancy rates because it lacks so-called “socialized medicine.” Never mind, of course, that …

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Median Household Wealth in America Is Going Nowhere

September 21, 2018

Today’s headline at The Wall Street Journal looks wonderful: “U.S. Household Net Worth Neared $107 Trillion in Second Quarter.” The journal is reporting on a new report from the Federal Reserve. Unfortunately, the fact that the aggregate national net worth is up doesn’t tell us much about how Americans are faring right now. The “$107 …

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Capitalism Makes Us More Humane

September 19, 2018

In the midst of high winds and flooding as a result of Hurricane Florence, we hear of a truck driver who saved 53 dogs and 11 cats from flood waters. And then there is the case of a woman who saved 18 dogs from a flooded house and its fenced in pen. This, mind you, …

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Mercenaries: A “Privatized” Army Is Still an Army

September 14, 2018

Erik Prince, the owner of a series of mercenary firms originally known as Blackwater, wants to “privatize” the war in Afghanistan. And he wants you to pay him to do it. According to to the Military Times, “Prince … believes a small footprint of private military contractors and even smaller footprint of U.S. special operators …

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Why Are the Feds Subsidizing Baby Formula Companies?

September 8, 2018

Last month, when a host of media outlets began talking about the Trump administration’s alleged “battle against breastfeeding,” few of them — if any — mentioned the fact that the US federal government continues to subsidize the baby formula industry to the tune of billions of dollars. [RELATED: “We Don’t Need the UN to Regulate …

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Money Supply Growth Falls to 6-Month Low

September 7, 2018

Money supply growth fell in August, dropping to the lowest rate recorded since February of this year. Overall, money-supply growth remains well below the growth rates experienced from 2009 to 2016. In July, year-over-year growth in the money supply was at 4.1 percent. That was down from June’s growth rate of 4.4 percent, and was …

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We Don’t Need the UN to Regulate Baby Formula

August 31, 2018

Last month, the New York Times reported that the Trump administration had been pressuring other countries at the UN to oppose a resolution supporting more widespread use of breastfeeding. This was, in turn, portrayed by much of the media as the Trump administration taking a stance “against breastfeeding,” which is today almost universally regarded as …

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You Can’t be Both “Pro Military” and “Pro Second Amendment”

August 29, 2018

The phrase “pro-gun, pro-military” is used by some conservatives to describe themselves, as if the two go together seamlessly. For example, activist and political candidate Erin Cruz states she is both “Pro Second Amendment” and “Pro Military” in her promotional materials. Another Republican candidate, Gregory Duckworth, advertises that he advances “pro-gun and pro-military initiatives.” And …

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South Africa’s Land Confiscation: Socialism by Another Name

August 28, 2018

An audio version of this article is available here. The UK’s Express reports this week the South African government has begun seizing farms in the country following a failure to negotiate sales with the owners. On July 31, President Cyril Ramaphosa, who had only been elected into office in February, confirmed his African National Congress …

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Ann Coulter Comes Out in Favor of Anti-Discrimination Laws

August 28, 2018

Ann Coulter once mocked Ron Paul for his call that the government get out of marriage. Coulter demanded that governments regulate marriage because, well, people would have too much freedom otherwise. That was just one of many times that Ann Coulter’s knee-jerk preference for government controls and government intervention became apparent. Consistency has never been …

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Why We Can’t Ignore the Militia Clause

August 25, 2018

While many defenders of private gun ownership recognize that the Second Amendment was written to provide some sort of counterbalance against the coercive power of the state, this argument is often left far too vague to reflect an accurate view of this historical context surrounding the Amendment.
After all, it is frequently pointed out that private ownership of shotguns and semi-automatic rifles could offer only very limited resistance to the extremely well-equipped and well-armed United States military.
It is often, therefore, just assumed that the writers of the Second Amendment were naïve and incapable of seeing the vast asymmetries that would develop between military weaponry and the sort of weaponry the average person was

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Why We Can’t Ignore the “Militia” Clause of the Second Amendment

August 23, 2018

While many defenders of private gun ownership recognize that the Second Amendment was written to provide some sort of counterbalance against the coercive power of the state, this argument is often left far too vague to reflect an accurate view of this historical context surrounding the Amendment. After all, it is frequently pointed out that …

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