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Tag Archives: Books

Some Non-Covid Links

GMU Econ grad student Dominic Pino, writing at National Review, accurately describes Sen. Josh Hawley’s (R-MO) new supply-chain web bill as “unserious.” A slice: Two things stand out. First, measuring goods by percentage of value doesn’t make very much sense. The value of a manufactured good is as a completed product, and it’s not just the sum of its parts. For example, if a pair of shoes costs $60, you wouldn’t pay $30 for only one of them. The shoes are only valuable to you as a pair;...

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Some Non-Covid Links

Matt Welch calls out the deplorable media bias for “Progressive” superstitions. A slice: There is something revealingly incongruous about a news organization [CNN] that in one breath conducts hair-splitting fact-checks deferring to the government’s of view (“In fact, there’s no mention of ‘parents’…at all in the memo, none,” [Anderson] Cooper said triumphantly Wednesday, about the controversial October 4 Justice Department directive to have federal agents be on the lookout for...

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Some Non-Covid Links

Boston Globe columnist Jeff Jacoby eloquently argues that “a free press doesn’t take government handouts.” A slice: Subsidies nearly always amount to confiscating money from the many in order to redistribute it to the few. Those who advocate funneling funds to local newspapers via tax breaks for publishers, advertisers, and subscribers are really saying that if people won’t support local journalism voluntarily, the government should make them do so involuntarily by manipulating the tax...

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Some Covid Links

Phil Magness’s and James Harrigan’s letter, in the BMJ, is meant to set the record straight about the great Great Barrington Declaration: Dear Editor, In their essay “Covid-19 and the new merchants of doubt” (BMJ Opinion, 9/13/21, https://blogs.bmj.com/bmj/2021/09/13/covid-19-and-the-new-merchants-of-d…), Gavin Yamey and David Gorski present themselves as defenders of sound scientific principles in the face of “denialism” related to the Covid-19 pandemic. These authors specifically...

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Some Non-Covid Links

David Henderson is appalled at the Biden administration’s assault on economic freedom and prosperity. A slice: Arguably the most intrusive regulation the Biden administration proposes is the one on people’s accounts in financial institutions. USA Today recently corrected an InfoWars exaggeration of the plan. The InfoWars headline: “Biden’s Treasury Dept. Declares IRS Will Monitor Transactions of ALL U.S. Accounts Over $600.” USA Today pointed out two mistakes. First, the Treasury can’t...

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Some Non-Covid Links

George Selgin pens a brilliant open letter to Comptroller of the Currency nominee Saule Omarova. A slice: In my opinion, the changes you advocate, were they to come about, would have harmful, if not disastrous, consequences. By saying so, I don’t at all mean to suggest that bankers today allocate credit flawlessly: far from it. I know that they sometimes fail to get credit to certain credit-worthy applicants, while lending recklessly to less worthy ones; and I understand that the...

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Some Non-Covid Links

John Cochrane wonders how the Nobel committee can justify not awarding the prize to the great Thomas Sowell. A slice: Yes, Tom’s work is empirical, neither full of equations of theory or econometrics. (Though Knowledge and Decisions is an excellent piece of theory.) Tom writes books. Well, maybe it’s time to celebrate persuasive fact-based books as well as the more standard approaches, as you also have done in the past. While Tom is hardy, he is 91. None of us last forever. Nor does your...

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Some Non-Covid Links

David Henderson reviews Diane Coyle’s new book, Cogs and Monsters. A slice: One of the biggest surprises I noticed in her view of economics is her statement, “Competition is quite a tender plant.” She explains, “The more successful, the larger, the more profitable and powerful the incumbents, the harder it is to maintain competition.” Actually, something closer to the opposite is the case. The more profitable the incumbents are, the greater is the incentive for new competitors to enter...

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Some Non-Covid Links

My intrepid Mercatus Center colleague Veronique de Rugy identifies the root evil of cronyism. A slice: My issue, however, is with [Ezra] Klein’s suggestion that changing the status quo requires conservatives and libertarians to stop denouncing Uncle Sam for big fiascoes like Solyndra, the solar company that infamously went under shortly after receiving a $538 million loan guarantee from a green-energy program under the Obama administration. Denouncing such waste, Klein insists, only...

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Some Non-Covid Links

George Leef busts the myth of so-called “market fundamentalism.” Wall Street Journal columnist Jason Riley decries the destructive legacy of LBJ’s (not-so) “Great Society” policies. A slice: Between 1940 and 1960 the percentage of black families living in poverty declined by 40 points as blacks increased their years of education and migrated from poorer rural areas to more prosperous urban environs in the South and North. No welfare program has ever come close to replicating that rate of...

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