Friday , December 3 2021
Home / Tag Archives: Free Markets

Tag Archives: Free Markets

The Latest James Bond plus Buchanan and Tullock

Inspired by Graham McAleer’s review of the new James Bond, No Time to Die, I streamed the film from Amazon Prime Video. Ever since with my young sons decades ago I watched James Bond films, I have always liked them for the action and the guns, although I now find Jason Bourne more congenial and more realistic. On Law and Liberty, our sister website, philosopher McAleer writes under the title “James Bond, Christian Knight”: During the Enlightenment, David Hume sought...

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Monetary policy and central planning

Milton Friedman once debated Robert Mundell on exchange rates. Mundell advocated using monetary policy to fix the exchange rate, whereas Friedman suggested that this sort of price control was interfering with the free market, and thus a bad idea. Friedman was probably right that fixed exchange rates are a bad idea, but his argument was flawed in two very important respects. First, Mundell was advocating the targeting of nominal exchange rates. The real exchange rate...

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Remembering Luigi Einaudi and the Italian Economic Miracle

On this day in 1961 Luigi Einaudi (1874-1961) passed away. Einaudi was a household name for generations of Italians: a name associated with economics and, particularly, with free market ideas. He played a role comparable with that of Ludwig Erhard in Germany: he significantly contributed to the policies which brought about what is still remembered as the Italian economic miracle. This “economic boom” was fostered by relatively light-touch regulation and light...

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Businesses cooperate, politicians compete

The FT points out that US businesses wish to cooperate with China while the politicians in both parties want to compete: America’s public and private elites are no longer as one on China, if they ever were. In Washington, vigilance to Beijing is the nearest thing there is to a bipartisan verity. Democrats, no less than Republicans, brood over Chinese gains in artificial intelligence and hypersonic missiles. Successive governments have tried to knit a web of Asian and...

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Will Texas choose to be pro-business or pro-market?

Tesla recent announced plans to move its corporate headquarters from California to Texas.  But there are some ironies associated with this action: And despite the state’s business-friendly reputation, Tesla can’t sell vehicles directly to customers there because of a law that protects car dealerships, which Tesla does not use. I would challenge the reporter’s use of the term ‘despite’.  Indeed, in a sense the Texas ban on direct sales from auto manufacturers is...

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Saule Omarova and Friedrich Hayek

Three-quarters of a century ago, Friedrich Hayek warned that the West was on “the road to serfdom.” President Biden’s nomination of Ms. Saule Omarova as Comptroller of the Currency is another illustration that the peril has not receded. A graduate of Moscow State University in 1989 on the Lenin Personal Academic Scholarship, Omarova has not apparently understood that the state cannot run the economy without tightly—and in fact, savagely—controlling individual lives....

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Contra Gensler and the Chinese Mirror

Gary Gensler, the chairman of the Securities and Exchange Commission, may be everything a classical liberal wants to avoid. I will take him as representative of the federal bureaucracies that want to control cryptocurrencies and the emerging decentralized finance (“DeFi”) markets. (See Andrew Ackerman, “Stablecoins in Spotlight as U.S. Begins to Lay Ground for Rules on Cryptocurrencies,” Wall Street Journal, December 25, 2021.) In an instructive article, The Economist...

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“Just Read the Instructions”

Except perhaps for some psychopaths, everybody hopes that the four members of the Inspiration4 mission (watch a video) will safely return to earth. One remarkable thing is how, just a few years ago, most people would have not believed that a crew of civilians would soon orbit the earth in an adventure financed by a billionaire (Jared Isaacman) on a reusable and already-used spacecraft built by the company of another billionaire (Elon Musk). That only military missions...

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Rent-Seeking in Slightly Different Words

We—we, economists and supporters of individual liberty—owe it to Mr. Trump to have reminded us how a powerful state and crony capitalism are dangerous. In fact, state power and cronyism are the two faces of the same Janus. A powerful state has a lot to give and much power to take, so that “capitalists” come to it for privileges (for example, subsidies or tariffs) or to avoid restrictions. Speaking of Mark Zuckerberg and other tech executives, Trump just declared on...

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Removal of Government Statues

The government of Virginia just removed the statue of Confederate general Robert E. Lee, erected in Richmond during the Jim Crow era. Contrary to today’s ruling intelligentsia and government, their precursors were not perfect. But let’s be serious: Jim Crow governments were certainly despicable. So was the federal government, which long promoted policies that favored discrimination. So would be a pure woke government who would simply discriminate against new hated...

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