Wednesday , May 18 2022
Home / Tag Archives: Public Choice Theory (page 5)

Tag Archives: Public Choice Theory

Ralph K. Winter Jr. RIP

Catching up on Wall Street Journals from December today, I came across an obit of federal judge Ralph K. Winter. I never met the man although I gather that a number of my friends have. But it’s amazing how one quote can stick out in your memory from over 40 years ago. I remembered that quote and found the publication it was in. Winter wrote “Campaign Financing and Political Freedom” for the American Enterprise Institute in October 1973. I think I was on the mailing...

Read More »

Newt Gingrich’s Numeracy Problem

$1,400 * 200 million does not = $2,000. Newt Gingrich tweets: If Senate Republicans fail to bring up the $2000 payment as a clean vote they run a real risk of losing the two seats in Georgia. This is an 80% issue. People get it. Billions for the banks, billions for big companies, but we can’t find $2000 for everyday Americans. If the proposal before the Senate really were to give $2,000 to everyday Americans, no one would be raising an objection because $2,000...

Read More »

Joe Stiglitz on Taxes

Taxation is unlike most transfers of money from one individual to another: while most other transfers are entered into voluntarily, taxation is compulsory. In Chapter 5 we saw some of the reasons why the contributions to support public services need to be compulsory: because of the free rider problem, unless support for public goods is made compulsory no one will have an incentive to contribute. We showed, in particular, that all individuals might be made better off...

Read More »

Did the Libertarian Party Cost Donald Trump the Election?

No, but it might have cost him Georgia’s electoral votes. My friend and fellow economist Walter Block has an op/ed in the Wall Street Journal (November 8 and November 9 print edition) titled “Libertarians Spoil the Election.” Here’s his argument: Did the Libertarian Party throw the election to Joe Biden? Maybe. At this writing nominee Jo Jorgensen’s vote total exceeds Mr. Biden’s margin over President Trump in Arizona, Georgia, Nevada and Pennsylvania, enough to...

Read More »

Voting and Margins

I used to teach my students, before I was allowed to vote in this country (I became a U.S. citizen in 1986) that even in swing states, their vote for President would not be determinative. When I finally got to vote (I think it was in the June 1986 California primaries), I voted and experienced the truth of my statements. My vote for U.S. president makes no difference on the margin and neither does yours. (That’s why I always vote for the person closest to my views,...

Read More »

From Democracy to Populist Rallies

In his 1945 book On Power, Bertrand de Jouvenel wrote: Democracy, then, in the centralizing, pattern-making, absolutist shape which we have given to it is, it is clear, the time of tyranny’s incubation. Sometimes, democracy in America looks a bit like the South American version. In general, democracy as we know it works differently than what Christopher Achen and Larry Bartels call its “folk theory” version. In their book Democracy for Realists, they describe the folk...

Read More »

Do Most Countries Elect Their Government Leader by Majority Rule?

Prime Minister Scheer? Co-blogger Scott Sumner, over at his own blog, themoneyillusion, writes: Other countries generally elect their president by majority vote (although a few “ceremonial” presidents are picked by an EC, as in India). He might be correct if he literally means “president.” But Scott seems to be comparing the United States electoral college to how the rest of the democratic world elects its governments’ main leaders, whether they’re called...

Read More »

Parties become popular by taking unpopular stands

This Matt Yglesias tweet caught my eye: While that sounds plausible, I believe Yglesias is mistaken about how politics works. There’s more to politics than public opinion polling on this or that issue; the intensity of support also matters. Here’s a simply numerical example: Suppose that the GOP contained 50% of the public, and the Democrats were also 50% of the public. (I’m ignoring independents just to make a point.) Also assume: 1. Roughly 25% of the public is...

Read More »

Competition in Indiana Politics Leads to Reduced Regulation

Me: I want to go to there. INDIANAPOLIS (AP) — Most of Indiana’s coronavirus restrictions on businesses and crowd sizes will be lifted this weekend, but people will still be required to wear masks in public for another three weeks, Gov. Eric Holcomb said Wednesday. Holcomb, a Republican running for reelection, has faced discontent from some conservatives over coronavirus restrictions. He said he would lift statewide capacity limits for restaurants and bars and...

Read More »

Drissel on the Normative Core

I received the following email from Bill Drissel about my “Public Choice: The Normative Core.”  Reprinted with his permission. Dr. Caplan The data you seek for your “normative core” is readily available in one arena: public transportation.  I follow the Anti-Planner, Randal O’Toole.  The planned benefit is number of riders.  The planned cost is usually available in dollars(of a given vintage).  The subsequent cost-overruns and consequent ridership are also available. ...

Read More »