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RealClear Radio Hour – Google Your Government

31 Aug

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Google Your Government

AUG 29, 2015

Adam Andrzejewski founded OpenTheBooks.com to fulfill his pledge while running for Governor of Illinois to post “every dime online in real time,” as a way to increase transparency in order to encourage greater efficiency and fight government waste, fraud, and corruption.

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RealClear Radio Hour – There’s No Place like New Orleans

30 Aug

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There’s No Place like New Orleans

AUG 29, 2015

Emily Chamlee-Wright, Provost and Dean of Washington College and Senior Research Scholar at the Mercatus Center, discusses disaster economics on the 10th anniversary of Hurricane Katrina. She shares stories from How We Came Back, of which she is a coauthor, highlighting the social entrepreneurs who have pioneered the rebuilding of New Orleans.

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Daily Caller – When the Price of Money is Wrong, the Price of Everything is Wrong

27 Aug

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When the Price of Money is Wrong, the Price of Everything is Wrong

AUG 26, 2015

The stock market has not gone crazy. It is desperately trying to go uncrazy.

In a healthy, free, and flourishing economy, prices act as unbiased bearers of information, driven by the impersonal forces of supply and demand, validated by millions of independent transactions. In a word, market prices act like a giant adding machine that no one controls. At any time, in every place, prices carry most of what we need to know to make the decisions we need to pursue our individual conceptions of happiness — regarding production and consumption choices, risks and rewards, and spending and saving tradeoffs.

Prices enable us to make independently informed choices. But when politicians, central bankers, and the crony financial institutions that serve them collude to construct politically profitable illusions, they do so by corrupting the price of money. By manipulating interest rates, they can induce massive misallocation of resources, warping consumption, production, spending, and saving choices, and biasing risk decisions across the entire economy. They are given cover by court economists, who work to convince the public that “fine-tuning” the economy and addressing the excesses of the “business cycle” are the proper role of government.

While these distortions can produce powerful short-term illusions, pumping up the value of assets in a simulacrum of prosperity, they can rarely be sustained. Sure, some well-connected cronies will line their pockets and spread their wealth around for a while, but sooner or later the ability to fake reality becomes too expensive, too complex, or too volatile to maintain, and the illusion comes crashing down. At that point, no one knows the real price of anything. Panic ensues, trade is disrupted, stock markets swoon, and economies shrink. The responsible parties then shift the blame, a credulous media amplifies their story, and the process starts all over again.

To read the rest of the column click here.

RealClear Radio Hour: Criminal Justice Reform

25 Aug

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Justice Reform

AUG 22, 2015

Holly Harris, Executive Director of the U.S. Justice Action Network, advocates for criminal justice reform, which continues to gain bipartisan support, and has shown a marked economic and social impact in states where reforms have been implemented.

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RealClear Radio Hour: The Plight of Christians in the Middle East

24 Aug

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The Plight of Christians in the Middle East

AUG 22, 2015

The Archbishop of Beirut, Paul Youssef Matar, shares the embattled history of the Maronite Church, from its refuge in Lebanon from the Ottoman Empire to its ongoing struggles for freedom of religion and equality against Daesh (better known as Islamic State) today.

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Daily Caller: Are You Pro-Mengele or Anti-Women’s Health?

21 Aug

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Are You Pro-Mengele or Anti-Women’s Health? Can You Explain Why?

The series of Planned Parenthood hidden camera videos being slowly released by the Center for Medical Progress has reopened raw wounds around what had been a relatively quiescent debate about abortion. The images are indeed shocking, yet public opinion could not be more polarized.

Anti-abortion activists are using the videos to mount another attack on Roe v. Wade, while abortion defenders circle the wagons. Conservative politicians are trying to cut off taxpayer funding for the nation’s largest abortion provider, while liberal politicians stoke fears that this would deny needed health care services to the poor. “Shades of Mengele!” shouts one side; “War on Women!” the other.

Welcome to the world of pluralistic democracy, where believers and atheists must learn to live and govern together. In such a polity, on what grounds does one argue for regulatory limits on abortion? Or legally restrict the use of fresh fetal tissue for scientific research. Or decide what is and is not appropriate to be funded with taxpayer money?

Notice how carefully I word the question: “How does one argue?” Not, “What is the correct answer?”

I’d like to take a different approach to this fraught conversation by not attempting to argue morality. Instead, we need to sit down together as reasonable people and draw some clear lines. Here’s how.

To read the rest of the column, click here.

The Freeman: How Greece Can Rise from the Ashes: The Kiwi Plan

12 Aug

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AUG 11, 2015

How Greece Can Rise from the Ashes: The Kiwi Plan

The signs of floundering entitlement democracies are everywhere these days — from poster child Greece to bankrupt Puerto Rico.

Runaway deficit spending, calamitous monetary policies, bloated public employee payrolls, incentive-killing welfare programs, confiscatory taxation, unfunded entitlements, dishonest government accounting, corporate cronyism, and job-killing regulations have mired most Western democracies in such a deep quagmire of voters’ own making that one despairs of finding a cure.

And yet, a cure has not only been found but has already been put into practice with great effect, offering practical lessons for any reformist who cares to look. New Zealand today stands as a beacon of freedom and prosperity, ranking number three in the Legatum Prosperity Index.

It wasn’t always so. In fact, few know the story of how that country transformed itself from a socialist basket case into one of the world’s most prosperous nations.

To read the rest of the column click here.

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