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Arnold Kling

Whether the topic is the economic effect of social security reform or the relationship between money and happi [Read More]

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Two questions about commercial real estate lending, by Scott Sumner
The S&L crisis of the 1980s was centered around loans to real estate developers. The banking crisis of 2007-09 was centered around loans to real estate developers (not mortgage loans). Dodd-Frank was supposed to fix this problem. How's it working...
Sunday, October 21, 2018

Biography of Christopher Sims, by David Henderson
One of Sims's earliest famous contributions was his work on money-income causality, which was cited by the Nobel committee. Money and income move together, but which causes which? Milton Friedman argued that changes in the money supply caused change...
Sunday, October 21, 2018

I Need Some Muscle Over Here, by David Henderson
The title of this post is that now-famous quote from University of Missouri faculty member Melissa Click. It's her threat to a reporter who was covering a protest on the campus. I thought of it when reading this story about how the FDIC muscled a pay...
Friday, October 19, 2018

One Benefit of Tariffs, by Pierre Lemieux
Perhaps one benefit of President Trump's tariffs and trade war will be to illustrate standard results of trade theory. One general result is that a domestic tariff against imports also increases the domestic price charged by domestic producers of th...
Friday, October 19, 2018

What's good for big tobacco . . ., by Scott Sumner
I'm not a fan of laws restricting tobacco use, except in government buildings. So I might be expected to look favorably on a change in FDA regulations that led to a boost in the prices of tobacco stocks. But this particular stock market reaction leav...
Thursday, October 18, 2018

Meritocracy Without Borders: Sowell Edition, by Bryan Caplan
In recent years, Thomas Sowell has been a staunch advocate of stricter immigration policies.  Which is ironic, because this passage from his Compassion Versus Guilt has stuck with me for thirty years: When I travel through California's vast agricult...
Thursday, October 18, 2018

Richard Nixon's 1968 Campaign for President, by David Henderson
The first thing that Martin did for Richard Nixon—one of the first things—it's dated July 4, 1967—is to make the argument for abolishing the military draft and moving to an all-volunteer armed force. This is my Hoover colleague Annelise Anderson rem...
Wednesday, October 17, 2018

Does Immigration Shrink the Welfare State?, by Bryan Caplan
People normally assume that immigration will expand the welfare state.  The lazy version says (a)  immigrants are net beneficiaries of the welfare state, and (b) people vote their self-interest.  The better version says that immigrants' countries of ...
Wednesday, October 17, 2018

The Government is NOT the Public, by David Henderson
There's a proposition on the November ballot in my area to study having a government agency use eminent domain to take over a private regulated water monopoly. I won't say anything about the merits because this blog cannot legally take a stand on a b...
Tuesday, October 16, 2018

A Fatal Flip, by Bryan Caplan
Suppose you receive the following option. You flip a fair coin. If the coin is Heads, you acquire healthy immortality. If the coin is Tails, you instantly die. The expected value of this option seems infinite: .5*infinity 0 is still infinity, no?...
Tuesday, October 16, 2018

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