The book Lies My Teacher Told Me by James Loewen was assigned to me during my senior year of high school. I still reflect on its lessons and have found them applicable not just to the past, but, in some cases, to the future. Here is how hypothetical, sweeping new gun control legislation might be seen 100 years from now…
Capitalism can be viewed as an economic system that has been a driving force in many advanced economies, fostered growth and innovation, enabled people to lift themselves out of poverty, and greatly improved living standards. But it also has many staunch critics, who will argue that, regardless of outcomes or track records, it is a deeply harmful and exploitative system. So, to clear up any confusion, what really is capitalism, and what isn’t it?
Ahead of his panel on Corruption and Poverty in Latin America at LibertyCon Europe, Juan Carlos Hidalgo, former policy analyst at the Cato Institute talks about why Latin America has so many cases of corruption, the recent protests in Chile and other countries around the world.
Why did poverty decrease so much over the past 200 years, and especially over the past 30 years? Let’s look at one key example; then we’ll zoom out to the broader research.
Many good people condemn the free market system on the mistaken belief that the wealth of the wealthy benefits only the wealthy.
Here’s my opening statement for my Students for Liberty debate with Will Wilkinson. Enjoy. Libertarians have a standard set of fundamental criticisms of the welfare state. Forced charity is unjust. Individuals have a moral right to decide if and when they want to help others. Forced charity is unnecessary. In a free market, voluntary donations […]
What should we do about the fact that some people are able to earn more money than others? Should government redress the resulting disparities in income? The answer is often believed to hinge upon our conclusion about the role of luck in affecting income-earning abilities. Those on the political left emphasize factors beyond the individual’s […]
Recently, at a Center for Global Development conference, attendees criticized a wide swath of development programs that, these experts say, provide no evidence they are achieving their objectives.
Isn’t a Universal Basic Income just another name for a negative income tax, such as Tax = -$10,000 + .3*Income? If so, isn’t a Universal Basic Income means-tested by definition?
I was initially excited to see that progressive Dean Baker has written a piece on “Eight Market-Oriented Proposals That Reduce Income Inequality” for AEI. It begins promisingly by criticizing overly strict occupational licensing for high-skilled workers. But it then studiously avoids the really big wins. Namely: 1. Immigration. High-skilled immigration reduces conventionally measured inequality by […]
Zwolinski concludes his series on William Graham Sumner with the question of how we ought to help the poorest among us.
Zwolinski examines William Graham Sumner’s critique of “social justice.”
Every year the number of regulations, dictates, rules, decrees, guidelines, statutes, laws, and bylaws in the United States grows by leaps and bounds.
A personal story about Vance’s climb from poor, white Appalachia to a Yale law degree and a white-collar career, Hillbilly Elegy: A Memoir of a Family and Culture in Crisis will make you laugh, cry, and think carefully about the importance of culture for economic wellbeing.
Would you give up air travel for $100,000? What about foregoing automotive travel for $500,000? Why or why not?
Reports of the world’s demise are greatly exaggerated.
The road to tyranny is paved with good intentions.
Beneath the surface there’s a lot of progress occurring that should make us all feel a little more optimistic about the future.
NPR’s Goats and Soda recently covered a debate in India over surrogacy. In India, there is a thriving industry of women who are paid to be surrogate mothers, carrying another couple’s children. Many surrogates are impoverished women, and there are growing concerns that paying poor women to be surrogates amounts to exploitation. Some are calling […]
Cumbersome, top-down aid policies are not agile enough to effectively respond to the diverse needs of our communities.
Rather than invent new human rights, people who are concerned about poverty should first ask what kind of barriers government creates that prevent social mobility. Those barriers should all be removed before any thought is given to taxing some people in order to give money or resources to others.
Local communities have a better understanding of their communities’ needs than far off centralized government anti-poverty directives.
Saturday, September 17th will be the five year anniversary of the beginning of the Occupy Wall Street protests. This week’s links cover the protests and what they did (or didn’t) accomplish. The Lasting Effects of Occupy Wall Street, Five Years Later Throwback: What Reason Saw at Occupy Wall Street Protests What Occupy Wall Street Got […]
The real world is a complex, messy, and difficult place and helping those who need it the most requires not just good intentions, but careful planning, advice from those who came before, and, most importantly, strict attention to the wishes and needs of the people themselves, since they are the ones who understand, more than anyone, what they truly need.