The Urgent Need for Intellectual Change

– April 24, 2020

The rebuilding of a free society after this chaos is over will require a great deal of work in the above four areas: mathematics, moral philosophy, history, and economics. In my darker moments I think that in fact we have gone back to ground zero in all these areas.

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There Will Be Blowback, In Mostly Good Ways

– April 24, 2020

Our lives in the coming years will be defined by forms of backlash, as a much needed corrective. You can’t take away everyone’s rights, put a whole people under house arrest, and abolish the rule of law without generating a response to that in the future.

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A Locked-Down Country Is Vulnerable to Attack

– April 23, 2020

In a state of lockdown, we are more vulnerable than ever. People are prisoners in their homes, with private firms shuttered and inert. America is in a recession, and perhaps in a depression. Government resources are depleted, and a sizable portion of the population is wandering around their home demoralized, confused, and depressed. Straight talk: now would be just the right time for an enemy of America to go for the kill.

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How Wrong Were the Models and Why?

– April 23, 2020

Epidemiological expertise may convey specialized knowledge about the nature of disease transmission that is specifically suited to forecasting a pandemic’s spread. But it does not exempt the modelers from social scientific best practices for testing the robustness of their claims. Nor does it obviate basic rules of statistical analysis.

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Why No Shortages in Canada as Compared with the U.S.?

– April 22, 2020

In contrast to Canada, which has no national restrictions against price gouging, 39 American states now have stringent laws or executive orders against raising prices during emergencies.

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We Would Not Be Better Off With Medicare for All

– April 22, 2020

Just because people would have health insurance does not mean they would receive health care when they need it most. In countries where everyone is covered by national insurance, the shortages are just as bad as in the U.S., if not worse.

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Disease and the Unconstrained State

– April 22, 2020

If we alter the constraints and powers of political actors as a result of reasoning in an institutional vacuum, we may be giving to political actors things they wanted regardless of the crisis. In the long-run, it will come at a cost.

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Washington Motto: Spend During Good Times and Spend Even More During Bad Times

– April 21, 2020

According to the empirical evidence, there is little doubt that large government debt has a negative, and in many cases an increasingly worsening, impact on the growth potential of a debt-burdened economy.

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We Don’t Need a Cure to Reopen

– April 21, 2020

I hope someday soon we will once again be having very rational yet vigorous discussions about the fundamental issues related to the liberal principles of justice and political economy, and we can point to the resiliency and ingenuity of a free people even in the face of adversity as one of the main arguments in favor of true liberal radicalism.

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Innovation and the Trouble with the Precautionary Principle

– April 20, 2020

Policies that frown upon entrepreneurial risk-taking actively disincentivize the building of new and better things. We must remove political barriers to productive entrepreneurialism or else we will never get back to being the builders we once were.

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Why Politicians Focus on Trivia in the Midst of Disaster

– April 20, 2020

Why would a city, short of tax money in a crisis, pay an enormous sum to disable a public space from being used by the citizens who paid for it? Because the city can do nothing about the virus.

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