Topic: Policy

State is going State

The State Isn’t Going Crazy; It’s Going State

– June 15, 2020

“If you want to use the state to accomplish your goals, you cannot “fall out only with the abuses.” You have to recognize that it’s the nature of the state, the thing itself, to use violence against its own citizens.” ~ Michael Munger

gears turning

The Three Best and Worst Ideas of the Crisis

– June 12, 2020

“I picked as my three best policies ones that target America’s most significant looming issues. (Some of these issues, unsurprisingly, were created by government interventions in the first place.) Good policies, of course, should allow for flexibility and innovation without bankrupting future generations.” ~ Veronique de Rugy


Can We Talk About Something Else Now?

– June 12, 2020

“We might, as the protesters I heard on the radio, remember that other things matter too, that one type of risk must be balanced by the harms of another, that risk-mitigating policies be proportionate to the damage, that few things warrant the wholesale closing of commerce and civil society.” ~ Joakim Book

house, light, hands

Free Down Payments and Subsidized Mortgages are Not Social Justice

– June 11, 2020

“Despite 50 years of debacles, politicians are still glorified for pretending that free downpayments and subsidized mortgages are “magic beans” that multiply social justice in America.” ~ James Bovard

Don’t Defund Police, Make them Part of the Market

Don’t Defund Police, Make them Part of the Market

– June 10, 2020

“There is an argument regularly doled out by police unions which states that without the wide swath of protections that police officers face, they would be more reluctant to investigate, pursue, and apprehend wrongdoers. If so, there are ways to fix that problem.”~Peter C. Earle

Massachusetts’ Phased Reopenings Harm Businesses

Massachusetts’ Phased Reopenings Harm Businesses, Help Nobody

– June 7, 2020

“Governor Baker’s plan is understandable politics but unforgivable policy.” ~ Max Gulker


The Climate Impact of Meat

– May 25, 2020

“Ideologues have no patience with nuances…It’s ‘go vegan’ or ‘go home.’ It doesn’t matter much what the facts are, as long as The Cause is advanced.” ~ Joakim Book


There Really Is a Solid Reason for Optimism

– May 24, 2020

“We can make the rebuilt political economy better than the bloated, creaky rent-selling machine that we had at the start of 2020.” ~ Michael Munger


The Worst Public Policy in a Century

– April 20, 2020

America has implemented a lot of really bad policies since the New Deal and fought needless wars and endured long, senseless occupations of places like the Philippines and Afghanistan. But at least all those policies were vaguely constitutional. The economic lockdowns, by contrast, have turned the Constitution into a frail and worthless fabric.


Can Medical Supply Autarky Save Us from Pandemics?

– April 19, 2020

When proposing expansions of government power we must recognize the powers in question will not be wielded by philosopher-kings. They will be wielded by actually existing politicians and bureaucrats, with all their biases and imperfections.


Soaring Unemployment Benefits Will Delay Recovery

– April 17, 2020

Policymaking is not easy. And policymaking in a pandemic is harder still. The CARES Act is a huge expenditure package. Some of it is likely to promote a speedy recovery. But some of it will drag the recession out unnecessarily.


If the Government Doesn’t Do It, Who Will?

– April 9, 2020

Governments have been providing fire protection, police services, roads, and other public services for pretty much our entire lives. Private, volunteer companies were getting the job done — until political entrepreneurs noticed a way to obtain power and resources for themselves by taking over previously-private volunteer fire departments to create patronage jobs for political allies.