President Trump’s delegation of a narrowly defined declassification authority to Attorney General Bill Barr has attracted criticism, notably on this site by my colleagues David Kris and Benjamin Wittes. I think these criticisms tell only one side of the story, and that the matter is more complicated than they let on.
One hundred years ago, on June 4, 1919, Congress approved by joint resolution a constitutional amendment giving women the right to vote, sending the amendment to the states for ratification. After seven decades of campaigning, the women’s suffrage movement was on the cusp of realizing its goal.
“It was the best of times, it was the worst of times, it was the age of wisdom, it was the age of foolishness, it was the epoch of belief, it was the epoch of incredulity.” Thus Charles Dickens begins “A Tale of Two Cities.” Would that the greatest of all novelists could return to us for a week. For it would take Dickens in his prime to do full justice to President Trump’s state visit to Britain this week.
Recently, New York writer Fran Lebowitz told Bill Maher on his HBO program that the U.S. government should turn President Donald Trump “over to the Saudis, his buddies—the same Saudis who got rid of that reporter.”
Years after a Democratic president supposedly observed that a dog was the only true friend to be found in the nation’s capital (like many a Mark Twain quote, we don’t know if Harry Truman actually said the words), it would be seem that a few Democratic presidential candidates see a canine as their ticket to the Oval Office.
Jan Crawford’s extraordinary CBS interview with Attorney General William Barr was released on Friday, May 31. In it Barr said some good things about why his investigation of the Trump campaign investigation is needed. He also said some bad things about his attitude toward his investigation that reveal the depressingly ugly state of U.S. intelligence and law enforcement institutions.
I examine monetary policy implications and business strategy concerns related to the introduction of digital currencies and faster payment systems. Key issues include financial inclusion, payment system efficiency, control by central banks of monetary policy transmission, privacy and anti-monetary laundering, and competition for banking services.
Urbanist and author Alain Bertaud of NYU talks about his book Order without Design with EconTalk host Russ Roberts. Bertaud explores the role of zoning and planning alongside the emergent factors that affect the growth of cities. He emphasizes the importance of cities as places for people to work and looks at how preferences and choices shape cities. Bertaud also reflects upon the differing perspectives of urban planners and economists.
In the most recent ratings put out by the state of Florida, Miami-Dade County Public Schools earned an "A" designation and had no "F" rated schools, unusual achievements for a large urban district. Ron Matus, Director of Policy and Public Affairs at Step Up For Students, sits down with Paul E. Peterson to discuss some factors behind the school district's success: dynamic and stable leadership, an understanding of how to intervene in and support the most struggling schools, and many different options for families if they are not satisfied.
Last week, President Trump announced that his immigration plan would not mandate that employers use E-Verify, the employment verification system that checks new employees against government databases. While the president felt it was too “tough” on illegal workers, he is wrong. Nearly all illegal workers passed the system last year. In reality, E-Verify is tough on legal workers who have had nearly 760,000 jobs held up by the system since 2006.
In his excellent analysis of health care costs, Alex Tabarrok refers to a widely touted finding by health economist Joseph P. Newhouse that the main driver of increases in health care costs has been increased technology. Alex links to this article by Newhouse, but the earlier Newhouse article that received so much attention was his “Medical Care Costs: How Much Welfare Loss?” Journal of Economic Perspectives (Summer 1992 ): 3-21 .
Starting in the 1970s, Nordhaus constructed increasingly comprehensive models of the interaction between the economy and additions of carbon dioxide to the atmosphere, along with its effects on global warming. Economists use these models, along with assumptions about various magnitudes, to compute the “social cost of carbon” (SCC). The idea is that past a certain point, additions of carbon dioxide to the atmosphere heat the earth and thus create a global negative externality. The SCC is the net cost that using that additional carbon imposes on society.
Hoover Institution fellow Jonathan Rodden talks about the geographic divide, which pits Democratic voters living mostly in cities against Republican voters living mostly in exurban and rural areas; and the impact on representation and policymaking.
Hoover Institution fellow Bill Whalen discusses Robert Mueller’s press conference this week and how the Democrats are leaning into impeachment. He also talks about the political landscape in California and the decline of the Golden State’s Republicans.
Hoover Institution fellow Lanhee Chen joins a panel discussion concerning the Democratic primary and which candidates they think will make it to the June debate stage, as well as impeachment, tariffs, and much more.
A lawyer who specialises in hacking and information security may have provided an argument as to why the US extradition of WikiLeaks founder Julian Assange should not proceed. A legal expert has forensically destroyed the latest charges against Assange. Meanwhile, award-winning journalist Robert Fisk and former Guardian editor Alan Rusbridger argue why the US prosecution of Assange should set off alarm bells everywhere.
“Go ahead, make my day.” It’s the line Clint Eastwood made famous while staring down the barrel of his Smith and Wesson .44 Magnum in the early 80s Dirty Harry classic “Sudden Impact”. Toss out the saying and pretty much everyone knows exactly what you’re referring to.
Education is the great equalizer, yet its inequitable distribution of money and resources is horrific. The way schools are funded in California perpetuates a racial and poverty divide. As a beginning teacher at Santa Clara County’s Juvenile Hall, I was taken aback by the fact that 70 percent of incarcerated youth read at three or more years below grade level. Most of my students could not read a typical restaurant menu, let alone a novel.
The narrow aim of maximizing profit as fast as possible compels owners of capital to say and do whatever they have to to get richer, no matter how irrational and contradictory, and no matter the cost to society and the environment. Such an aim is irresponsible and outdated, and needs to be replaced by a human-centered aim that recognizes the need for a modern economy controlled by the working class and people themselves.
Thirteen economists offer non-partisan, common-sense prescriptions for policy action across various sectors Earlier this week, barely days after Narendra Modi led the BJP to a stunning re-election triumph and the new Ministry took charge, a trickle of official data confirmed the bad economic news that everyone but the government had known about for months.
The law of unintended consequences, often cited but rarely defined, is that actions of people—and especially of government—always have effects that are unanticipated or unintended. Economists and other social scientists have heeded its power for centuries; for just as long, politicians and popular opinion have largely ignored it.
Political announcements, such as Donald Trump's shock move to slap tariffs on Mexico, have an impact on monetary policy decisions and could undermine trust in policy makers, said economists and academics on Friday. This erosion of trust could spill over into other areas, diminishing the influence that the US monetary policy has on the global economy, they added. They were speaking to the media on the sidelines of the 6th Asian Monetary Policy Forum held in Singapore.
While climate change is a political loser, as we noted in the May 18 Australian election when the Liberal-National Coalition, stressing economic growth, tax cuts and support for Australia’s energy producers, united conservatives and tossed out the opposition center-left Labor Party, climate change activists are now resorting to a change in semantics to try and curry favor.
The Sixth Asian Monetary Policy Forum (AMPF), co-organized and funded by the University of Chicago Booth School of Business, the National University of Singapore Business School and the Monetary Authority of Singapore, convened here on Friday.
The unitary theory of the presidency may be reaching its logical conclusion under President Donald J. Trump. That theory, which is referred to as the unitary executive, holds that presidents have broad, close to unlimited, powers over the executive branch. At its extreme, the theory holds that the president cannot be checked “by Congress or the Courts, especially in critical realms of authority,” as John P. MacKenzie wrote in his book Absolute Power.
The Federal Reserve Bank of New York issued the following remarks by President and CEO John C. Williams at the conference celebrating the 50th anniversary of the Journal of Money, Credit and Banking: "John Maynard Keynes quipped, "Practical men, who believe themselves to be quite exempt from any intellectual influences, are usually the slaves of some defunct economist." I wonder whether Keynes would see this as a feature rather than a bug in light of his enduring influence on the profession more than 70 years after his death.
Congress needs a plan for how to proceed when certain provisions of the USA FREEDOM Act, including the controversial call detail records program, expires in December, said speakers at a public forum held by members of the Privacy and Civil Liberties Oversight Board on Friday.
Americans were indeed surprised by the size of Prime Minister Narendra Modi’s mandate. But rattled they are not. It’s true that US President Donald Trump likes strong leaders. But cheerleading is unusual.
The Asian Monetary Policy Forum (AMPF) convenes today for the sixth consecutive year. The highlights of the Forum include presentations and discussions on the dominant role of the US dollar and its implications for monetary policy, as well as challenges posed by digital currencies.