TEL AVIV -- For the time being, people are going about their business. Hamas is not raining rockets down on residents here, daily ear-piercing air-raid warning sirens are not sending everyone running for cover, and the city has returned to its bustling self.
Last week, I posted here and here about Larry Summers's excellent talk in which he advocated removing the ban on U.S. oil exports. I then remembered that when I was the Senior Economist for Energy Policy with President Reagan's Council of Economic Advisers, I had written a memo on the issue of relaxing the constraint on exporting Alaskan oil.
I'm a big fan of Vanguard. All of my IRA-type assets are in Vanguard funds. And when I mistakenly claimed in a Wall Street Journal that John (Jack) Bogle, who started Vanguard, had learned from work by Eugene Fama, Bogle was very nice in the way he corrected me and then, when I acknowledged my mistake, wrote the following nice letter to me:
GLASGOW — To most Americans, Scotland means golf, whisky and — if they go there — steady drizzle. Even to the millions of Americans whose surnames testify to their Scottish or Scotch-Irish ancestry, the idea that Scotland might be about to become an independent country is baffling.
Anyone who knows what anxiety, and sometimes anguish, parents go through when they have a child who is still not talking at age two, three or even four, can appreciate what a blessing it can be to have someone who can tell them what to do — and what not to do.
I’m in Charleston, South Carolina, today through Wednesday, on a fact-finding mission (the fact: my father celebrating his 80th birthday; the finding: there are few nicer places to be post-Labor Day — provided no hurricanes are working their way up the Atlantic seaboard).
You may recall the famous Cash for Clunkers program in 2009 that attempted to stimulate the economy by giving government rebates to people who bought used cars. The program cost taxpayers $3 billion and was widely criticized for merely accelerating decisions to buy cars, rather than producing additional sales.
No serious person takes seriously Obama’s declaration of war on the Islamic State ISIL. Obama’s September 10 speech was an exercise in domestic politics – in this case fending off demands that something be done to and about the Muslims who knifed off the heads of persons who could have been you or me.