Peter Berkowitz is the Tad and Dianne Taube Senior Fellow at the Hoover Institution, Stanford University. In 2019-2021, he served as the Director of the State Department’s Policy Planning Staff, executive secretary of the department's Commission on Unalienable Rights, and senior adviser to the...
In response to Jonah's query below , I think that Peter Berkowitz's selection of the "big three" of American conservatism is defensible, but debatable...
Michael Walzer’s name is associated with the summons to undertake social criticism that is engaged: that is, rooted in actual circumstances; cognizant of real people’s wants, needs, and desires; and respectful of the diversity of beliefs, practices, and forms of association by which groups of men and women organize their moral, political, and spiritual lives.
Donald Trump’s flamboyant incursion into the Republican primary has not prevented the return of the quadrennial spectacle featuring conservatives arguing among themselves, often vociferously, about the principles that define their movement.
How much does the gap between rich and poor matter? In 1979, for every dollar the poorest fifth of the American population earned, the richest fifth earned nine. By 1997, that gap had increased to fifteen to one. Is this growing income inequality a serious problem? Is the size of the gap between rich and poor less important than the poor's absolute level of income? In other words, should we focus on reducing the income gap or on fighting poverty?
To understand the sometimes glaring gaps between candidate Obama’s promises and President Obama’s policies, it is useful to appreciate an old tension in American progressivism. . . .
The September 11 attacks in New York and Washington have already cost America thousands of lives and billions of dollars in damages. But those are only the direct costs. How severe and how lasting will the impact be on our economy as whole? And how will new burdens on the federal government, including a military buildup and a bailout of the airline industry, affect fiscal policy? Should the government cut taxes or increase spending to get the economy moving again?
On July 29, 1981, barely six months into his presidency and in the face of an economic crisis of historic proportions, Ronald Reagan succeeded in persuading both houses of Congress to pass dramatic tax cuts that set the stage for nearly three decades of vigorous economic growth...
Be careful when one uses the superlative case—best, most, -est, etc.—or evokes end-of-the-world imagery...
Just two years ago, in the 2000 fiscal year, the annual federal budget had a surplus of $236 billion. Now the federal government is facing a budget deficit of more than $150 billion, possibly much more. And whereas during the presidential campaign of 2000, the candidates were debating how to spend trillions in expected future surpluses, the Congressional Budget Office is now projecting a cumulative $1 trillion deficit by 2011. What happened to the surplus, and what is to blame for the return of the deficit? Is it President Bush's tax cut? Or was it the recession of 2001 and the war on terrorism? In light of the deficit, what should we make of the president's budget plans?
In the past century the earth's human population has quadrupled, growing from 1.5 billion in 1900 to about 6 billion today. By 2050, it is estimated that the global population will reach 9 billion. In 1968, a young biologist named Paul Ehrlich wrote a best-selling book called The Population Bomb, which sparked an ongoing debate about the dangers of overpopulation. He argued that population growth was destroying the ecological systems necessary to sustain life. So just how worried should we be? Is population growth a problem or not? And if so, what should we do about it?
In the West, capitalism reigns triumphant. Living standards, wealth, and technological development in the capitalist Western countries surpass anything seen before in human history. But why has capitalism so obviously failed in most developing countries? Why are some saying that capitalism is in a state of crisis today in the Third World? Does the success of capitalism depend on Western cultural values that simply don't translate to the Third World? Or can economic and political reforms, especially reform of property rights, enable developing countries to share the same fruits of capitalism and free enterprise that we enjoy in the West?
Despite the fundamental distinction between the two, misunderstandings of capitalism and socialism — and their implications for freedom — abound, and usually in favor socialism. In these circumstances, a return to the basics is warranted. The 17th-century writings of John Locke in defense of political and economic freedom and the 19th- century critique by Karl Marx of political and economic freedom represent classics of the genre.
In January 2003, the Bush administration unveiled a package of proposed new tax cuts, including provisions to eliminate the taxation of dividends and make permanent the 2001 tax cut. President Bush called the plan "an immediate boost to the economy" as well as "essential for the long run to lay the groundwork for future growth and prosperity." Critics have said that the plan doesn't provide short-term economic stimulus and endangers long-term growth and prosperity. Is the Bush tax plan good for the economy or not?
According to a 1998 study by the Organization for Economic Cooperation and Development, over the last half century nations that have been more open to trade have experienced double the annual growth rate of those that have been closed. So why would any nation be opposed to free trade? But, in fact, many developing countries are skeptical of free trade—believing that the rules of global trade benefit the rich, developed North at the expense of the poor, developing South. Are the critics right? With even President Bush's commitment appearing to falter, is the drive to greater free trade in crisis?
Interest Rate adjustments by the Federal Reserve are among the most closely watched and anticipated of all economic policy decisions. Yet many economists believe the Fed no longer has the power it once did to regulate the economy. So just how powerful is the Fed today? What tools does the Fed have to regulate the economy, and how should they be used?
Peter Thiel says the credit crisis of 2008 has nothing to do with the free market...
My latest Macro Musings podcast is with Peter Ireland. Peter is a professor of economics at Boston college, a research associate at the National Bureau of Economic Research, and a member of the shadow open market committee. He has also been a visiting scholar at numerous Federal Reserve banks.
Lars Peter Hansen, an internationally known leader in economic dynamics, has been named the founding director of the University of Chicago’s Milton Friedman Institute for Research in Economics. . . .
Adam Davidson, in the New Yorker, highlights the thinking of Peter Navarro, a Ph.D. economist who is on Donald Trump's economic team.
In this wide-ranging conversation, Thiel discusses his politics, his campaign, and the scourge of totalitarian conformism in the United States and abroad; the problem with “following the science”; where President Biden deserved blame and where he does now; and why cryptocurrency may just save the world.