By Robert E. Wright Co-hosts of TV talk show “The View” recently mocked Florida’s Republican governor for asking for federal aid in the wake of the devastation Hurricane Ian. Mockingly they asked “Isn’t it socialism when the government helps you?” Governments of all ideological stripes are supposed to help their citizens. The big policy questions are when, where, and how … [Read more...] about The Private Disaster Response Alternative
By Robert E. Wright While presumed experts in Washington look for data that will justify reopening the economy, the third branch of government, the judiciary, has hardly been mentioned in the crisis to date but could play a key role in breaking any political stalemate. So my spirits soared when I saw a partial headline reading “Coronavirus: Battle Breaks Out As Beach … [Read more...] about Why Aren’t Americans Suing Their Way Out of Lockdown?
By Robert E. Wright It is becoming increasingly difficult to reject the hypothesis that California lawmakers are trying to solve their state’s notorious housing crisis by driving out everyone who isn’t a lover of earthquakes, fires, to-die-for weather, and arbitrary government. Their latest Constitutional faux pas is AB5, which, among many other things, limits California … [Read more...] about California’s Contractor Law Violates Free Speech
By Robert E. Wright It’s my 51st and I am happy to say that I have not died, even once, of food poisoning or other food-related illnesses. I can safely assert the same of anyone reading this, despite recent government shutdowns that disrupted food safety inspections. Many people believe we need government inspectors to keep the food supply safe, but they are full of it, and … [Read more...] about Unsung Heroes: Private Food Inspectors
By Robert E. Wright Our good friends at the Mercatus Center recently published another report on America’s morbidly obese regulatory code, which still contains over 100 million words despite President Trump’s attempt to “drain the swamp” with his Executive Order 13771. The report correctly points out that “regulatory accumulation,” as the authors call it (a malady … [Read more...] about Actually, We Could Just Flip the Switch
Op-Ed by Robert E. Wright Traditional news may not be “fake” per se, but people are right to remain suspicious of it. Deep insights into reality often get dumbed down into silly slogans and ideas, but that does not mean that they are completely off the mark. Remember Obamacare’s “death panels”? That bit of legend was rooted in the intuition that one should not receive … [Read more...] about What Economic News Can You Trust?
By Robert E. Wright At the third annual Philosophy, Politics, and Economics (PPE) Society conference in New Orleans last week, Nobel Prize winner Al Roth gave the final keynote speech about, what else, kidney exchanges. I had already read his book on the matter, but a reception was scheduled to follow, so I went. I am glad I did because he made a somber topic quite … [Read more...] about The Golden Rule Requires Markets