Category: Obama Administration

Oil Spills and Trying Harder

Don’t take this as a defense of BP, but we need to keep reminding ourselves that accidents happen. Accidents not only happen, but “keeping the boot on the neck” of those trying to clean up the mess may not be all that helpful—not to mention the terrible imagery our government is creating with such rhetoric. […]

The Yuan, the Dollar: Repeating the Policy Mistakes of the Great Depression

In several recent speeches, I’ve mentioned that our policy makers seem intent on repeating the policy mistakes of the depression. I mention the clamor for the Fed to withdraw or mop up excess reserves even though bankers feel the need to hold them without significant incentive. Doing that very thing during the depression caused bank […]

Higher Wages through Government Contracts?

“In the end, businesses had to choose between lowering wages and shutting down. Often, they shut down.” Let’s see now. Government spending is out of control. So are budget deficits and debt generation. The taxpayers are in revolt. Tea parties are dominating the political scene. Yet, despite all this, we get an announcement that government […]

The New York Times/CBS Poll and My Advice for the President

The front page of today’s New York Times reports on the results from the latest New York Times/CBS News poll. It is largely about who polls the lowest between President Obama and the Congress, President Obama and the Republicans, and Republicans versus Democrats. It made me wonder whether poll results can go below zero. Here […]

Jobs Jobs Jobs – Trade Trade Trade

Warning: In terms of the title, I’m about to bury my lead. Either be patient, or jump ahead. Yesterday my dentist asked me if there was a short and sweet book I could recommend to him that would help him establish a framework for his thinking on matters economic. He thought he had good instincts […]

The War on Banks

Getting Curiouser and Curiouser   Many mistakes were made during the Great Depression of the 1930s, and we seem determined to repeat all of them. They include starting a trade war with Smoot-Hawley, raising marginal tax rates in the middle of the depression, tightening monetary policy through misinterpretation of the meaning of excess bank reserves, […]

Health Care Reform Lite

Because I believe in comparative advantage, I blog about the few things I know something about and leave other topics in more capable hands. On those other topics I feel free to use shortcuts to form my tentative opinions since I won’t be inflicting them on others. Over the years, for example, WWFT (what would […]

Why Fear Keynes?

Time Magazine quoted its Man of the Year, Chairman Bernanke, regarding his boyhood interest in the Great Depression. He had heard his family discuss a town full of shoe factories that closed during the depression leaving the community so poor that its children went barefoot. He said he kept asking why they didn’t just open […]

A Load of Hay

In “Hard Money Populism” I mentioned Congressman Ron Paul’s coming to Texas A&M University a few years ago to speak to the Young Republican Club and that the attendance was embarrassingly small. I said that he was a good sport about it and nevertheless gave them “the whole load.” I don’t know how many readers […]

Q: Are Tim Geithner and Larry Summers Dumb, Careless or Crazy?

A: No, I Don’t Think So   I think we should look for an alternative explanation. We’ve heard much chatter about Treasury Secretary, Tim Geithner, and Economic Advisor, Larry Summers, both making similar gaffes last week-end, cracking the door open for a “middle-class tax increase.” I’d say the probability is low, let’s say one in […]