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Why are we so afraid of other nations that can’t even take care of their own shit?

TomDispatch has a great article about the insanity of our military’s spending priorities and the money-grubbing paranoia of the associated defense-industrial complex. It is scary. You gotta read it. At the same time, all rich nations are military allies of

Posted in Development, Public Finance

How to indebt future generations. Borrowing alone does not do it!

Private investors were begging governments to borrow more money in 2015. Interest rates were extremely low: Government debt cannot significantly be a significant burden when interest rates are that low. For example, when interest rates are zero, there is no

Posted in Macro, Public Finance

The mistaken libertarian/anarchist theology underpinning bitcoin and other blockchain currencies

Ian Bogost writes that Cryptocurrency Might be a Path to Authoritarianism. You should read the full article for full effect, but he says that “Extreme libertarians built blockchain to decentralize government and corporate power,” and blockchain could consolidate the control

Posted in Macro, Public Finance

The best marijuana policy is the least popular: decriminalization

Americans tend to be conservatives in the sense that we tend to be risk averse.  We don’t want to change our system unless there is a really good reason.  In the case of our current policy towards marijuana, there is

Posted in Health, Public Finance

Market failures in everything: Book publishing

Markets are only efficient when they are close to perfect competition, and if they are efficient there should not be shortages and surpluses.  However, there are persistently large surpluses and shortages in the book publishing industry.  There is a particularly

Posted in Managerial Micro, Public Finance

Innovative societies must have equality of opportunity

The current tax bill is largely motivated by the theory that if you give tax cuts to successful rich people, even though it increases inequality, it will be worth it because these elites will create jobs through innovation with the

Posted in Inequality, Public Finance

Monopoly power at the emergency room

There is a lot of monopoly power in healthcare in the US, and it has been driving up prices by decreasing competition. Research shows that greater consolidation in the hospital industry causes higher prices, but it is hard to explain

Posted in Health, Public Finance

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