Category Archives: Crony Capitalism

Mr. Trump and the Swamp. Over at the EPA, its a draw.

In his campaign, Mr. Trump said we were going to be so successful that we would get tired of winning.  Count me as not yet weary.   Over the last few weeks, there were two big stories with EPA which are worth highlighting.  In general, Mr. Trump has gone with a full scale assault on the EPA’s swamp.  While many uncritically accept government as acting on the best interests of the people, more attentive citizens are aware that bureaucracies are not… Continue Reading ››

Boom, boom goes the market, unions get whacked and Elon is still on the dole!

We haven’t really touched on the economy in a while, so I’ll briefly hit some of the latest news and invite your discussion in the comments. First up is the state of the markets.  Many Berean readers know that I’m suspicious of the markets, and have been for years, since valuations by most conventional measures are on the very high side. I have attributed this primarily to the low interest rate policies of the global central banks (not just the… Continue Reading ››

A Preliminary Look at Health Costs and Insurance

I was asked to address the question of insurance in connection with healthcare, so I am finally mostly over my flu and hopefully can think more lucidly.  Insurance, as has been defined by some others, is simply a hedge against the future attained by paying someone (an insurer) who has established a firm that accepts many similar payees into a pool.  Out of that pool come payments now to those in need of them (contractually) and also those not in… Continue Reading ››

An Entertaining Way to Learn About Contemporary US Capitalism

I have discovered a very good way to learn about a topic is to read about something related – the topic serves as a foundation or is always in the background. For example, a good way to learn about the rise of the Nazis in the inter-war period in Germany is to read about something else that happened in Germany during the same time period. I had this experience with Erik Larson’s In the Garden of Beasts. A consistent day-by-day… Continue Reading ››

An Exile in Trumplandia and The Road to Serfdom

Illiberal. That one word, expresses my primary fear about President Donald J Trump. Yesterday I posted An Exile in Trumplandia Discovers Twitter which I hope partially illustrates our president’s response to some of the institutional pushback he is seeing. When I use the word “liberal”, I am not using the word to mean government control, as “liberal” has come to mean in typical usage in the political arena in the United States. My usage of the word liberal indicates a belief that the… Continue Reading ››

An Exile in Trumplandia Discovers Twitter

I have been fairly adept avoiding social media so far. Over a decade ago I experimented with Facebook for a very short while, soon deciding that Facebook simply took up too much time. When we joined a house church in the early part of this decade I revived my Facebook account in order to read and respond on the house church’s private Facebook page. We no longer attend the house church and now my Facebook page sits dormant. Because of… Continue Reading ››

Will Mr. Trump be the Squanderer-in-Chief?

These are difficult days in the Trump administration.  Really? Difficult days in only two weeks on the job?  No Bereans were happy with Mr. Trump’s personal character, and no Bereans were happy with all of his policy prescriptions.  Yet most of us believed that Mrs. Clinton was a worse evil, and all of us thought that at least parts of his agenda could be very positive.  I have focused on the economic impact of his agenda, and while I was… Continue Reading ››

The City of Man

I am sitting in the San Antonio airport, waiting for my flight back home, reflecting on an excellent Values and Capitalism retreat here and–the subject of this blog–my walk yesterday.  My goal was to walk to a bookstore about two miles from my downtown hotel.  I had mapped it out using Googlemaps and set out for what I thought would be about a 20 minute trip one way.  37 minutes later I realized I had gone too far and had… Continue Reading ››

Trump’s Trumps

A new controversy–well, not really new, just renewed–has now taken the stage regarding President-Elect Donald Trump’s transition.  This one concerns the “flavor” of his cabinet choices, taken collectively.  The media and Democrats are trying to figure out (1) what they tell us about Trump and (2) what the supporter–stakeholders think about the choices.  Those are interesting questions.  I am not sure they can be answered adequately at this point, but let’s at least explore them. First, do the choices made… Continue Reading ››

Trump goes in for a Carrier Landing, but at what cost?

Mr. Trump is not yet inaugurated, and he is already achieving notable policy success.  This week’s decision by Carrier to keep 1000 jobs in Indiana rather than moving to Mexico is seen as a vindication against Mr. Obama’s “hand’s off” approach to job loss from globalization. In reality, Mr. Trump is repeating the same mistakes as Mr. Obama. Of course its a great victory for the 1000 workers, and I rejoice that the pain that their community felt is assuaged.… Continue Reading ››