Category Archives: Crony Capitalism

A Really Bad Legacy, and How to Reverse It

President Obama and his executive agencies set a new record for the number of pages of new regulations in one day: 527 pages (in a single day!).  For the year the number of pages so far is also a record, at 81,640 pages.  It is also worth noting that seven of the the top eight spots for number of pages of new regulations are held by the Obama administration:  2010, 20111, 2012, 2013, 2014, 2015, 2016.  This data comes from… Continue Reading ››

Why? And What Now?

At about 3 AM last night we were informed that Donald Trump would be our 45th president.  My daughter photographed the screen and we all went to bed.  But now the next phase in all this process begins: governance–which is very different from winning a campaign.  Before I get to that, let me say a few words about why I thought this might well occur.  I am not a professional pollster–right now, that is a really good thing, as I… Continue Reading ››

Conservatives and Cronyism: Time to Take Action

A really important column appeared November 3, 2016 by Yuval Levin in the National Review Online.  The title was “It’s Time for the Right to Get Serious about Tackling Cronyism,” and that title perfectly captures the thrust of the article.  You can read it here: http://www.nationalreview.com/article/441691/conservatism-cronyism-policy-solutions-right.  (Sorry, Bert Wheeler, I still can’t master just “link”).  But note the article was aimed at conservatives (including Republicans), though liberals have plenty to answer for on this front as well.  The subject was… Continue Reading ››

Globalism versus Globalization

President Obama has shown his true colors again.  In a speech to a group of ambassadors gathered at the White House (July 15) he said this: “I think we have to step back [from the Nice attack] and reflect on what we are doing to eliminate this kind of chronic violence. It’s been a difficult several weeks in the United States.  But the divide … is between people who recognize the common humanity of all people and are willing to build [international]… Continue Reading ››

Free Trade: Trump, Clinton, Obama, and Ryan. Who is Right?

I hate to beat a dead horse, but the issue of trade keeps coming up in the news, whether from Donald Trump and the Trumpists or from Paul Ryan or from Hillary Clinton and Barack Obama, all claiming to have the right position on trade and the place of the United States in the global economic world.  Let’s sort through this mess first to find out who stands for what, if anything. Trump is a protectionist, that is pretty clear. … Continue Reading ››

The latest Obama Admin edict: Let them eat Tofu!

In today’s Wall Street Journal (gated) reports on a political battle over the provision of food stamps, and it illustrates much of what is wrong in Washington DC.  Many of us lament the almost doubling of the number of people receiving food stamps, with only a slight drop off well after the recession is over.  We legitimately worry about creating a culture of dependency which is not ultimately beneficial to the recipients.  Yet there is an equal dependency on the provision… Continue Reading ››

Supremes throw out VA Governor corruption conviction, “they all do it”

In an amazing 8-0 decision, the Supreme Court threw out the conviction of former VA governor McDonnell for alleged corruption: The Justice Department alleged Mr. McDonnell agreed to legitimize, promote and seek research studies for the company’s products. The former governor among other things arranged meetings for the businessman, Jonnie Williams, with other government officials and hosted and attended events designed to encourage state university researchers to initiate studies of a Star product, the department said. Chief Justice Roberts wrote,… Continue Reading ››

Hail to the Victors! But Let’s Get the Victors Right.

Another college basketball season has come and gone, as has another football season.  I didn’t watch the NCAA National Championship game but did see the last couple of exciting minutes.  As always, basketball is fun to watch as is football.  But I also read an article in the National Review Online that caught my eye, mainly because it resonated with what I have been saying for twenty years.  Now some readers won’t like what I am about to say, but… Continue Reading ››

The Trend of Economic Freedom in the United States

Yesterday the Heritage Foundation released the 2016 Index of Economic Freedom. This annual publication is produced by the Heritage Foundation in conjunction with the Wall Street Journal. In addition to the 2016 Index the foundation also published Economic Freedom in America, a supplement outlining trends in economic freedom in the United States. Figure 1 illustrates the overall composite freedom score of the United States from the inception date of the index in 1995 to the latest figures which cover through the midpoint of… Continue Reading ››

Another Modest Proposal

As we watched the Democratic and Republican Party presidential debates, I have heard some, but not nearly enough, discussion of the problems of the “regulatory state,” that is, that “Fourth Branch” of government affectionately called bureaucracy.  Since this is a national election, I will confine my comments to the Federal agencies such as EPA, FCC, FEC, SEC (no, not the Southeastern Conference), HHS, IRS, CPSC, NHSTA, the Justice Department, and many others, nearly covering the entire alphabet.  Readers likely already… Continue Reading ››