Regulation Policy & Welfare

The Wrongful Conviction of Martha Stewart

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So what’s wrong with the criminal conviction of Martha Stewart? She lied to federal officials, right? And it’s against the law to lie to federal officials, right? So what’s the problem? From the standpoint of the U.S. Justice Department, there is, of course, no problem at all. The law ... [click for more]

Derivative Crimes and Federal Injustice

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One of the common complaints levied against criminal justice in the United States is that criminals often are acquitted because of “legal technicalities.” For example, defendants who seem to be guilty find charges dismissed because police did not properly inform them of their “Miranda Rights,” or evidence that clearly demonstrates guilt is kept from legal proceedings because of the ... [click for more]

I’ll Take Free Choice

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Intellectuals who disdain the common man’s freedom never run out of rationalizations for government control. In a recent New York Times op-ed touting his book, The Paradox of Choice: Why More Is Less, psychology professor Barry Schwartz criticized political reforms aimed at expanding choice. He argued that “for many ... [click for more]

Price Controls Can Be Deadly

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Who would ever dream that the economic fallacies to which U.S. officials subscribe could turn deadly? Yet that’s what recently happened in Baghdad, where an American GI was shot dead while guarding long lines of angry and disgruntled consumers at a gasoline station in Baghdad. Why are there long lines ... [click for more]

“Bad Money Drives Out Good”

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This is what has been called Gresham’s Law. It was formulated by Sir Thomas Gresham to explain to Queen Elizabeth I what was happening to the English shilling. Her father, Henry VIII, had been adulterating the English shilling, the basic coin of the realm, by replacing 40 percent of the silver in the coin with base metals — a ... [click for more]

Book Review: Dependent on D.C. by Charlotte A. Twight

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Dependent on D.C.: The Rise of Federal Control over the Lives of Ordinary Americans by Charlotte Twight (St. Martins Press, 2002); 422 pages; $26.95. I have often thought about how different the United States of today is from the United States my grandfather knew. A century ago, he was a young man embarking on a business career. He and all other ... [click for more]

Will Work for Less

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“Thought I’d get a piece of meat,” . “Got all kinds,” he said. “Hamburg, like to have some hamburg? Twenty cents a pound, hamburg.” “Ain’t that awful high? Seems to me hamburg was fifteen las’ time I got some.” “Well,” he giggled softly, “yes, it’s high, an’ same time it ain’t high. Time you go on in town for a ... [click for more]

Vice Laws: A Lethal Cure in Search of a Disease

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People sometimes accuse libertarians of being immoral or amoral because we do not define vices as crimes. At its most harmless, the accusation is groundless and based on ignorance. At worst, however, it is an act of deliberate deception — the first step in a chain of thinking that leads to the proliferation of genuine crimes that cause great ... [click for more]

Book Review: Government Creep

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Government Creep: What the Government Is Doing That You Don’t Know About by Philip D. Harvey (Port Townsend, Wash.: Loompanics Unlimited, 2003); 159 pages; $12.95. Shopping for a new car? For your “protection,” it will come equipped with airbags. Don’t want airbags in your vehicle? Tough. Not only is it impossible to buy a new ... [click for more]

Legal Plunder in Alabama

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Most Americans would take umbrage at the suggestion that they are serfs rather than citizens of the United States. But that just shows how far removed from political reality they are. How many people would be surprised to learn that the government can take their homes if it decides ... [click for more]

The Fraud of Insider-Trading Law, Part 2

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Part 1 | Part 2 It is virtually unquestioned in America today that insider trading in the securities markets is a dastardly act. We must make a distinction here between trading by insiders and trading by insiders on the basis of nonpublic information. Insiders are legally allowed to buy and sell stocks. The Securities and Exchange Commission (SEC) requires ... [click for more]
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