Regulation Policy & Welfare

Central Planning, American Style

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The November 5, 1993, issue of The Narragansett Times announced the completion of the Narragansett Comprehensive Plan (NCP). Clarkson A. Collins, director of community development, said: "It's a very enthusiastic and aggressive plan that takes an awful lot on." My reaction: Eccccchhh! I can envision only an ominous future ... [click for more]

Baseball, Microsoft, and Antitrust Tyranny

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Congress's efforts to meddle in the Major League Baseball strike and the Department of Justice's harassment of the software giant Microsoft are just the latest reminders that the American economy badly needs to be liberated from the century-long tyranny of antitrust law. (The Sherman Antitrust Act was passed in 1890.) Through a quirk of jurisprudential history, baseball has been exempt ... [click for more]

The Art of Budget Cutting

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The new Republican majority in Congress will have its integrity severely tested when it decides the fate of the National Endowment for the Arts (NEA). The Republicans got elected on one basic promise — to cut the size of the national government. It is difficult to think of another federal program that so richly deserves to be axed. That ... [click for more]

The Greatest Enemy

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They're out to get me — the most relentless, implacable foe a human being ever had. They've been after me all my life. On the day I was born, they demanded to know who I was and where I was so that they could put me on their list. Their spies ... [click for more]

The Payoff Society

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Last November, The Washington Times published an editorial by Marilyn Quayle entitled "Americans are Demanding Relief from Overzealous Regulators." Ms. Quayle pointed out: "To comply with federal regulations alone costs between $300 and $500 billion a year, or $4,000 to $6,000 for every working man and woman in America. ... [click for more]

The Disaster of Government Disaster Relief

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January's tragic earthquake around Los Angeles, like last year's Midwestern floods and Southern Californian wildfires, once again highlights the government's pernicious role both before and after the occurrence of natural disasters. As the government has become more involved in such matters, the losses from natural disasters have increased. That is no mere coincidence. The government's role has been responsible for ... [click for more]

Counterfeit Charity

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In Frederic Bastiat's words, "Man is a sentient being." He expresses traits of concern and sympathy for his fellow sojourners on this earth. He cares for the less fortunate among his neighbors. In a world pockmarked by violence, tales of sacrifice overwhelm tales of terror, although the latter tend to be recounted more fully in history books. Americans have taken ... [click for more]

The Case for Legalized Prostitution

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Prostitution may be the world's oldest profession, and laws prohibiting prostitution may well be the oldest example of government regulation and government (sex) discrimination. In a free society, however, all such laws are inappropriate because they violate the basic rights and liberties of the individuals involved. Recent research indicates that over one million women in the United States earn their ... [click for more]

Licensed to Steal

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Question: What do architects, attorneys, dentists, dietitians, embalmers, funeral directors, innkeepers, nurses, optometrists, pharmacists, physicians, surveyors, and veterinarians have in common? Answer: They are all employed in occupations that are licensed or similarly regulated by the state. Question: What else do these occupations have in common? Answer: They are all under-represented by minority practitioners. Is there a relationship? You bet your state-board ... [click for more]

Freedom, Private Property, and the Environment

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Unfortunately, most Americans believe that the only way to preserve our environment is through public ownership of the means of production. "If there were no environmental threat," the refrain goes, "we would favor a capitalist system for America. But since our environment is at stake, we have no choice but ... [click for more]

The Failure of Socialism and Lessons for America, Part 1

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Part 1 | Part 2 The world is watching the spectacle of Russia and the other captive nations of the former Soviet Union trying to free themselves from their seventy-five-year experiment in socialism. The bankruptcy of the system is accepted by practically everyone. The economies of the former Soviet republics are in shambles. Civil wars and ethnic violence have ... [click for more]

Speculation, Law, and the Market Process

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After Hurricane Andrew devastated the southern part of Florida, the state's attorney general threatened to prosecute "price-gougers" and speculators for charging exorbitant prices for food, ice, plywood, and other essential items. The Power of government officials to regulate prices and to punish speculators is not new. It stretches back centuries. ... [click for more]
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