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city planner, city planning, Portland, Oregon, Better Naito, business

How to Ruin a Thoroughfare

Cities require some planning. But the further beyond a certain minimum, the greater the ease with which a central planning authority can be captured — by zealots with more stars in their eyes than brains in their heads. Portland, Oregon, is a case in point. Students from Portland State University






education, free trade zone, Shenzhen, Chicago, Detroit, regulations, reform

SEZ Ed

The great barrier to educational advance in our time is the federal government. The second great barrier? Your state government. The third great barrier? Your local government. Proposals to break up government-subsidized and -enforced school monopolies have ranged from tax credit proposals and voucher programs to charter schools and (the






healthcare, Obamacare, TrumpCare, ACA, Affordable Care Act, Healthcare reform, government, socialism

ObamaCare’s Casualties

We all know the truth: Partisan “warfare” yields the usual war casualty, truth itself. Now, because of the increasing weight of federal government presence in healthcare markets, partisan untruth incurs medical costs. Take the goofy Republican plan(s) to “repeal and replace” ObamaCare — pushed with so many half-truths and downright






Samuel Girod, Kentucky, crime, Amish, FDA, drug,

Pardon Him, Mr. President

Presidents tend to issue pardons as their tenures draw to a close. But many victims of our government should be pardoned right now. Until the culpable agencies can be dismantled and/or sundry bad laws repealed, a steady flow of presidential pardons would provide the swiftest justice. An Amish man in






Tom Woods, Contra Krugman, podcast, healthcare, welfare,

According to Economics

“Everywhere you look, economics is despised,” writes Tom Woods in his Tuesday email letter. You know what isn’t despised? A daily email letter.* But I digress; back to economics. “The gimme-free-stuff people hate it because they don’t like being told that there might be undesirable side effects from seizing other






healthcare, Obamacare, Trumpcare, Affordable Care Act, pre-existing condition

According to Logic

“Polling on every possible option confounds all logic,” or so writes Tiana Lowe about ObamaCare and its repeal, at National Review. “Americans overwhelmingly dislike the individual mandate and prioritize lowering the cost of health care over all other health problems in the country,” Ms. Lowe elaborates, “but a majority of






Marijuana, sand, Nevada, crisis, emergency

Messed Up State

After lamenting Illinois’s fiscal decline into America’s “most messed up” state yesterday, lo and behold, today we find the State of Nevada messed up, too. On marijuana.* Question 2, passed by voters last November, legalized recreational use of what we used to call “weed” by those 21 years of age






robot, machinery, Ludd, Luddites, anti-technology, socialism, efficiency, government

Mr. Jetson, Call Your Office

Increasingly, people are worrying about robots. They’re taking our jobs, we’re told. Soon, all we’ll have left are robots. Massive unemployment! While some find this scenario utopia and bliss,* it sounds dreadful to me. Silver-plated lining is, I doubt it. This kind of worry about technology making laborers obsolete has






bubble, Paul Krugman, recession, student loans, debt, folly, David Stockman

Next Bubble to Pop?

There was a great and wondrous moment, a decade and a half ago, when economist Paul Krugman, Nobel Laureate and New York Times’s unregistered shill for the Democratic Party, suggested that what the economy really needed was another housing bubble. What he wrote, specifically, was this: “To fight this recession,






Seattle, Oregon, unintended consequences, work hours, scheduling, Fair Work Week, labor

Against Flexibility?

Do politicians have any idea what they are doing? In Oregon, Senate Bill 828 just passed the Senate and is now being favorably reviewed in the House. The law would require “large employers in specified industries to provide new employee[s] with estimated work schedule and to provide current employee with






minimum wage, business, pay, workers, fallacy, profit, Bernie Sanders

Minimally Mugged By Reality

It should shock no one: forcing businesses to pay steep minimum wages ends up pushing some businesses out . . . of business. Yesterday I looked at what minimum wage laws can do to low-skilled workers. Today, consider the employers. When we make it harder to turn a profit, it






Mitch McConnell, Rand Paul, ObamaCare, healthcare bill, opposition

The Real ObamaCare Opposition

Senate Majority Leader Mitch McConnell (R-Ky) has introduced a bill to compromise between the House’s recent Affordable Health Care Act and the current “ObamaCare” Affordable Care Act. Though there seems to be some “what the heck, go with it” enthusiasm for it on Capitol Hill, it’s not coming from Senators






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