Feeds:
Posts
Comments

Search Results for 'sowell'

Earlier this year, I borrowed from Dante’s Inferno and created the Five Circles of Statist Hell. At the time, I suggested that Venezuela was on the cusp of moving from the third circle (“widespread poverty and economic misery”) to the fourth circle (“systematic and grinding poverty and deprivation”). Since we now know that children in […]

Read Full Post »

Over the years, I’ve shared some clever images, jokes, and cartoons to expose the flawed mindset of those who hope to achieve coerced equality of outcomes with redistribution and high tax rates. The size of a pizza vs the share of a slice. The modern version of the Little Red Hen. Washington’s Byzantine welfare state. […]

Read Full Post »

Two days ago, I contrasted the views of Pope Francis and Walter Williams about capitalism and morality. I explained that Walter had the upper hand because free markets are a positive-sum game based on voluntary exchange while redistribution (at best) is a zero-sum game based on coercion. That’s the theoretical argument. Now let’s look at […]

Read Full Post »

Political cartoonists like Michael Ramirez and Chuck Asay are effective because they convey so much with images. But we need more than clever cartoons if we’re going to educate the general population about how government harms the economy and undermines freedom. And that’s why Thomas Sowell is so invaluable. He’s one of the nation’s top […]

Read Full Post »

Public finance experts are quite familiar with the budgetary shenanigans of cossetted government bureaucracies. They even have terms to describe how agencies and departments try to manipulate outcomes by claiming that any requirement for fiscal restraint will necessitate cuts to the most politically popular parts of the budget. The “fireman first principle” – Describes how […]

Read Full Post »

When speaking about the difference between the private sector and the government, I sometimes emphasize that mistakes and errors are inevitable, and that the propensity to screw up may be just as prevalent in the private sector as it is in the public sector. I actually think the government is more likely to screw up, for reasons […]

Read Full Post »

The great Ronald Reagan famously said (and I am paraphrasing, since I do not remember the exact phrase) that the most dangerous words in the English language were “I am from Washington and I am here to help you.” Those are very wise words, especially when we think of the damage politicians have done because of […]

Read Full Post »

Even though it’s important – particularly in a world with slippery politicians – to define words and terms accurately, I haven’t focused on this issue. Indeed, a quick search through my archives shows that the only glossary I’ve ever published was this humorous list of financial terms. And the only dictionary I’ve ever published was […]

Read Full Post »

A couple of years ago, Newt Gingrich accused Obama of being a socialist, causing some squawking and grousing about incivility from the more sensitive types in Washington. I jumped to the President’s defense, pointing out that Obama is a different type of statist. I’m gratified that Thomas Sowell of Stanford University’s Hoover Institution agrees with […]

Read Full Post »

A few days ago, I wrote about Article 1, Section 8, of the Constitution, which lists the “enumerated powers” of the federal government. That post included a reference to Wickard v. Filburn, an infamous Supreme Court case that opened the door to unlimited intervention from Washington. Why was this case important? As is so often the […]

Read Full Post »

Welcome, Instapundit readers. This school choice video shows the best way of dealing with the problems described in this post (though, as Walter Williams explains, that’s only part of the answer). ======================================================= If you care about helping the less fortunate succeed, I’m commenting today on a Thomas Sowell column that will make you sad and […]

Read Full Post »

I recently posted an excellent video showing how the War on Poverty has been a disaster for both taxpayers and poor people. Let’s now look at a specific example of the income-redistribution racket. Professor Thomas Sowell has a superb column, which begins by noting that the left tried to build support for more income redistribution […]

Read Full Post »

Thomas Sowell just completed a three-part “Back to the Future” series, looking at a couple of fiscal policy issues. His unifying theme is how the political class fails (perhaps deliberately) to learn from mistakes. In Part I, he decimates President Obama’s new stimulus scheme. Once we get past the glowing rhetoric, what is the president […]

Read Full Post »

As far as I can tell, everything that Thomas Sowell writes is worth reading, but I especially like how he is so effective at linking his arguments to the underlying principles of a free society. And when he writes a column focused on those underlying principles, I can’t help but get inspired. He reminds me […]

Read Full Post »

In addition to noting that gun control tends to increase crime by reducing the cost of being a criminal (i.e., thugs are less likely to meet armed resistance), Tom Sowell also explains that people who don’t like the Constitution should amend the document rather than appointing ideologically-motivated Justices who ignore what it says. …there is no […]

Read Full Post »

As usual, Sowell is right on the mark. By expanding the size and burden of government, Obama is making it more difficult for the economy to prosper: President Obama keeps telling us that he is “creating jobs.” But more and more Americans have no jobs. The unemployment rate has declined slightly, but only because many […]

Read Full Post »

As usual, Tom Sowell uses basic economics to explain a confusing topic. His core insight is that government has undermined market forces, which is leading to rising costs. Obama and the other statists somehow think more government will make things better: …policies based on political hype over the years are what have gotten us into […]

Read Full Post »

I’ve always been mystified by GOP politicians, pollsters, and consultants who argue that the GOP needs to support big government in order to win votes. The biggest victories for Republicans in living memory, after all, are the 1980 and 1994 landslides, when the GOP was most aggressive in promoting an anti-government message. The big-government, compassionate-conservative […]

Read Full Post »

Do stores in low-income neighborhoods charge higher prices because of racism, or greed? That’s what some academics argue, but Tom Sowell points out that there are real economic factors that drive priciing decisions. The example below is about stores, but his IBD column also has a great example using financial services: Low-income neighborhoods tend to […]

Read Full Post »

Sowell for President

In his Random Thoughts column, Thomas Sowell shows more wisdom in his questions than politicians could demonstrate if they ever had to provide answers. The three questions excerpted below underscore the importance of thinking about both the underlying morality of public policy as well as the unintended consequences of government actions: Since this is an […]

Read Full Post »

Government did not help us in the 1930s, and it is not helping us today.

Read Full Post »

Back in 2016, I created a 2×2 matrix to illustrate the difference between redistributionism (tax Person A and give to Person B) and state planning (politicians and bureaucrats trying to steer the economy, either through direct ownership or industrial policy). The main point of that column was to show that countries should try to be […]

Read Full Post »

During the Obama years, I shared a cartoon strip that cleverly makes the point that some people will choose not to work if they can get enough goodies from the government. That Wizard-of-Id parody has been viewed more than 56,000 times, which suggests many readers also thought it was worth sharing. But it obviously hasn’t […]

Read Full Post »

How should Nazism be classified, particularly when compared to socialism? Are these ideologies at opposite ends of a spectrum, or are they simply different sides of the same collectivist coin? In my humble opinion, both views are correct, which is why I think this triangle is the best way to classify various ideologies. Nazis are […]

Read Full Post »

Back in 2010, I narrated this video on money laundering for the Center for Freedom and Prosperity, mostly to help people understand that governments are imposing huge costs on both industry and consumers without any offsetting benefits (such as reductions in crime). As you can tell from the video, I’m not a big fan of […]

Read Full Post »

Back in 2012, I shared a video clip of Ice-T defending the 2nd Amendment, but that video is now dead, so I’m glad to see that Prager University has added his comments as a prologue to this defense of gun rights by Prof. Eugene Volokh. Ice-T and Prof. Volokh make for a good combination, one […]

Read Full Post »

There are several false narratives about economic history, involving topics ranging from the recent financial crisis to 19th-century sweatshops. But probably the biggest falsehood, as explained in this video by Prof. Lee Ohanian, is the notion that big government saved us from the Great Depression. The only shortcoming of Ohanian’s video is that he’s analyzing […]

Read Full Post »

While it’s true that every penny in the budget requires money to be diverted from the economy’s productive sector, not all government spending is created equal when considering the impact on growth. Some types of spending, such as redistribution programs, are doubly harmful to prosperity. The economy is first hurt by the taxes needed to […]

Read Full Post »

I repeatedly write about inequality, largely in hopes of helping people, especially my left-leaning friends, understand that we should instead focus on other issues, such as economic opportunity and poverty reduction. In other words, let’s try to help the less fortunate rather than tear down successful people I specifically try to convince them that they […]

Read Full Post »

My late friend Walter Williams was a first-rate economist, an important public intellectual, and a truly great American. He also was an amazing communicator, with an unparalleled ability to make important points in a succinct and easy-to-understand manner. My favorite Walter quote is about how capitalism enabled positive-sum wealth creation. Today, though, I want to […]

Read Full Post »

Next »