Life Without a Microwave

Commentary, Disruption, David Henderson

Last week, my family’s microwave broke down after 15 years of faithful service. That incident might sound trivial to you. I’m sure it is trivial to you. But it made me aware of how valuable a microwave has been to us. And our week without a microwave taught me a lot about the value of microwaves—and can teach us more generally about the value of economic freedom.

Will The Real Christina Romer Please Stand Up?

Commentary, Regulation, David Henderson

One big problem with the Romers’ research, which they acknowledge, is that in their model one tax cut of a given magnitude is identical to another tax cut of the same magnitude. It doesn’t matter, in their model, whether the tax cut comes from a tax credit or from a cut in marginal tax rates. But, of course, it does matter.

Are We Ailing from Too Much Deregulation?

Commentary, Regulation, David Henderson

Many journalists claim that the U.S. economy since the late 1970s has been very free, with little regulation; that this absence of regulation has caused markets to fail; that there was a consensus in favor of little regulation; and that, now, this consensus is fading. On all these counts, the reports are false. Specifically, the U.S. economy has not been free since before the New Deal of the 1930s.

The Pursuit of Happiness

Commentary, Role of Government, David Henderson

The insight that markets break down discrimination is not new. Over 200 years ago Voltaire wrote: “Go into the London Stock Exchange. . . and you will see representatives of all nations gathered there for the service of mankind. There the Jew, the Mohammedan, and the Christian deal with each other as if they were of the same religion, and give the name of infidel only to those who go bankrupt.”