Don’t blame religion for poltical violence
Dec09

Don’t blame religion for poltical violence

I haven’t posted at TMV for a while, which is a shame, because it is where I got started writing earlier this year. I’m posting today because another TMV blogger enjoyed an article I wrote for Salon that is published below. The piece has sparked a great and fascinating (for me) debate. You can read my ripostes here, here, here and here. Religion has once again become the “opiate of the people.” But this time, instead of...

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The Best Argument for the Minimum Wage is Moral, not Economic
Aug08

The Best Argument for the Minimum Wage is Moral, not Economic

Economists on left has aptly noted that productivity has increased dramatically over the past 30 years, with no similar increase in wages (Schmitt). Others (Card and Krueger, but more recently Dube et al) have noted that apocalyptic predictions of mass unemployment have proved wrong in the past. Economists of the middle-out persuasion have shown how a higher minimum wage would stimulate demand. But this isn’t something that...

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Milton Friedman: Father of the Tea Party?
Aug01

Milton Friedman: Father of the Tea Party?

Yesterday was the 101st anniversary of Milton Friedman’s birth, and it will be widely celebrated among the vast number of Americans who march in Tea Parties and wear tricorn hats in public. He will be hailed by the vast number of “libertarian populists” now burgeoning within the Republican ranks. But the new “libertarian populism” is increasingly at odds with the possibility of a shared future. Libertarian populists love markets. One...

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Solving the Student Loan Crisis is Only the First Step
Jul26

Solving the Student Loan Crisis is Only the First Step

Congress will likely hammer out some sort of deal, which Republicans will love and Democrats will be forced to swallow, but it’s worth considering whether we view education in entirely the wrong way here in America. In Britain, where my girlfriend lives, students don’t begin paying off their loans until they find stable employment, and the cost is in proportion to their earnings. Australia similarly ties the cost of paying off the...

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Patent Trolls Aren’t the Problem, Patents Are
Jul22

Patent Trolls Aren’t the Problem, Patents Are

As Republican obstruction kills immigration reform, the next problem Congress and the president will try and fail to fix is the patent system. Specifically, they’ll target “patent trolls,” companies that buy patents and use them to create endless litigation. But the larger problem they fail to see is that America’s patent regime is based upon a flawed model of innovation and will hamper innovation, while increasing inequality. The...

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