Category Archives: Economic Policy: General

The Rust Belt Is Right to Blame Obama | Wall Street Journal | 12.18.2016

Donald Trump hasn’t wasted time moving to revive America’s economic growth, with an emphasis on manufacturing. Critics may say the recent Carrier deal, which will save 800 American jobs, is small potatoes, but Mr. Trump’s pledge to reduce regulation is decidedly not. A new analysis confirms that the average industry’s regulatory risk has increased nearly […]
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Why the Fed Should Not Raise Interest Rates| Hugh Hewitt |11.9 2015

For months now, the biggest economic question in Washington and even the world has been, when will the U.S. Federal Reserve raise interest rates. After all, since 2008, the Fed has more than doubled M1 (the narrowest and most widely followed measure of money in the economy). If ultra-easy money policies aren’t reversed, won’t inflation […]
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Regulation is blocking enterprise in Silicon Valley | Financial Times | 06.05.07

An anxious question is increasingly being asked in America’s entrepreneurially intense tech- nology communities: could we be seeing the death – or at least the decline – of exit strategies? When backers of high-risk ventures have ready routes to realise returns, they invest more. The US has long enjoyed multiple and largely uncongested exit avenues, […]
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Baltimore Riots, Low Growth Economy: The Wages of Folly| Hugh Hewitt |5.5.2015

You don’t often see the wages of folly come due all at once. But in less that 48 hours last week, the nation was presented with two bills for the last six-and-a-half years. On Monday night, rioting broke out in Baltimore. We all know the immediate cause, the funeral of a young man who died […]
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SOTU Address: No Middle Class Economics but Lots of Spin| Hugh Hewitt |1.28.15

Last week President Obama delivered his next to final State of the Union address. In it, he extolled “middle class economics”, which was the name he attached to his economic policies. The more I listened, the more I thought, this is spin, not reality. As with many, perhaps most, Americans, when I hear the words […]
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Income Inequality in America: Is It Rising and Is It Bad| HughHewitt.com | 07.14.14

For anyone following the media just now, it is hard to get through a week without hearing about income inequality in America. In case you missed it, it’s gone up in the last few decades and this, we are told, is a bad thing. On both accounts, I wonder. The recent flurry of interest follows […]
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Why Is the President Throwing So Many Friends under the Bus? | HughHewitt.com | 05.12.14

Sometimes it seems there is nothing so dangerous as being a friend of this administration – dangerous in terms of how the administration treats you. I am not sure I had ever heard the term “throw under the bus” until, during the 2008 campaign, candidate Obama did exactly that to his deceased grandmother, suggesting she […]
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Question to Ricochet: Is this a brilliant idea or what? | Ricochet.com | 03.08.14

In Southern California for the Pacific Research Institute’s annual Baroness Margaret Thatcher Orange County Dinner last night, I had lunch shortly after landing with a veteran of political communications in this state. Over our meal, he began to go on in the manner all of us go on about the cluelessness of Republicans in Washington. […]
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The Ricochet 200th Podcast: The Larger Meaning | Ricochet.com | 01.26.14

As all Ricochetti know, tonight James, Peter, Rob and many more will have themselves a 200th Ricochet podcast. The golden voices and lively wits will record live at the Town and Gown Ballroom on the University of Southern California campus in downtown Los Angeles. One of the organizers tells me that the audience may exceed […]
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The Crisis In Entrepreneurial Finance: The Death of ‘Liquidity Event’ IPOs | HughHewitt.com | 08.04.13

Why are the American economy and the number of American jobs growing so slowly?  A few days ago, I stumbled on one answer.  And for once, it didn’t have to do – or, at least, much to do — with economy’s mismanagement by the current administration. As part of a swing through California, I spent […]
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President Obama’s Clueless Economics | HughHewitt.com | 07.25.13

Yesterday President Obama delivered a much-heralded (by himself and his minions) speech on the economy. It was a transparent attempt to change the Washington topic from, as he put it, “phony scandals”. Phony scandals?  Let’s see.  Could he have been referring to the White House-ordered IRS audits of the Administration’s political opponents, precisely the same […]
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President Embraces Flat Earth Science… and Economics | HughHewitt.com | 06.26.13

Yesterday President Obama joined the Flat Earth Society. That’s not how he put it, of course.  Just the opposite.  He said, “We don’t have time for a meeting of the Flat Earth Society,” i.e. those not prepared to join him in embracing radical anti-fossil fuel policies. Put another way, he meant forget about Congress.  Congress […]
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We Can’t Go Back Again (to 1950s Tax Rates) | HughHewitt.com | 4.17.13

In an article in yesterday’s Wall Street Journal, Lawrence Mone, president of the Manhattan Institute, took on the leftist contention that a return to prosperity requires returning to the high marginal tax rates of the 1950s – 91 percent for top earners. In an article full of telling points, for me the most telling point was […]
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Obama’s Quiet Declaration of War on Oil and Gas Production | USNews.com | 03.18.13

Last week, the president traveled to the Argonne National Laboratory outside Chicago to deliver what the White House billed as a major speech on energy. To see what is wrong with the administration as it enters its second term, you could do worse than carefully reading that address. Despite the speech’s “energy” label, the oil […]
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At the New Year, the American Middle Class and the Ghost of Christmases Long Ago and Far Away | HughHewitt.com | 12.28.12

Looking back on the year now ending, I have been struck by a disconnect that has entered American language. Through the presidential campaign and now in the fiscal cliff fight, we have heard about “the middle class.”  The president – to the cheers of the media  — tells us he is for the middle class […]
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Don’t Believe Obama on Income Inequality | U.S.News.com | 05.21.12

You’ve heard it a thousand times at least. The incomes of middle class Americans have stagnated in recent decades. Those of the rich—the 1 percent—have soared. It is a very compelling, very troubling, and very widely believed observation and, according to three economists from Cornell and Indiana universities, not true. If they are right—and their […]
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Are the Debates About Manufacturing Jobs, Energy Independence and Illegal Immigration About to Become Irrelevant? | HughHewitt.com | 04.24.12

This is a cautionary posting. Here is the question: What if the major issues of the last four years became irrelevant to the nation’s fate in the next four?  I have three examples in mind. Manufacturing: The decline in America’s manufacturing dominance has become a talking point for everyone from the AFL-CIO to Rick Santorum […]
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Permanent Downsizing of the American Dream? | HughHewitt.com | 02.21.12

So what is happening with the economy?  Employment numbers go up and Greece gets bailed out.  Presto.  The markets rise and the clouds of bad times dissipate.  Or do they? Yes, economic recovery has been in the news all week. The president has modestly credited his own policies as the cause.  A media intent on […]
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President’s Thursday Night Economic Speech: Tragedy or Farce? | HughHewitt.com | 09.05.11

Karl Marx wrote that, “History always repeats itself twice, the first time as tragedy, the second time as farce.” Like much of Marx, this is basically nonsense dressed up as deep insight.  But maybe, just maybe, we’re about to see something like Marx’s dictum played out in Washington on Thursday night.  That will be when […]
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Arthur Laffer in San Francisco | HughHewitt.com | 11.15.10

On Thursday night last week, supply-side luminary Arthur Laffer spoke to the Pacific Research Institute’s annual dinner in San Francisco. Laffer is among the most consequential economists of the last half century.  Though lampooned and denounced on the left, his Laffer Curve has had a greater impact on American and global economic dialogue than, say, […]
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Systemic Pessimism | HughHewitt.com | 08.16.10

When Shakespeare’s Richard the Third decried the “winter of our discontent”, he meant that unhappiness had gone into hibernation.  He intended to awaken it.  No need for R-III-R in Washington these days.  With all problems diagnosed as “systemic”, systemic pessimism is everywhere. Two weeks ago, in her weekly Wall Street Journal column ( http://tiny.cc/4gkz6 ), […]
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Snooki Economics: More Astute than Administration Economics | HughHewitt.com | 08.02.10

“I don’t go tanning anymore, because Obama put a 10 percent tax on tanning.”  Snooki, New York Post, Sunday, August 1st, 2010. It’s a sad day when Snooki, breakout buffoonette of the MTV hit reality show Jersey Shore, knows more about economics than the White House policy staff.  You tax an activity; you get less […]
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Trying on Every Front to Increase the Role of Government | HughHewitt.com | 11.23.09

It is a rule of thumb among conservatives, not just in Washington but around the country, that the United States does not deserve the government that the Democratic administration and congress are currently giving it.  But the Republican Party, whose drubbing in the last election delivered to the Democrats the excessive power they now enjoy, […]
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Regulation blocks US enterprise | Financial Times | 06.04.07

Almost unnoticed in the rest of the economy, an anxious question is increasingly being asked in the US’s entrepreneurially intense technology communities: could we be seeing the death – or at least the decline – of exit strategies? Exit strategies are critical to entrepreneurial finance. When backers of high-risk ventures know that, should the ventures […]
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Reaganomics and the American Renaissance | El Impacto Reagan | La Fundacion Centro de Estudios Americanos | Buenos Aires, Argentina | 11.01.06

This essay was written at the request of La Fundacion Centro de Estudios Americanos in Buenos Aires.  In translation it was published in November 2006 as a chapter in the Center’s El Impacto Reagan, the first originally Spanish-language book to examine Reagan Administration policies.  The Center asked that it open with a personal recollection of […]
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Lessons From the U.S. Past on Monetary Policy | Financial Times | 08.07.03

Sir: Bill O’Rahilly (“ Goodbye, yellow brick road”, August 5) makes several mistakes about US economic history in the McKinley-Bryan period and its meaning for today. He suggests that the issue of the time was deflation and stagnation (McKinley and the gold standard) versus easy money and renewed growth (Bryan and free silver). This was […]
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Congress’s Stealth Tax | Wall Street Journal | 06.24.02

Congress is racing to enact an accounting reform bill. But have the members stopped to consider the fine print? If they did, they would find in the Senate version of the legislation a provision with the potential to cause more havoc in our markets than a dozen Enrons. The bill, written by Sen. Paul Sarbanes […]
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‘Poor’ Assumptions in the Tax Debate | Wall Street Journal | 05.04.01

Now that House and Senate conferees have agreed on a $1.3 trillion tax cut, Democrats are lining up to attack this package as a giveaway to “the rich.” Many Republicans have taken this critique to heart by crafting tax cuts weighted toward “fairness” instead of economic stimulus. But all these criticisms are based on a […]
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Thresholds of Pain | Wall Street Journal | 08.10.94

Like a canary in a mine, an obscure, high-technology entrepreneur named E.O. Schonstedt may have been a warning signal to the U.S. economy. In the 1970s, he learned that a friend of his, in complying with civil-rights reporting demanded of government contractors with 50 or more employees, had been required to submit eight pounds of […]
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The Tax That Ate the Economy | Wall Street Journal | 06.24.91

Between May 1990 and this April, the U.S. suffered a net loss of 879,000 jobs. It wouldn’t have happened and there would be no recession today if the financing of small and young companies had not collapsed after 1986, when tax reform mandated raising the top rate on capital gains to 33% from 20%. Despite […]
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Indexing Capital Gains — Fool’s Gold | Wall Street Journal | 06.27.90

As the current inning in the long-running game called the budget process reaches its climax, many in Washington are betting that the congressional Democrats are about to make a double play. Getting George Bush to move his lips on taxes was their first out. Stopping him from moving them on capital gains tax reduction could […]
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Problem Isn’t Rate of U.S. Savings, but Where the Money Goes | Wall Street Journal | 03.23.89

A rose may be a rose, but, as anyone who buys a house or analyses a financial statement discovers, when it comes to money, a number is not necessarily a number. It can appear to tell one story but, once explored, really tell another. For example, look at a report issued earlier this month by […]
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