Does globalization destroy culture?

Globalization is routinely decried for its disruptive effects, particularly as it relates to local culture and community enterprises and institutions. Even as it’s proven to drive significant economic growth, questions remain about its steamrolling influence on the culture. Continue Reading...

Providence, presidents, and the fundamental fallacy of pop economics

When running for president, candidates often makes outlandish promises about how we’ll benefit once they have power. For instance, vice-presidential candidate John Edwards said in 2004 that, “when John Kerry is president people like [quadriplegic actor] Christopher Reeve will get up out of that wheelchair and walk again.” And in 2008, then-candidate Barak Obama said we’ll look back on his winning the Democratic nomination as the moment “when the rise of the oceans began to slow and the planet began to heal.” The most absurd claims, though, are often about matters of economics. Continue Reading...

The end of black conservatism?

On December 27, 2016, at the age of 86, Thomas Sowell published his last column. After publishing dozens of books and hundreds of columns, Dr. Sowell’s retirement may mark the beginning of the end of an era of black intellectuals who were champions of political and economic liberty. Continue Reading...

5 victims of the $15 minimum wage

As protests for a $15-per-hour minimum wage continue to rage across the country, cities like Seattle and states like California and New York have already begun to adopt such schemes. But alas, prices are not play things, and such measures are bound to reap a range of deleterious effects, from raised consumer prices to increased unemployment to reduced working hours to outright business closures. Continue Reading...

Thomas Sowell’s escape from socialism

Earlier today I mentioned that economist Thomas Sowell was retiring from writing his syndicated column. For decades Sowell, age 86, has been one of the leading thinkers in the libertarian and conservative circles. Continue Reading...

Is ‘fair trade’ fair?

Most consumers have heard of fair-trade coffee, but have no idea how fair-trade actually works. In this video, economist Victor Claar covers the basics of the fair-trade model, and explores whether fair trade can deliver on its promises to help the poor. Continue Reading...

The economics of Bedford Falls (Part 3 of 3)

[Note: This is the final post in a series highlighting some of the financial aspects and broad economic lessons of Frank Capra’s holiday classic, It’s a Wonderful Life. You can find part one here and part two here.] Economist Don Boudreaux recently outlined ten foundational lessons that should be learned in every well-taught principles of economics course. Continue Reading...