Acton Institute Powerblog Archives

Technology and Regulation

Riding the net neutrality see-saw

This week, I was one of several commenters consulted in Nicholas Wolfram Smith’s article “FCC Repeal of Net Neutrality Leads to Lively Fight” for the National Catholic Register. I think Smith did a fine job conveying my primary concern: But according to Dylan Pahman, a researcher and managing editor of Acton Institute’s Journal of Markets & Morality, one of the problems with the 2015 net neutrality regulations was that it gave the government far too much regulatory power over ISPs. Continue Reading...

ATMs, bank tellers, and the automation paradox

In September 1969 the Chemical Bank branch in Rockville Center, New York opened the first automatic teller machines. The first ATM was only able to give out cash, but by 1971 the machine could handle multiple functions, including providing customers’ account balances. Continue Reading...

Elon Musk on the Problem with Regulators

“Most of economics can be summarized in four words: ‘People respond to incentives,’” says economist Steven E. Landsburg. “The rest is commentary.” When governments create a regulation, they are creating an incentive for individuals and businesses to respond in a particular way. Continue Reading...

There is No Free Lunch—or Free Red Tape

It was once a common practice of saloons in America to provide a “free lunch” to patrons who had purchased at least one drink. Many foods on offer were high in salt (ham, cheese, salted crackers, etc.), so those who ate them naturally ended up buying a lot of beer. Continue Reading...

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