Mitchell's Musings

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  • 19 Aug 2014 1:58 PM | Emily Smith (Administrator)

    You could grow bananas at the North Pole. How? With enough subsidy for insulation, heating, solar lamps, etc., it would be possible. Since there would be a need to construct the facilities and then maintenance, there would be jobs created at the North Pole. But would such a project be worthwhile? Surely not. The North Pole is clearly not the best place for growing bananas.


    It is also true in less extreme circumstances that you can artificially create jobs. Providing a subsidy can induce economic activity in the location offering the subsidy. But you can always ask whether it is worthwhile.

     

    MitchellMusings 8-18-14.pdf

  • 11 Aug 2014 9:01 AM | Daniel Mitchell (Administrator)

    A few weeks ago, Los Angeles Times columnist Michael Hiltzik ran a piece entitled “A new right-wing claim: Obama must be lying about inflation!” which was about a new conspiracy theory concerning government price change data.1 The theme, as the headline suggests, is that some folks believe that the official inflation statistics are being kept too low, i.e., the books are being cooked. So let’s look at the data and see what the fuss is all about.


    MitchellMusings 8-11-14.pdf

  • 04 Aug 2014 2:24 PM | Daniel Mitchell (Administrator)

    California has long had a system of direct democracy – the initiative, referendum, and recall – going back to the early 20th century. The idea was that politicians – corrupted by special interest money – needed to be checked by the electorate. At the time, the villain de jour was the Southern Pacific Railroad, often depicted back in the day as an octopus strangling commerce and buying politicians. Reform was needed.


    MitchellMusings 8-4-14.pdf

  • 25 Jul 2014 8:50 AM | Emily Smith (Administrator)
    In recent times, much has been said about technology being “disruptive” as if this was a new idea.  Yet the modern era has been characterized by a stream of innovations that led to disruptions.  Look at pictures from the 19th century of city streets and you will see horse-drawn vehicles.  Then the automobile came along and the horses disappeared.  One could go on and on: electricity, steam power, broadcasting, movies, airplanes, the telegraph, railroads, etc.


    Read More


  • 02 Feb 2014 12:00 AM | Emily Smith (Administrator)
    A recent California poll suggests a turn in public opinion toward skepticism about unions. What happened? MitchellMusings 2-3-14.pdf
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