Topic Category: U.S.

Monthly U.S. headlines trumpeting the death of inflation hide a painful truth for American families: rapidly rising food prices. News reports rarely mention this pain because economists’ preferred inflation metric, so-called “core CPI,” omits both food and energy due to concerns about their volatility. Although this omission might make sense from a purely economic perspective, it does a disservice to voters.

Topic: U.S.
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When President Obama gave his recent address at Knox College, he lamented the dismal state of middle-income families, whose real incomes have been stagnant or falling. He promised new policies that would restore upward mobility and improve prospects for growth and employment. However, he ignored the negative effects of the Federal Reserve’s unconventional monetary policies.

Topic: U.S.
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The U.S. economic recovery remains anemic, so President Barack Obama wants Washington to spend more money. Of course, if the economy was booming, he would want the federal government to spend even more money. Nevertheless, the favorite justification for public expenditures these days is to “stimulate” the economy. The fact that $5 trillion in federal deficits during the president’s first four years in office didn’t create a buoyant economy doesn’t matter.

Topic: U.S.
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August 10th is a special event in the energy industry. It marks the tenth year since the famous Northeastern blackout plunged millions of people into total darkness. While some small pockets of the region escaped unscathed, the vast majority of the homes and businesses suffered some type of financial loss. The question is, ten years later, what have we learned?

Topic: U.S.
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The Congressional Budget Office has fiscally scored the Senate’s immigration bill, S. 744, and found that it will decrease fiscal deficits over the next 20 years—giving a huge boost to reform proponents. In line with criticisms, the CBO departed from orthodoxy and assumed that S. 744 would affect economic growth (i.e., they dynamically scored the bill)—arguing that the economic and fiscal gains from immigration reform are clear.

Topic: U.S.
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Few Americans dread anything more than receiving a letter from the IRS. But imagine a full field audit, with intrusive questions about your activities and spending habits, from suspicious agents convinced that you’ve violated the law. That’s essentially what political activists on the Right have been enjoying recently, courtesy the Obama administration.

Topic: U.S.
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Money matters — it’s a maxim of Prof. Milton Friedman that I repeat often in my columns. Since the Northern Rock bank run of 2007 — the "opening shot" of the financial crisis — the money supply, broadly measured, in the United States, Great Britain, and the Eurozone has taken a beating. Recently, in the United States, money supply growth has started to rebound, but only slightly.

Topic: U.S.
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The United States currently has an estimated 11 million immigrants who entered this country illegally. According to the National Research Council, the migration of these individuals into the United States costs American taxpayers $346 billion annually. Now we are starting to get a feel for the costs being absorbed by one sector — the U.S. healthcare system — to treat this population. And the cost is staggering.

Topic: U.S.
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A Common conservative refrain is that immigrants, once they enter the U.S., “immediately begin to depend on government welfare,” as Sen. Jeff Sessions of Alabama recently put it. That’s simply not true, according to a Cato Institute study by Professor Leighton Ku and lecturer Brian Bruen, both of George Washington University’s health policy department.

Topic: U.S.
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Europeans recognize they pay a high price for creating an increasingly dependent society. In fact, Denmark has been transfixed by the revelation of a 36-year-old single mother who collects more in benefits than many Danes earn at work, and has done so for two decades. Worried Karen Haekkerup, Minister of Social Affairs and Integration, says people “think of these benefits as their rights. The rights have just expanded and expanded.” How does this compare to the United States?

Topic: U.S.
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