You are browsing the archive for 2013 July 05.

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Summer Austrian Seminar in Poland

July 5, 2013 in Economics

By Mark Thornton

Instytut Misesa in Poland will hold a conference in September called ‘Summer Austrian Seminar’ where the main topics will be the problems of the Eurozone examined from the Austrian point of view. You can find the full program here. The lecturers are mostly scholars associated with the Mises Institute and the Mises Institute’s Summer Fellows Program.

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Source: MISES INSTITUTE

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Debating Carbon Taxes

July 5, 2013 in Economics

As concern over climate change grows, policymakers face a difficult question: How much should society spend today to protect future generations against the unknown risks emissions create? In the new issue of Regulation, several scholars make their cases both for, and against, carbon taxes. Economists Bob Litterman, Robert S. Pindyck, Daniel Sutter, Shi-Ling Hsu, and David R. Henderson explore a variety of approaches to the economics of climate change in this symposium.

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Source: CATO HEADLINES

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Egypt and American Hubris

July 5, 2013 in Economics

By Doug Bandow

Doug Bandow

American foreign policy is a wreck. The presumption that Washington controls events around the globe has been exposed to all as an embarrassing illusion.

Egypt teeters on the brink, again. Syria worsens by the day. Israeli-Palestinian negotiations are dead, with another intifada in the wind. North Korea threatens to nuke the world. Violence grows in Nigeria. The Europeans have gone from disillusioned to angry with President Barack Obama. Argentina, Brazil, Ecuador and Venezuela reject U.S. leadership in Latin America. Even Iranian reformers support Iran’s nuclear program. Zimbabwe’s vicious Robert Mugabe is likely to retain power in upcoming elections. Iraq is friendly with Iran and supporting Bashar al-Assad. The Afghan government remains corrupt, incompetent, and without legitimacy. Bahrain cracks down on democracy supporters with Washington’s acquiescence. China and Russia resist U.S. priorities in Syria and elsewhere. Venezuela without Chavez looks like Venezuela with Chavez.

Instead of embracing the illusion of Washington’s omniscience, officials should acknowledge the limitations on their power and influence.”

It wasn’t supposed to be this way. America was the unipower, the hyperpower, the sole superpower, the essential nation. Washington was the benevolent hegemon. Only members of the axis of evil had something to fear from the United States. All the U.S. government had to do was exercise “leadership” and all would be well.

Oops.

That U.S. pride swelled with the end of the Cold War is hardly a surprise. But what unfortunately emerged was a rabid arrogance, the view that “what we say goes.” It was the very hubris about which the ancient Greeks warned.

Washington policymakers looked around the world and saw unformed lumps of clay, ready to mold into America’s image. And the U.S. government knew better than everyone else how the rest of the world should be organized and run. American leaders simply saw further, explained Secretary of State Madeleine Albright, who understood, even if Islamic activists did not, that the mass death of Iraqi babies due to economic sanctions “was worth it.” So it was when it came to achieving Washington’s other foreign-policy objectives as well.

Indeed, the United States was entitled to intervene at will, coercing, bombing, invading and occupying other nations for whatever reason Washington saw fit. American officials could order about ally and adversary alike, in full expectation that its dictates would be followed. Filled with rightness and possessed of power, the United States could expect to suffer no consequence from its actions.

Alas, this all proved …read more

Source: OP-EDS