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The Truth, Probably

By Robert McHenry

We will never attain certainty about our concerns, but with care and luck we approach it by increments. Above all, we learn to be skeptical of grand visions and their visionaries.

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Essays

  • ‘The American Banking System Might Not Last Until Monday’

    ‘The American Banking System Might Not Last Until Monday’

    Learning from the crises you’ve forgotten.

    How good is the human group mind at financial memory? Pretty bad. For example, consider this really striking bit of history: “The then Federal Reserve Chairman made a phone call to the Bank of ...

  • Flash Point: New Oil-by-Rail Rules

    Flash Point: New Oil-by-Rail Rules

    Proposed regulations of oil-bearing trains pose several challenges and divert us from more important safety questions.

    On July 6, 2013, a train carrying crude oil from the Bakken formation in North Dakota exploded in the middle of Lac-Mégantic, a small town in the Canadian province of Quebec. The incident was genuinely ...

  • A Flawed E-Cigarette Regulation

    A Flawed E-Cigarette Regulation

    The FDA's proposed regulation should not go forward in its current form, or it will undermine efforts to persuade ...

    Recently, the New York Times ran several high-profile essays justifying the liberalization of marijuana laws. Editorialists addressed the health effects, the need for product standards, and the ...

  • Peanut Butter’s Many Inventors

    Peanut Butter’s Many Inventors

    The popular product illustrates both the opportunities and the risks of intellectual property.

    How have so many people come to love peanut butter? Experts aren’t sure how long it takes to develop the taste, but to many people it’s a formative childhood memory. One notable fan, ...

  • 100 Years of the Panama Canal

    100 Years of the Panama Canal

    One of the supreme engineering feats of the early 20th century, the canal has been an immense boon to shipping and of ...

    On August 15, 1914, the world was fixated on the dramatic first month of World War I, as the German army raced towards Paris and the fate of Europe hung in the balance. But on that day, half a world ...

  • Good News for U.S. Capital Markets

    Good News for U.S. Capital Markets

    The FSOC’s decision to back away from SIFI designations has major implications for the regulation of ‘shadow banking.’

    After its last meeting at the end of July, the Financial Stability Oversight Council (FSOC) announced that it has “directed staff to undertake a more focused analysis of industry-wide products ...

  •  In Defense of Price Gouging and Profiteering

    In Defense of Price Gouging and Profiteering

    If you don’t like price rationing, please explain how limited supplies of a good are to be allocated.

    Minor news stories with only a local direct interest nonetheless can carry large general implications, and just such a recent item emerged last weekend: Residents of Toledo, Ohio were warned not to ...

  • A Bipartisan Consensus on How to Fight Poverty?

    A Bipartisan Consensus on How to Fight Poverty?

    In an otherwise bitterly partisan political environment, two recent policy proposals from both sides of the aisle share ...

    Two recent comprehensive policy proposals for reforming the government's approach to fighting poverty — one from a center-left think tank, the other from Republican Congressman Paul Ryan ...

  • The Long-Hours Luxury

    The Long-Hours Luxury

    One factor that is often overlooked in the debate over causes of income inequality is a shift in the distribution of ...

    The United States and most other industrialized countries have experienced a rapid increase in inequality since around the 1970s. Unsurprisingly, the discussion of inequality has become politicized. ...

  • It's Time for Real Reform of Veterans' Health Care

    It's Time for Real Reform of Veterans' Health Care

    The Miller-Sanders bill addresses the immediate crisis, but underlying structural defects must be corrected if we are ...

    Congress is expected to adopt a bipartisan deal to improve veterans' health care before it adjourns for a five-week summer recess. Representative Jeff Miller (R-Florida) and Senator Bernie Sanders ...

Datapoints

Airstrikes in Iraq

Support increases for airstrikes against militants.

Airstrikes in Iraq

TECH POLICY DAILY

  • Tech Policy Daily: The voice of the American Enterprise Institute's Center for Internet, Communications, and Technology Policy.

Most Viewed Articles

‘The American Banking System Might Not Last Until Monday’ By Alex J. Pollock 08/23/2014
Learning from the crises you’ve forgotten.
The Truth, Probably By Robert McHenry 08/31/2014
We will never attain certainty about our concerns, but with care and luck we approach it by ...
Peanut Butter’s Many Inventors By Edward Tenner 08/15/2014
The popular product illustrates both the opportunities and the risks of intellectual property.
The Long-Hours Luxury By Tino Sanandaji 08/04/2014
One factor that is often overlooked in the debate over causes of income inequality is a shift in ...
A Flawed E-Cigarette Regulation By Sally Satel and Alan D. Viard 08/16/2014
The FDA's proposed regulation should not go forward in its current form, or it will undermine ...
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