Economics

Center on Wealth, Poverty, and Morality

Is the Blogosphere the Death of the Mainstream Media?

The world that George Gilder envisioned in his provocative book Life After Television (Norton, 1990) has nearly arrived — more than a decade and a half behind schedule. Nowhere is that more evident than in the growth of the ‘blogosphere’ which threatens to overthrow the influence of the mass media by providing consumers with an endless supply of unfiltered news Read More ›

Dumb and Dangerous

It is no secret that politicians frequently put all of us at risk because of their real or willful ignorance. Most wars are a result of political miscalculations, but so are many recessions, depressions and other economic calamities. What follows are three examples where the political class is putting us in danger because of economic ignorance or worse. U.S. Sens. Read More ›

Testing Oscar Arias

SAN JOSE, Costa Rica — Oscar Arias, while serving his first term as president of Costa Rica, won the Nobel Peace prize in 1987 for helping to negotiate the peace that ended the civil wars in Central America. Last month, after a long absence, he was elected to a second term as president by the narrowest of margins. This time Read More ›

Making a Real Difference

If you were a very wealthy person and you really wanted to improve the lot of your fellow man by donating a large sum of money in the most cost-effective way possible, what would you do? According to the new Forbes list of the richest people, there are almost 800 billionaires in the world. Many of them are engaged in Read More ›

A Tale of Two Cities

AMSTERDAM, The Netherlands. — Like New Orleans, this city has had periods of past glory — evident in its many well preserved buildings from centuries back. But it has also been subject to major floods and other calamities over the last 900 years. That Amsterdam has managed to overcome similar adversity enables it to provide a role model for New Read More ›

Lethal Ignorance

If you really like apple pie, and you could have one-third of a 2 pound pie or half of a 1 pound pie, which would you choose? This grade school math problem is very similar to the problem politicians and economic policymakers face in deciding whether to distribute smaller pieces of a bigger pie, or vice versa. Their decisions tell Read More ›

The Next Big Scandal

As you read this commentary, a highly predictable scandal is developing that may embarrass leaders, including President Bush, British Prime Minister Blair, and other heads of government, severely damage the reputations, or worse, of many bureaucrats, and cost taxpayers billions. A summit meeting of the leaders of the “G8” nations (U.S., U.K., France, Germany, Russia, Japan, Italy, and Canada) was Read More ›

Global good news

Humans as a species have just enjoyed their best year yet, 2005, on our little planet. By almost any measure, more people lived better lives last year than ever before. Global lifespans, literacy and real incomes all reached record highs, and more people lived in free or at least partially free countries than at anytime in human history. The state Read More ›