Economics

Center on Wealth, Poverty, and Morality

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Seattle Is Socialism’s Laboratory, and It’s Not Pretty

Democratic socialists are in the middle of a hostile takeover of the Democratic Party. Led by the Bernie Sanders presidential campaign and the “squad” of newly elected congresswomen, the hard-left coalition has laid out an ambitious agenda to transform the United States into a democratic socialist nation and Seattle has effectively become the nation’s laboratory for socialist policies. Read More ›
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Discovery Research Fellow Gale Pooley: Are We Doomed to Run Out of Resources?

Are humans using up Earth’s scarce resources too quickly, posing an existential threat to humanity itself, as the chief villain in the popular movies “Avengers: Infinity War” and “Avengers: Endgame” believed? No, says Discovery Research Fellow Gale Pooley, an economist and associate professor of business management at Brigham Young University-Hawaii, who more fully explained his answer Monday, Sept. 9th at a luncheon on Maui sponsored by the Grassroot Institute of Hawaii. Pooley recently co-authored with Cato Institute senior policy analyst Marian L. Tupy a study, “The Simon Abundance Index: A New Way to Measure Availability of Resources,” showing that Earth’s resources are actually becoming more plentiful. Read More ›
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Discovery Institute Research Fellow Gale Pooley Launches “The Simon Project”

Are we running out of resources? Many scholars, including Thomas Malthus and Paul Ehrlich, believed that population growth would result in the exhaustion of resources and a global catastrophe. University of Maryland economist Julian Simon rejected their ideas. In his 1981 book The Ultimate Resource, Simon argued that humans were intelligent beings, capable of innovating their way out of shortages through greater efficiency, increased supply, and the development of substitutes. In 1980, Simon and Ehrlich bet on the future price of $1,000 worth of five metals (copper, chromium, nickel, tin and tungsten). If the aggregate price of the five metals rose above $1,000, Simon would pay the inflation-adjusted difference to Ehrlich. If it fell below $1,000, Ehrlich would pay Simon. In spite of a population increase of 873 million over those 10 years, the five metals declined in price by an average of 57.6 percent. In 1990, Ehrlich mailed Simon a check for $576.07 (read more). The Simon Project aims to continue to explore the relationship between population growth and resource availability using four new concepts: Time Price, Price Elasticity of Population, the Simon Abundance Framework and Simon Abundance Index. Read More ›
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The Simon Abundance Index

Are we running out of resources? That’s been a hotly debated question since the publication of Paul Ehrlich’s book The Population Bomb in 1968. The Stanford University biologist warned that population growth would result in the exhaustion of resources and a global catastrophe. University of Maryland economist and Cato Institute’s Senior Fellow Julian Simon, in contrast, argued that humans would Read More ›

Photo by John Moeses Bauan

Christopher Rufo Featured in WORLD Magazine Story on Tiny Houses

Seattle plans to stop funding another tiny house village for the homeless after months of fighting with the property’s managers. It will be the second time the city has closed down a tiny house development. Northlake Village, one of nine tiny house villages the city has built since 2015, opened in March 2018. A nonprofit group called the Low Income Housing Institute (LIHI) managed it and subcontracted with Nickelsville, an activist organization of homeless and formerly homeless people. Sharon Lee, LIHI executive director, said Nickelsville did not make residents look for permanent housing or work with a case manager. They also used evictions “arbitrarily and unjustly made people homeless again,” Lee said. Tension grew, and in April, Nickelsville refused to allow LIHI or city staff on the property. They closed the gates with padlocks and posted signs telling the residents working security to keep LIHI or city staff out. In September, the city gave LIHI an Oct. 7 deadline to enroll residents in the city’s Homeless Management Information System. LIHI failed to comply, blaming Nickelsville for not cooperating. Read More ›
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Compassion with Results

The purpose of this paper is to provide a roadmap for immediate impact for American cities and counties on the issue of homelessness. While the long-term goals for subsidized and permanent supportive housing are necessary components of public policy, we believe these plans must be supplemented with the short-term objectives that will deliver immediate results to the citizens, families, and homeless individuals across the country. Read More ›
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Photo by Ashlee Best, COSM2019

Leading Economist and Developer of Time-Prices, Dr. Gale Pooley Appointed as a Fellow of Discovery Institute

Seattle — Discovery Institute is pleased to announce the appointment of Dr. Gale L. Pooley to serve as a fellow with the Institute’s Center on Wealth and Poverty. “Gale Pooley is the world leader in the most important movement in contemporary economics — based on the recognition that wealth is knowledge, money is time, and the only true prices are Read More ›

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Discovery Fellow Christopher Rufo with Tucker Carlson on the West Coast Shoplifting Boom

There is a "shoplifting boom" that's hitting the major West Coast cities. Five years ago, California passed Proposition 47, which decriminalized drug possession and thefts under $950, which has led to a surge in property crime throughout the state. Policies like this hurt working families, create disorder on downtown streets, and drive California further into "Third World levels of inequality." Last night, I sat down with Tucker Carlson to discuss the "shoplifting boom." I was born and raised in California, so it's very difficult to see what's happened to my home state—but there's no end in sight to the rising chaos and disorder. Read More ›
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Still from America Lost by Christopher Rufo (CC-BY-ND)

Discovery Institute Fellow Chrisopher Rufo Set to Release New Documentary Next Year on American Poverty

Discovery Institute research fellow Christopher F. Rufo is set to release his latest feature-length documentary, America Lost, which tells the story of life in three “forgotten American cities” — Youngstown, Ohio, Memphis, Tennessee, and Stockton, California.  America Lost reveals the dramatic decline of the American interior through a combination of emotional personal stories and thoughtful conservative commentary. Filmmaker Christopher F. Rufo spent Read More ›