Tuesday, March 21, 2017

Highly Linkable - "progress" report edition

Let us begin with all the answers: The Cato Handbook for Policy Makers - it reads like stereo instructions for solving public policy problems.

Tyler Cowen has a new book, The Complacent Class, this short video is a good introduction. He suggests you can turn the book into winning advice. And perhaps it offers a unique explanation of Trump.

More from Cowen: Let he who cannot assimilate cast the first stone.

The Trump Rally? Scott Sumner cautions against the conventional view.

Dollars, Taxes: It is that time of year again. One of the promised blessings of President Trump is tax reform. Unfortunately, but perhaps not surprisingly, the version we will get is anything but ideal. Cowen explains. And Scott Sumner points out what economists know about taxes that the general public doesn't.

Do we need a national health policy? Steven Landsburg strongly suggests the question is silly on its face and requires more and different thought than what is generally offered.

One area of public policy Trump is offering no progress on is Social Security along with its ~$11 TRILLION of unfunded liability (i.e., debt in addition to the official national debt). Regardless of the chances, Bob Murphy has thought through a first-step solution to be considered before the inevitable changes to the benefit formula: Let people opt out. 

Speaking of letting people make decisions for themselves (and why shouldn't we given that they are in the best position to make good decisions as it concerns themselves), a surprising thing happened to an Ivy-league professor when she did a study of check-cashing businesses by working at one. She changed her mind about the business's virtues. (HT: David Henderson)

Scott Alexander kindly suggests some groups of people who we don't have to hate.