Big Government advocates often claim that we have government to thank for our modern 40-hour work week. In the bad old days, businesses forced employees to work super long hours, but then benevolent government stepped in and forced all businesses to limit the work week to 40 hours. How much of that is true? Let’s … Continue reading How did we get the 40-hour work week?
Historically, the US has been known as a beacon of freedom. Unfortunately, that reputation has become tarnished over the past ten to fifteen years. I’m referring to economic freedom, not political freedom. Economic freedom means that each person is free to work, produce, consume, and invest as they wish. This involves personal choice, voluntary buying … Continue reading US not the beacon of freedom you think
The more I ponder the topic of capitalism, the more convinced I become of the importance of businesses. I used to think of businesses as generally a good thing because they provide jobs, but I see now that it’s much more. Everyone should want a business-friendly environment. Not because it helps businesses, but because it … Continue reading Why we should be pro-business
A couple of my recent posts discussed the immense prosperity gains much of the world has seen over the past couple centuries. The long-term track record of free-market capitalism is quite good and quite clear. However, some people say that the American middle-class has stagnated, and is little better off today than in the 1970s. … Continue reading Is middle-class stagnant?
People have become tremendously more prosperous over the past two centuries, at least those who live in countries that practiced something like free-market capitalism for a sustained period. In my last post, we looked at how incomes have grown in different parts of the world. In this post, the time machine will take us back … Continue reading Prosperity Time Machine (2 of 2)
I think one reason some people don’t appreciate free-market capitalism is that they take prosperity for granted. They don’t really notice how prosperity has improved over the decades, so they don’t really think about how it happened. This is somewhat understandable. The slow unfolding of events over decades and centuries makes it difficult for anyone … Continue reading Prosperity Time Machine (1 of 2)
The growth rate of the US economy has been in the news recently, for a couple reasons. First, economic growth in recent years has been lower than the historical average of roughly 3%. This has led some people to predict low growth as the new normal. Second, the budget released last week by the Trump […]
A couple of weeks ago, Puerto Rico (PR) effectively declared bankruptcy. Although I am no expert on the PR economy, based on my limited research, the mess down there seems to illustrate how too much government causes problems for an economy. We can all learn some lessons from this. What are the problems? Over the … Continue reading Lessons from Puerto Rico Bankruptcy
Trade deficits have been in the news because President Trump has talked about international trade quite a bit. He and others think that a trade deficit is a very terrible thing. I mostly disagree. The heart of free-market capitalism is economic freedom. Freedom is usually beneficial for society, and that includes freedom to trade. Free … Continue reading How Bad Are Trade Deficits?
Last week President Trump’s team proposed to cut the corporate tax rate from 35% to 15%. Tax reform that cuts the tax rate and also closes loopholes is an excellent idea that would benefit all of us. Popularity of corporate taxes Taxing corporations is popular. Gallup and Pew Research surveys both show that more than … Continue reading Why Corporate Tax Cut Makes Sense