Over at Cato’s blog, my colleague Mark Calabria calls out Nobel economics prize winner Joseph Stiglitz for ignoring his own little role in the economic downturn:
A recent report from the U.S. Postal Service’s inspector general found that workers’ compensation costs for postal employees are unnecessarily high. The reasons according to the audit are stale federal laws and bureaucratic ineptitude at the USPS and the Department of Labor.
Recent history shows that government efforts to micromanage industry range from unnecessary to disastrous — be it green energy, car makers, the housing market. Small wonder, then, that the government has so drastically mismanaged its own "business": the United States Postal Service.
Chris Edwards and I have repeatedly called for policymakers to get specific when it comes to spending cuts. Policymakers who want to cut spending should at least pick an agency or program and work to have it eliminated. Rep. Mike Pompeo (R-KS) has done this by introducing legislation to terminate the Department of Commerce’s Economic Development Administration.
The House Committee on Energy and Commerce’s Subcommittee on Oversight and Investigations held a hearing yesterday on President Obama’s pledge to go “page by page, line by line” through the federal budget to eliminate programs “we don’t need.” I testified with an ideologically diverse group of budget experts.
The Wall Street Journal reports on rising state and federal unemployment taxes at a time when unemployment remains high. Keynesian economists keep telling us that unemployment benefits have a stimulative “multiplier effect” on the economy. Unfortunately, that sticky little problem of the government having to suck resources out of the economy to pay for this alleged stimulus keeps getting in the way:
The Institute for Research on the Economics of Taxation’s Michael Schuyler has written an interesting paper that compares the federal government’s bleak financial situation to that of the U.S. Postal Service. The entire paper is a good read, but here are a few key points:
An audit released this week by the Department of Justice’s inspector general details wasteful and extravagant spending at DOJ conferences under both the Bush and Obama administrations. Stories about waste in government programs are as common as ants, but this one appears to have struck a nerve across the country—perhaps because the president is trying to convince us that Washington needs more money.
Chris Edwards testified to Congress's Joint Economic Committee this week on the damaging rise in federal spending and debt (his written testimony is here). The following are a few key points:
I recently discussed why the additional federal subsidies for state and local government that President Obama is proposing as part of his “job plan” are a bad idea. A new study from two Harvard economists suggests that the president’s affinity for these subsidies might have something to do with the fact that the aid would be particularly helpful to states with more left-leaning legislators and strong public sector unions.