In yesterday’s Wall Street Journal, Amity Shlaes offers sound advice on how to make the American economy more innovative.

In today’s Baltimore Sun, Rachel Marsden offers sound advice to the Occupy Wall Street crowd.  Here’s a slice:

The idea of fair and just compensation in exchange for commensurate effort has been so corrupted that true capitalism is a rarity — even on Wall Street, where screwing up means being bailed out through corporate welfare. Ironically, the protesters occupying Wall Street have that in common with those they purport to oppose: They all want government handouts, and no one wants to hustle to change their predicament.

In Sunday’s Washington Post, Reason’s Katherine Mangu-Ward dispels five myths about healthy eating.

Steve Landsburg explains why

… [i]f you care about efficiency, you’ll want to cut the capital gains rate to zero for everyone. If you care about fairness, and if you believe fairness mitigates against double/triple/quadruple taxation, you’ll still want to cut the capital gains rate to zero for everyone.

Carpe Diem’s Mark Perry updates us on the state of industrial production in America.

Bryan Caplan asks a question of growing importance.

Speaking of Bryan, I thank him for alerting me to this splendid post by Scott Sumner.

Finally, my former student Mrs. Michelle M. McAdoo speaks with Neil Cavuto about Apple Inc.

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kyle8 October 18, 2011 at 8:39 am

The Shlaes article is awesome. I knew about the change in capital gains taxes, but didn’t know the history of the other laws.

We should not expect any growth, and in fact we will be in for continued economic problems because taxes on capital gains are set to increase in two years, and because crippling regulations, especially in the energy sector, are multiplying.

Let us hope a more rational group get into power. These spoiled leftwing brats are running the economic train off of the cliff even faster than the warmongers who preceded them.

John Dewey October 18, 2011 at 9:29 am

I appreciated the content and tone of Rachel Marsden’s piece. But I disagree with this statement:

Rachel Marsden: “The idea of fair and just compensation in exchange for commensurate effort has been so corrupted that true capitalism is a rarity”

I analyze at least 150 proposed deals offerred to the air transportation which employs me. My job requires me to also pour over the financials of 200-300 would-be vendors. Perhaps my perspective on corporate America has provided me a wider view than what Ms. Marsden has been provided.

Although the GM bailouts and the Solyndra bribes make the big news, thousands of small and medium companies conduct business every day without any desire or expectation of government assistance. It is true that government at all levels interferes with their operations, but that intereference in no way disqualifies those companies from properly being categorized as capitalistic.

jjoxman October 18, 2011 at 9:31 am

I just like that Don used the word “splendid.” It is a substantially underused word.

Ken October 18, 2011 at 10:07 am

Suppose half of the sectors of the economy grow forever at 4%, while the rest completely stagnate. I’m strongly tempted to say that this economy’s growth rate equals 2% forever. Anyone tempted to disagree? If so, why?

This statement by Bryan is loaded with implicit assumptions that have to be there for this to work. Assuming X is the combined 50% of the economy that stagnates at time 0 and Y is the 50% of the economy that has a 4% growth rate at time 0. Assume that X and Y make up 1 unit each of the economy (so the economy is 2 units at time 0), then at time k, the economy will be 1 + 1*(1.04)^k, meaning that asymptotically the economic growth rate will be 4%, not 2%. For example in 100 years the economy will be 1+1.04^100 = 51.5 and in 101 years the economy will be 1+1.04^101 = 53.5. Since 53.5/51.5 = 1.038, the economy grows at 3.8% in the 101st year.

For the situation Bryan mention to occur is that some industries in Y become stagnant.


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