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Ben Zycher is an A.E.I. scholar who is not going along with some other A.E.I. scholars’ – such as Aparna Mathur’s – mysterious and disappointing call for government-mandated paid family leave.  A slice from Ben’s essay:

So let us begin with another obvious eternal truth: There are no free lunches, and the mere fact that expanded paid leave in isolation would be very nice for some or many workers says little about the unavoidable tradeoffs….  From a purely analytic standpoint, there is no difference between an expansion of paid leave and, say, a “free” limousine ride to and from work each day.  After all, the latter too would be very nice, but is unlikely to be worth the unavoidable cost in terms of other employment conditions and parameters that also are desirable.

Also on the topic of the economic folly of government-mandated paid family leave is GMU Econ alum Dan “Bulldog” Mitchell.

Here’s Eric Boehm on the wise about-face by Baltimore’s mayor on raising that city’s minimum wage to $15 per hour.  Reality is.

Using recent findings about Americans’ increased trade with the Chinese – findings from a paper by Jonathan Rothwell and from another paper by Ildikó Magyari – the Wall Street Journal, in this anonymously authored editorial, reports that, contrary to some earlier reports, this increased trade is indeed beneficial for American workers on the whole.  A slice:

A second recent study—“Firm Reorganization, Chinese Imports, and US Manufacturing Employment” by Columbia Ph.D. candidate Ildikó Magyari —looks at the impact of Chinese imports on U.S. companies. It finds that trade with China reduced costs and allowed firms to expand “their total manufacturing employment in industries in which the US has a comparative advantage relative to China, even as specific” parts of the same company got smaller.

Although Chinese imports may mean job losses in one part of the company, Mr. Magyari writes, “these losses were more than offset by gains in employment within the same firms. Contrary to conventional wisdom, firms exposed to greater Chinese imports created more manufacturing and nonmanufacturing jobs than non-exposed firms.”

Scott Sumner tells a tale of two cities and of the importance of values.

Walter Olson very nicely unpacks the poisonous fruits of irresponsible reporting about proposed budget cuts.

Mike Munger tackles the timely topic of “safe spaces” and speech on college campuses.

Steve Chapman reports the happy news that Trump’s border wall is looking less and less likely to become a reality.

J.D. Tuccille tells of how the Federal Trade Commission is sensibly skeptical of occupational-licensing diktats.  (HT Anthony Onofreo)  It’s worthwhile here to note that FTC acting Chairperson Maureen Ohlhausen is a graduate of the GMU School of Law.


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