Commentary

If you’re not too concerned about global warming, you’re probably a regular American. If you think, however, that it’s on par with World War II as a threat to the nation, you’re the managing editor of Time magazine. Al Gore’s “We” ad campaign drew a parallel between fighting global warming and storming the beaches of Normandy. Then Time took the iconic photo of Marines raising the flag at Iwo Jima and replaced the Stars and Stripes with a tree. “[W]e say there needs to be an effort along the lines of preparing for World War II to combat global warming... continue reading
Candidates for president of the United States are being judged on their “plans” for the economy, health care, retirement, housing, etc. However, in 1920 the renowned Austrian economist Ludwig von Mises published “Socialism,” in which he pointed out that central planning cannot result in a prosperous economy. One of his main points was that a planner cannot accumulate and process the information needed to allocate resources to their highest and best use. This idea was made in a concrete fashion by Leonard Read in his 1950 article, "I, Pencil," where he showed that a planner cannot possibly determine how to... continue reading
Pity poor Al Gore. The former presidential candidate has a trophy room Tiger Woods would envy. He’s got the Nobel Peace Prize, an Emmy, even an Oscar. But much like his failed presidential campaign, Gore can’t win the big game. Gore’s big game is climate change. He’s been trying to force America to embrace his apocalyptic vision for years and Americans still don’t agree. His failure is almost stunning – like Woods losing at miniature golf. He’s been completely set up for an easy victory: The mainstream media long ago fully embraced everything he says about global warming. They rarely... continue reading
Skyrocketing gasoline prices may be pushing the U.S. economy over the edge, but the oil-rich lords of the Organization of Petroleum Exporting Countries (OPEC) oil cartel don’t give a hoot. Chakib Khelil, OPEC’s president and Algeria’s oil minister, has warned that oil may go to $120 a barrel. Khelil is an optimist – if one or more of the major oil producers, such as Iran or Venezuela, gets embroiled in a conflict or otherwise destabilizes, oil could go up beyond $130 a barrel, experts say. And OPEC, whose members are getting rich and fat strapping astronomical oil prices on the... continue reading
To hear the mainstream media tell it, we have a Titanic problem with global warming. Not large, but Titanic in that they believe “unsinkable” mankind is facing a looming cataclysm. How do they know? Because some scientists tell them that’s the way it is. But when other scientists tell them that might not be the case, they only half listen and soon forget. Such is the fate of the unprecedented 2008 International Conference on Climate Change put on by the Heartland Institute. That event drew 500 scientists, economists and public policy experts to New York to discuss the flaws in... continue reading
The 2008 campaign season features sharp disagreements among the leading presidential aspirants from both parties. Climate change, however, seems to be the exception that proves the rule, as all three frontrunners have embraced broadly similar policy prescriptions that would supposedly combat global warming. Sens. Hillary Clinton (D-N.Y.), John McCain (R-Ariz.), and Barack Obama (D-Ill.) have declared their support for mandatory emissions reductions and heavy investment in renewable fuel technology. All three are also co-sponsors of the 2007 Climate Stewardship and Innovation Act (S. 280), a bill that would establish a cap-and-trade system to restrict carbon dioxide emissions over the next... continue reading
Some in the media try claim that we are in the beginnings of a recession in an attempt to make the case for larger government intervention in the economy. It is instructive to consider an era when there was a truly severe economic downturn, the Great Depression, in order to give some perspective to our current situation and whether government action is likely to help or hinder things. Great Depression by the Numbers Economic growth : The Great Depression was a period of decline that involved not just the economy of the United States but that of the entire world... continue reading
You know the presidential race is in full rhetorical swing when candidates are rallying people against a dangerous enemy of America. It’s time to play on the most basic of voters’ instincts: fear and hate. The enemy in question has a worldwide network with agents embedded deep in the United States. It gets money from oil. And it has a name that makes the media jump to attention. Yes, the next president must save us from … Exxon. You could substitute other Big Business names there, depending on the political climate, but this is the one today’s candidates are naming... continue reading
What’s messier and more shameless than candidates campaigning to save the economy? Media coverage of that economy – the one all the candidates want to “stimulate.” The media coverage that’s driving people’s votes. Despite journalists and politicians’ gloomy outlook, two-thirds of Americans say their own finances are “secure,” according to a recent Los Angeles Times/Bloomberg poll. That’s surprising when you consider the media’s take on the economy, where the push is very real for a big-spending, “stimulating” candidate. Washington must “ride to the rescue,” as one Washington Post columnist put it. A perfect example: while two-thirds of Americans surveyed said... continue reading
Amy Robach, a daytime anchor at MSNBC, recently reported on the “Today” show that “everyone’s talking about a recession.” The Business and Media Institute found that the broadcast media mentioned the economy or a recession in 54 stories during the first two weeks of 2008. When I was a child, one of the most popular shows on children’s television was the “Rocky and Bullwinkle Show.” In one of the segments, Bullwinkle Moose played Mr. Know-It-All. His opening line always ended with “Now what does that mean?” Perhaps it is time we asked the same question about recession. There are a... continue reading