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I have a new essay, coauthored with two of my former students, Anna Mills and Dana Williams. We just published a piece in Real Clear Policy summarizing it. Here is a selection of the OpEd:

Liberals, conservative, and libertarians agree on the goals: Patients should have access to innovative, low-cost, and high-quality care. And though another round of federal reform may be years off, a number of state-level changes can move us closer to a competitive and patient-centered health-care market, making it possible to realize these shared aspirations.

In a new paper published by the Mercatus Center at George Mason University, we identify three areas for reform: States can eliminate certificate-of-need laws, liberalize scope-of-practice regulations, and end the regulatory barriers to telemedicine.

And here is our longer essay.

I haven’t had much time for blogging lately but I’m going to try to get back into the swing of things. Back in December, I had this to say in Real Clear Markets:

The eminent political economist (and my former professor) Gordon Tullock, passed away last month at the age of 92. His greatest contribution to economic understanding was a funny-sounding concept: “rent seeking.” Funny sounding or not, this idea-perhaps more than any other economic idea developed in the last century-explains what ails our moribund economy. And, as strange as this may sound, a pair of rock star dinosaur hunters form the 1880s can help us understand what exactly rent seeking is and why it’s such a problem.

You can read the rest here. FYI: I didn’t choose the title and am not crazy about it.  

Dinosaur

photo:

(It has been a busy few weeks and I haven’t had much time for blogging).

In early December, my colleagues Chris Koopman, Adam Thierer, and I published a piece on the sharing economy and consumer protection regulation. Here is a summary.

A few days later, I was on the Diane Rehm Show talking about the sharing economy with Alvaro Bedoya (@alvarombedoya) and Nancy Scola (@nancyscola). Alvaro is the executive director of the Center on Privacy and Technology at Georgetown University Law School and Nancy is a reporter covering the intersections of technology and public policy, politics, and governance for The Washington Post.

During the course of our conversation, Diane also spoke with Sunil Paul, the co-founder and CEO of Sidecar and with Donna Blythe-Shaw, the spokesperson for the Boston Taxi Drivers’ Association.

It was a great conversation and I very much enjoyed meeting Diane, Alvaro and Nancy.

You can listen to it here.

Also check out Adam’s comments on the sharing economy at a Congressional Internet Caucus Advisory Committee here.

Two weeks ago, I sat down with CSPAN’s Greta Wodele Brawner to talk about “lame duck” sessions of Congress. Drawing on my research with colleagues Chris Koopman and Emily Washington, we discussed the ways in which roll call voting patterns differ during lame duck sessions compared with ordinary sessions.

A few times I struck a relatively upbeat tone about what might get accomplished in the next two years. Only two weeks old, I worry that some of these comments already seem wildly optimistic. Let me know what you think.

An interesting development in state regulation of wine shipment

November 18, 2014
Thumbnail image for An interesting development in state regulation of wine shipment

Can one state enforce another state’s laws that prohibit direct-to-consumer wine shipment from out-of-state retailers while allowing it by in-state retailers?  That’s the question posed in a recent New York case. The New York State Liquor Authority has a rule that prohibits licensees from engaging in “improper conduct.”  The liquor regulator argues that direct shipments […]

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The Sharing Economy

September 30, 2014

Over at the Tech Liberation Front, my colleague Adam Thierer has sketched out a few themes in the debate over the sharing economy. His discussion of leveling the regulatory playing field is particularly important. Here is my favorite part: Alternative remedies exist: Accidents will always happen, of course. But insurance, contracts, product liability, and other […]

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How Complete Are Federal Agencies’ Regulatory Analyses?

September 12, 2014

A report released yesterday by the Government Accountability Office will likely get spun to imply that federal agencies are doing a pretty good job of assessing the benefits and costs of their proposed regulations. The subtitle of the report reads in part, “Agencies Included Key Elements of Cost-Benefit Analysis…” Unfortunately, agency analyses of regulations are less […]

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North Carolina Reconsiders its Rejection of Corporate Welfare

September 2, 2014

A couple of weeks ago, something surprising happened in North Carolina. As the Carolina Journal explained: RALEIGH — Twenty-eight House Republicans bolted party ranks Tuesday, joining 26 Democrats to defeat an economic incentives program that some labeled “corporate welfare.” It was a rebuke to House Speaker Thom Tillis, R-Mecklenburg, Senate leader Phil Berger, R-Rockingham, and […]

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Ex-Im in 5 Minutes

August 26, 2014

What is Ex-Im? What does it do? Is it, on net, a good deal for the U.S.? Here is my attempt to answer these questions in five minutes. Many thanks to the multi-talented Charles Blatz for making this possible.

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Paving over pension liabilities, again

August 18, 2014

Public sector pensions are subject to a variety of accounting and actuarial manipulations. A lot of the reason for the lack of funding discipline, I’ve argued, is in part due to the mal-incentives in the public sector to fully fund employee pensions. Discount rate assumptions, asset smoothing, and altering amortization schedules are three of the […]

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