Chris Moody

Recent Posts From Chris Moody

How to Explain Free Trade In Less Than Three Minutes

It is a common refrain from politicians and pundits alike, (I’m looking at you, Lou Dobbs,) that governments need to “do something” to protect jobs at home and limit trade from foreigners. We hear it all the time. But what if we lived in a society in which people, regardless of their national origin, could trade freely with one another?

Courtesy of Tom Palmer at the Atlas Foundation, the video below explains how such a system of free trade would accomplish greater prosperity and peace for everyone.

Watch:

For more, check out AtlasNetwork.org/BastiatLegacy.

Advice for Tea Partiers

The Tea Party movement’s endurance will be a testament to its ability to understand that cutting government means having a long-term focus and its willingness to move beyond Republican talking points. Cato’s John Samples, author of The Struggle to Limit Government offers an assessment of what Tea Partiers should do if they really want to sustain an effort to cut government. Five pieces of advice:

1. Republicans aren’t always your friends.

2. Some tea partiers like big government.

3. Democrats aren’t always your enemies.

4. Smaller government demands restraint abroad.

5. Leave social issues to the states.

Watch:

Guns in DC

Three people were killed and six wounded after a drive-by shooting occured in Southeast Washington DC this week .

The tragedy unfolded in a town where it is ridiculously difficult to legally purchase a gun. DC has some of the strictest anti-gun ownership laws in the nation. For many District residents who want to own a gun, the burdens aren’t worth the time and cost. So they get them illegally. (Such are the consequences many draconian laws. If you’re willing to  break the law, you can have a gun.)

So you can imagine why one might find today’s Washington Post editorial cartoon troubling and perplexing:Gun Cartoon

In a city in which the Second Amendment is barely recognized as a right, it is difficult to blame the Second Amendment for gun-related deaths. It is dissapointing (but not surprising) to see that Tom Toles is unable to grasp that.

Irony Alert

Photo taken at a rally in Los Angeles in March:

Irony

It gets better. Did you hear the one about the guy who runs a consulting company that charges money in return for lessons on how to organize a successful anti-capitalism protest?

As economist Tyler Cowen would say, there are markets in everything.

That’s Some Loophole…

President Obama is poised to take on a whole host of issues in the coming months, including reforming federal regulation of the financial sector, campaign-finance law and increasing federal involvement in education, Politico reports.

We’ll save policy analysis for another day. For now let’s focus on the way Politico reported the news.The story reads:

Obama now will push Congress to close campaign-finance loopholes opened by the Citizens United case, adopt his overhaul of the No Child Left Behind education bill, and perhaps even tackle a clean-energy bill.

Wait, what? “Loopholes”? Since when do we consider the First Amendment, you know, that “Congress shall make no law” stuff, a “loophole” that can (or should) be closed if it gets in the way of Congress?

That’s some loophole.

And in case anyone forgets what the Citizens United case was really about, here’s your primer:

Census Comedy Gold

After you fill out your U.S. Census form (for libertarians, it will take about 10 seconds, for everyone else, expect about 10 minutes), watch this:

Another Day, Another Hot Mic

Not much to see here, just the obligatory “Biden tells Obama that signing the health care bill into law is a big effing deal” post.

To be sure, this isn’t a scandal, and it’s certainly nothing to get worked up about. It’s just funny.

I can imagine the president’s reply was a lot like this scene in Forrest Gump.

Forrest: “But you ain’t got no legs Lt. Dan!”

Lt. Dan: “Yes, I know that.”

 

Behind the Politics

Today is going to be a day of discussing sheer politics, and little more. At this point, we are well beyond talks of policy and the only thing that matters for the next 12 hours is whether some members of Congress can be convinced, for whatever reason, to cast a Yea or Nea vote on the House floor on the health care overhaul.

But let us not forget the important philosophic differences that are at play in this debate.

In this weekend’s edition of the Wall Street Journal, the editorial board takes a minute to look past the politics, and reminds us of what is behind the battle over true health care reform:

In our world of infinite wants but finite resources, there are only two ways to allocate any good or service: either through prices and the choices of millions of individuals, or through central government planning and political discretion.

That is really what it’s all about. Who decides. Who controls. And who you think makes better decisions.

The Journal even reprinted a 1996 essay from the late economist Milton Friedman on their op-ed page. Now, if something written nearly 15 years ago still has relevance in the current moment of contemporary politics, you know it must be something special.

So, in between your vote counting on this Sunday afternoon, take a moment to read Friedman’s immortal words.

Reason Saves Cleveland - Education

If you were a policymaker tasked with running a school system with one of the lowest achievement rates in the country, and someone came along and offered an idea with proven results that costs less, would you give that person the time of day? (We can only hope.)

In their second installment of Reason Saves Cleveland, Nick Gillespie examines Cleveland’s dysfunctional school system, and show methods around the country that actually work.

As Reason explains, “Cleveland’s public schools are failing to prepare students for their futures and as a result, all parents who can afford to have been fleeing to the suburbs for decades. Within Cleveland’s own boundaries, charter schools are booming and delivering quality education at a fraction of the cost of traditional public schools. Does Cleveland have what it takes to fundamentally reform its K-12 education system and become a leader in 21st-century education?”

For the sake of all those children who did not choose to be born into poverty, let us hope it does. Watch:

Reason Saves Cleveland

The fine folks from Reason TV just released a new documentary series, “Reason Saves Cleveland,” which traces the rise and fall of the once great Midwestern city, and how a few reforms can get “the mistake on the lake” back on track.

Here’s their description: “Sixty years ago, Cleveland was a booming city full of promise, opportunity, and people. Today, the city’s population is less half of what it was in its prime and it ranks as one of the poorest big cities in the United States. Hometown hero Drew Carey reflects on how the city became “the mistake on the lake” and wonders about the city’s future. Is a Cleveland renaissance possible or is the city doomed to long, slow death?”

I’ll be posting new episodes all week. Enjoy.

Chris Moody

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