A new chair for the Federal Reserve

President Trump announced his choice for Fed Chair (formal title: Chairman of the Board of the Governors of the Federal Reserve System): Jerome Powell, a current Fed governor appointed by President Obama in 2012. I'm disappointed, but not surprised, that he did not reappoint Janet Yellen as chair. I think she had a nearly ideal background for a Fed chair: Academic smarts as a professor at … [Read more...]

Will Mexico pay for the wall?

"Trump Seeks 20% Tax on Mexico Imports" is the headline in the New York Times. President Trump claims this is how Mexico will pay for a border wall. It is economic nonsense; a 20 percent tariff is a way to get Americans to pay for the wall without directly taxing them for it. If the tax applies to all imported goods and services, this will affect everything from auto parts to fresh vegetables. … [Read more...]

Some economic history for Martin Luther King Jr. Day

Today is Martin Luther King, Jr., Day, a time to celebrate not only Dr. King’s life but the broader Civil Rights movement of which he was a leader.  The Birmingham Bus Boycott, the Freedom Riders, the March on Washington, the Civil Rights Act of 1964, Bloody Sunday at the Edmund Pettis Bridge, and the Voting Rights Act of 1965, are just a few of the milestones we recognize and commemorate. Back … [Read more...]