Accounting Fraud and Short Sellers

Fascinating discussion Friday on CNBC about the falsification of Lehman Bros. balance sheets prior to their collapse.  The fraud was completely missed by regulatory agencies despite extensive government oversight by the SEC and the NY Federal Reserve, who had regulators inside Lehman after the Bear Stearns meltdown.  Sarbanes-Oxley, put into …

Republicans and Obstructionism

We keep hearing that the Republicans are the party of “no,” that they are simply obstructionists keeping us from achieving a blissful state of progressive utopia. The latest example of this is Sen. Jim Bunning, standing in the way of a $10 billion unemployment benefits extension.  He says he supports …

Ideology, Religion, and Charity

If liberals are the charitable people and conservatives are greedy and selfish, why is it that though liberals make, on average, 6 percent more than conservatives (using numbers from 2000), conservatives give, on average, 30 percent more to charity? Why is it that religious people are twice as likely as …

Healthcare and transparency

President Obama today is holding his health care summit to “bridge the gaps” that exist between what Republicans think is best for the country with regard to healthcare reform and what the Democrats want to see passed. In his opening remarks, President Obama said, “I hope that this isn’t political …

Obama, health care, and price controls

Just days before the White House health care summit with Republican members of Congress, President Obama has released a health care plan that, according to the Wall Street Journal, “take[s] the worst of both the House and Senate bills and combine[s] them into something more destructive.” The bill attempts to …

Foreigners and Innovation

  Foreigners receiving PhDs have, in recent years, constituted nearly half of all such degrees awarded in science and engineering in the United States.  In 1997, the percentage was fewer than one-third. Because the majority of these students choose to stay in the US after receiving their education, this is a …