Economics

Trouble for the Bubble Down Under

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In a remarkable and most unexpected outcome, Australia’s conservative Prime Minister Scott Morrison has retained the country’s leadership at the recent Australian Federal Parliamentary election (18 May, 2019). Morrison’s victory confounded a wide array of commentators, academics, advocacy groups, industry groups, all of the opinion polls, most of the media and a host of fringe political groups who not only predicted victory for the Labor opposition but an emphatic one.  read more »

America Can’t Ignore The Economic Threat Of A Rising China

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In the aftermath of the Communist victory in the late 1940s, the question often asked in Washington was: “Who lost China?” That fueled the McCarthyite inquisition that followed. The question our children might ask is: “Who lost America?”  read more »

Milwaukee Puts Ribbons Over Brooms

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Due to circumstances entirely within the city of Milwaukee’s control, it can’t afford to fix potholes in city streets and it certainly won’t pay to repair the damage to at least 45 cars caused by those potholes so far this year.  read more »

Mayoral Mismatch

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Mayors have had little success in becoming president, with only one big-city chief executive, Grover Cleveland of Buffalo, later governor of New York, actually making it to the White House.  read more »

Densification Efforts Like SB50 Are The Wrong Fix To California’s Housing Problem

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For decades California’s regulatory and tax policies have undermined our middle class, driving millions out of this most favored state. Perhaps nowhere is this clearer than in a drive that seeks to destroy the single-family neighborhoods preferred by the state’s middle-income households.  read more »

After Amazon: What Happened In New York Isn’t Just About New York

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The fiasco surrounding Amazon’s recent escape from New York reflects a broader, potentially devastating trend. By driving the Seattle-based behemoth out of the Big Apple, New York’s increasingly militant progressives have created a political paradigm that could resonate in cities across the country.  read more »

Atlanta Remains Top World Airport in 2018

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Atlanta’s Hartsfield-Jackson International Airport continues to be the largest in the world in terms of volume, with 107 million passengers, according to preliminary 2018 data released by Airports Council International. Atlanta has held the top position since 2000. However, Atlanta’s passenger growth over the last eight years has been the smallest of the top 20 airports, at 20.2 percent.  read more »

California Lawmakers’ War On Domestic Oil and Gas Creating National Security Risk

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Somehow Californians are proud (or oblivious) to the fact that the Golden State has become a national security risk. Both California’s in-state crude oil production, and Alaskan oil imports have both been forced into decline and are now unable to meet the states’ energy needs.  read more »

Cities Could Use More People Who Care Less

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I wrote my latest piece about Providence, but it could apply to a lot of cities. It’s a bit of a contrarian take on civic engagement. For some people, too much civic engagement can result in a fixation on problems, which then turns them negative on the community. This makes the grass look greener in other places. Whereas if they just enjoyed the good things about a city instead of worrying about civic challenges, they might enjoy life more and be more likely to stay. Here’s an excerpt:  read more »

The Once-Lucky Country

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Few places on earth are better suited for middle-class prosperity than Australia. From early in its history, when it was a refuge for British convicts, the vast, resource-rich country has provided an ideal environment for upward mobility, from the pioneering ranches of the nineteenth century to the middle-class suburbs of the late twentieth. Journalist Donald Horne described Australia in 1964 as “a lucky country run mainly by second-rate people who share its luck.”  read more »