The public policy blog of the American Enterprise Institute

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Discussion: (19 comments)

  1. Jon Murphy

    4. Regulatory overreach: Nearly two in five US workers (38%) can’t do their jobs without a permission slip (license) from the government.

    I am a libertarian partly because I believe a man should not have to ask permission from another to earn a living.

    1. I wonder if that includes folks who need a clearance.

      1. An employee always needs its employers permission to work for him. The idea that a third party’s permission is needed is the problem.

        There is nothing wrong with a government agency denying employment to someone who can’t meet some requirement. Similarly, there is nothing wrong with an employer denying someone employment because that someone doesn’t have a government certification. There is something wrong with the government denying a private employer the right to hire someone because the perspective employee doesn’t have a government certification.

      1. Paul, I have to wonder how much more of this nonsense people will tolerate before they decide they have had enough.

        1. Ron,

          My bet is they will tolerate it right up until they miss their first meal because of it. Then it will be too late.

    2. Well said, Jon, that’s it exactly.

  2. So he went to all that trouble to learn how to tie a shoe properly but applied no effort to learn what he was really doing.

    The “shoe knot”? It is simply a square knot or reef knot with a loop in each of the bitter ends. The weak form is the granny, or thief’s knot with the two loops.

    The simplest way to tie a proper square knot is to lay the end alongside the standing part then loop the other end over and under it to lie smoothly next to its standing part. Do it without loops to see it more clearly then add in the loops.

    An additional lesson to that of small changes resulting in dramatic benefits is that the answer may lie in other fields, especially those of the skilled, but less educated, craftsman.

    1. Jon Murphy

      I guess I missed something by never being a boy scout

      1. Yes, you did.

      2. I was kicked out of Boy Scouts for eating too many Brownies.

        1. Jon Murphy


  3. PeakTrader

    To rebuild the American middle class, we need to get rid of unnecessary regulations, perhaps $1 trillion of the $2 trillion a year of federal regulations.

    Also, we need to raise the minimum wage, e.g. to $15 an hour, which will raise real wages for those up to $25 an hour, while workers earning more than $25 an hour will lose little, generate faster real growth, a higher level of consumption and saving for the masses, greater efficiencies of production, less dependence on government handouts, more tax revenue, and correcting imbalances built-up over several decades, e.g. the saving glut and idle labor.

  4. PeakTrader

    “…firm that has raised $7 million has an interesting mission: Buy up companies that can ultimately serve and grow the marijuana industry.”

    Yes, buy security firms, e.g. gates and locks, firms that help students with remedial classes and how to get GEDs, pizza businesses, when they get the munchies, and film studios that make really stupid movies.

  5. Thomas Boyle

    There’s a much more secure knot, which also looks quite elegant. Tying it takes a little practice, but once tied it never, ever comes undone – and yet it opens as easily as a regular shoe knot.

  6. Thomas Boyle


    “Also, we need to raise the minimum wage, e.g. to $15 an hour, which will”…

    raise unemployment dramatically, especially among young and disadvantaged workers, reduce real growth, reduce the level of consumption, lower savings for the masses, shift production to inefficient home production, increase dependence on government handouts, cut tax revenue and raise tax rates, and increase the saving glut and idle labor.

    There – fixed it for you.

    1. PeakTrader

      Your beliefs aren’t supported mathematically and empirically. Ignoring a problem won’t “fix it.” It may self-correct in some decade, but at enormous cost and at a suboptimal level, because of ignorant people like you.

  7. Thomas Boyle


    The biggest thing an increase in the minimum wage would do, is to show just how arrogant and insensitive are those who would deny a person the right to make an exchange that improves their life, just because the person imposing the rule can’t imagine ever wanting to make that exchange.

    The law has no place in telling us who we may love, who we may befriend, or what peaceful activities we may pursue with consenting others – even if we’re being paid a little for those activities.

    Telling low-income people that, because they cannot earn enough, they may not earn at all, is cruel.

    1. PeakTrader

      Nice fairy tale.

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