Looking for Renewable Policy Certainty in All the Wrong Places

From EnergyWire comes the headline, “In Missouri, industry wants off the ‘solar coaster’.” (link here via Midwest Energy News). A utility rebate program authorized by voters in 2008 is making Missouri into a solar leader in the Midwest. But $175 million set aside to subsidize solar installations is [nearly] fully subscribed … and the same small … More Looking for Renewable Policy Certainty in All the Wrong Places

Icle Letter to Gov. Christie Opposing Direct Vehicle Distribution Ban: Over 70 Economists and Law Professors

Geoff Manne of the International Center for Law and Economics has spearheaded a detailed, thorough, analytical letter to New Jersey Governor Christie examining the state’s ban on direct vehicle distribution and why it is bad for consumers. Geoff summarizes the argument in a post today at Truth on the Market: Earlier this month New Jersey … More Icle Letter to Gov. Christie Opposing Direct Vehicle Distribution Ban: Over 70 Economists and Law Professors

Someone Please Explain the American Wind Energy Association’s Funky Electricity Price Arithmetic

About a month ago the American Wind Energy Association blogged: “Fact Check: New Evidence Rebuts Heartland’s Bogus RPS Claims.” I’m scratching my head a bit trying to understand their so-called facts. The big claim from AWEA: The eleven states that produce more than seven percent of their electricity from wind energy have seen their electricity prices … More Someone Please Explain the American Wind Energy Association’s Funky Electricity Price Arithmetic

Discrimination in West Virginia Price Gouging Case?

Are West Virginia “outsiders” more likely to be accused of price gouging? From the March 8, 2014, Charleston Gazette, “Morrisey accused of discrimination in price gouging response“: CHARLESTON, W.Va. –A Putnam County storeowner accused of price gouging bottled water during the water crisis says Attorney General Patrick Morrisey discriminated against him because he is Lebanese, … More Discrimination in West Virginia Price Gouging Case?

Rent-seeking Diary: State Dealer Franchise Laws and Tesla

By now you’ve probably heard that last week the New Jersey Motor Vehicle Commission passed a rule stipulating that automobile sales in the state cannot be direct-to-consumer, and must instead take place via dealer franchises. Tesla Motors was the clear target of this regulation, with its innovative electric vehicles and direct-to-consumer sales model. New Jersey … More Rent-seeking Diary: State Dealer Franchise Laws and Tesla

Take a Gamble on “The Bet”: It is a Balanced History of the Simon-ehrlich Conflict on Population and Scarcity

Paul Sabin’s The Bet offers perhaps the best-researched, best-written and most thorough account of the history and meaning of the famous 1980 bet between population pessimist Paul Ehrlich and resource optimist Julian Simon. Sabin is unceasingly fair in his treatment of the antagonists, a tough trick to pull off when working with such charged material. … More Take a Gamble on “The Bet”: It is a Balanced History of the Simon-ehrlich Conflict on Population and Scarcity

No Population Bomb

From the op-ed pages of the New York Times, Erle C. Ellis explains, “Overpopulation Is Not the Problem“: MANY scientists believe that by transforming the earth’s natural landscapes, we are undermining the very life support systems that sustain us. Like bacteria in a petri dish, our exploding numbers are reaching the limits of a finite … More No Population Bomb

Politicized Implementation of U.s. Oil Import Quotas, 1959-1973

The oil import quota system in place from 1959 to 1973 restricted imports to an amount equal to the difference between the federal government’s estimate of domestic oil demand and the estimate of domestic oil supply. But, of course, nothing in industry-protection policy can be easy, so the policy contained a number of adjustments and … More Politicized Implementation of U.s. Oil Import Quotas, 1959-1973

Public Choice Theory: Skwire’s First Law

Some time last spring, my friend and occasional KP contributor Sarah Skwire formulated on Facebook what’s now dubbed “Skwire’s First Law”, and we’ve been using it, kicking its tires, and discussing it all summer. In a timely manner (given what we’ve learned this summer about widespread, unwarranted government surveillance and the impending likelihood that yet … More Public Choice Theory: Skwire’s First Law

“In the Spirit of Apollo, with the Determination of the Manhattan Project”: Nixon’s Project Independence

When Arab oil exporters imposed their embargo on the U.S. and the Netherlands in October 1973, George Schultz noted that the United Kingdom and France faced hardly any problem accessing crude oil supplies.Schultz was Secretary of the Treasury at the time and had earlier been in charge of Nixon’s Cabinet Task Force on Oil Import … More “In the Spirit of Apollo, with the Determination of the Manhattan Project”: Nixon’s Project Independence