At CEI’s 2016 annual dinner—A Night in Casablanca!—in DC, I caught up with three interesting gentlemen for a dose of common sense economics.
Up first is Dr. Bruce Yandle, dean emeritus of Clemson University’s College of Business and Behavioral Science and winner of the Competitive Enterprise Institute’s 2016 Julian L. Simon Memorial Award, boldly carrying on Simon’s legacy celebrating free people as the "ultimate resource." Yandle describes the current macroeconomic scene, defined by slow growth sliding into global currency and trade wars, and challenges us to correct course. The father of the “Bootleggers and Baptists” theory explaining strange-bedfellow political collusion, he recounts the latest case with big tobacco, state governments, and health advocates looking to quash e-cigarettes.
My second guest this week is Ryan Young, CEI fellow and co-author of two major new studies—“People Not Ratios: Why the Debate over Income Inequality Asks the Wrong Questions” and “The Rising Tide: Answering the Right Questions in the Inequality Debate.” Young draws the crucial distinction between absolute and relative poverty and celebrates market economies as the greatest poverty reducer in history. He encourages anti-poverty advocates to raise the economic floor by expanding opportunity rather than lower the ceiling through punitive redistribution. He touts reforms like ending restrictive occupational licensing in order to foster sustainable economic development.
Wrapping up the show is Steve Forbes, Chairman and Editor-in-Chief of Forbes Media and author of Reviving America: How Repealing Obamacare, Replacing the Tax Code and Reforming the Fed will Restore Hope and Prosperity. Forbes discusses some common sense reform proposals laid out in his new book looking to pull America out of its economic rut by encouraging growth and innovation.
You can hear the discussion by listening to the full show as-aired on iTunes, or you can check out the podcasts hosted on YouTube and SoundCloud. Make sure to check back next week for another episode of RealClear Radio Hour.