Dr. Tracy C. Miller's blog

Remembering great economist

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Dr. Gary Becker, who won the Nobel Prize in Economics in 1992, died May 3 at the age of 83. I was privileged to be a student of Gary Becker at the University of Chicago in the 1980s. He is well known for applying a rational approach to human behavior in a variety of contexts not previously considered part of economics. One need not fully agree with Becker’s approach to benefit from reading some of the articles and books he wrote. Read More»

A false solution for inequality

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Recently, some commentators have been promoting the idea of a government guaranteed income, where the government would pay a monthly cash payment to every American, regardless of need or merit.

A similar idea, the negative income tax, has been discussed by economists for decades. In Switzerland, voters will soon consider a referendum that would require the Swiss government to pay every adult citizen $2800 per month.

Although it sounds appealing, a government guaranteed income is a bad idea, and its defenders rely on fallacious economic arguments to support it. Read More»

Healthcare: Of course there will be death panels

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Recently the debate about “death panels” has been heating up as Republican Congressional leaders express their opposition to implementing the Independent Payment Advisory Board (IPAB) by refusing to appoint members to serve on it.

The IPAB, which was referred to as a death panel by Republicans during the 2010 Congressional elections, is a committee that was to be created as part of healthcare reform and consists of 15 full-time members appointed for staggered six-year terms. Read More»