Challenging times require bold reforms, but very few political candidates have proposed any. With this paper we try to fill that gap by identifying five reforms that would solve current problems, spur economic growth and return power and money to the states and the people.
Virtually everyone agrees with criminal asset forfeiture. But civil asset forfeiture, in which government can seize property without charging the property's owner with a crime, is widespread and troubling because it denies citizens several constitutional rights.
Many brand name prescription drugs are expensive, and there are reasons for that. But most of the proposed political "fixes" would only make them more expensive or ensure they never reach the market. The better solution to controlling prices is to reduce onerous regulations an expand competition.
Minimum wage legislation is just another form of price controls. Most economists understand why price controls don't work, but many people forget those principles with respect to the minimum wage.
James Madison, and George Mason before him, were clear in the language in the Fourth Amendment, that the people and anything they own must be protected from unreasonable and warrantless government searches and seizures. So why aren't we?
Social Security's disability program is in bad financial shape. A private sector reform, modeled after a program that's been around for nearly 35 years, would provide the disabled and survivors with better benefits while helping remove some of the strain from Social Security.
The cost of developing new prescription drugs is very expensive—a process made even more expensive than it has to be because of excessive government restrictions and limited patent life. However, not developing new drugs can also be expensive, both in financial and human costs.
Frantic end-of-year passage of tax extenders does not encourage investment as intended. In 2014, investment in agricultural equipment was hampered by tax uncertainty over Section 179. Congress must recognize the need for certainty in tax policy by passing temporary measures earlier in the year, and by implementing overall tax reform that results in a simpler, more stable tax system.
U.S. taxpayers have been subsidizing wind energy for decades. The primary focus of that subsidy has been the Production Tax Credit, which ended in 2013. But powerful forces want to reinstate the PTC, even though wind energy imposes huge costs on ratepayers and taxpayers at a time when fossil-fuel generated electricity is getting cheaper and cleaner.
States are looking for ways to reduce their exploding Medicaid spending. Two states, Illinois and Pennsylvania, found a way to do just that: by examining their Medicaid and welfare rolls and removing people who don't belong.