In our latest Liberty Update, we highlight an eye-opening new study confirming how drug price controls…
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AEI's Michael Rosen: "Omicron Variant Sows Chaos but Doesn’t Move Needle on Patent Waiver Debate"

In our latest Liberty Update, we highlight an eye-opening new study confirming how drug price controls kill pharmaceutical investment and innovation at the worst possible time, when America and the entire world depend upon them more than ever.

In similar vein, American Enterprise Institute (AEI) Adjunct Fellow and healthcare expert Michael Rosen nicely illustrates how the omicron variant of Covid has paused the destructive global effort to suspend enforcement of patent rights belonging to lifesaving vaccine developers:

But the new omicron variant of the virus has intervened, shelving the planned WTO meeting and throwing into continued contrast the supposed haves and have-nots of vaccine protection...  But the EU has held firm in resisting the vaccine waiver, and rightly so."

Unfortunately…[more]

December 06, 2021 • 12:20 PM

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Despite Gathering Economic Clouds, Biden Pushes Higher Taxes and Wasteful Spending Print
By Timothy H. Lee
Thursday, September 30 2021
So our economy is slowing and inflation appears increasingly perilous, but what do Biden, Nancy Pelosi and Chuck Schumer propose? Trillions of additional dollars in wasteful spending, paid by more borrowing or higher taxes diverted from the productive private sector.

As economic clouds form both domestically and worldwide, what America and the world need is sober helmsmanship and policies that propel our economy, not weaken it.  

Instead, we get preposterous and incoherent whoppers from Joe Biden in defense of his massive tax and spending scheme.  

“Every time I hear, ‘This is going to cost A, B, C or D,’” Biden said, “the truth is, based on the commitment I’ve made, it’s going to cost nothing.”  

So there you have it.  Joe Biden has finally proven that there really is such thing as a free lunch.  You were wrong, Milton Friedman.  

Offering even more cause for alarm, Biden proceeded to claim that his tax-and-spend monstrosity is simultaneously unknown yet overwhelmingly popular.  “Every element of my economic plan is overwhelmingly popular,” Biden continued, “but the problem is, with everything happening, not everybody knows what’s in that plan.”  

Set aside the fact that the “everything happening” to which he refers are problems of his own creation:  the catastrophic Afghanistan withdrawal, Covid policy confusion, a humanitarian and security crisis at our southern border and capitulating to China on a hostage exchange.  Nevertheless, Biden informs us that Americans remain ignorant about his plan yet enthusiastically support it.  

Meanwhile, as the Wall Street Journal reports, unsettling signs of economic trouble are accruing:  

The U.S. and European economies slowed in September as supply-chain bottlenecks and worries over the Delta variant weighed on businesses, adding to signs the global economy is experiencing a soft patch amid an uneven recovery, purchasing managers’ surveys showed.  Manufacturing and services businesses in both the U.S. and Eurozone reported slower growth in activity this month, although the pullback was more pronounced in Europe.  Forecasting firm IHS Markit said its index measuring U.S. business activity, based on surveys on purchasing managers, fell to 54.5 in September from 55.4 in August.  That was the lowest level in a year, as activity at services businesses reached a 14-month low.  

Just as ominously, government officials now admit that the so-called “transitory” inflation spikes are actually stubbornly persistent and probably with us for a while.  The Wall Street Journal again:  

All year the Federal Reserve’s message on inflation has been consistent:  This year’s surge is transitory, and inflation will soon return close to the central bank’s 2% target.  Yet look more closely, and it is clear officials are turning less sanguine — and that explains growing eagerness to start raising interest rates.  Last September, long before the supply bottlenecks emerged, the median forecast by Fed officials was for core inflation (which excludes food and energy) in 2022 of 1.8%. Every few months since then they have nudged that up, and in the forecasts released Wednesday they see core inflation next year at 2.3%.  While current-year forecasts get pushed around a lot by temporary factors such as a jump in oil prices, the next-year forecast reflects where inflation is expected to settle once temporary factors recede.  The message from the Fed’s latest projections is that “transitory” is lasting an awfully long time.  Indeed, next year’s projected 2.3% is the highest next-year core inflation forecast since projections were first published in 2007.  (emphasis added)

So our economy is slowing and inflation appears increasingly perilous, but what do Biden, Nancy Pelosi and Chuck Schumer propose?  Trillions of additional dollars in wasteful spending, paid by more borrowing or higher taxes diverted from the productive private sector.  

Before 2017, the U.S. was burdened by the developed world’s highest corporate tax.  After President Trump cut taxes and brought our corporate rate toward the developed world average, our economy reached unprecedented heights.  

Biden, Pelosi and Schumer, however, want to reimpose a corporate rate that would again make ours among the highest in the world.  What signal does that send to businesses and employers who can increasingly base their operations anywhere in the world?  It’s certainly not “Open for Business.”  

Their plan would also penalize American entrepreneurialism by hiking taxes on capital gains and carried interest, which fuel risk-taking and innovation.  

Moreover, if the Federal Reserve raises interest rates due to inflationary pressure as reported above, then that suddenly makes government borrowing and federal debt payments more costly.  

Biden likes to scapegoat his predecessor for all variety of his own performance failures, but one thing he did inherit was a remarkably resilient economy.  As economic warning signs begin to flash, Biden would be wiser to sustain what he inherited from Donald Trump, not reverse it.  

Quiz Question   
Which of the following is famously known as “a date which will live in infamy”?
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Notable Quote   
 
"A bank that misplaced over one-fifth of its deposits would be shut down almost immediately. So would a hospital that bungled one in five operations, or a private health insurer that mishandled one-fifth of its claims.But apparently, the bar is a lot lower for government programs. The Biden administration recently admitted that 'improper payments' made up 21.69% of total Medicaid spending in fiscal…[more]
 
 
—Sally Pipes, President, CEO, and the Thomas W. Smith Fellow in Healthcare Policy at the Pacific Research Institute
— Sally Pipes, President, CEO, and the Thomas W. Smith Fellow in Healthcare Policy at the Pacific Research Institute
 
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