Brief Analyses

Restricted to two letter-size pages, a Brief Analysis summarizes some aspect or aspects of a public policy issue, presenting points for consideration in policy debates or responding to points that have been raised during these debates.

The Fed's Mandate

When the Federal Reserve was created in 1913, Congress did not give it a monetary policy goal as we understand that term today. The Fed's monetary policy role evolved gradually, and congressional mand…

Will Green Energy Make the United States Less Secure?

Environmentalists have long cited the environmental harms caused by fossil fuels as evidence of the need to move to green sources of energy such as wind and solar power. Recently, some conservatives h…

Affordable Health Plans Are an Endangered Species

Beginning in 2014, most U.S. residents will be required to have health insurance coverage. However, provisions of the new Affordable Care Act (ACA) will limit the choice of health plans offered. Healt…

Emergency Medical Services: How Health Reform Could Hurt First Responders

The scope of emergency services local governments provide has expanded over the years from fire fighting and rescue to providing advanced medical care, transport and a point-of-access to the health sy…

Reforming Medicare: The Affordable Care Act versus the Rivlin/Ryan Proposal

Former Congressional Budget Office (CBO) Director Alice Rivlin and Rep. Paul Ryan (R-WI) have offered a proposal to reduce projected Medicare and Medicaid spending. The provisions affecting Medicare a…

United States Should Shoot Down U.N. Small Arms Treaty

The Obama administration recently appointed a negotiator to work with the United Nations on a treaty to regulate international trade in small arms. The ostensible goal is to staunch the flow of illega…

Biotech Forests: An Environmental Blessing?

Genetically modified grains, fruits and vegetables have become ubiquitous on U.S. farms and in supermarkets. Biotechnology investments initially focused on modifications that would be profitable relat…

Make Taxes Visible

Here is an idea that should receive support from just about everyone: the taxpayer savings account (TSA). Instead of the current withholding system, amounts withheld from your paycheck would go into a…