Time to waste, time to cut wasteful spending

Political Factors behind Cuts and Surges in Government Spending

We tried to explain surges and cuts in governmental spending by some of the political factors affecting governments’ abilities to balance the budget broadly discussed in the literature. We focus on territorial separatism, minority government, grand coalition, single party government, and the ruling party’s ideology. Special attention is paid to the phenomenon of universal suffrage, which has caused the rise to power of modern left-wing parties and strong special interest groups within the bureaucracy.

 Most political factors turn out to be time- and case-sensitive except for universal suffrage. A severe crisis can open the window of opportunity to cut public expenditure, while favorable economic conditions stimulate claims for redistribution and spikes in government spending.  The most effective way to curb the instability of public finance is to strengthen pro-reformist political coalitions, claiming defense of national identity and moral values, that encourage austerity and are market-friendly.

The paper is just published in the   Problems of economic Transition, (Tailor and Francis)  vol. 59, no. 4, 2017, pp. 294-320 2017,  doi: 10.1080/10611991.2017.1321418

Early and unedited version of the article  you could find at SSRN site.


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Measuring de facto Constitutional constraints: the article just published

Journal of Constitutional Political Economy just published on-line our article “A Proposal for a More Objective Measure of De Facto Constitutional Constraints”.

Volume 28, Issue 4, December 2017 pp. 311-320

Simple and easily correctable measures of institutions are based on observable / detectable events, not on the experts’ personal opinion.

We tried to detect (initially) three types of events, so for each country at each year we ask just three questions:
1. Will the ruling elite leave power and join the opposition if it loses an election (the power rotation criterion developed by Adam Przeworski )?
2. Has the government ever lost in court and complied with the court’s decision even if the litigation significantly reduced its prestige and authority?
3. Can the media and opposition criticise the government [including (a) accusations about its incompetence, (b) immorality, or (c) crimes, and call for its replacement, without experiencing intimidation or punishment]?

see for further details the paper   Yanovskiy Moshe, Ginker Tim ” A Proposal for a More Objective Measure of De Facto Constitutional Constraints ” Journal of Constitutional Political Economy, DOI: 10.1007/s10602-017-9242-1, 2017     http://link.springer.com/article/10.1007/s10602-017-9242-1

The full text of the article could be send by request (corresponding authors’ mail is yanovskiy.moshe at gmail.com).

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“How Butter beats the Guns” is published ב”ד

After years of hysterical or totally senseless reviews and editors’ reactions we got from economic journals we had switched to military ones. Now we have got this very important for us publication in the Czech military Journal “Defence and Strategy” (Obrana a Strategie).

To clarify our point regarding conditionality of the Government’s ability to defend, to deter potential aggressor we referred to example from Czech history. Voters and the Government must promote (not punish) the most gifted military leaders like Jan Žižka – great leader and typical winner but not the “nice man” which could discuss matters of religious coexistence with Justin Trudeau.

Here is the article (just click it):

Yanovskiy Moshe, Zatcovetsky Ilia “How Butter beats the Guns” Defence and Strategy, 2017 Volume 17, Number 1 (June 2017) pp.141-154 doi 10.3849/1802-7199.17.2017.01.141-154;

and the Supplementary materials

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Do you want to buy quality goods? Deregulate!

Are you, mostly, happy with Chinese quality? Really?

Here is one of the explanations why you are almost definitely not. People of another culture often simply fail to understand you wishes and requirements (to say nothing of the language barrier, causing the problems more grave, than you are currently experiencing, reading this text).

I was told by my friends a numerous stories about  huge problem for Asian colleagues simply to acknowledge their mistake. This problem makes the process of the mistakes corrections harder and, eventually, it harms the goods and services quality.

The principal explanation of the quality degradation, currently observable, comes to this:

  1. disappearance of reference-class quality goods made in the old industrialized countries – the countries of high manufacturing culture;
  2. The competition has been weakened drastically since manufacturing escaped from the Europe and US, pressed by new generation of regulations: antitrust, “green” and antidiscrimination laws and enforcement;
  3. The decline in competition intensity caused the decline in the goods’ quality.

I guess, you know some people among your friends, ready to buy high quality, reliable goods at high price, but pretty often they simply haven’t choice.

So, do you want to buy traditional American quality goods at affordable price? Deregulate!

Stop to punish the most successful companies for their successes, let the market to restrain the natural greed. Scrap antitrust policies and offices. Stop to hear from self-appointed, false prophets of coming ecological disasters. At last but not at list: repeal all the norms of Civil Rights Act of 1964, restricting private persons and entities behavior. Scrap the EEOC .

The private discrimination is the integral component of the Freedom. Every your choice (really free choice) means discrimination against all the non-chosen options. You marry one woman means you discriminate against all the rest women. You’d prefer to  hire the best workers, so you are discriminate against inexperienced or lazy workers or the persons with spoiled reputation (spoiled in your subjective opinion). You follow moral values rooted in the Sinai Revelation? You are discriminating against Islam! To win Jihad on Discrimination means to finish Freedom, means to abandon free choice, moral values and common sense.

Stop Jihad on Discrimination, stop Jihad on successful businesses, stop Jihad on free human actions – enjoy fruits of free entrepreneurship, tough competition, enjoy high quality!

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The Promise kept: great choice of president Trump

Liberal web-outlet  Voxcom has published pretty useful article on the cost of Clinton failure for the American Lefts:  “missed chance to reshape Supreme Court for a generation“. The author, BTW, points out, that some republican presidents nominees in the SCOTUS had chosen to stand with liberals  in the core decisions, sharing de facto “progressive” ideological values (liberal NY senator Charles E. Schumer even calls it “mainstream).
Instead this “bright future” president Donald Trump picked Judge Neil  Gorsuch on Antonin Scalia’s vacant seat in the SCOTUS.

New York Times: President Trump, in nominating Judge Gorsuch to the Supreme Court, has chosen a judge who not only admires the justice he would replace but also in many ways resembles him. He shares Justice Scalia’s legal philosophy, talent for vivid writing and love of the outdoors.
Heritage Action stresses: President Trump has delivered on his campaign promises and nominated Neil Gorsuch, a conservative judge who will uphold our values and defend our Constitution…  Now we are in the most critical stage of the fight that began almost a year ago to protect the highest court in the land from a liberal takeover. At Heritage Action we will do everything we can to make sure a conservative justice is confirmed by the Senate. We need to make sure the Senate moves quickly to confirm Neil Gorsuch as the next Supreme Court Justice, and your urgent gift will fuel this fight.

Newsmax stresses rare for nowadays devotion of the candidate to 1st Amendment values, including defense of religious freedom: Neil Gorsuch drew outrage from Democrats as conservatives cheered. Appointed by George W. Bush, Gorsuch is a staunch conservative who has ruled in favor of religious freedom. Even Alan Dershowitz offered a surprising endorsement!

Neil Gorsuch lecture delivered for Law School of Case Western Reserve University.

We wish the candidate to overcome leftists hostility in the Senate (Ted Cruz warns about and promises to fight for Gorsuch approval)  long life. Neil Gorsuch was born in 1967, so he could contribute reshaping the SCOTUS for a generation to protect core American values, property and Liberty.

We must pay special attention on the president Trump loyalty to his voter. He keeps his promise in spite routine for modern mainstream conservatives habit to betray their voters. Well done, Mr. President!

P.S. Two Jewish reactions on president Trumps’ pick: Orthodox Union is encouraged, Reformists find it “troubling”. It is so natural: people who believe in Sinai Revelation validity are inspired, and the people thinking eternal Laws could be corrected by women and by men to meet current needs (see “Living Constitution” concept) lament the President’s Choice.

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Few notes for my Jewish friends, perplexed by Trump

People ask themselves: what has really happened? What will happen to us since Trump elected? I believe nothing REALLY bad hasn’t happened, since the end of the primaries.

Obama’s landmarks. No any doubt both candidates were better than person who was 2nd (after Carter) openly anti-American president. Just to remind, see two following references:Roanoke, VA, 2012 speech: declaration of hate to Business: so, USA could reasonably to look forward to recover a little bit;   Cairo 2009 speech, encouraging “Moslem brothers” to act

The campaign was dirty and extremely unpleasant but it’s over already; end of hostilities after elections depends on Democrats more than on republican Donald Trump already urged his supporters to stop http://www.cbsnews.com/news/60-minutes-donald-trump-family-melania-ivanka-lesley-stahl/ , I hope Democrats will follow his pattern soon to stop left radicals shocking protests against elections outcomes (!).

The winner looks for you unpleasant and he is not man of principles, of values, he is pragmatic (I hate it) but all his bad promises will be hard to keep w/o support of the Congress, there most of republicans not love him, to put it mildly, and not so loyal to him

All good things   he promised (at Convention and in Gettysburg Address, in the Contract with America )   he (because he is ‘pragmatic’), probably, will not execute (While I wish to be wrong about his qualities, of course).  with few probable exemptions – see the “Contract” “Actions to protect American workers” (5) and (6) – there is really strong interests behind these promises so it would be easier for Trump to keep it; US oil extraction and  export will weaken our enemies, will weaken our home special interests dreaming to redistribute gas rent, so it is good for USA and it is good for Israel even more;

Both, USA  and Israel have escaped some very bad things as a result of the elections.

1. Compare the most probable pattern for new SCOTUS judge nominee under Hillary  (sort of candidate for the seat of the Giant – seat of Antonin Scalia!) and here is Trumps’ list:  it make a huge difference

2. For Israel: Can you imagine Trump avoiding to visit potential contributor because of mezuzah at his door?  ; see also on Clintons’ contributors .

3. Further erosion of 1st Amendment Rights; progress in establishment of militant atheism and militant Islam as governmental, officially approved religions and persecution of Christians (as “white privilege”, as discriminating “Historically excluded groups” etc); probably, promotion of restriction on the political campaigns’ financing (Axelrod ideas development of Campaign financing reform ) and discrimination against conservative NGOs (IRS case like ).

4. Further  erosion of 2nd Amendment right (Democrats promised further tighten legislation for gun owners and traders – see “Preventing Gun Violence”  p. 39 of Dems’ Platform 2016 )

5. For Business. Clinton would for sure encourage further escalation jihad on “discrimination”, EEOC power and activities expansion etc  – see  and Trump – simply not (Cruz would destroy EEOC, Trump, unfortunately will not).

The outcomes of the November 8 elections means the US Universities radicalization ugly process suffered heavy blow (at least moral) and opportunity to stop it appears; see following links for example (   http://www.nytimes.com/2015/11/12/us/racial-discrimination-protests-ignite-at-colleges-across-the-us.html ; the principal link: database of 1st Amendment rights in the campuses across US: https://www.thefire.org/spotlight/using-the-spotlight-database/  ); November, 8 means half of America told to radicals: “We are hate you too and we have a way to stop you”

On Trump personality again, I’m sure you aren’t take seriously comparisons ‘Trump he is like Hitler’?  The people chanting this nonsense surely aren’t going to emigrate  as they promised before the elections, and they aren’t heroes, believe me. I hope you understand, that the “arguments” like “he can start WWIII” are totally irrelevant.  Trump definitely not mad, he is not man of bad values or man of the good values, he is sly guy, pragmatic, so we should afraid his compromises not his real actions; just to remind – nor Brezhnev, not Mao hadn’t started WWIII and, surely, they hadn’t even idea to do so really.

BTW,  Trump already have got a lot of proposals (from Alan Dershowitz, for example) which means: “Now, be reasonable, betray your voters ASAP!” and I’m afraid Trump will do it in many things; (for comparison – British prime-minister Edward Heath did the same and Margaret Thatcher hadn’t  – see The lady’s not for turning  (and here is the transcript).

Worst things Trump could cause for Israel depends on us more than depends on Trump himself – see the logic (not may be this very specific case) in Moshe Feiglin’s comment: https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=Pn50VjiZCtA&feature=youtu.be

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The Torah as the source of economic freedom and its sustainability

At first glance, the Torah does not address the issues of economic and social order (surely, it does not discuss distinctions between free capitalist and socialist approaches). Talmudic sources, occasionally restricting economic freedom, often reflected realities of communities which survived under pressure of hostile environment and were in permanent need of mobilization to meet external challenges. At the same time, the Torah, the Tanakh and the Talmud prescribe limited government and rule of law. But above all, the Torah provides the most powerful protection of private property and personal rights: the protection is sanctified by the Lord and based on moral imperatives, rather than being just for the sake of economic efficiency.

The paper (in Hebrew) is uploaded at SSRN.

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Will the West Survive Until 2084? Israel perspective – updated version

Updated (edited) versions of previously published book are just uploaded

The book approaches and ideas is developed and promoted in the Israel by the brochure “Will the West Survive until 2084? On the problems and Perspectives of the Family, Private Property and the State”.

Here is pdf version of the brochure in English and here is the  Hebrew versions .

The readers’ reaction and criticism is welcomed!

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Crime and Punishment: Jeff Jacoby comment

Here is highly recommended article written by Jeff Jacoby on punishment deterrence capacity and his  link onexcellent collection of scientific articles on the issue.

Classical paper by Isaak Ehrlich  (1975) must be added to the above mentioned list of papers.

BTW, both, dead felons  and dead terrorists can’t kill.

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Revisiting US military Aid for Israel: new voices of concern

More and more people publicly share their concern about incentives caused by US military aid for Israel. The problem we had discussed since 2011 (Yanovskiy Moshe, US Aid for Israel – A Historical Overview (version on March 3, 2014).

Ex-ambassador Yoram Ettinger presented his reasons why  Israel shouldn’t accept U.S. aid? Previously he insisted. Ettinger had explained previously, that ‘Israel Must Be Defiant; ‘US Doesn’t Want a Wimp Ally‘ so US Aid harms both sides.

Former Israeli general (Maj. Gen. (Res) Gershon Hacohen, former commander of the IDF’s Northern Command and head of the army’s war colleges): US military aid harms Israel. General is focused on conditionalities of the programs mainly.

Unfortunately, government of Israel being fully aware  of the problem follows the course predicted by Mancur Olson theory of special interests groups – asking for more and more ‘generous’ US Aid programs.

General references on Rashi:

“According to Rashi, who was one of the most important pillars of Jewish thought, this story teaches us that liberty has a price; that it’s better to have a bitter leaf taken directly from the hand of God than to be given something sweet as honey by mortal men, …  The lesson here is that the bitter taste of things we accomplish on our own is preferable to the sweet privileges than can imprison us.”

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