Wanted: A counter-populism strategy

It is too simplistic to only warn of populism. Populist messages may be distasteful, ill-informed or just plain wrong. But they are only symptoms of an underlying malaise of Western democracies. [...]

America’s agony of choice

The in-flight entertainment on our domestic flight to LA was excellent: we had live TV, and the first presidential debate between Donald Trump and Hillary Clinton was on. It was gripping television. Not because it was so good but because it was so bad. [...]

The Human Cost of Welfare

What beneficiaries actually wanted to do was to regain control over their lives and enjoy the fruits of their achievements – just like everyone else. The tragedy of the US welfare system is that it often prevents just that. [...]

Don’t put Germany on the economic axis of evil

Perhaps the next time the US government wants to criticise some European governments for poor economic policies, they could turn their attention to the least competitive ones instead. And the next time the US Treasury submits a report on international currency manipulation, maybe they could have a closer look at what the US Fed is doing. The cause of the problems may be closer to Washington than to Berlin. [...]

I spy the demise of the ‘Old West’ alliance

In the coming months and years, President Obama and his administration will have a lot of work to do if they want to restore trust with their European partners. And they will have to show even more commitment to make them believe they could be friends. [...]

Bilateral trade deals create winners and losers

Bilateral deals such as TPP and TTIP complicate the world trade situation and create concrete winners and losers. Whereas free trade allows different hm to compete across national boundaries and allows countries with different absolute and comparative advantages to benefit, competing protectionist blocks trade on political and economic clout. [...]

America’s real choice

What the United States can least afford is four more years of election campaign-style politics. Both camps must work together to avert fiscal disaster. But are Democrats and Republicans willing to cooperate for positive change? [...]