SSDI Reform: Promoting Gainful Employment while Preserving Economic Security

Determining whether medical impairments imply inability to work is becoming more difficult in a growing number of cases, with the result that many applicants with residual work capacities are admitted to Social Security Disability Insurance (SSDI), a program facing imminent insolvency. A new paper from Cato scholar Jagadeesh Gokhale advocates a change in the structure of SSDI’s benefit payments to those admitted to the program. Shifting benefits at the margin toward paying beneficiaries to work rather than to remain out of the work force would encourage beneficiaries with residual capacities to return to work.

Cato Institute Announces New Center for Monetary and Financial Alternatives

The Cato Institute is pleased to announce that they have established a new Center for Monetary and Financial Alternatives, which will focus on development of policy recommendations that will create a more free-market monetary system in the U.S. “We have assembled a group of scholars and advisory board members who will challenge the Federal Reserve and the financial regulators in a way they haven’t been challenged in 100 years,” said John Allison, CEO of the Cato Institute and former CEO of BB&T Corporation.

War on Poverty Turns 50: Are We Winning Yet?

The War on Poverty is 50 years old. Over that time, federal and state governments have spent more than $19 trillion fighting poverty. But what have we really accomplished?  In a new paper, Cato scholars Michael D. Tanner and Charles Hughes argue that while the War on Poverty achieved some initial success, the programs it spawned have long since reached a point of diminishing returns. “Good intentions are not enough,” say Tanner and Hughes. “We should not continue to throw money at failed programs in the name of compassion.”

The Evidence on Universal Preschool

Calls for universal preschool programs have become commonplace, reinforced by President Obama’s call for “high-quality preschool for all” in 2013. But any program that could cost state and federal taxpayers $50 billion per year warrants a closer look at the evidence on its effectiveness.  In a new study, David J. Armor reviews the major evaluations of preschool programs, including both traditional programs such as Head Start and those designated as “high quality,” and argues that the evaluations do not paint a positive picture.

Recent Commentary

In China, Law Isn’t Winning

There’s no possibility of open criticism of the anti-corruption campaign, as both the party and the state apparatus tightly control speech in the name of social stability.


October 22

A Dangerous World? Threat Perception and U.S. National Security

Featuring the editors John Mueller, Woody Hayes Senior Research Scientist, Mershon Center, Professor of Political Science at Ohio State University, and Senior Fellow, Cato Institute; and Christopher Preble, Vice President, Defense and Foreign Policy Studies, Cato Institute; with comments by Frank Hoffman, Senior Research Fellow, National Defense University; and James Fallows, National Correspondent, The Atlantic; moderated by John Samples, Vice President and Publisher, Cato Institute.

12:00pm Hayek Auditorium

Of Special Note

Win a Free iPad Mini

Win a Free iPad Mini

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Special! 10 Copies for $10

Cato Pocket Constitution

To encourage people everywhere to better understand and appreciate the principles of government that are set forth in America’s founding documents, the Cato Institute published this pocket-size edition.

32nd Annual Monetary Conference

32nd Annual Monetary Conference
Alternatives to Central Banking: Toward Free-Market Money

Thursday, November 6, 2014
9:00 a.m. — 6:15 p.m.

When the Federal Reserve was created in 1913, its powers were limited and the U.S. was on the gold standard. Today the Fed has virtually unlimited power and the dollar has no backing. Leading scholars and advocates for fundamental monetary reform will discuss the case for sound money and the reforms needed to realize it.

Details and registration