Freedom on Trial, a project of the Cato Institute, has released a provocative three-part short film - Freedom on Trial. This compelling courtroom drama takes viewers into the heart of the everyday issues that can arise when an employer’s desire to hire more employees runs into the barrier of minimum wage laws, and when the government’s plans to “solve” income inequality only make things worse. These complex problems take center stage in courtroom as both sides passionately make their cases. Quick, witty, dramatic, and empathetic, this series exposes the problems of authority, bureaucracy and centralization, while celebrating the “what ifs” of a life in a freer world.

The Case Against a U.S. Carbon Tax

Some proponents of federal policies to combat climate change are arguing for a federal carbon tax. Within conservative and libertarian circles, some proponents claim that a revenue-neutral carbon tax “swap” could deliver a double dividend, reducing climate change while shifting some of the nation’s tax burden onto carbon emissions, which supposedly would spur the economy. A new paper from Robert P. Murphy, Patrick J. Michaels, and Paul C. “Chip” Knappenberger argues that, both in theory and in practice, the case for a U.S. carbon tax is weaker than its most vocal supporters have led the public to believe.

The New Feudalism: Why States Must Repeal Growth-Management Laws

Advocates of growth-management laws, which strictly regulate what people can and cannot do with their land in the name of controlling urban sprawl, say that it produces many benefits, including preservation of farm lands, energy savings, reduced air pollution, and lower infrastructure costs. In a new paper, Cato scholar Randal O’Toole argues that growth management slows regional growth, exacerbates income inequality, and particularly harms low-income families, especially minorities such as African Americans and Latinos.

Fiscal Policy Report Card on America’s Governors 2016

In the new “Fiscal Policy Report Card on America’s Governors,” Cato scholar Chris Edwards examines the tax and spending decisions made by U.S. governors since 2014. Governors who have cut taxes and spending the most receive the highest grades, while those who have increased taxes and spending the most receive the lowest grades. Only five governors were awarded an “A” in this latest report card — Paul LePage of Maine, Pat McCrory of North Carolina, Rick Scott of Florida, Doug Ducey of Arizona, and Mike Pence of Indiana.

Recent Commentary

Real ID Decisions

Whoever wins the presidential election is going to face big choices regarding the national Real ID law.


November 2

Debate: Should Libertarians Vote?

Featuring Jim Harper, Senior Fellow, Cato Institute; Michael Cannon, Director of Health Policy Studies, Cato Institute; and Aaron Ross Powell, Research Fellow and Editor,, Cato Institute; Trevor Burrus, Research Fellow, Center for Constitutional Studies, Cato Institute; moderated by Jason Kuznicki, Research Fellow and Editor, Cato Unbound, Cato Institute.

5:00PM to 6:00PM
Hayek Auditorium, Cato Institute

Of Special Note

What Is Justice?

Political Philosophy: An Introductio

Political Philosophy: An Introduction is the latest in a series of self-paced, online guides from – a project of the Cato Institute. The goal of political philosophy is to determine the standards by which we judge different institutions good or bad, just or unjust. Political Philosophy is a primer on major theories of justice, arguments philosophers have made for and against them, and to how to be more thoughtful and rigorous in our own thinking. Guides – videos and accompanying text – are detailed at – and are also available through online retailers nationwide.

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.

Now Available

The Libertarian Mind Audiobook

The Libertarian Mind, by David Boaz, longtime executive vice president of the Cato Institute, is the best available guide to the history, ideas, and growth of libertarianism, and is the ultimate resource for the current, burgeoning libertarian movement. This acclaimed book is now available as a fully unabridged audiobook, ready for immediate downloading, on

34th Annual Monetary Conference

The lack of any monetary rule to guide policy decisions has created great uncertainty and increased financial volatility. Zero or negative interest rates and quantitative easing have created severe distortions in asset markets by increasing risk taking and politicizing credit allocation while failing to bring about robust economic growth. At Cato’s annual monetary conference, leading experts will address the risks inherent in the unconventional monetary policies of the world’s leading central banks and the steps that need to be taken to restore long-run economic growth.