On Obama and Immigration

On Thursday, President Obama announced the specific provisions of his immigration executive order, which shifts priorities for deportations. Argues Cato scholar Alex Nowrasteh, “Viewing the executive order in purely policy terms, it will produce positive economic effects and legalize a significant number of unlawful immigrants. But whether this executive order is constitutional is a major question. …The best possible policy outcome is if Congress were to use this opportunity to seriously debate and pass some of the conservative proposals on immigration reform.”

The Federal Emergency Management Agency: Floods, Failures, and Federalism

Federalism is supposed to undergird America’s system of handling disasters, particularly natural disasters. State, local, and private organizations should play the dominant role. Today, however, growing federal intervention is undermining the role of private institutions and the states in handling disasters.  In a new paper, Cato scholar Chris Edwards looks at FEMA’s response to major disasters, and argues that policymakers should reverse course and begin cutting FEMA. “Ultimately,” says Edwards, “the agency should be closed down by ending aid programs for disaster preparedness and relief and privatizing flood insurance.”

Why Government Fails and Why Ideas Matter

Far too many people who call for government intervention assume that politicians and other government agents are superhuman — that when they are elected or appointed to political office, they are miraculously transformed into beings consistently more altruistic, knowledgeable, and wise than are business executives, consumers, and other people who operate only in the private sector.  In the new Cato Policy Report, Cato adjunct Donald J. Boudreaux explains how knowledge of Public Choice destroys the romantic myth that government is some sort of miracle worker.

Supreme Court Will Consider Challenges to Affordable Care Act

The U.S. Supreme Court has announced that it will consider arguments in King v. Burwell, one of four cases argued before federal courts, that claims that the subsidies and taxes the IRS is implementing in the 36 states with health-insurance Exchanges established by the federal government are illegal. Cato scholar Michael F. Cannon applauds the court’s decision: “Since January, the Obama administration has been spending billions of unauthorized federal dollars, and subjecting nearly 60 million Americans to unauthorized taxes, all to hide the full cost of the Patient Protection and Affordable Care Act, or ObamaCare. The administration’s actions have not only violated the law and caused massive economic disruption, they have also subverted the democratic process.”

Recent Commentary

Strange Bedfoes against NSA Reform Bill

The push to rein in the authorities of the National Security Agency—covertly expanded by a secret court to permit indiscriminate bulk collection of Americans’ communications  and financial records—has become a truly bipartisan affair.

Reviving Growth: A Cato Online Forum

In conjunction with the upcoming conference on the future of U.S. economic growth, the Cato Institute has organized a special online forum to explore possible avenues for pro-growth policy reforms.


November 21

National Security and Double Government

Featuring the author Michael Glennon, Professor of International Law, Fletcher School, Tufts University; with comments by Gene Healy, Vice President, Cato Institute; and Jeremy Shapiro, Fellow, Brookings Institution; moderated by Justin Logan, Director, Foreign Policy Studies, Cato Institute.

12:00pm Hayek Auditorium

Of Special Note

Win a Free GoPro Hero3 Digital Video Camera

Win a Free Go Pro

Sign up in the month of November to receive any of Cato’s free emails, and you’ll automatically become eligible to win a free, brand new GoPro Hero3 digital video camera – waterproof, Wi-Fi compatible, wonderful. A winner will be selected at random on December 1 from the email addresses of all who have signed up.

It’s a win – win. You’ll be able to start receiving emails on upcoming Cato events, links to Cato’s newest research reports, multimedia products, podcasts, special book and ebook offers, and more, while being in line to receive a free GoPro camera. Sign up now.

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.

Special Online Forum

Reviving Economic Growth

In conjunction with the upcoming conference on the future of U.S. economic growth, the Cato Institute has organized a special online forum with leading economists and policy experts to explore possible avenues for pro-growth policy reforms.

Read the essays

The 2014 Cato Institute Surveillance Conference

The 2014 Cato Institute Surveillance Conference

Friday, December 12, 2014
9:00 a.m. — 5:30 p.m.

Never in human history have people been more connected than they are today — nor have they been more thoroughly monitored But the growth of government surveillance is not restricted to spies: Ordinary law enforcement agencies increasingly employ sophisticated tracking technologies Is this a vital weapon against criminals and terrorists — or a threat to privacy and freedom? How should these tracking technologies be regulated? Can we reconcile the secrecy that spying demands with the transparency that democratic accountability requires? This Conference will explore these questions, guided by: top journalists and privacy advocates; lawyers and technologists; intelligence officials … and those who’ve been targets of surveillance.

Details and registration