Trump’s First Trade Deal: The Slightly Revised Korea-U.S. Free Trade Agreement

While the renegotiation of the North American Free Trade Agreement has received far more attention, a lesser-known U.S. trade deal has also been reworked. The renegotiation of the Korea-U.S. Free Trade Agreement (KORUS) provides a useful example of Trump’s trade dealmaking in practice. In a new paper, Simon Lester, Inu Manak, and Kyounghwa Kim demonstrate how the renegotiation made only minor changes to the agreement and could be taken to mean that the reality of Trump’s trade policy may not always match the rhetoric.

Why Do College Diversity Efforts Draw Criticism?

The issue of diversity on college campuses raises a number of difficult and provocative issues. In a ruling expected later this year, a federal district court will determine whether the selection criteria Harvard employs to boost admissions of some demographic groups pass legal muster. In the new issue of Regulation, Dennis L. Weisman contends that defining discrimination exclusively in terms of a departure from merit-based admissions may be too narrow because it fails to account for the value conferred on the university by other types of admissions. Also in this issue, Richard B. McKenzie discusses the economics undergirding the Climate-Change Doomsday Trap, and Chris Elmendorf looks at bolstering pro-housing factions in local government.

Unplugging the Third Rail: Choices for Affordable Medicare

Medicare expenditures as a share of gross domestic product (GDP) are now six times larger than they were in 1967. Without intervention, Medicare’s share of GDP will force some combination of substantial cuts in other government spending, significantly higher taxes, and unhealthy levels of public debt. A new paper by John F. Early identifies the minimum changes required to prevent further expansion of Medicare’s share of GDP, while retaining the existing structure of the program.

Principles for the 2020 Surface Transportation Reauthorization

America’s surface transportation infrastructure needs significant improvements and rehabilitation, yet Congress is uncertain about how to do this. Some want to significantly increase federal spending on infrastructure. Others want to end deficit financing of transportation and end federal restrictions that reduce the efficiency and effectiveness of the funds that are spent. In a new paper, Cato scholar Randal O’Toole presents three principles that Congress should apply to a new surface transportation funding bill. These principles are pay-as-you-go, user fees, and subsidiarity.

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Over-The-Counter Birth Control? Bring It On

The confluence of views among women of child-bearing age, medical experts, and now legislators from both ends of the political spectrum provides a great opportunity to liberate women from the paternalistic policy that makes them pay a toll - a doctor’s office visit - to obtain contraception.

Events

Of Special Note

The Inclusive Economy: How to Bring Wealth to America’s Poor

The Inclusive Economy: How to Bring Wealth to America's Poor

The Inclusive Economy: How to Bring Wealth to America’s Poor energetically challenges the conventional wisdom of both the right and the left that underlies much of the contemporary debate over poverty and welfare policy. Author and national public policy expert Michael Tanner takes to task conservative critiques of a “culture of poverty” for their failure to account for the structural circumstances in which the poor live. In addition, he criticizes liberal calls for fighting poverty primarily through greater redistribution of wealth and new government programs.

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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.

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Home Study Resources

The Cato Institute offers a wealth of online educational audio and video resources, from self-paced guides on the ideas of liberty and the principles of economics, to exclusive, archived lectures by thinkers such as Milton Friedman and F. A. Hayek. Browse through some highlights of our collections, for personal study or for use in the classroom.

Sphere Summit: Teaching Civic Culture Together

For more than four decades, the Cato Institute has introduced people, including millions of young people, to the ideas of freedom. Many Cato books are already taught in high school curricula across the country. To advance the ideas of liberal democracy and the rule of law, Cato has developed the Sphere Summit for educators. The opening Summit seminar, “Teaching Civic Culture Together,” will be held at the Cato Institute in Washington, DC, on July 14–18, 2019.