The Cato Papers on Public Policy was an annual publication of highly innovative articles by recognized national experts on contemporary economic and public policy issues–with a particular focus on critically evaluating the limits of government policies and on providing potential improvements and solutions. Three issues were published in 2011-14.

2012 – 2013

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• Analyzing how the French failure to monetize gold inflows in the late 1920s and early 1930s contributed to the overall reduction in world gold reserves and impacted the world price level.

• The effectiveness of the Term-Auction Facility program, one of the main tools used by the Federal Reserve during the financial crisis.

• Evidence to dispute the conventional wisdom that U.S. CEOs, top executives, and corporate governance are being paid more and more, and not being penalized for poor performance.

• The 500% increase in the rate of imprisonment between 1970-2000 and an empirical approach to measuring how deterrence and incapacitation can affect crime reduction.

2011

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<p><em>Can the Treasury Exempt Its Own Companies from Tax? The $45 Billion General Motors Net Operating Loss Carryforward</em><br />
How the U.S. Treasury used arcane provisions of the tax code to manufacture a tax break for political supporters during the bailout of General Motors, masking the true cost of the bailouts of GM and other firms.</p>

<p><em>Free to Punish? The American Dream and Harsh Treatment of Criminals</em><br />
In comparison to many penal systems in the rest of the world, Americans are much harsher in their treatment of criminals. This article looks at the causes, revealing how the American Dream may be to blame.</p>

<p><em>Competition and Innovation</em><br />
Compelling analysis of how patents that are easily assigned and strictly enforced for a long period of time do not promote innovation, but instead impede it.</p>

<p><em>Labor Market Dysfunction during the Great Recession</em><br />
The impact of mortgage modifications on the labor market recovery, showing that reductions in mortgage payments based on borrowers' current income skews incentives for households to relocate to a stronger labor market and lowers both employment and productivity.</p>