June 7: China is more interested in developing a nuclear deterrent than in getting into a nuclear arms race with America, said Joseph Cirincione of the Carnegie Endowment for International Peace at a Cato Policy Forum, “People’s Republic of China: Red Tiger or Pink Pussycat?” Ross H. Munro of the Center for Security Studies insisted that the Chinese leadership views America as a threat to its plans to dominate Asia. Alfred Wilhelm of the Atlantic Council said the modernization of China must go forward, and Washington should try to react positively.
June 8: At a Cato Book Forum for Limiting Leviathan: Faustian Bargains and Constitutional Governance, Cato Institute vice president for legal affairs and director of Cato’s Center for Constitutional Studies Roger Pilon said that today we have a government of effectively unenumerated powers. To change that, we must encourage the courts to stop being deferential to the political branches, encourage Congress to ask itself if it has the authority to act on an issue, and encourage the public to be constitutionally vigilant. Jamin B. Raskin of American University praised the book, coedited by Richard A. Wagner and Donald P. Racheter, for emphasizing the importance of limiting government power, but he criticized the idea that people, when they form governments, think first of law enforcement rather than such services as public education.
June 10: Experts from four continents gathered for a Cato conference, “The Crisis in Global Governance,” on the struggle between state corporatism in its various forms and laissez faire. Deepak Lal of the University of California at Los Angeles gave the luncheon address, “The Challenge of Globalization: There Is No Third Way,” and Sen. Don Nickles (R‐Okla.) delivered the closing comments.
June 15: Ned Graham, son of evangelist Billy Graham and head of East Gates International, said at a Cato Policy Forum, “China in the Balance: The Case for Normal Trade Relations,” that Western religious organizations working in the People’s Republic of China have benefited from the expanding commercial ties between America and China. Nicholas Lardy of the Brookings Institution and Robert Kapp of the U.S.-China Business Council argued that American companies and consumers will benefit once America starts to treat China as a member of the World Trade Organization
June 15: The Cato Institute hosted a Reception for Microsoft founder and CEO Bill Gates. Gates thanked Cato for defending free‐market principles before answering questions from guests.
June 28: The Justice Department’s investigation of American Airlines for allegedly slashing fares to snuff out competition was the topic of discussion at a Cato Policy Forum, “Big Airlines, Small Airlines, Big Government: Who’s Preying on Whom?” John R. Lott Jr., author of Are Predatory Commitments Credible? argued that vigorous competition shouldn’t be mistaken for predation. James H. Burnley IV, former secretary of transportation; Mark Kahan, CEO of Spirit Airlines; and William E. Kovacic of George Washington University debated whether the suit against American Airlines is good for the industry.
July 14: At a Cato Policy Forum, “Rethinking Employer‐Sponsored Health Care,” three corporate health care specialists discussed how companies should move to reform the health care market. Dwight McNeill of WayPoint Health argued that a key to making the health care system work more efficiently is to have employees be the direct buyers of health care. Mary Barker of Baxter International argued that making health care available to more people through markets will result in improvements. Patricia Nazemetz of Xerox Corporation said that Xerox hopes to move to a defined‐contribution approach, which will allow employees full access to the dollars allocated to health care so they can decide how they want to spend that money.
July 15: Japan is going to change rapidly and radically within the next decade, said Milton Ezrati at a Cato Book Forum. Ezrati, chief investment officer at Nomura Asset Management and author of Kawari: How Japan’s Economic and Cultural Transformation Will Alter the Balance of Power among Nations, argued that Japan will shed its mercantilist stance and become the “headquarters nation” of Asia. That change, he concluded, will present new military and economic challenges to the West.
July 16–18: To educate members of Congress about the interplay between regulation and technology, the Cato Institute held a Telecommunications Roundtable in Napa Valley, California. Among the speakers were William Kennard, chairman of the Federal Communications Commission; Thomas J. Tauke, senior vice president of government relations for Bell Atlantic Corporation; Daniel Klein of Santa Clara University and author of What Do Economists Contribute?; Stanley S. Hubbard, chairman and CEO of Hubbard Broad‐casting; Martin Cooper, a pioneer in the wireless communications industry; and Judy Estrin, chief technology officer and senior vice president at Cisco Systems.
July 26: The United States should stick to developing a limited land‐based National Missile Defense system, said Charles Peña, a missile defense consultant, at a Cato Policy Forum, “National Missile Defense: Should the United States Build a Land‐Based or a Sea‐Based System?” John Harvey of the U.S. Department of Defense stressed the importance of developing, demonstrating, and deploying (when directed) a system to defend the United States against a limited strategic ballistic missile threat by a rouge nation. Peter Huessy of National Defense University argued that the United States should have both a land‐ and a sea‐based system, and a space‐based one if necessary. David R. Tanks of the Institute for Foreign Policy Analysis said America will need three or four sites on land in the near future and a sea‐based system further down the line.
July 29: At a Cato Policy Forum titled “The F-22 Raptor: Should It Fly or Die?” Lt. Gen. Gregory Martin of the U.S. Air Force called the F-22 tactical fighter “priceless” and argued that the aircraft’s deterrent effect on other nations must be taken into account when considering its cost. Most of the other speakers were more critical of the aircraft. Chuck Spinney of the U.S. Department of Defense said that he would cancel the F-22 program—along with the two other new fighter aircraft programs (the F-18E/F and the Joint Strike Fighter)—and start over. Rear Adm. Eugene Carroll of the Center for Defense Information warned against the “rush to production” of an untested F-22. Michael O’Hanlon of the Brookings Institution argued that Washington would be better off if it improved air‐to‐ground attack abilities instead of investing so heavily in the F-22. Lane Pierrot of the Congressional Budget Office said that the Department of Defense’s plans to purchase three types of new fighter aircraft might not be affordable if the defense budget stays at the current level.
This article originally appeared in the September/October 1999 edition of Cato Policy Report.