Campus scholars' perspectives on topical issues — in conversation with you

Turning off the lights in California

The state faces enormous challenges to prevent the catastrophic wildfires of recent years.

Will Facebook’s ill-conceived Libra cryptocurrency fail to launch?

Plans for Facebook’s proposed “stablecoin,” Libra, appear to be unraveling with the withdrawal of PayPal, Visa, Mastercard, Stripe, eBay, and Mercado Pago as potential sponsors. This is hardly surprising, given growing awareness of Libra’s potential adverse consequences. If it offers anonymity to its users, Libra will become a platform for tax evasion, money laundering, and terrorist finance. … Continue reading »

How to make billionaires pay their fair share of taxes

Co-authored with UC Berkeley economist Emmanuel Saez. Their new book is The Triumph of Injustice: How the Rich Dodge Taxes and How to Make Them Pay. America’s soaring inequality has a new engine: Its regressive tax system. Over the past half century, even as their wealth rose to previously unseen heights, the richest Americans watched … Continue reading »

Don’t let impeachment furor distract us from preventing 2020 election interference

Amid the impeachment furor, don’t lose sight of the renewed importance of protecting the integrity of the 2020 election. The difference between Richard Nixon’s abuse of power (trying to get dirt on political opponents to help with his 1972 reelection, and then covering it up) and Donald Trump’s abuse (trying to get Ukraine’s president to … Continue reading »

Impeaching Trump could hurt the presidency and national security

House Speaker Nancy Pelosi authorized the opening of an impeachment inquiry over accusations that President Trump abused his foreign-relations powers to target political rivals. Realizing the gravity of the affair, the president had announced that the White House would release an unclassified and unredacted transcript of a phone call at the center of the whistle-blower complaint. Mr. … Continue reading »