Previous Articles

  • The Coming Inflation Nightmare February 16, 2021 by W. David Montgomery - Many alarming executive orders have been issued in the first days of the Biden Administration, but today I want to discuss a central feature of its economic policies. That is the implicit, and by some loudly shouted, belief that it is possible to pile up ever growing deficits by borrowing from the Federal Reserve. This belief must be spiked. A sub-cult in economics that likes to refer to itself as Modern Monetary Theory, or MMT to the insiders, holds that the amount of borrowing by the Federal government is meaningless. It can always be accommodated, according to this cult, by the Federal Reserve creating money that it lends to the Federal government. All policymakers need to do is keep watch on inflation, and if it appears all that money is beginning to cause price levels to rise, the solution is to increase taxes high enough to siphon off the excess money being spent by consumers. As long as inflation is stubbornly low, despite zero interest rates, the Federal government can spend all that Democrats dream of and really has no need to raise taxes. Members of Congress, whether Democrats or Republicans, love it. The Democrats love to spend the money;…
  • Biden’s Immigration Plan February 2, 2021 by Matthew Daley - This is a first look at President Biden’s immigration plan and will likely be followed by analyses in greater depth as the Congress takes up his proposals. Upon first reading, one is hard pressed to identify any major “ask” of the advocates of increased immigration that has been omitted. Together with President Biden’s Executive Orders, this proposal, if adopted, will vacate restrictions on immigration adopted during the Trump Administration and ease a number that were in place during the Obama Administration. Absent is a clear commitment to controlling our borders (however that is done) and returning illegal/unauthorized aliens to their homelands. The result will be significant increases in immigration of all types to the US, the exact magnitude of which is difficult to forecast due to uncertainties regarding future enforcement policies and factors which drive immigration. The Biden plan does not announce “open borders” as its objective, but one may be forgiven for suspecting that is the direction in which the US will travel under it.
  • Editors’ Note January 19, 2021 by webadminpcw - Instead of our usual original article, we have decided to use this issue to make two appeals, one financial and one editorial, which you can read below. We also strongly recommend that you read the sidebar in which we summarize articles published elsewhere that we believe are “Worth Reading.” The most important events of the past two weeks have been discussed widely and capably by commentators whom we read and respect. As a result, none of us has found a better way to explain, summarize or refute their points. Instead of making an unsuccessful try, we decide to curate those articles and recommend the five we found most interesting and thought-provoking. We will be back in two weeks, as opinionated as ever.
  • An Appeal January 19, 2021 by webadminpcw - Since we started publication in 2019, there have been 40 issues of the Chesapeake Observer and the editors are very gratified with how our readership has grown. Until now, we have supported the journal out of our own pockets, with the intention that at some point it should become self-supporting. We are now asking for the first time for contributions to support publication of the journal.
  • An Invitation January 19, 2021 by webadminpcw - Though we enjoy writing about topics that interest us and on which we have some knowledge, it was never our goal to include only our own voices in this journal. Once again, we invite readers to submit to us articles on topics of current interest that have important implications for the future.
  • Thinking About Things: What Will They Do Without Trump to Bash? January 5, 2021 by John DeQ. Briggs - First of all, good riddance to 2020 and welcome 2021! Second, no year is off to a proper start without a look back at the prior year through the memorable eyes and hilarious brain of Dave Barry. However bad 2020 was, his review of it is enough to bring laughing tears to the eyes of left and right alike. Indeed, he is one of the few people left in the world who can skewer everyone with a light touch and not seem generally, well, hateful - without that special malice which seems to so afflict the left. His column is here, sadly behind the Washington Post paywall for some. Dave Barry’s 2020. Third, I have been wondering what all those reporters, their staffs, the editors, OpEd writers, late-night comedians, Big Tech, the universities and their academic apparatchiks, sonorous and not so sonorous voices on public and private radio, and the rest of the center left will do once the curtain finally falls on the remnants of the Trump administration. Certainly, the New York Times writers seem as energetic as ever - even just yesterday exclaiming about the “lack of decency” in the country, especially that part of it that might…
  • A Letter to Our Readers from the Chesapeake Observer Editors December 22, 2020 by webadminpcw - This holiday season, we ask each of you to join us in sending to our state and county health authorities the suggestion that, as a matter of common sense, they provide for vaccination certificates immediately. To date, there is a dearth of specific information regarding the timing and distribution of Covid-19 vaccinations, except for health care workers and those in long term residential care facilities. Moreover, there is no plan that we have seen that ensures that those who elect to receive Covid-19 vaccinations will be provided with a certificate attesting to that inoculation. In decades past, international travelers were advised or, depending on destination, required to have a record of their vaccinations recorded in a “yellow book” or some other official document.
  • Editors Note December 8, 2020 by webadminpcw - Once again, the three editors have combined forces to comment on the men and women who have been or might be named to head Cabinet Departments under a Biden-Harris Administration. As of this issue, there is little to go on for some important departments, so that we only cover those departments for which current announcements and rumors reveal likely directions for policy. We will return to this topic in future issues.
  • Thinking About Things: Ruminations about The Biden Justice Department December 8, 2020 by John DeQ. Briggs - We have a greater opportunity than normal this edition to engage in rank speculation and congenial rumination about what various facets of the Biden administration might look like. My remit for the moment is the Justice Department and some of its constituent pieces.
  • Biden’s National Security Team December 8, 2020 by Matthew Daley - President-elect Biden has started to form his national security team with several announcements being made, apart from the Department of Defense where a vigorous debate is raging behind the scenes. Anthony Blinken has been chosen as Secretary of State, Jake Sullivan as National Security Advisor, Avril Haines as Director of National Intelligence, Alejandro Mayorkas as Secretary for Homeland Security and John Kerry as Special Envoy for Climate Change. Of this group, only John Kerry could fairly be described as a “household name” and we can only speculate about the significance of lodging the position of Special Envoy for Climate Change with cabinet rank under the national security umbrella.