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  • Author: Janine R. Wedel
  • Publication Date: 03-1999
  • Content Type: Working Paper
  • Institution: The Cato Institute
  • Abstract: Since the fall of the Berlin Wall in 1989 and the subsequent breakup of the Soviet Union in 1991, the governments of the United States and other Western countries have provided massive aid to promote a transition to the free market in Central and Eastern Europe and the former Soviet Union. But aid for market reforms in the region has been largely ineffective. Whether provided in the form of technical assistance, grants to political groups or nongovernmental organizations, loans and guarantees to the private sector, or direct financial aid to post-communist governments, that aid has been plagued by a number of problems. The failed $22.6 billion bailout of Russia by the International Monetary Fund in July 1998 only confirmed the flawed nature of the aid-for-reform approach.
  • Topic: Economics, Emerging Markets
  • Political Geography: Russia, United States, Europe, Eastern Europe, Asia, Soviet Union
  • Author: Ivan Eland
  • Publication Date: 02-1999
  • Content Type: Working Paper
  • Institution: The Cato Institute
  • Abstract: Serious military threats to U.S. security have diminished dramatically since the end of the Cold War. The threat from conventional Russian military forces has all but disintegrated and would take many years to reconstitute. China would take 20 to 30 years to transform its bloated and obsolete military into a major threat to U.S. vital interests. The militaries in both nations should be watched, but they may never develop into credible threats.
  • Topic: Security, Defense Policy, Arms Control and Proliferation, Cold War, Nuclear Weapons, Terrorism
  • Political Geography: United States
  • Author: Kathleen C. Bailey
  • Publication Date: 01-1999
  • Content Type: Working Paper
  • Institution: The Cato Institute
  • Abstract: The Comprehensive Test Ban Treaty (CTBT) is now before the U.S. Senate for its advice and consent. The treaty bans all explosive testing of nuclear weapons. Advocates of the CTBT make several arguments in support of the treaty. The reasons reduce to two points: the ban will constrain the modernization and development of nuclear weapons by the nations that already possess them, and it will help prevent the spread of nuclear weapons to additional nations. Both objectives are set out in the CTBT's preamble.
  • Topic: Security, Arms Control and Proliferation, Nuclear Weapons
  • Political Geography: United States
  • Author: Steve H. Hanke, Kurt Schuler
  • Publication Date: 03-1999
  • Content Type: Policy Brief
  • Institution: The Cato Institute
  • Abstract: President Carlos Menem of Argentina has advocated replacing the Argentine peso with the dollar. Dollarization would benefit Argentina because it would eliminate the peso-dollar exchange-rate risk, lower interest rates, and stimulate economic growth.
  • Topic: Economics, International Political Economy
  • Political Geography: Argentina, South America, Latin America
  • Author: Ivan Eland, Timothy M. Beard
  • Publication Date: 02-1999
  • Content Type: Policy Brief
  • Institution: The Cato Institute
  • Abstract: Although the end of the Cold War reduced the likelihood of a nuclear exchange between the superpowers, several smaller rogue states, through their dedicated efforts to acquire weapons of mass destruction and ballistic missiles, have emerged as potential threats to U.S. national security. National Intelligence Estimate 95-19 stated that no new missile threats to the United States would develop before 2010. However, given the curious circumstances of the estimate's release and the many analytical faults contained in the document, its results have been questioned.
  • Topic: Defense Policy, National Security
  • Political Geography: United States
  • Author: Cato Institute
  • Publication Date: 04-1998
  • Content Type: Working Paper
  • Institution: The Cato Institute
  • Abstract: On December 8-9 the Cato Institute and The Economist cosponsored a conference on the global public pensions crisis at the Queen Elizabeth II Conference Centre in London. Among the speakers were Michael Tanner, director of the Cato Project on Social Security Privatization; Clive Crook, deputy editor of The Economist; Carlos Boloña, former finance minister of Peru; Mukul Asher of the University of Singapore; and Peter Ferrara, chief economist at Americans for Tax Reform and an associate policy analyst at the Cato Institute. Excerpts from their remarks follow.
  • Topic: Economics, Government, International Political Economy
  • Political Geography: London
  • Author: Daniel T. Griswold
  • Publication Date: 04-1998
  • Content Type: Working Paper
  • Institution: The Cato Institute
  • Abstract: America's annual trade deficit, already large by historical standards, could reach a new record in 1998, fueling protectionist sentiment in Congress. Political fallout from the trade deficit numbers could impede efforts to reduce barriers to trade in the United States and abroad. Contrary to popular conception, the trade deficit is not caused by unfair trade practices abroad or declining industrial competitiveness at home. Trade deficits reflect the flow of capital across international borders, flows that are determined by national rates of savings and investment. This renders trade policy an ineffective tool for reducing a nation's trade deficit.
  • Topic: Economics, Political Economy
  • Political Geography: United States
  • Author: Jonathan D. Wallace
  • Publication Date: 02-1998
  • Content Type: Working Paper
  • Institution: The Cato Institute
  • Abstract: Under the legal doctrine of pervasiveness, media such as television and radio get much less protection from censorship than do print media. The Supreme Court should reject the pervasiveness doctrine as a dangerously broad and vague excuse for speech regulation. If the doctrine applies to any medium, it could arguably apply to all media. The pervasiveness doctrine thus threatens to curtail the First Amendment's protection of freedom of speech.
  • Topic: Government, Industrial Policy, Political Economy, Science and Technology
  • Author: Ivan Eland
  • Publication Date: 12-1998
  • Content Type: Policy Brief
  • Institution: The Cato Institute
  • Abstract: According to Secretary of State Madeleine Albright, terrorism is the most important threat the United States and the world face as the 21st century begins. High-level U.S. officials have acknowledged that terrorists are now more likely to be able to obtain and use nuclear, chemical, and biological weapons than ever before.
  • Topic: Foreign Policy, Terrorism
  • Political Geography: United States
  • Author: Steve H. Hanke
  • Publication Date: 10-1998
  • Content Type: Policy Brief
  • Institution: The Cato Institute
  • Abstract: The devaluation of the Russian ruble this year was predictable, especially considering Russia's poor monetary history. State-manipulated money has been a Russian hallmark since the time of Peter the Great and shows that the country's money problems are endemic and do not depend on who controls the central bank. Czarist, Soviet, and post-Soviet governments have used the central bank printing press to finance deficit spending, resulting in high inflation, confiscation of savings, capital controls, or a combination of the three.
  • Topic: Economics, International Political Economy
  • Political Geography: Russia, Europe, Asia, Soviet Union