Cronyism vs. Competition

The Texas Legislature is considering a bill that will allow auto makers to sell directly to consumers. Currently, new automobiles must be purchased through a franchised dealership. Not surprisingly, the bill is opposed by dealership owners. Wyatt Wainwright, president of the Houston Automobile Dealers Association, recently met with lawmakers to explain why auto dealers oppose […]

Made in Texas

According to The Texas Tribune, “Under federal law, wine can have an appellation of origin from a state if a minimum 75 percent of its grapes are grown in that state. The other 25 percent can come from anywhere.” The Texas Legislature is considering a bill that will require Texas winemakers to use 100 percent […]

The Danger of Deregulation

Many have applauded President Trump’s stated objective to “massively” reduce regulations. Certainly, fewer regulations are better than the mountains of controls and prohibitions that currently stifle American businesses. But reducing regulations is not the panacea some might believe.

Consider the Environmental Protection Agency as an example. Last week, Scott Pruitt, the head of the agency, […]

Title Insurance and Cronyism

Every day, we are subjected to the hidden costs of government regulations. Government drives up the cost of nearly every product and service, including title insurance. While title insurance isn’t a sexy topic, it impacts nearly every real estate transaction, and thus has an impact on housing costs, the cost of doing business, and everything […]

Democrats Aren’t Good for Texas Businesses

One of the hallmarks of Regressives is the rejection of principles. They deal with issues in isolation, believing that we must experiment to discover “what works.” Now they are trying to convince Texas businesses to take that same approach. As one example, the Chronicle called for the state’s businesses to consider supporting Democrats. Regressive blogger […]

Opportunity and Freedom

Yesterday, I wrote about a Chronicle article that claims Houston denies opportunities to the children of low-income families by failing to build subsidized housing in wealthier neighborhoods. The article focuses on education, while completely ignoring the most fundamental aspect of opportunity: freedom.

Freedom means an absence of coercion. It means that an individual can pursue […]

Somebody (Else) Should do Something

Of major cities in the United States, Houston is always among the leaders in the affordability of housing. Yet, the Chronicle, frequently eager to bash the city, notes that

a report last fall from the Federal Reserve Bank of Dallas pointed out, Houston homeowners are the most cost-burdened in the state, with more than 10 […]

The Pre-existing Conditions Mandate is Immoral

The pre-existing conditions feature is at the heart of what is wrong with Obamacare. It requires insurance companies to pay for the care of new customers who are already sick with often chronic and expensive diseases and to charge them no more than their healthy patients. These are the same insurers that the young and […]

A War Story

Several years ago, I purchased a four-plex in a low-income area of Houston. About a year later, I received a letter demanding that I register the property with the City of Houston. But before I could register the property, I had to obtain a Certificate of Occupancy.

The property was fully occupied when I purchased […]

Gun Violence and Government Force

Last week, students from Yates High School presented an original play, “Gun Violence: The New Normal.” The play was written, performed, and directed by the students. The Chronicle noted:

Although a good-sized crowd filled the auditorium, those who most needed to see this play were absent. Some elected officials, whose obeisance to the Second Amendment […]