Author Archive | James K Glassman

Oil Company Profits and The Senator From Windfall

Of all the politicians complaining about the profits and practices of America‘s wicked oil companies, few can top Sen. Maria Cantwell (D-Wash.). Among her latest ventures is a demand that the oil company executives who testified Nov. 9 be brought back to the Senate, this time under oath. In a letter to the chairmen of […]

Three Huge Automatic Tax Increases — Courtesy of Congress

The first rule in government, as in medicine, is the Hippocratic one: Do no harm. Unfortunately, Congress is about to do severe harm to the U.S. economy if it fails to act in the next few months to stop three huge automatic tax increases. Let me shift metaphors. The increases — 133 percent for the […]

Interview: Dan Yergin on Energy Prices and Policies

James Glassman: Energy prices have been rising sharply, partly because of Hurricane Katrina and Hurricane Rita. We decided to talk to probably America’s number one expert on energy to try to separate some of the hysteria and the myths from the truth. Dan Yergin is the Chairman of Cambridge Energy Research Associates. He’s also a […]

“Windfall Profits Tax ” Will Increase the Price of Oil

“An angry public wants quick relief from high prices” at the pump, says Business Week. That’s hardly a surprise. Over the past year, the Energy Department reports, a gallon of regular gasoline has gone from $1.86 to $2.96. But even at less than bottled water, $3 gasoline hurts consumers and the economy as a whole. […]

When to Sell a Stock

My biggest mistake in 25 years of writing newspaper and magazine articles about the stock market started innocently. My intention, in a February 23, 2003, column for the Washington Post, was to show readers how to analyze a stock and decide whether to buy it. The mistake was to choose a single, real-live company as […]

“Windfall Profits” Tax on Oil Companies

“An angry public wants quick relief from high prices” at the pump, says Business Week. That’s hardly a surprise. Over the past year, the Energy Department reports, a gallon of regular gasoline has gone from $1.86 to $2.96. But even at less than bottled water, $3 gasoline hurts consumers and the economy as a whole. […]

Hurricanes and Global Warming: Interview with Dr. Roy Spencer

Dr. Roy Spencer is a principal research scientist for University of Alabama in Huntsville. In the past, he has served as Senior Scientist for Climate Studies at NASA’s Marshall Space Flight Center in Huntsville, Alabama, where he directed research into the development and application of satellite passive microwave remote sensing techniques for measuring global temperature, […]

Hurricanes and Global Warming: Interview with Meteorologist Dr. William Gray

Meteorologist Dr. William Gray may be the world’s most famous hurricane expert. More than two decades ago, as professor of atmospheric science and head of the Tropical Meteorology Project at Colorado State University, he pioneered the science of hurricane forecasting. Each December, six months before the start of hurricane season, the now 75-year-old Gray and […]


As much of Europe struggles with double-digit unemployment this year, the United States has been creating an average of 200,000 new jobs a month. One of our great advantages is the relative ease with which Americans can start new businesses. Physical disability, the desire to stay home with young children, racial or religious discrimination — […]

How to Avoid Investing in Crooked Businesses

Reading Kurt Eichenwald’s fascinating book on Enron Corp., “A Conspiracy of Fools,” is enough to make an investor throw up his hands (or his lunch), sell all his stocks and buy a bundle of nice short-term U.S. Treasury bonds. Eichenwald shows, in vivid detail, how Enron executives used every trick, legal and illegal, to display […]

Hurricane Katrina and Global Warming

A profound tragedy is unfolding in New Orleans, the most beautiful city in America, with the richest cultural history and the most wonderful style of living. I lived in New Orleans for seven years. I was married there. My children were born there. I have many friends there. My daughter, her husband and their little […]

The Axis of IP Evil

The U.S. commerce secretary, Carlos Gutierrez, last month took a ritual stroll through a Beijing market that teemed with pirated versions of “Star Wars” and “Seinfeld,” along with bogus North Face windbreakers, Calloway golf clubs and Samsonite suitcases. “We would like to see greater enforcement,” he said. “The time has come to see some results.” […]

CNOOC Acquiring Unocal: What’s All The Fuss?

What’s all the fuss? An energy company based in Hong Kong called CNOOC, Ltd. — small by international standards — a few weeks ago bid $18.5 billion in cash to buy another small energy company, Unocal, based in California. The bid was nearly $2 billion higher than a previous offer for Unocal by Chevron, a […]

Housing Bubbles

The blazing-hot topic at suburban cocktail parties this spring is whether there’s a bubble in the residential housing market. No wonder. In 2004, existing home prices rose faster than in any year since the 1970s. Some markets are going bonkers. Alexandria, Va., is up 31% in 12 months; San Bruno, Cal., 25%; and parts of […]

Death Tax Returns In 2011

The clock is ticking. Unless Congress acts — who knows? — we could see a wave of suicides, patricides, matricides and rich-uncle killings in 2010. That’s the year that the federal tax on estates — also known as the “death tax,” the most hated tax exacted by the U.S. Treasury — will be repealed. If […]

Amtrak is Anti-American

Right after the November 1994 election, I wrote that “the way to tell how serious Republicans are about cutting federal spending is to watch

Debating Social Security

In a romantic mood, I was reading “Anna Karenina” flying down here and stumbled across one of Tolstoy’s brilliant insights. At a party at the home of his friend Prince Oblonsky, Konstantin Levin, the philosophical farmer, muses about the futility of dinnertable debates. Tolstoy writes: “Levin had often noticed in discussions between the most intelligent […]

AARP Invests in Hypocrisy

The President has made fixing Social Security his number-one domestic objective, but the fight won’t be easy — in part because of fierce opposition by the AARP, the seniors’ lobby, with 35 million members. The AARP is using an old strategy: trying to scare the wits out of old people. The organization’s executives want its […]

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