Steve Buckstein

A free-market guru with ties to Portland

In honor of Milton Friedman’s 102nd birthday this July 31, below is Steve Buckstein’s op-ed in Friedman’s memory, which appeared in The Oregonian the day after Friedman passed away in 2006. Full text A great champion of human liberty passed away on Thursday at the age of 94.  Milton Friedman won the Nobel Prize in economics in 1976, […]

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Oregon’s Prescription-Only Cold Medicine Law Needs a New Look

In recent years, Cascade Policy Institute has tracked and analyzed the effectiveness of a 2006 Oregon state law that requires all citizens to obtain a doctor’s prescription before buying pseudoephedrine-based cold and allergy medication. Overall, our analysis found that the law produced a minimal impact on the state’s methamphetamine problem, based on the fact that […]

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Common Sense this Independence Day

I’ve taken two tours of Independence Hall in Philadelphia. Though it was full of vivid history about the signers of Thomas Jefferson’s Declaration, I don’t recall seeing much about a relatively unsung hero of the American Revolution, Jefferson’s friend Thomas Paine, who stirred the new nation to action. In the months before our country declared […]

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U.S. Supreme Court rules that freedom of association trumps public sector union demands

The U.S. Supreme Court today ruled in Harris v. Quinn that home health care workers in Illinois cannot be forced to pay public sector union dues because that violates their freedom of association as protected by the First Amendment. The decision should help similar workers in Oregon who are being forced to pay dues to the state’s largest public […]

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Oregon’s Self-Service Gas Prohibition Probably Won’t End—But It Should

Only two states prohibit motorists from pumping their own gasoline: New Jersey and Oregon. I’m not sure what excuses the powers-that-be use in New Jersey, but here they in-effect warn that “you’ll set yourself on fire.” The ban went into effect in 1951, and the only attempt to end it failed at the polls in […]

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What Should Have Happened with Cover Oregon

By now, people around the country know our state’s attempt to create a health insurance exchange website was a colossal failure. Fingers of blame are pointing in all different directions; and last month the U.S. Attorney’s office issued broad subpoenas seeking information from Cover Oregon and the Oregon Health Authority about who did what, who […]

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Just Say No to the Oregon Opportunity Initiative

The cost of obtaining a college degree is rising rapidly, leading some people to advocate that taxpayers subsidize even more of the cost. They assume that the state will benefit economically if more of its citizens obtain higher educations. And yet, as one researcher puts it, “One of America’s most durable myths is that the […]

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The Last Communist City: Havana or Portland?

It’s clearly a stretch to describe Portland as a communist city, but there is an eerie similarity between Portland and the real communist city of Havana.   Portland-based independent journalist Michael J. Totten recently traveled to Cuba to see for himself the Havana that most tourists never see. He published his fascinating account in a […]

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Cover Oregon: Out of the Frying Pan…

On April 25th, after wasting more than $200 million in federal cash, Cover Oregon’s Board voted to pull the plug on Oregon’s failed ObamaCare health insurance exchange and go with the federal exchange technology as the “core” of its system. The first open enrollment period for Oregonians ends today. Oregon hopes to be back in […]

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As ObamaCare Turns Four, How’s It Working out for You?

The Affordable Care Act turned four years old last Sunday. So how’s it working out for you? If you’re one of the millions who lost, or risk losing, the insurance you already had, your answer is probably “not so great.” If you’re a young person who realizes that ObamaCare wants you to pay much higher […]

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