Andrew B. Wilson

Andrew B. Wilson, a longtime contributor to The American Spectator, is resident fellow and senior writer at the Show-Me Institute, a free-market think tank headquartered in St. Louis.

An Open Letter to Jeff Bezos

 

Dear Jeff: Amazon is amazing. In just 20 years as a public company, the company you founded has experienced a thousand-fold growth in sales — going from $148 million in 1997 to $138 billion in 2016 and a projected $160 billion in the current year. Adjusted for splits, the price of the stock has gone […]

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HQ2 = PU.E 2: Something Is Rotten in Amazon’s Request for Proposals

 

If you have been following the business news over the past couple of weeks, you know about “HQ2.” It is the most sought-after prize — the biggest pot of gold, if you will, at the end of a shimmering rainbow — in the entire history of economic development projects underwritten by tax breaks and subsidies […]

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The Utopian Apocalypse: Silicon Valley Freaks Out Over Automation

 

With Labor Day just around the corner, now is a good time to discuss (and, more than that, to take up the cudgels against) a bad idea popularized by leading figures in Silicon Valley. It is really a two-part idea. It begins with the proposition that the robots are coming and they are about to […]

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Raising the Level of One’s Game

 

In any adventure, there is one requirement: Live for the moment — pushing aside unworthy or inappropriate thoughts. A good example comes from ski jumping. Before jumping off the side of a cliff, you must “ache for the impact”: thinking only of the sheer joy to come, when you soar high above the trees and […]

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Blind-Siding the Public

 

In the land of the blind, the man with one eye is king. When it comes to Missouri’s rapidly proliferating special taxing districts, one-eyed kings pick millions of dollars out of the pockets of unseeing and unsuspecting consumers / taxpayers. Who preys upon the sightless with such cruel impunity? More often than not, it is […]

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Obamacare Express: How ‘Gun to the Head’ Turned Into Runaway Locomotive

 

In 2012, prompted by a U.S. Supreme Court ruling, Barack Obama turned what had been a “gun to the head” of state lawmakers and governors into an act of extraordinary (if reckless) generosity. The then president offered the states “free money” — and lots of it — in return for their support of a central […]

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The ‘Price’ of Doing Business

 

As someone who ran his own business for many years, I am aware of the difference between cost and price, even if it is something that eludes many political leaders and more than a few businesspeople with their noses in the public trough. Cost is the expense that a business incurs in making a product […]

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Wake Up, Missouri Lawmakers — Seven New Year’s Resolutions

 

Wake up, Missouri lawmakers. It is me, the Ghost of a Christmas Yet-to-Come, who whispers in your ear this wintry night. I come not to frighten you (like the baleful ghost in Dickens’s tale) nor to load you down with unearned and therefore inconsequential and soon-to-be-forgotten gifts. Opportunity beckons. This is your chance to do […]

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Making Missouri Great in a New Age of Decentralizing Government

 

If politics and policy were twin babies, politics would be first out, screaming for food and attention. Policy would be busy thinking of life beyond the crib. Where politics looks for quick fixes, policy seeks long-term solutions. If ever there were a time for the second-born twin to shine, and to get on with the […]

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Here’s a Money-Saving Idea for St. Louis

 

Francis Slay, the mayor of St. Louis, wants to spend more money (another $2.2 billion) on a very expensive toy — adding 17 miles of track at taxpayer expense to the 46 already assembled in the MetroLink light-rail system. He calls it “a moral and economic imperative” for our city and region. That’s crazy talk. […]

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