Peter J. Wallison

Peter J. Wallison is the Arthur F. Burns Fellow in Financial Policy Studies at the American Enterprise Institute.

Could the Republicans Survive Dodd-Frank?


There are always people who believe that Washington’s actions are immutable. Yes, they say, the people can elect Republicans who pledge to overturn Obamacare, but when the smoke clears much of it will still be standing. And sure, we have a deficit crisis, but Paul Ryan’s budget — or any other entitlement reform — will […]

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The ‘Big Lie’ Defense


It’s always painful to take on the myths and ideological narratives of the left. The pundits of the liberal (excuse me, “progressive”) media make a pretense of listening to reason, but when their views are challenged, they become abusive. You are not honestly trying to find the truth; you are making up data, actually lying. […]

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The True Story of the Financial Crisis


As many readers of The American Spectator will know, I was a member of the Financial Crisis Inquiry Commission, a 10-member body appointed by Congress to investigate the causes of the financial crisis of 2008. The Commission issued its report in late January 2011, with a majority concluding that the crisis could have been avoided […]

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The Fed Fails Upward


Let’s understand something. Increasing regulation, and spreading it over the rest of the financial economy, only solves Congress’s problem; it makes everything else worse. We’ve seen this before. The Sarbanes-Oxley Act in 2002 imposed immense costs on U.S. companies and drove foreign companies out of our markets. Now we are seeing members of Congress prepare […]

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The True Origins of This Financial Crisis


Two narratives seem to be forming to describe the underlying causes of the financial crisis. One, as outlined in a New York Times front-page story on Sunday, December 21, is that President Bush excessively promoted growth in home ownership without sufficiently regulating the banks and other mortgage lenders that made the bad loans. The result […]

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Reagan and McCain


Apparently dissatisfied with their presidential choices, Republicans are asking, “Why don’t we have another Ronald Reagan?” But if we think seriously about what made Ronald Reagan a great leader and a great president, we may find that there’s a reasonable facsimile hiding in plain sight. John McCain, although he has failed to toe the line […]

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Reagan, Iraq, and Neoconservatism


There are several major deficiencies — even logical gaps — in the Halper-Clarke thesis that Ronald Reagan would not have invaded Iraq (“Neoconservatism Is Not Reaganism,” TAS, April 2004, and posted yesterday as “Would Ronald Reagan Have Attacked Iraq?“). The first and most obvious is that the authors fail to deal with the realities that […]

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