Walter E. Williams bio photo

Walter E. Williams

Professor of Economics.
wwilliam@gmu.edu
(703) 993-1148
D158 Mason Hall
Department of Economics
George Mason University

Related Sites:
The homepage of George Mason University.
Homepage of the Department of Economics at GMU.

Archived Columns From 2016

by Walter Williams

2016 January

Unappreciated Tax on the PoorJanuary 06, 2016

A few years ago, BET had a commentary titled “Where Are the Grocery Stores in Black Neighborhoods?” One wonders whether anyone thinks that the absence of sup...

Minimum Wage DishonestyJanuary 13, 2016

Michael Hiltzik, a columnist and Los Angeles Times reporter, wrote an article titled “Does a minimum wage raise hurt workers? Economists say: We don’t know.”...

Blacks and the ConfederacyJanuary 20, 2016

Last July, Anthony Hervey, an outspoken black advocate for the Confederate flag, was killed in a car crash. Arlene Barnum, a surviving passenger in the vehic...

Education InsanityJanuary 26, 2016

Some credit Albert Einstein, others credit Benjamin Franklin, with the observation that “the definition of insanity is doing the same thing year after year a...

2016 February

Isn't It Strange?February 03, 2016

There is a letter titled “Isn’t It Strange?” making the rounds in email boxes. It asks questions to which our fellow Americans should know the answers, save ...

Sloppy Language and ThinkingFebruary 10, 2016

George Orwell said, “But if thought corrupts language, language can also corrupt thought.” Gore Vidal elaborated on that insight, saying, “As societies grow ...

Clinton and Sanders and ProgressivismFebruary 17, 2016

Presidential candidates Hillary Clinton and Sen. Bernie Sanders seek to claim the “progressive” mantle. Both claim the other is not a true progressive. Clint...

Gullible AmericansFebruary 24, 2016

Jonathan Swift (1667-1745), satirist, essayist and political pamphleteer, is a favorite of mine. He wrote “Gulliver’s Travels.” One of Gulliver’s voyages was...

2016 March

What Is The Fair Share Of Taxes?March 02, 2016

Presidential hopefuls Hillary Clinton and Sen. Bernie Sanders, along with President Obama, say they want high-income earners, otherwise known as the rich, to...

The Seen And UnseenMarch 09, 2016

Claude Frederic Bastiat (1801-50) — a French classical liberal theorist, political economist and member of the French National Assembly — wrote an influentia...

Our Forgotten StatesmanMarch 16, 2016

George Washington, our first president, is probably our greatest and most decent statesman. We celebrate Washington’s Birthday each February. But March 16th ...

Trade Deficit AngstMarch 23, 2016

Let’s look at the political angst over trade deficits. A trade deficit is when people in one country buy more from another country than the other country’s p...

Campus LunacyMarch 30, 2016

The American Council of Trustees and Alumni publishes occasional reports on what college students know. Nearly 10 percent of the college graduates surveyed t...

2016 April

Campus Lunacy Part IIApril 06, 2016

Professor Victor Davis Hanson is a classicist and historian with the Hoover Institution at Stanford University. He recently wrote an article titled “The hypo...

Attacking Our Nation's FoundersApril 13, 2016

During Sen. Bernie Sanders’ campaign visit to Liberty University, he told the students that our nation was created on racist principles. Students at a Christ...

Rights Versus WishesApril 20, 2016

Here is what presidential aspirant Sen. Bernie Sanders said: “I believe that health care is a right of all people.” President Barack Obama declared that heal...

A Superior VisionApril 27, 2016

Last month, I celebrated the beginning of my 81st year of life. For nearly half that time, I have been writing a nationally syndicated column on many topics ...

2016 May

Common SenseMay 04, 2016

Republican presidential aspirant John Kasich stirred up angry words from women’s organizations and the Democratic Party by his response to a question from a ...

Fiddling Away Black FuturesMay 11, 2016

Most black politicians, ministers, civil rights advocates and professionals support Hillary Clinton’s quest for the presidency. Whoever becomes the next pres...

Scalia School of LawMay 18, 2016

George Mason University School of Law has just been renamed the Antonin Scalia School of Law in honor of the late Supreme Court Justice Antonin Scalia. Accom...

You Are What You Say You AreMay 25, 2016

Last year, I declared myself a springbok trapped in a human body. A springbok is a highly agile individual who is among the “least concern” species and resid...

2016 June

Elitist ArroganceJune 01, 2016

White teenage unemployment is about 14 percent. That for black teenagers is about 30 percent. The labor force participation rate for white teens is 37 percen...

Elitist Arrogance, Part IIJune 08, 2016

A basic economic premise holds that when the price of something rises, people seek to economize on its use. They seek substitutes for that which has risen in...

Money Going to WashingtonJune 15, 2016

According to a New York Post article (May 22, 2016), in just two years, Hillary Clinton — former first lady, senator from New York and secretary of state — c...

Purification of AmericaJune 22, 2016

In 2008, Barack Obama promised a fundamental transformation of America. Where that promise has gone unfulfilled the most is in areas of sexual and racial dis...

Multiculturalism: A Failed ConceptJune 29, 2016

German Chancellor Angela Merkel declared that multiculturalism has “utterly failed,” adding that it was an illusion to think Germans and foreign workers coul...

2016 July

Thinking Beyond Stage OneJuly 06, 2016

A recent ruling by the U.S. Department of Commerce dramatically increased tariffs on some Chinese steel products, such as cold-rolled steel, which is used to...

Challenges for Black PeopleJuly 13, 2016

President Barack Obama and his first attorney general, Eric Holder, called for an honest conversation about race. Holder even called us “a nation of cowards”...

Challenges for Black People: Part IIJuly 20, 2016

The prospects for a better future are nearly hopeless for roughly 20 percent of black people — those who reside in big-city crime-infested and dysfunctional ...

What Can Discrimination Explain?July 27, 2016

A guiding principle for physicians is primum non nocere, the Latin expression for “first, do no harm.” In order not to do harm, whether it’s with medicine or...

2016 August

Compensating DifferencesAugust 03, 2016

What economists call an ability to make “compensating differences” is a valuable tool in everyone’s arsenal. If people are prohibited from doing so, they are...

The Decline of CivilityAugust 10, 2016

One of the unavoidable consequences of youth is the tendency to think behavior we see today has always been. I’d like to dispute that vision, at least as it ...

Is Free Trade Causing Job Loss?August 17, 2016

International trade figures heavily in the presidential race. Presidential candidate Donald Trump said, “Hillary Clinton unleashed a trade war against the Am...

College Campus LunacyAugust 24, 2016

As the fall semester begins, parents, students, taxpayers and donors should be made aware of official college practices that should disgust us all.

Economic ConspiraciesAugust 31, 2016

A general economic principle is that any law or regulation that restricts market entry tends to impose the greatest burden on those who can be described as p...

2016 September

Corrupt Academics and the MediaSeptember 07, 2016

Some are puzzled by the dishonesty, lack of character and sheer stupidity of many people in the media. But seeing as most of them are college graduates, they...

Academic Giants and DwarfsSeptember 14, 2016

The University of Chicago’s president, Dr. Robert J. Zimmer, wrote a Wall Street Journal article, titled “Free Speech Is the Basis of a True Education.” In i...

Cruelty to Black StudentsSeptember 21, 2016

Last year’s college news was about demands for safe spaces, trigger warnings and bans on insensitivity. This year’s college news is about black student deman...

Transgenderism Can Be HelpfulSeptember 28, 2016

North Carolina’s legislative body passed the Public Facilities Privacy and Security Act, which mandates a statewide policy banning individuals from using pub...

2016 October

Discrimination and SegregationOctober 05, 2016

I was invited, along with several other American professors, to deliver lectures at South Africa’s University of the Witwatersrand in Johannesburg in 1979. P...

A Constitutional Right to LiteracyOctober 12, 2016

Detroit school students, represented by the Los Angeles-based public interest firm Public Counsel, filed suit last month against the state of Michigan, claim...

Freedom to WorkOctober 19, 2016

If a person wants to go into business as a taxicab owner, what requirements should be imposed to protect the public? The prospective taxicab owner should sho...

Dumb American YouthOctober 26, 2016

Do you wonder why Sen. Bernie Sanders and his ideas are so popular among American college students? The answer is that they, like so many other young people ...

2016 November

The Rich and UsNovember 02, 2016

Microsoft co-founder Bill Gates, having a net worth of $81.8 billion, and Amazon.com CEO Jeff Bezos, having a net worth of $70.4 billion, are the nation’s tw...

Rules of the GameNovember 07, 2016

The underpinnings of a decent society are neutral laws — laws that favor no particular individual or group — and the impartial enforcement of those laws. The...

Blacks and PoliticiansNovember 16, 2016

Donald Trump’s surprise win has millions of Americans, many of whom are black, in a tizzy. Many, such as Kareem Abdul-Jabbar, are writing about what it means...

Trump and College ChaosNovember 23, 2016

If one needed more evidence of the steep decay in academia, Donald Trump’s victory provided it. Let’s begin by examining the responses to his win, not only a...

Let's Fight TyrannyNovember 30, 2016

For more than a half-century, it has become abundantly clear that our nation faces increasing irreconcilable differences. At the root is the fact that there ...

2016 December

Majority Rule Equals TyrannyDecember 07, 2016

It is alleged that Hillary Clinton won a popular vote majority. Therefore, if the nation were not burdened with the antiquated Electoral College, anguished a...

Please, No More MiraclesDecember 14, 2016

President-elect Donald Trump has warned companies that they are not going to leave the United States anymore “without consequences.” He has lived up to his t...

Inclusiveness and DiversityDecember 21, 2016

Sometimes it seems as if every other word from the mouths of academicians is “inclusiveness” or “diversity.” How sincere and truthful are these people about ...

Wealth, Poverty and PoliticsDecember 28, 2016

Thomas Sowell has just published a revised and enlarged edition of his classic “Wealth, Poverty and Politics.” At the very beginning, he quotes Alexander Ham...