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Articles by Keith Yost

November 1, 2011
War is never a clean affair. The recent action in Libya is no exception — in victory, the rebels have taken to killing pro-Gaddafi forces in retribution, including, it appears, Gaddafi himself, who was captured while fleeing his final holdout in Sirte. But the final outcome is as pure and as cheap a victory as the United States can hope to force on the modern battlefield. The Department of Defense estimates that from March to September, the Libyan intervention cost the DOD a mere $1.1 billion, with no U.S. casualties.
October 28, 2011
It’s challenging to get either Americans or policy wonks excited about the European debt crisis. Foreign countries are having problems to which there are no clever policy solutions? I’d rather listen to a panel discussion of Mitt Romney’s hair.
October 25, 2011
With 70 days remaining until the Iowa caucus, former Massachusetts governor Mitt Romney is the heavy favorite to become the Republican presidential nominee. Leading in the polls and viewed by many within the party as the sole remaining credible candidate, it is unsurprising that Romney is being given a 70 percent chance of taking the nomination by Intrade, a leading prediction market.
October 21, 2011
Between January 2008 and January 2010, the U.S. private sector shed 9.8 percent of its workforce, either through layoffs or reduction of employee hours. One might have expected the output of the private sector to have declined during the same period, but no — Real Gross Domestic Product remained essentially the same.
October 18, 2011
Earlier this year, the Inter-Agency Working Group on the Social Cost of Carbon, a panel assembled for the purpose of estimating the harm that a ton of CO2 emissions causes to the world, concluded its efforts to put a price tag on greenhouse gas emissions. Using up-to-date scientific assessments and an appropriate time discounting of future harms, the working group concluded that the Environmental Protection Agency and other federal bodies should use $21 as the baseline estimate of the damage caused by releasing a ton of CO2 into the atmosphere.
October 14, 2011
Solyndra deserves more credit than the media is giving it. But not much.
October 7, 2011
Palestine’s bid to become a voting member at the United Nations is nearing its final hour. In the latest tally, it appears that Palestine is close to securing nine votes on the Security Council, with Brazil, China, India, Lebanon, Russia, and South Africa voting yes; Bosnia, Gabon, and Nigeria very likely to vote yes; and Britain, Colombia, France, Germany, and Portugal set to abstain from the vote. Should Palestine reach the nine-vote threshold for entry, the United States will be faced with a choice. Should it abstain, and defer to the Security Council super majority, or should it vote no and veto the Palestinian entry?
October 4, 2011
During the debt ceiling negotiations, President Obama made an offer to Speaker of the House John Boehner that was the epitome of reasonable:: in return for lifting the debt ceiling, Obama proposed a $4 trillion reduction in federal deficits over ten years, split roughly 2-to-1 between spending cuts and revenue increases, with little to none of the cuts occurring in the next two years. Boehner, having waited for this sort of middle-of-the-road compromise for weeks, quickly accepted. And for a moment, I thought it was all going to work out.
September 30, 2011
A pitfall of writing for this newspaper as frequently as I do is that sometimes a major event comes along and I find that I’ve already said most of what I wish to say. Such is the case with Admiral Michael G. Mullen’s recent admonishment of Pakistan’s Inter-Services Intelligence for its ties to the Haqqani insurgent network.
September 27, 2011
In August, Elizabeth Warren, the presumptive Democratic candidate for the U.S. Senate seat currently held by Scott Brown, had this to say:
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