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Recent Policy Studies
Natural Resources, Energy, Environment, & ScienceBy Science and Public Policy Institute, Science and Public Policy InstituteReport, 08/30/2013
It appears that the picture being painted for Earth’s future biosphere is one that is bright and optimistic, as more and more improvements are made to models that are predicting that future. Throughout the course of the current century, even the severe warming predicted by current climate models will not likely be detrimental to plant growth and productivity. Rather, it will likely be a major benefit, enhancing plant growth and soil organic carbon storage, which will provide a significant negative feedback to global warming as the Greening of the Earth continues.
Crime, Justice & the LawBy Myron Magnet, Manhattan InstituteCity Journal, 08/30/2013
As New York citizens prepare to vote on a new chief executive for their city, it’s imperative they understand Gotham’s current era of peace and safety is no accident. Though New York is now one of the safest large cities anywhere, this has certainly not always been the case. “Fear” operated as the buzzword of life in the Big Apple for decades, as residents struggled to cope with rampant crime fueled by a roaring trade in drugs and sex. Municipal government seemed unwilling or incapable of addressing the violence holding neighborhoods hostage. That changed with the election of Rudy Giuliani to the mayor’s office in 1994, as he successfully waged war on crime and the urban decay it fostered. Political lessons learned can easily be forgotten in the absence of compelling leadership, however. Can New York residents remember what it took to rescue their city, and vote accordingly?
Foreign Policy/International AffairsBy Jessica Zuckerman, The Heritage FoundationIssue Brief, 08/30/2013
President Daniel Ortega of Nicaragua is pushing for a proposed canal project despite lingering questions and growing skepticism from Nicaraguan citizens and politicians. With no public debate, a deficit of hard facts, and a proposal rushed through the Nicaraguan National Assembly, the canal would be a massive undertaking with many unforeseen consequences and still uncertain economic gains, which could be a boon or bust for the second poorest nation in the Western Hemisphere. At the same time, the project also presents key questions for the U.S. concerning the state of democracy and transparency in Nicaragua, the erosion of property rights, and the continued growth of Chinese investment throughout the region.
Economic and Political ThoughtBy Richard Samuelson, Claremont InstituteClaremont Review of Books, 08/30/2013
The U.S. remains an exceptional nation in crucial ways. Anyone who becomes an American citizen is fully American, from that day forward. By contrast, a naturalized citizen of France, Japan, or Nigeria can live for decades in his new country, and his family can remain there for generations, yet many of the locals will still think of them as foreigners. To be sure, there is an American culture. But in America, politics, not culture, makes the nation. American identity is bound up with our Union, Constitution, and laws, rather than with tribe, clan, or culture. In the U.S., nation and culture are separate to an unusual degree. That reality, in turn, affects a range of important questions connecting what kind of government America will have to what kind of nation it will be.
Natural Resources, Energy, Environment, & ScienceBy Ken Silva, America's Future FoundationDoublethink, 08/30/2013
Thanks to pioneering technological advances in hydraulic fracking techniques, the natural gas industry is booming across the country. Concerns regarding the potential risks drilling presents to groundwater supplies, air quality, and fears of other environmental hazards have drawn the close scrutiny of regulators and legislators. This is apparent in Ohio, where the town of Oberlin is attempting to ban the extraction, transportation, and storage of oil and natural gas. But is there a free-market solution to the problem of oversight? Properly aligning incentives is the best way to generate good behavior. A private sector company insuring drillers against spills and leaks would have a much greater incentive to prevent accidents than government bureaucrats, and would be less vulnerable to political influences and outside pressures.
EducationBy Dara Zeehandelaar, Amber E. Winkler, Thomas B. Fordham FoundationStudies, 08/29/2013
The dominant approach to public education for most of our nation’s history was for local districts to offer standard-issue schools. Today, however, families across much of the country can choose among multiple public-school options. But what do parents really want? Could we do a better job of creating and delivering the educational options that families most crave for their kids? Analysts and advocates interested in the “demand” side of school choice have long focused on parents’ educational preferences. But parents are too often viewed as a monolith of similar if not identical preferences. This groundbreaking study by the Thomas B. Fordham Institute takes a different approach: It attempts to “segment” U.S. parents into distinguishable groups, each with its own set of values, priorities, and preferences regarding education.
Budget & TaxationBy Joseph Henchman, Tax FoundationFiscal Facts, 08/29/2013
The IRS today announced that, beginning with the 2014 tax filing season, they will use a “state of celebration” standard for recognizing marriages. Consequently, any couple possessing a marriage license from any U.S. state may file a joint federal tax return. This standard is in contrast to a “state of residency” standard, in which federal joint filing would be permitted only by residents of states that recognize the marriage as valid. The next step must be taken by the 24 states that do not recognize same-sex marriage but require taxpayers to reference the federal tax return when filling out their state tax form.
Budget & TaxationBy Patrick Louis Knudsen, The Heritage FoundationBackgrounder, 08/29/2013
With another budget confrontation looming in September 2013, some Members of Congress have already stated that they cannot meet the impending tight spending limits for FY 2014. They could do so, of course—if they eliminated a range of unnecessary, poorly run, or even harmful federal programs. These long-overdue terminations would save $42 billion in the coming fiscal year—more than is needed to reach 2014 spending targets. The Heritage Foundation’s Patrick Louis Knudsen lists and explains which programs should be cut, and why.
Transportation/InfrastructureBy South Carolina Policy Council, South Carolina Policy CouncilArticle, 08/29/2013
Since the close of the 2013 legislative session, the confused priorities of South Carolina’s transportation authorities have been on full display. Just before the session ended, lawmakers passed a bill that would allow the largely unaccountable State Transportation Infrastructure Bank (STIB) to borrow up to $500 million (through bonds) every year for “expansion and improvements to existing mainline interstates.” In the past, new infrastructure funds have been used on new projects rather than on maintaining existing ones – and so far that has continued to be the case. The bottom line is simple. Road conditions in South Carolina aren’t likely to improve unless several reforms happen first. Unaccountable agencies such as the STIB should be eliminated. The legislature and transportation authorities should mandate that as long as any South Carolina roads are below an acceptable grade transportation dollars should be spent only on maintenance and not new construction.
Economic GrowthBy Bruce Yandle, Mercatus CenterCommentary, 08/29/2013
The wet blanket blamed covering our economy might be energy regulation, monetary policy, or health care policy, or credit market controls, or environmental policy. But it is not policy per se that chills the economy—it is uncertainty with respect to policy. Most business people tell me, “Just let us know the rules of the game, and we will figure out a way to play.” It is awfully hard to play the game when rules are being changed without a clue as to when they will become final. Today’s world has enough risk and uncertainty without more being added by Washington.
Health CareBy Robert Alt, Nathaniel Stewart, Buckeye Institute for Public Policy SolutionsReport, 08/29/2013
State lawmakers in Michigan, Ohio and numerous other states continue to debate whether to opt–in to an expansion of Medicaid permitted by the Affordable Care Act, popularly known as “Obamacare.” In response to serious concerns about the program’s lack of flexibility and potential long-term costs for states, proponents of Medicaid expansion are promoting the use of “waivers” that will free states from federal rules and restrictions as they expand Medicaid programs. This solution is illusory. Because Medicaid waivers are temporary, subject to the discretion of federal officials and vulnerable to potential judicial reversal, they are unlikely to permit much of the flexibility state policymakers seek. By contrast, Medicaid expansion likely will be difficult to reverse. Accordingly, reliance on waivers as a source of long-term flexibility to reform the operation of Medicaid programs is ill-placed, and trading expansion for waivers is a risky bargain for states.
Economic and Political ThoughtBy Iain Murray, Blake Taylor, Competitive Enterprise InstituteOn Point, 08/29/2013
In recent years, there has been an explosion in published research into the causes and implications of happiness. A growing movement has sought to use the results of this research to influence public policy, by both government and intergovernmental organizations. The idea is that if governments attach significant value to this happiness research and data, they could formulate policies that would attempt to maximize aggregate happiness. The first step toward this central planning approach to happiness would be to supplement or replace traditional economic performance measures, such as Gross Domestic Product with one that focuses on subjective well being. This approach would introduce significant greater subjectivity into an area that needs to be as objective as possible for it to be of any use. This paper outlines the methodological and political problems with use of happiness measures for political purposes.
Budget & TaxationBy Christopher DeMuth, Claremont InstituteClaremont Review of Books, 08/29/2013
The growth of executive government and the growth of government debt are both highly worrisome to many people. They are, however, usually thought of as separate problems, arising from separate government functions. On the one hand, the executive branch operates mainly through regulation. Government borrowing, on the other hand, is a method of public finance: treasury departments market bonds to raise funds for spending in excess of tax revenues—because the government is making a long-term investment, because it is facing an emergency, or just because it has overpromised and wants to keep the spigots open. And yet the two problems are, I believe, deeply related. A clue is their scope and trajectory. The accumulation of wide policy discretion in the executive, and the accumulation of high levels of public debt, are the overarching phenomena of contemporary democracy.
Monetary Policy/Financial RegulationBy John H. Makin, American Enterprise InstituteEconomic Outlook, 08/29/2013
The global financial crisis destroyed over one-fifth of accumulated American wealth in just one year: 2008. That huge loss was on top of a far more modest but still significant 1.62 percent wealth loss in 2007. Both the US stock market bubble burst in 2000 and the housing bubble implosion of 2008 contributed to the current situation, reinforcing the need for a Federal Reserve “bubble watch” program. If we could recognize patterns that lead to these bubbles, we could see them coming and adjust policy to protect wealth accumulation and the economy as a whole.
Foreign Policy/International AffairsBy Ariel Cohen, The Heritage FoundationIssue Brief, 08/29/2013
President Obama will be in St. Petersburg, Russia, on September 5–6 for the G20 summit. However, the White House has canceled a bilateral visit to Moscow and a meeting with President Vladimir Putin after Russia granted Edward Snowden, a fugitive former National Security Agency contractor and secret national security documents leaker, temporary political asylum. Moreover, for the past two and a half years, Russia has been America’s major opponent around the world, from Syria to Iran to Europe. Nonetheless, it is possible to improve U.S.–Russian relations, but both sides have work to do.
Foreign Policy/International AffairsBy Luke Coffey, The Heritage FoundationIssue Brief, 08/28/2013
President Barack Obama will visit Sweden on September 4 en route to the G20 summit in St. Petersburg, Russia. The timing of this visit is important. The decision to visit Sweden was announced after the White House cancelled the U.S.–Russia summit, scheduled for September, due to a lack of progress in the U.S.–Russia bilateral relationship. Also, like his meeting at the White House with the leaders of Estonia, Latvia, and Lithuania in August, the President’s visit is an opportunity to demonstrate America’s commitment to transatlantic relations. The U.S. and the Nordic and Baltic countries share many of the same values and challenges. President Obama should use this opportunity to build closer American ties with Sweden. Three issues should dominate the visit: regional security, negotiations on the Transatlantic Trade and Investment Partnership (TTIP), and Arctic policy.
LaborBy Michael Hicks, Michael LaFaive, Mackinac Center for Public PolicyMackinac Center Report, 08/28/2013
Michigan’s new right-to-work law has reignited several debates about whether or not such policies are beneficial to states that adopt them. The results of this study show that from 1947 through 2011, right-to-work laws increased average real personal income growth by 0.8 percentage points and average annual population growth by 0.5 percentage points in right-to-work states. From 1970 through 2011, these laws also boosted average annual employment growth by 0.8 percentage points. All of these findings are statistically significant. These results suggest that right-to-work laws have a positive and sometimes very positive impact on the economic well-being of states and their residents. Indeed, the study’s findings show that right-to-work laws, on average, cause a one-time, permanent increase in the rate of economic growth in states.
Transportation/InfrastructureBy Baruch Feigenbaum, Reason FoundationPolicy Study, 08/28/2013
Metropolitan Atlanta’s transportation system has reached a critical juncture. Its highway and transit systems have failed to keep pace with population growth and changing travel patterns, and the result is congestion and a lack of mobility. Taken together, these problems have significant economic implications for Atlanta. It also shrinks people’s circles of opportunity, limiting their possibilities in entertainment, recreation and social life. This transportation plan aims to end traffic congestion as a regular part of life in metropolitan Atlanta and to dramatically increase the mobility of its residents. Crucially, this plan also proposes an approach to funding its recommendations that requires no new tax revenue.
Budget & TaxationBy David Stokes, Show-Me InstituteTestimony, 08/28/2013
Missouri counties should carefully consider sales tax pooling. While it may sound great that cities compete with each other for retail development, the reality is that the effects of that government competition have been harmful for Saint Louis County. It has resulted in tax giveaways and home takeaways, all for the sake of bureaucrats trying to plan our local economies. The government planning and the abuse of tax increment financing have failed to benefit our region’s economy. It has not grown jobs or opportunity. There is a better way, a more free-market-oriented way. The Saint Louis County sales tax pool is a more free-market-oriented system that encourages growth for the whole region instead of having cities fight with each other for retail development. Saint Louis County needs to move further in that direction.
EducationBy Lindsey M. Burke, Friedman Foundation for Educational ChoiceReport, 08/28/2013
As parental choice in education takes root in more communities throughout the U.S., education savings accounts (ESAs) have taken on greater importance as the funding mechanism for customized learning. This is especially true in Arizona. The state’s version of ESAs, known as Empowerment Scholarship Accounts, has enabled families to completely tailor their children’s educational experience. With Empowerment Scholarship Accounts, Arizona has created a model that should be every state policymaker’s goal when considering how to improve education: funding students instead of physical school buildings and allowing that funding to follow children to any education provider of choice.
ImmigrationBy David Bier, Competitive Enterprise InstituteOn Point, 08/28/2013
Immigrant entrepreneurs have long helped drive America’s economy. However, bureaucratic restrictions make coming to America to start a new business extremely difficult, and the current proposals to address this are inadequate. A true entrepreneurship visa would permit anyone willing to start a new U.S. business and capable of supporting themselves and their family with that business to do so. Such a visa would reflect America’s tradition of immigrant entrepreneurship and make America the most competitive country in the world for talented and innovative businessmen.
Regulation & DeregulationBy Christopher Koopman, Nita Ghei, Mercatus CenterEconomic Perspectives, 08/28/2013
Regulatory agencies have traditionally focused on mitigating the harm imposed on individuals by market failures, that is, harm caused by such things as pollution, misleading advertising, and unsafe products. In the past few years a new framework has arisen focused on attempting to mitigate the harm individuals cause themselves as a result of what the agencies view as “irrational” behavior. Government increasingly began to intervene to “nudge” consumers toward “better” choices through regulation, arguing this improves consumer welfare. The restriction of consumer choices is then counted as a benefit rather than a cost of regulation. As much of the research highlighted in this paper shows, this approach is dubious.
Economic and Political ThoughtBy Kevin Slack, The Heritage FoundationFirst Principles, 08/28/2013
Beginning in the 1950s, a more radical form of liberalism emerged in the academy that sowed the seeds for the sexual revolution and multiculturalism. Neo-progressivism mobilized the New Left of the 1960s, transformed American politics, and continues to dominate the cultural and political conversation today. It combines what neo-progressives call personal politics (the idea that American citizens have a right to all forms of self-expression) and cultural politics (the idea that cultural groups are entitled to special status) together as the twin pillars of a new identity politics. As a result, citizens today have more, not less, freedom from government in the realm of sexual expression, and the American electorate has been fractured into various groups.
Regulation & DeregulationBy Richard A. Epstein, Hoover InstitutionDefining Ideas, 08/27/2013
The current inheritors of Martin Luther King Jr.'s civil rights movement never think beyond the illusory direct benefits to their favored short-term target, ignorant of the powerful pressures that chew up their social agenda. Rather than looking hard at their own programs, they tragically work to resurrect the moral outrage of 1963. The modern champions of the civil rights movement make overwrought comparisons to earlier days because they know that the regalvanized movement needs a fat target at which to shoot. The messy issues around labor, housing, and education don’t provide that target, but raise hard technical issues on which these leaders have nothing useful to contribute. So the current economic frustrations morph into a widespread uneasiness. Al Sharpton and his fellow speakers at the Washington rally have forfeited any claim to the universal appeal of the “I have a Dream” speech.
Foreign Policy/International AffairsBy Theodore Bromund, The Heritage FoundationIssue Brief, 08/27/2013
The U.S. has announced that it will sign the U.N. Arms Trade Treaty (ATT) as soon as it is satisfactorily translated into all official U.N. languages. Once the U.S. signs the treaty, and even without the advice and consent of the Senate, the U.S. will consider itself obliged not to violate the treaty’s object and purpose. There are ten reasons why the U.S. should avoid putting itself in this dangerous position by not signing the ATT.
Budget & TaxationBy Paul Kersey, Illinois Policy InstituteReport, 08/27/2013
When considering Illinois’ economy and politics, it is clear that unionized government causes or exacerbates many of the state’s problems. The process of making long overdue changes in the Chicago Public School system has become an ordeal involving a strike and what likely will be a long-running string of protests. All of this is intended to delay and water down educational reforms. State taxpayers bear the burden of more than $200 billion in unfunded public sector pension and retiree health care obligations, much of which is a consequence of collective bargaining agreements. Compensation for current government workers is increasing at a time when incomes for the majority of the states’ residents who work outside of government are stagnant or declining. Lobbyists representing unionized government workers stymie reforms and a powerful union political machine blocks political change. Three main features of Illinois labor law empower government unions and shield them from accountability.
Family, Culture & CommunityBy Meghan Cox Gurdon, Hillsdale CollegeImprimis, 08/27/2013
Books show us the world, and in that sense, too many books for adolescents act like funhouse mirrors, reflecting hideously distorted portrayals of life. Those of us who have grown up understand that the teen years can be fraught and turbulent—and for some kids, very unhappy—but at the same time we know that in the arc of human life, these years are brief. Today, too many novels for teenagers are long on the turbulence and short on a sense of perspective. People in the book business should exercise better taste. Adult authors should not simply validate every spasm of the teen experience. Our culture should resist marching toward ever-greater explicitness in depictions of sex and violence.
International Trade/FinanceBy Derek Scissors, The Heritage FoundationIssue Brief, 08/27/2013
A trade agreement’s rules of origin indicate how to treat goods and services from sources that are not party to the agreement. For the Trans-Pacific Partnership (TPP), billed by its supporters as a “21st-century trade agreement” and a template for other major trade talks, rules of origin may be vital. The TPP has been behind closed doors for a long time. The wait will be more than worth it if a sound agreement is struck, setting the tone for the rest of the decade and beyond. Confusing or protectionist rules of origin should not be allowed to stand in the way.
Budget & TaxationBy Nicole Gelinas, Manhattan InstituteCity Journal, 08/27/2013
New York State’s distressed cities and towns can’t afford to pay their future obligations. Many localities have promised to pay pensions to their workers or to cover their health-care costs, once they retire—but haven’t put enough money aside to keep those promises. New York municipalities in fiscal trouble could benefit from something closer to California’s freewheeling approach to its own cash-strapped cities. Bankruptcy brought the town of Vallejo the supreme advantage of “being able to reject its collective bargaining agreements,” as bond analysts at Standard & Poor’s note. If Governor Andrew Cuomo wants to prevent New York cities from going bankrupt he should learn from California’s bankrupt cities. They have been able to do something that New York’s similarly distressed municipalities haven’t: reduce retiree health-care liabilities and get out of bad contracts.
Health CareBy Alyene Senger, The Heritage FoundationIssue Brief, 08/27/2013
Obamacare will impose new health coverage costs, the employer mandate, compliance regulations, and new taxes on all businesses. Altogether, these constraints will dramatically affect companies’ per-employee costs, desire to provide health coverage, and motivation to grow in terms of both income and employment.
Natural Resources, Energy, Environment, & ScienceBy James Panero, Manhattan InstituteCity Journal, 08/26/2013
The Shale Revolution has brought enormous economic benefits to American producers and consumers. According to a 2012 study by the consulting and forecasting firm IHS Global Insight, shale oil and gas combined generated $87 billion in domestic capital investments in 2012. The advantages aren’t confined to the gas industry and its direct beneficiaries; savings on energy ripple through the broader American economy. The U.S. Energy Information Administration reports that the shale-gas boom has pushed down the price of natural gas in America to one-third of its 2008 level. The lower costs of shale gas, PricewaterhouseCoopers reports, will yield 1 million domestic manufacturing jobs by 2025 and add 0.5 percent growth to the nation’s gross domestic product.
Labor Department’s Persuader Rule Undermines Employers’ Rights and Threatens the Attorney-Client RelationshipBy John Malcolm, The Heritage FoundationBackgrounder, 08/26/2013
Union membership in America is in decline, plunging from 20 percent of workers in 1983 to 11.3 percent (and only 6.6 percent among private-sector workers) in 2012. It is no secret that the Obama Administration is working overtime to reverse this trend. To this end, the Administration is now pushing a radical reinterpretation of an obscure, 50-year-old labor law that would give unions an edge by making it harder for employers to receive legal advice about labor and employment issues. This new interpretation runs contrary to congressional intent and will impose enormous costs on American businesses. It also poses a serious threat to the confidential nature of the attorney-client relationship and sacrifices the stability, even-handedness, and efficacy of the current rule.
Natural Resources, Energy, Environment, & ScienceBy William Yeatman, Competitive Enterprise InstituteAnalysis, 08/26/2013
Since President Barack Obama took office in 2009, the Environmental Protection Agency (EPA) has issued a suite of ideologically- charged regulations that collectively hamper the ability of utilities to deliver low- cost energy to American families. Under the banner of Regional Haze regulations, EPA has sought to aggressively execute the President’s environmental agenda in Oklahoma by forcibly mandating utilities to add new costly emissions control systems to coal-fired power plants.
Budget & TaxationBy Scott A. Hodge, Stephen J. Entin, Michael Schuyler, Tax FoundationSpecial Report, 08/26/2013
Led by Chairman Dave Camp (R-MI), the House Ways and Means Committee is developing a plan to dramatically simplify the tax code and cut individual and corporate tax rates. Congressman Sander Levin (D-MI), the ranking Democrat on Ways and Means, recently asked the Joint Committee on Taxation (JCT) to estimate the revenue losses associated with such a tax rate cut plan. The revenue estimates produced by the Joint Committee on Taxation overstate the difficulty of paying for lower individual and corporate tax rates. Dynamic analysis shows that cutting individual tax rates (as is being considered by the House Ways and Means Committee) is 21 percent less costly than the static estimate produced by JCT. Cutting corporate tax rates would be 59 percent less costly.
Health CareBy Alyene Senger, The Heritage FoundationIssue Brief, 08/26/2013
No class of American professionals will be more negatively impacted by the Patient Protection and Affordable Care Act (PPACA), commonly referred to as Obamacare, than physicians. Third-party payment arrangements are already compromising the independence and integrity of the medical profession, and Obamacare reinforces the worst of these features. Specifically, physicians will be subject to more government regulation and oversight, and will be increasingly dependent on unreliable government reimbursement for medical services. Doctors, already under tremendous pressure, will only see their jobs become more difficult. That is why Congress must repeal Obamacare and start over.
The Constitution/Civil LibertiesBy Randolph J. May, Seth L. Cooper, Free State FoundationPerspectives from FSF Scholars, 08/26/2013
Above all else, the U.S. Constitution recognizes the uniqueness of copyright and patent. The Founding Fathers held an anti-monopolistic outlook and at the same time supported limited protections for copyright and patent. The Constitution’s framers and ratifiers made a conscious choice both to protect individual intellectual property rights and to rely on certain constitutional safeguards against monopolies. All told, the U.S. Constitution established an anti-monopoly, pro-intellectual property rights outlook.
ImmigrationBy W.D. Reasoner, Center for Immigration StudiesBackground Paper, 08/26/2013
In June the House Judiciary Committee approved a bill that aims to enhance public safety and national security through more effective immigration law enforcement within the country as well as at the borders. Known as the Strengthen and Fortify Enforcement (SAFE) Act, the bill was sponsored by Rep. Trey Gowdy (R-S.C.), who is chairman of the Immigration and Border Security sub-committee. In addition to shoring up many parts of immigration law to help prevent the entry of criminals and terrorists and to remove them when they are discovered, the bill facilitates cooperation between local law enforcement and federal agencies in enforcement. Our analysis finds that the SAFE Act, in contrast to the more widely hyped Senate bill, would reverse the recent steep decline in interior enforcement and especially the decline in removals of criminal aliens.
Foreign Policy/International AffairsBy James Phillips, The Heritage FoundationIssue Brief, 08/26/2013
Washington should maintain ties with Egypt’s new government to help stabilize the country, preserve bilateral military and counterterrorism cooperation, maintain Egypt’s peace treaty with Israel, and help protect American interests in the Middle East. A complete cutoff of aid would only increase the risks of greater carnage in Egypt and the Middle East while setting back important foreign policy goals and damaging the reputation of the United States as a reliable ally. Washington should attach strong conditions to its aid but should not unilaterally pull the plug as long as Egypt’s army remains committed to holding elections and satisfying those conditions.