My long-time friend Ben Powell, a professor of economics at Texas Tech University and the director of the Free Market Institute there, is quite a good interviewer: asking good questions and coming up with good lines apparently on the fly.

Here’s a link to a recently aired “Free to Exchange” episode. The first 13 minutes are with Walter Williams and the last 11 minutes are with me.

Times below are approximate. I’ve highlighted only the parts from the interview with me, although I highly recommend watching the interview with Walter too.

13:00: Brief history of draft.
14:00: Why draft doesn’t lower cost of having a military.
15:00: Great question in optimal tax theory.
16:00: Elvis Presley.
16:40: Bill Gates.
17:00: Not having draft makes military stronger.
18:15: Great line from Ben: “They could have got a lot more privates by letting him [Presley] not be one.”
18:20: Economists’ effect on the debate.
19:30: Milton Friedman’s exchange with General William Westmoreland.
21:00: Ben asks: If national defense is so important, why would how we obtain manpower be an exception to the way we organize other economic activities?
21:50: Happy birthday, 18 year old.