"I'm a fifth-generation New Yorker and I care a lot about the city," says Reason TV Producer Jim Epstein. "I like covering local issues." But Epstein, 39, is frustrated by government interventions that make "it harder and harder for people who aren't rich to live here." The $15 minimum wage passed in April, for instance, will eliminate jobs in one of the few industries where low-skilled immigrants can still find work in New York City, as Epstein explains in "Minimum Wage vs. the Carwasheros" (page 26).
Manhattan Institute fellow Jared Meyer moved to Washington, D.C., shortly after graduating college in 2013, just as Uber was beginning to expand beyond its "black car" service. "At the time, very few people in policy focused on the regulatory challenges that disruptive platform technologies would face," he recalls. Thus began his interest in the "sharing economy"—a sector that has flourished despite ongoing efforts to regulate it more tightly, which he catalogs in "Why Hillary Hates Uber" (page 42). The fight is personal for the 25-year-old: "If D.C. is going to place hundreds of trillions of dollars in unfunded entitlement promises on millennials' shoulders," he says, "the least politicians can do is let us work."
Frank Dikötter, 54, teaches humanities at the University of Hong Kong. An excerpt from his forthcoming book, The Cultural Revolution: A People's History, 1962–1976 (Bloomsbury), appears on page 52 ("China's Other Cultural Revolution"). It is the third in a trilogy, the first volume of which won the Samuel Johnson Prize for Non-Fiction in 2011. Dikötter's love of China extends to his adopted hometown. "The image we have of Hong Kong is that of a concrete jungle," he says. "Few people realize that about two-thirds of the territory are protected county parks where one can hike for hours on end without ever having to cross a road."