March 11, 2009
"Don’t Blame Drugs for Health-Care Costs"
Posted by Joseph Coletti at 11:38 PM
Our guest Monday, Sally Pipes, says prescription medicines suppress spending on surgeries, etc.
Ms. Pipes will discuss her new publication, The Top Ten Myths of American Health Care.
Congestion Relief Means No to Roads
Posted by Becki Gray at 5:20 PM
The House Transportation Committee met this morning to consider House Bill 148, Congestion Relief/Intermodal Transport Fund. The bill authorizes local governments to put a referendum in front of the voters to increase the local sales tax by one-half cent. If approved, all of that revenue would go to pay for congestion relief. Trouble is – it could only go to transit.
When Rep. Ric Killian (R-Mecklenburg) proposed that the money also be used for roads, Transportation Committee Chair and the bill sponsor Rep. Becky Carney (D-Mecklenburg) replied, “This is a transit bill, not a roads bill.” Guess she’s not aware that, in spite of the millions of tax dollars to build the light rail transit in Charlotte, there has been no congestion relief for drivers trying to get around Mecklenburg.
The bill passed anyway and goes on to the House Finance Committee where the discussion of what all this will cost the taxpayer will begin.
Right about Rush
Posted by David N. Bass at 4:22 PM
U.S. Sen. Byron Dorgan, a Democrat from South Dakota, gets it right on the money:
I think Rush Limbaugh is successful because he has a good show people want to listen to.
But it's not fair!
Are we all Keynesians now?
Posted by Mitch Kokai at 4:11 PM
The Economist wants to know.
My guess is that Roy would vote no. Click play below to learn why.
HT: Donna Martinez
If you didn't like George W. Bush's federal budgets ...
Posted by Mitch Kokai at 4:05 PM
... Chris Edwards of the Cato Institute says you shouldn't be thrilled about President Obama's plans.
He analyzes the ways in which the new boss is the same as the old boss in a new fiscal bulletin (pdf link here).
Tomorrow Morning: Will CO2 Regulation be Approved?
Posted by Daren Bakst at 2:55 PM
In NC, who needs the legislature when you have the Department of Environment and Natural Resources (DENR)? DENR is asking the Environmental Management Commission (EMC), a state commission that adopts environmental regulations, to approve the regulation of carbon dioxide (CO2).
It doesn't matter that there is no statutory authority or that the legislature has made it clear that it wants to study CO2 regulation issues, DENR wants to preempt the legislature and regulate CO2.
Tomorrow morning, the EMC will decide whether to approve DENR's request--the EMC is known for doing whatever DENR wants so the odds are good that NC will take the major step of regulating CO2 without the legislature ever approving it. DENR doesn't believe in representation of the people--as long as some bureaucrats want to advance their political agenda, that's all that matters.
The regulations that will be considered tomorrow morning would require certain facilities to report CO2 emissions. This is a big deal because it would lay the groundwork for far costlier CO2 regulation.
Even if weak statutory authority is found, the EMC would be taking inappopriate action:
Magnitude of the Issue
On an issue of this magntiude, an unelected and unaccountable body shouldn't be deciding for the state whether CO2 should be regulated (without clear and express legislative approval).
Preempting the Legislature
The legislature has specifically decided to study CO2 regulation, including whether CO2 emissions should be reported--the EMC would be preeempting the legislature and its work.
Unless the EMC members hear from a lot of people against these regulations today, global warming extremists in DENR and the EMC will take priority over the state constitution and separation of powers.
The legislature should be insulted by DENR's actions--of course, this is the same legislature that doesn't believe it needs to comply with United States Supreme Court decisions.
Blue Dogs and big spending
Posted by David N. Bass at 2:27 PM
Ernest Istook, a self-described "recovering congressman" from Oklahoma, here takes on the Blue Dog coalition and their supposed fiscal conservatism:
A few individual Blue Dogs have cast votes against parts of the tidal wave of spending. But as a group, they’ve not blocked the spending spree even when they had the chance to do so. They’ve gone along with the spending promoted by Obama and House Speaker Nancy Pelosi (D-Calif.).
State unemployment approaching California level
Posted by Joseph Coletti at 1:28 PM
North Carolina in January had the sixth highest unemployment rate (9.7%) in the nation, behind only Michigan (11.6%), South Carolina (10.4%), Rhode Island (10.3%), California (10.1%), and Oregon (9.9%). The unemployment rate is the highest in 26 years and has nearly doubled from 5.0% in January 2008, tied for the biggest increase in the country.
Watch Internaltional Climate Conference opening banquet talks
Posted by Dr. Roy Cordato at 12:30 AM
Very important keynote addresses by President Vaclav Klaus of the Czech Republic and current President of the EU and MIT's Richard Lindzen. Watch the entire video of both talks here.
The Keynesian approach did wonders in Japan
Posted by George Leef at 11:56 AM
Wonders, anyway, if you mean turning a slump into a decade-long depression. Professor Ben Powell recounts the Japanese experience here.
Huge "stimulus" spending packages and bailouts made economic conditions worse in Japan.
What the Keynesians seem incapable of understanding, even after it's been explained over and over, is that recessions aren't caused to insufficient demand, but rather by the widespread misallocation of resources. The profit and loss system takes care of that on its own, but governmental meddlers fear being called "do-nothing" politicians in the next election if they don't make a big show of their "concern" by enacting policies intended to "fix" the economy.
Earmarkin' for Educat'n
Posted by Dr. Terry Stoops at 09:13 AM
While David Price is North Carolina's number one earmarker, Robin Hayes rules the education earmarks in the omnibus spending bill for FY 2009.
• Anson County Schools, equipment ($95,000 Hayes)
• Duplin County Schools, English language acquisition program ($95,000 Mcintyre)
• Family and Neighborhood Institute of NC, equipment and technology to assist at-risk youth ($143,000 Mcintyre)
• Fayetteville Technical Community College, teacher training initiative ($143,000 Hayes)
• Hoke County Schools, technology upgrades, equipment ($143,000 Hayes)
• Lee County School District, English language acquisition program ($95,000 Etheridge)
• North Carolina Biotechnology Center, K-12 STEM teaching materials and teacher training ($95,000 Miller)
• North Carolina Central University, academic enrichment activities ($128,000 Price)
• North Carolina Technology Association Education Foundation, School Technology Demonstration Project ($190,000 Hayes, Butterfield)
• Scotland County Schools, equipment ($95,000 Hayes)
• University of North Carolina at Greensboro, ON TRACK LEARN MATH project ($250,000 Coble, Miller)
• University of North Carolina at Greensboro, NC Council for Health literacy initiative ($238,000 Coble)
Edwards returning to the poverty trail
Posted by Mitch Kokai at 07:17 AM
It looks as if former Sen. John Edwards plans to return to his old poverty shtick — including the same old incorrect pronouncements on the topic.
It would be nice if he followed the lead of people like William Easterly who actually understand the problem.
In case you missed him …
Posted by Mitch Kokai at 07:02 AMJohn Hood contributed to the lead story on WTVD's 6 p.m. news Tuesday, offering his thoughts about the likelihood that Gov. Beverly Perdue and N.C. lawmakers will pursue tax hikes in 2009.
Click play below to hear what John told reporter Gerrick Brenner.
For more on Hood's impression of the governor's budget ideas — as spelled out in her State of the State address — read this recent Daily Journal on the topic.
Today's Carolina Journal Online features
Posted by Mitch Kokai at 06:58 AM
Today's Carolina Journal Online exclusive features Jim Stegall's report on the disadvantages charter schools face when struggling with budget cuts.
John Hood channels his inner Glen Campbell with his latest Daily Journal, which discusses the impact of this week's U.S. Supreme Court ruling on a southeastern North Carolina redistricting case. (The Glen Campbell reference refers only to the column's headline, which has now inserted an awful song into my head.)
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