The latest Carolina Journal Online exclusive features David Bass' report about a national group of pro-life college students asking Gov. Beverly Perdue to investigate a new UNC health insurance mandate that includes abortion coverage.
"From the beginning, the Race to the Top program placed heavy emphasis on the role of charter schools and the importance of supporting high-quality charter school movements," said Darrell Allison, President of Parents for Educational Freedom in North Carolina. "Rewarding a state like North Carolina, where charter laws are restrictive not only because of the arbitrary cap but also because of inequities in funding and operation, is confusing to say the least."
Todd Ziebarth, Vice President for Policy with the National Alliance for Public Charter Schools, agrees that the decision is not in keeping with the original intent of Race to the Top.
"Considering that other states took meaningful legislative action on charter schools to better compete for the federal initiative, we did not expect the U.S. Department of Education to select a state like North Carolina," said Ziebarth.
In a new column posted at Human Events, Thomas Sowell punctures popular myths about government-run medical care:
In particular, we need to examine the claim that the government can "bring down the cost of medical care."
The most basic fact is that it is cheaper to remain sick than to get
medical treatment. What is cheapest of all is to die instead of getting
life-saving medications and treatment, which can be very expensive.
Despite these facts, most of us tend to take a somewhat more
parochial view of the situation when it is we ourselves who are sick or
who face a potentially fatal illness. But what if that decision is taken
out of your hands under ObamaCare and is being made for you by a
bureaucrat in Washington?
We won't know what that leads to until the time comes. As Nancy
Pelosi said, we will find out what is in the bill after it has passed.
But even now, after ObamaCare has been passed, not many people want to
read its 2,400 pages. Even if you did, you would still not know what it
would be like in practice, after more than 150 boards and commissions
issue their specific regulations.
Sowell goes on to tout the ideas expressed in Sally Pipes' new book, The Truth About ObamaCare.
All of the Race to the Top winners adopted the Common Core State Standards.
District of Columbia: Adopted July 22
Florida: Adopted July 27
Georgia: Adopted July 8
Hawaii: Adopted June 18
Maryland: Adopted June 22
Massachusetts: Adopted July 21
New York: Adopted July 19
North Carolina: Adopted June 3
Ohio: Adopted June 18
Rhode Island: Adopted July 1
William Kristol doesn't believe President Obama is a Muslim. But Kristol outlines in a new Weekly Standardcolumn the reasons why mainstream media outlets ought to cut some slack to those Americans who believe Obama does practice Islam.
Kristol also points to an important part of the president's system of beliefs that's less confusing:
But Americans aren’t all mixed up in their judgment of President
Obama’s policies. Obama said last week, at a Hollywood fundraiser, that
he and congressional Democrats “have been able to deliver the most
progressive legislative agenda—one that helps working families—not just
in one generation, maybe two, maybe three.”
Today’s progressives are multiculturalists. They’re inclined to make
grand claims about the positive merits of a multicultural,
non-judgmental mosaic replacing our old, uniculturalist melting-pot view
of America. But when political realities force them to retreat, as
Obama has done in the mosque controversy, from a proud multiculturalism
to a narrow defense of the right to the free exercise of religion and
the right to build on private property, they’re in trouble. The free
exercise of religion and respect for private property are not a
promising agenda for progressives.
Progressivism is in retreat. Obama’s problem isn’t that people
falsely think he’s a Muslim. It’s that the public is correctly
concluding he’s a garden-variety multiculturalist progressive. So
November’s election won’t just be a repudiation of one non-Muslim
president. It will be a repudiation of a multiculturalist progressive
worldview—and of the bitter elites who cling desperately to that
worldview and are consumed by antipathy to most Americans, who don’t.
If you spend 72 hours in a place you’ve never been, talking to people
whose language you don’t speak about social, political, and economic
complexities you don’t understand, and you come back as the world’s
biggest know-it-all, you’re a reporter. Either that or you’re President
Obama. I called my wife. She said, no, she certainly is not vacationing
at government expense in some jet-set hot spot with scads of her BFFs.
Looks like I’m not President Obama. But I am a reporter, fresh from
Kabul. What do you want to know about Afghanistan, past, present, or
future? Ask me anything.
As all good reporters do, I prepared for my assignment with extensive
research. I went to an Afghan restaurant in Prague. Getting a
foretaste—as it were—of my subject, I asked the restaurant’s owner (an
actual Afghan), “So what’s up with Afghanistan?”
He said, “Americans must understand that Afghanistan is a country of
honor. The honor of an Afghan is in his gun, his land, and his women.
You take a man’s honor if you take his gun, his land or his women.”
And the same goes for where I live in New Hampshire. I inquired
whether exceptions could be made, on the third point of honor, for
“Oh yes,” he said.
Afghanistan—so foreign and yet so familiar and, like home, with such
wonderful lamb chops. I asked the restaurateur about other similarities
between New Hampshire and Afghanistan. “I don’t know,” he said. “Most of
my family lives in L.A.”
I wonder whether the memory of this recent trip will endure as long as O'Rourke's experience with livestock.
Writing for Reason Radley Balko gives an overview of our corrupt crime lab, as well as similar experiences in quite a few other states.
He gets at the core of the problem: "Forensic science in America is corrupted by a fundamental conflict of interest. In far too many states, crime labs fall under the auspices of law enforcement, usually reporting to the state attorney general. A forensic analyst's real aim should be the follow the science, even if results prove disappointing to bosses who are trying to secure convictions. But the pressure from prosecutors, even when it's not overt (which it often is), produces bias even in the work of the most fair-minded analysts."
Byron York's latest Washington Examinerarticle explores the political reality facing those Democrats who voted for the recent federal health care reform legislation:
In passing the national health care bill, you accomplished something your party dreamed of for decades. It was your most important vote, and now is the time to take credit for it.
Except it's not.
Recently a number of top Democratic strategists conducted focus groups in Las Vegas, Charlotte, Philadelphia and St. Louis. They also conducted a national poll of 1,000 likely voters and an online poll of 2,000 more likely voters. They wanted to measure the public's feelings about Obamacare and help Democrats make an effective case for the bill they passed in March.
The researchers found what they call a "challenging environment," which is a nicer way of saying "disaster in the making." Voters simply aren't buying the Democratic case that health care reform will insure more than 30 million currently uninsured people and save money at the same time. And when they think about their own health care, people worry that reform will mean less, not more, availability of care, and at a higher cost.
Faced with that bad news, the pollsters came up with several recommendations for Democratic candidates. When talking about Obamacare, Democrats should "keep claims small and credible." They should promise to "improve" the law. They should avoid talking about policy and stick to "personal stories" of people who will benefit from Obamacare. And above all, the pollsters advise, "don't say the law will reduce costs and deficit."
It's a stunning about-face for a party that saw national health care as its signature accomplishment. "This is the first time we've seen from Democrats that they clearly understand they have a serious problem in terms of selling this legislation," says Republican pollster David Winston.