The Business Journal (Triad) reports that North Carolina was ranked 10th in the country based on the total value of the Cash for Clunkers rebate requests. More than $78 million was requested from North Carolina.
There's a lot of attention on how the new cars have better fuel efficiency. I'd like to see the United States DOT analyze the impact the program is having on vehicle safety--that's something they probably will avoid.
Terry Anderson at PERC in Montana discusses an existing "public option" in health care, the Indian Health Service here.
Unfortunately, Indians are not getting healthier under the federal
system. In 2007, rates of infant mortality among Native Americans
across the country were 1.4 times higher than non-Hispanic whites and
rates of heart disease were 1.2 times higher. HIV/AIDS rates were 30%
higher, and rates of liver cancer and inflammatory bowel disease were
two times higher. Diabetes-related death rates were four times higher.
On average, life expectancy is four years shorter for Native Americans
than the population as a whole.
Such horror stories are common on reservations, where the common
wisdom is "don't get sick after June"—the month when the federal
dollars usually run out. Late last year, the Montana Quarterly
interviewed Tommy Connell, a member of the Blackfeet tribe and a worker
in the IHS hospital in Browning, Mont. He didn't pull any punches in
his assessment of the IHS. "They're lying to us," he said of promises
over the years of more funds and better care. "You can pass just about
any bill you want, but to appropriate money to that bill, that's
Dismal statistics prompted Mr. Baucus to declare a "health state of
emergency" on the Fort Peck Reservation in northeastern Montana and to
order an investigation of the IHS's use of funds. In July 2008, the
Government Accountability Office reported that the IHS simply lost
$15.8 million worth of equipment such as trucks and Jaws of Life
machines between 2004 and 2007. It also found that $700,000 worth of
computers were ruined by bat dung.
Political observers know that mid-term elections typically break for the party that doesn't occupy the White House. One exception was 2002, when Republicans retook the U.S. Senate and strengthened their majority in the House, despite the fact that Bush was president. 9/11 had much to do with that.
Contrary to the '02 anomaly, however, the mid-terms next year are shaping up to follow historical trends, barring some colossal event. It's early days yet, but political analysts are offering some speculation on the scenario next year (reported in the Politico):
Top political analyst Charlie Cook, in a special August 20 update to subscribers, wrote that “the situation this summer has slipped completely out of control for President Obama and congressional Democrats.”
"Many veteran congressional election watchers, including Democratic ones, report an eerie sense of déjà vu, with a consensus forming that the chances of Democratic losses going higher than 20 seats is just as good as the chances of Democratic losses going lower than 20 seats,” he wrote.
At the mid-August Netroots Nation convention, Nate Silver, a Democratic analyst whose uncannily accurate, stat-driven predictions have made his website FiveThirtyEight.com a must read among political junkies, predicted that Republicans will win between 20 and 50 seats next year. He further alarmed an audience of progressive activists by arguing that the GOP has between a 25 and 33 percent chance of winning back control of the House.
“A lot of Democratic freshmen and sophomores will be running in a much tougher environment than in 2006 and 2008 and some will adapt to it, but a lot of others will inevitably freak out and end up losing,” Silver told POLITICO. “Complacency is another factor: We have volunteers who worked really hard in 2006 and in 2008 for Obama but it’s less compelling [for them] to preserve the majority.”
Can we learn anything today from the failure of the Fourth Crusade in the early 13th century?
John Hood says yes, and he explained why during his presentation today to the John Locke Foundation's Shaftesbury Society. After recounting the history of the crusade, which featured Christians' attacks on Christian targets and never approached the Holy Land, Hood offered lesson No. 1. Watch it by clicking play below.
2:15 p.m. update: Watch the full 51:53 recording by clicking the play button below.
You'll find other John Locke Foundation video presentations here.
David and George, apropos of your posts (linked below) — I think that Castro's Cuba is far more destructive of women and their lifelong prospects, not to mention that it creates a far more favorable and permanent environment for their sexual exploitation by men, than some jerk fratboy. There is, it would seem to me, a difference between a few women having morning-after regrets after getting drunk at a frat party (discrete and thoroughly avoidable incidents) and a generation of underaged girls whose families are in such dire, inescapable poverty that they often view prostitution as a necessity to live.
in 2001 that Cuban prostitutes had a "university level" education.
Some prostitutes go to school or work during the day and sell their bodies at night.
Grechell, 20, said she studies accounting and dreams of attending the University of Havana. But for now, she said she goes out with foreigners "because I need the
Many Cubans earn just $10 or $12 per month. But prostitutes take in $500 and up, according to a 2002 University of Miami study.
Not all charge big fees, and some travelers brag they've had sex with Cuban women for as little as a meal or a pair of shoes. ...
But we see which draws feminists' ire. Aren't both offensive? If only one, why the little jerk who profits every time you give him free advertising? Then again, to protest Castro, you'd have to reverse all your positions on the Cuban revolution and burn your stupid Ché shirts, too. It's hard to take the termagants seriously about the fratboy idiot when they gush about Castro.
The Daily Tarheel recently ran this article about an exhibit at UNC showing Fidelista posters and films. The gushing tone of the piece is just too much. You'd think Castro ruled over Disneyland, not a politically repressed, starving nation.
What dictator hasn't managed to hire clever propagandists to create vibrant, exciting material designed to put a smiley face on the fact that he's trampling all over the liberty and property of the people?
On Tuesday night (August 25th), N.C. State’s Campus Cinema held a showing of Tucker Max's new movie “I Hope They Serve Beer in Hell.” From the title, its easy to deduce what's involved but for those whose intuitive juices aren't flowing this Monday morning, the movie basically narrates Tucker Max's narcissistic, frat boy "activities."
The Pope Center's Jay Schalin writes that NC State's decision to host the movie, and Max personally last week, is more evidence that the university's administrators are utterly clueless.
The drama of the Kennedy funeral has obliterated the coverage of the other lefty who died recently, Don Hewitt of 60 Minutes fame. Humberto Fontova writes this American Thinker obituary of Hewitt setting the record straight on his involvement in the Castro cover-up. Fontova was a featured speaker at the 2006 Raleigh Spy Conference that discussed Castro and Cuba. (Dates and program for the 2010 conference have not been set yet.)
Forty years after his media
advance-work helping install a Stalinist regime in Cuba the legendary
Don Hewitt of CBS still seemed proud of his work as a Castro media
auxiliary. During that interim, over 20,000 Cubans were murdered by
firing squad and beaten or starved to death in forced labor camps.
Another 70-80 thousand were ripped apart by sharks or drowned in the
Florida straits (attempting to flee a nation that previously took in
more immigrants per-capita than the U.S.)
If Mr Hewitt had uttered a single word of remorse regarding this bloodbath, I'd find him easier to praise than to bury.
after Herbert Matthews of the New York Times made Fidel Castro an
international pop star on the front page of the (at the time ) world's
most important newspaper, CBS horned in on the act. The February 1957
NYT's headline article proclaimed that, "Fidel Castro has strong ideas
of liberty, democracy, social justice, the need to restore Cuba's
Constitution....this amounts to a new deal for Cuba, radical,
democratic and therefore anti-Communist."
Editor, The New York Times
620 Eighth Avenue
New York, NY 10018
To the Editor:
Ted Kennedy's canonization is too much. Every day brings the deaths of thousands of people, the vast majority of whom are known only to their families and friends. These people aren't mourned by politicians, t.v. reporters, or the general public.
Yet almost every one of these unheralded persons has been more productive than has Ted Kennedy - or Chuck Grassley, Nancy Pelosi, the Georges Bush, or any other politician you name, whether he or she be still breathing or buried.
Who installed the windows in my house? I don't know. Yet he provided value to me and never forced his hand into my wallet or his nose into my eating habits. Who will fly the plane that will carry me home tomorrow from Michigan to Virginia? I have no idea. Yet that pilot will render unto me (and dozens of others) a valuable service in exchange for funds that I voluntarily paid to his or her employer. That pilot doesn't force me to fly. Nor does he or she presume to know better than I do what is best for my family and me.
Who caught the fish that I will eat tonight? Who trucked it from the sea to my hotel? Who will cook that fish? Who designed the dishwasher that cleaned the plate and utensils that I will use?
I know almost none of the millions of people whose daily efforts make possible my life and that of countless other Americans. These people don't have grand plans for arrogantly re-working society. They offer only to deal voluntarily with me and with others, never pretending - unlike Mr. Kennedy - to be endowed with a mysterious genius and a saintly inspiration justifying haughty intrusions into my affairs.
Politicians are mortals. But as their greedy lust for power and glory reveals, they are mortals especially flawed.
Donald J. Boudreaux
Professor of Economics
George Mason University
Fairfax, VA 22030
Incidentally, the New York Times almost never runs letters that challenge its statist philosophy. The Times has become almost indistinguishable from the kind of party newspapers you find in dictatorships.
According to the State Board of Education contract report for September, the following selected activities are included in the federal grant:
- To provide two regional trainings to increase knowledge on how to hold a public hearing for more comprehensive sex education.
- To provide a new teacher academy on comprehensive health education with a focus on HIV/STD and teen pregnancy prevention.
- To provide location and meals for two American Psychological Association (APA) Human Immunodeficiency Virus (HIV) prevention trainings for Young Males Having Sex with Males (YMSM) and other Lesbian Bisexual Transgender Questioning (LBTQ) youth service providers @30 participants each.
- To provide three training events for school staff, community leaders and parents on how to be an ally for Gay, Lesbian, Bisexual Transgender, Questioning (GLBTQ) youth.
For the 2008-2009 school year, the system level teacher turnover rate was 12.72 percent. This was down from the 2007-2008 rate of 13.85 percent.
According to the National Commission on Teaching and America’s Future, the national teacher turnover rate is 16.8 percent.
If you only count those who are no longer in the public schools of North Carolina, the turnover rate falls to 8.86 percent. (The system level rate above includes teachers that move to other public schools in NC.)
The Teacher Turnover Report will be released at this week's State Board of Education meeting.
If one were inclined to enforce a strict application of truth-in-advertising laws upon publishing houses, W.W. Norton and Company might face some problems with its latest volume from Pulitzer Prize-winning historian Edmund S. Morgan.
Read the book, though, and you’ll discover something else. Sure, Washington and Franklin are there, along with other Founders in smaller doses. But this is no narrative story of the Revolutionary period. You’ll read nearly 200 pages on other topics (in a 260-page book) before reaching the Founders.
Instead Morgan has collected 17 essays — some dating back more than 70 years — that have some basis in the American colonial period. When I write “some basis,” I mean readers will encounter Morgan’s musings on witchcraft, 18th century Yale University politics, even Puritan sex.
Regardless of the topic, Morgan’s writing is constantly thought-provoking, never boring, and occasionally on point for those who chose to read the volume to learn more about the Founders. Take for example the following passage from a 1982 essay on the important role of the Anti-Federalists:
Were the Antifederalists wrong? Was Madison right? Yes and no. Representative government of the kind the Antifederalists valued in the state government was clearly what Madison did not want in the national government, and the fact that the size of the nation would eliminate that kind of representation was, for him, all to the good. Attachment to local interests was what he hoped the natonal government would overcome; natural aristocrats wee just what he wanted in the national House of Representatives. But the men he encountered there a few years later were not quite what he expected, and he was not altogether happy with the way they behaved. Nor did he find them as varied in their interests or as unable to agree in oppressing others as he had predicted. Fortunate for him that he did not succeed in securing a national veto over state legislation, for by 1798 he was trying for state veto over national legislation.
Morgan offers other valuable insights on the nature of representative government and the skills Washington and Franklin demonstrated in choosing when to act (and when to refrain from acting) in pursuit of the American cause. Armed with adequate knowledge about the structure and format of the book, you might find those insights intriguing.
Nancy Gibbs of TIME is not ready to trash the program, even though she spells out the following flaws in the first paragraph of her latest column:
[T]he most popular government program in years is an economically dubious, environmentally negligible, politically lazy handout from 99% of the population to the other 1%. …
Yet Gibbs declares in the final paragraph that the $3 billion in clunker payments could end up looking like “the smartest money Washington spent all year.” What does that say about the rest of the government’s spending?
… you believe the government should force us or entice us to make decisions that are “good for us.”
The cash-for-clunkers program offers a clear example, as Business Week explains in an article headlined “America’s Fickle Small-Car Market.” (It has a different headline in the online version.)
And what happens when high gas prices or government handouts go away? Americans buy what they want. And it's usually not compact cars but powerful family sedans and sport-utility vehicles. That presents a problem for automakers. Over the next 18 months, the industry is bringing to market nine all-new small cars and subcompacts. Now the clunker program is over, and gasoline, currently hovering at $2.62 a gallon nationally, is expected to stay below $3 for the foreseeable future.
Government distortion of the auto market has diverted resources away from the types of vehicles we really want. Those resources have flowed instead toward vehicles the government wants us to have.
Did you ask, “What’s wrong with that?” Then I respond, “Hello, progressive.”
By the way, Roy, thanks for letting me appropriate yourtheme.