Tag: Politics

Outside Money in Politics »

One complaint about political campaigns is that they are increasingly funded by “outside money” that comes from outside the jurisdictions in which the elections are held. In a recent special election in Florida to fill a seat in the US House of Representatives, $9 million in outside money was spent to influence that election....
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Civic Engagement »

My local newspaper, The Tallahassee Democrat, ran a story on March 19 reporting on a talk given by former Florida Governor and former US Senator Bob Graham. In his talk, Graham calls for more civic engagement. His talk was a part of a larger program titled “Choosing to Participate: The Power of Civic Engagement.”...
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President Obama’s Investment Skills »

After the Obama administration bailed out General Motors by purchasing a 60.8% ownership share in the company for $49.5 billion, President Obama said, “We expect taxpayers will get back all the money my administration has invested in GM.” (I do like the way the president takes responsibility for the investment.) Now, the president’s administration...
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Intergenerational Transfers and Political Support for the Welfare State »

Supporters of the welfare state might see it as a mechanism for transferring income from rich to poor with the idea of helping those at the bottom end of the income distribution, but in the United States, the welfare state is increasingly transferring income from the young to the old, regardless of the wealth...
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Speak Loudly and Carry a Small Stick »

At the beginning of the twentieth century, President Teddy Roosevelt’s foreign policy was, “Speak softly and carry a big stick.” At the beginning of the twenty-first, President Obama’s policy appears to the the opposite: “Speak loudly and carry a small stick.” President Obama threatened Syria not to step over a “red line” by using...
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Common Ground »

I often find myself disagreeing with Cynthia Tucker, the Progressive journalist and professor, so I was happy to read a recent column of hers, on the farm bill that just passed the House, and find that she and I share some common ground on our views toward government. She considers the bill an example...
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Stockman: Cronyism Is Destroying American Capitalism and American Democracy »

I’ve recently read David Stockman’s book, The Great Deformation: The Corruption of Capitalism in America. (You can buy it at Amazon, but it’s cheaper at the Mises Institute.) Stockman explains how cronyism has grown throughout the 20th century in America, placing much blame on the Federal Reserve, and describing how businesses have managed to...
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President Obama on Inequality: Rhetoric vs. Reality »

President Obama has recently promoted inequality as a fundamental threat to our way of life, saying, “The combined trends of increased inequality and decreasing mobility pose a fundamental threat to the American Dream, our way of life, and what we stand for around the globe.” You can read the rhetoric here. Let’s look at...
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Conscripting Four-Year Olds: California’s Latest Preschool Plan »

From House Minority Leader Nancy Pelosi to President Obama, Washington politicians are scrambling to get their hands on other people’s toddlers. But they’re not alone. Back in 2010 California Gov. Arnold Schwarzenegger signed into law the Kindergarten Readiness Act of 2010. Basically, every year since 2012-13 children must celebrate their fifth birthday sooner and...
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Retiring Teacher Seniority in California? »

California is legendary for its protection of unionized teachers. But if a new measure makes it onto the November ballot, voters would decide whether California teachers would have to bank on more than seniority to keep their jobs. Matt David of StudentsFirst submitted the measure to the Secretary of State last month, where it’s awaiting...
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