URLs du Jour


  • Inaugural address One of the more predictable outcomes of electing Democrats: payoffs to public school teacher unions. New Hampshire's new Governor, Maggie Hassan, is no exception; her efforts to undo NH's "Opportunity Scholarship Act" (OSA) made Cato's blog with the headline "New Hampshire’s Governor vs. Kids and Taxpayers".

    The Cato blogger comments:

    The Opportunity Scholarship Act empowers low-income families to choose the education that best meets the individual needs of their children. In the process, the state of New Hampshire saves money. If passed, the governor’s hasty and ill-considered repeal would harm low-income children and taxpayers. It’s hard to say whose interests the governor thinks she’s serving, but it’s certainly not going to help those kids and taxpayers to take away this promising and entirely voluntary option.

    I disagree that it's "hard to say" whose interests the Gov is serving.

  • President Obama proposed raising the minimum wage to $9/hr in his State of the Union speech. Steve Landsburg goes through the usual argument why this is a bad idea, but he adds on an unusual, additional, argument, which I found interesting. You should read the whole thing, but the bottom line:

    Fairness tells me that the cost of a widely-supported program should not be dumped on a small segment of society, and moreover that it especially should not be dumped on that small segment of society that has already helped to alleviate the perceived problem (i.e. those who have already been providing jobs for unskilled workers) — just as the burden of increased park cleanup should not fall on a small segment of society and especially not on those who have been contributing to cleanup all along. Political wisdom tells me the same thing. It’s very easy to support programs that other people will have to pay for. But voters, like everyone else, should bear the costs of their own decisions. Letting people vote for expensive programs that “somebody else” will finance is a good recipe for getting people to vote irresponsibly.

    Of course, irresponsible voting is a primary reason why Obama made it where he is today. So…

  • At the venerable wizbang blog, Warner Todd Huston notes an interesting contradiction. Conventional progressive wisdom is that "universal background checks" are a must when it comes to buying firearms. After all, how do we know you can be trusted with a gun unless we know everything?

    And yet…

    As it happens, Democrats and the Obama administration are attempting to eliminate background checks for prospective employees claiming it is a “civil rights” issue.

    Warner links to James Bovard's further explanation. It's difficult to argue that background checks are an effective means of keeping guns out of the hands of evildoers, but an unacceptable means of ensuring you're not hiring evildoers.

  • Nick Gillespie argues that people should not sweat the sequester. For example:

    The first thing to note is that the $85 billion figure that gets bandied about overstates this year's cuts due to sequestration by about $40 billion. According to the Congressional Budget Office (CBO) in its February 2013 report on the budget outlook, "Discretionary outlays will drop by $35 billion and mandatory spending will be reduced by $9 billion this year as a direct result of those procedures [sequestration]; additional reductions in outlays attributable to the cuts in 2013 funding will occur in later years."

    Don't believe the scaremongers. The only thing wrong with the sequester is that it's way too small to bring us back to fiscal sanity quickly enough.

  • Grokster Steve MacDonald busts NH Listens, a group run by the University Near Here's Bruce Mallory. Read the whole thing™.

    Pun Salad was equally unimpressed with Bruce a couple years ago.