Texas House Votes to Ban City Fracking Bans

Texas moved a step closer to preempting cities and counties from banning fracking. On April 17, by...

Arizona Anti-Common Core Effort Grows

They call themselves the “Mommy Lobby,” and even after two anti-Common Core bills failed to become...

Defending the Ethical Enterpriser in an Anti-Business Climate

In spite of the great advances in reducing poverty and increasing the freedom and dignity of...

Net Neutrality Is Just As Stupid Internationally As It Is Here

Net Neutrality remains an omni-directional terrible idea. Here in the United States, Net...

Deepwater Horizon Five Years Later: Lessons Learned

Five years ago, following a blowout and explosion on the Deepwater Horizon rig that killed 11...

Transit Ridership Increases: No Escape from New York

Transit ridership is increasing in the United States. The American Public Transportation...
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Education

Arizona Anti-Common Core Effort Grows

They call themselves the “Mommy Lobby,” and even after two anti-Common Core bills failed to become law in Arizona, the growing group of parents and grassroots activists vows to continue to fight Common Core until it’s repealed. Gina Ray, a mother of four and member of the Mommy Lobby, says Gov. Doug Ducey (R) is responsible for the Common Core repeal-and-replace legislation not passing. Speaking...

Environment

Texas House Votes to Ban City Fracking Bans

Texas moved a step closer to preempting cities and counties from banning fracking. On April 17, by a vote of 122-18, the Texas House passed House Bill 40 recognizing the Texas Railroad Commission's long-held authority to regulate oil and gas exploration and production, including hydraulic fracking, in the state. The bill was a reaction to the Denton, Texas' fracking ban. Denton's ban, approved by...

Obama’s Climate/public Health Threat Claim Right out of EPA Faux Scare Playbook

Climate Change Weekly #168 Following a playbook designed by the Environmental Protection Agency (EPA) as described in memos the Obama administration fought to keep secret, on April 7 President Barack Obama announced efforts to highlight the alleged public health impacts of climate change on children and minorities. Obama made the announcement personal, noting he was terribly frightened once when...

Average American’s Not Alarmed over Climate

According to a recent Gallup poll, Americans’ concerns about the environment are waning with safe drinking water topping their list of environmental concerns and climate change coming in dead last. Fifty-five percent of American’s reported “worrying a great deal” about the safety of drinking water compared to just 32 percent “worrying a great deal” about global warming. Gallup’s Environment...

Finance & Insurance

Study: ‘Sharing Economy’ Revolution Empowers Customers

Businesses such as Airbnb and Uber, which directly connect consumers and service providers without the need for middlemen, are empowering consumers and creating a self-regulating economy, a recent study from the Mercatus Center at George Mason University has found. By allowing “underutilized assets or ‘dead capital’ to be put to more productive use,” the authors explain, the sharing economy...

A Well-Written Overview of Governments’ Economic Misdeeds

The Impending Monetary Revolution, the Dollar and Gold, Second Edition By Edmund Contoski; American Liberty Publishers, November 2014 281 pages, ISBN-13 978-0-9655007-1-5 $28.95 on publisher’s website, http://www.amlibpub.com/order.html The first edition of Edmund Contoski’s book The Impending Monetary Revolution, the Dollar and Gold was excellent, and it makes an outstanding textbook for a...

Study: Housing Bubble, Rising Caused Consumer Retail Prices to Rise

A new study has uncovered evidence the 2000s housing bubble affected the U.S. economy in previously unsuspected ways, by causing consumer prices to rise and fall based on the rate of homeownership in any particular area. In “House Prices, Local Demand, and Retail Prices,” New York University Assistant Professor of Finance Johannes Stroebel and University of Chicago Assistant Professor of...

Health

Obamacare’s an 8 out of 10, Except for States and People

Consumer Power Report #458 Asked to grade the performance of his signature law recently, President Barack Obama gave Obamacare an 8 out of 10. “The reason I don’t put it at a 10 is because you can always improve something,” Obama told ABC News in an interview published Wednesday. The White House has been more bullish lately about public acceptance of the largest overhaul to the healthcare system...

An Unpaid Doc Fix

Consumer Power Report #459 In a bipartisan vote this week, the Senate undid the longtime Sustainable Growth Rate can-kick for a more permanent fix – but one that is not paid for by any stretch of the imagination. In fact, the Senate rejected an opportunity to require the increased payments to physicians be paid for: Utah Republican Sen. Mike Lee had introduced a potential amendment to the bill...

Ted Cruz Isn’t Like Most Obamacare Enrollees

Consumer Power Report #457 Supporters of Obamacare have been making noise of late about the fact leading Obamacare opponent Sen. Ted Cruz (R-TX) is going to have to sign up for health coverage under the law. But in obsessing about this issue, these supporters are doing themselves no favors, because Cruz’s situation highlights the wide gap in experience between those whose coverage is subsidized...

Taxes

Michigan Plummets in Economic Outlook Rankings Among States

There is troubling news for Michigan’s economy, according to the American Legislative Exchange Council’s annual “Rich States, Poor States” state competitiveness index. The index ranks states on both economic performance in the past and the outlook for the future. In the 2015 index Michigan experienced the worst decline of any state on economic outlook, dropping 12 places to No. 24. The index is...

A Handy Guide for Effective Marketing in Any Situation

Review of Marketing Big…by Thinking Small: How Anything You Sell Can Be Helped by the Greatest Marketing Achievement of the 20th Century, by John L. Gann, Jr., CarpeHoram, 2015, 64 pages, $59.75 at http://salesjobsandtaxes.com/thinksmall1.html Marketing is the factor in any business that could make or break a business. In his book Marketing Big…by Thinking Small, author explains how to market...

County Group Moves to Halve Township Government in Illinois

A citizen group trying to consolidate township governments in McHenry County, Illinois, says the change could save as much as $40 million over 10 years. If successful, the McHenry County Citizens for Township Consolidation would bring the number of townships down from 17 to as few as eight. Mike Shorten, chairman of the group, says the goal is not to reduce services but to restructure to make...

Tech

Net Neutrality Is Just As Stupid Internationally As It Is Here

Net Neutrality remains an omni-directional terrible idea. Here in the United States, Net Neutrality exponentially increases the government’s ability to tax the Internet. Starting with the 17.4% Universal Service Fund (USF) tax. Which goes up automatically every calendar quarter. And goes up each and every time three unelected Federal Communications Commission (FCC) bureaucrats decide...

Constitutional Private Property Rights Trump Legislation Written to Appease Donors

Private property rights are a fundamental component of any successful economy. If you want a nation to prosper – property must be safe in its owners’ hands. Intellectual Property (IP) shouldn’t be treated any differently than physical property. In fact, in most instances – in many ways – IP is far more important. The spark of creation that is, for instance, the Microsoft Windows operations...