We’ve had years to get used to it, to adjust to Illinois being $13 billion in debt, our credit rating slipping, our bills unpaid. We clutch at any excuse for optimism. These hard times are just a passing dip, a bad patch. Look — unemployment in Illinois has fallen from 11.5 to 11.3 percent — happy days are here again!
In 2006 it hit 3.9 percent.
The unions – the goons running the show and the people who buy into it – can no longer claim victimhood, upset that they are being demonized by the public at large. That isn’t going to fly because the people of this country know full well that these unions brought it on themselves. THEY are the ones who demanded pay that in no way reflected their value or any increase in their work product. THEY are the ones who demanded unrealistic pension plans, allowing members to retire at absurdly young ages with set payouts and benefits for life. THE GOONIONS are the ones who used their political power to make sure that the people in office knew that the unions put them there.
Moody’s on Monday downgraded Greece government bond ratings into junk territory, citing the risks in the euro zone/IMF rescue package for the debt-laden country.
Queensland firm QBiotics Ltd said its drug EBC-46, derived from the seeds of a tropical rainforest shrub, was ready to be tested on humans after successfully treating solid tumours in more than 100 dogs, cats and horses.
Last night the Drudge Report website led with the speculation that World Cup organizers might ban the vuvuzela horns. Earlier in the day he led with a picture of poor Robert Green looking hapless. You may not think much of his politics, but Drudge still has an uncanny ability to shape and direct traditional news coverage. He knows his audience, and if there wasn’t a market for soccer in the States, he wouldn’t be featuring it on his site.
The Britain’s Got Talent judge and former newspaper editor is on the verge of signing a four-year contract to take over King’s primetime show in the autumn.
Starbucks said on Monday that as of July 1, its stores in the United States would offer free Wi-Fi, via AT&T, that anyone can reach with a single click. In case customers run out of distractions on the Web, Starbucks is giving them even more reason to sit and browse, by offering a variety of digital content through a partnership with Yahoo.
The New York Times is reporting that Obama is unleashing yet another public relations blitz to sell his already passed but woefully unpopular healthcare bill, at least in part to help Democrats who supported the boondoggle.
As soon as Obama can spare the time to take a break from entertaining himself with publicly funded rock ‘n’ roll parties, he’ll begin an Obamaganda campaign to convince the stubbornly unsophisticated majority that Obamacare is the panacea for not only their health needs but also the nation’s financial difficulties. I wish I were being facetious.
LINCOLN, Neb. — Nebraska made it official Friday and applied for membership in the Big Ten Conference, a potentially crippling blow to the Big 12 and the biggest move yet in an offseason overhaul that will leave college sports looking much different by this time next year.
Glenn Beck is giving the work of think tanks millions of dollars worth of free advertising-obliquely. The title of his new novel is The Overton Window, and it refers to a theory of social change put forward by Joe Overton, former vice president of The Mackinac Center in Midland, Michigan. In brief, the theory holds that politicians choose from a narrow range of policies that are politically acceptable, but over time the window of political possibility can be shifted. The theory directs our attention to the importance of shifting that window in the direction of greater freedom rather than worrying about the latest election cycle. That’s what free market think tanks exist to do.
As currently practiced, bioethics is largely irrelevant to those who are affected by new biomedical technology. The bioethics community could recover from this crisis by applying classical-liberal precepts about human nature and absolute power to crucial issues such as patient autonomy, physician responsibility, and human dignity.
Although it purports to serve teachers and meet their professional needs, the NEA does not use its resources exclusively to help educators meet their number one goal of helping children learn. It lacks the focus to fulfill its mission of “a great public school for every student.” Individual teachers pay hundreds and even thousands of dollars year after year in NEA dues. These dues are used in activities that many members find offensive and infuriating. This booklet outlines the NEA’s history, how it spends its money, how it works to control teachers and politicians, and what you can do about it.
The Independent Review
For more than two centuries, liberal constitutionalists have championed the separation of powers as a means of constraining self-interested political activity that erodes personal freedom. Although F. A. Hayek values the separation of powers, he contends that it cannot safeguard individual liberty unless the prevailing culture, a product of spontaneous order, favors limited government.
Government spending, even in a time of crisis, is not an automatic boon for an economy’s growth. A body of empirical evidence shows that, in practice, government outlays designed to stimulate the economy may fall short of that goal. Such findings have serious consequences as the United States embarks on a massive government spending initiative. Before it approves any additional spending to boost growth, the government should use the best peer-reviewed literature to estimate whether such spending is likely to stimulate growth and report how much uncertainty surrounds those estimates. These analyses should be made available to the public for comment prior to enacting this kind of legislation.
Historically, public employees have faced a trade-off: lower wages than the private sector in exchange for job security and generous benefits. That trade-off, however, has been disappearing.
Rogerson compares fifty years of time series data from the United States and fourteen other OECD countries. He finds that a 10 percentage point increase in the tax rate on labor leads to a 10 to 15 percent decrease in hours of work. Even a 5 percent decrease in hours worked would mean a decline in labor output equating to a serious recession. While recessions are temporary, permanent changes in government spending patterns have long-lasting repercussions.
A recent research paper released by the Center for State and Local Government Excellence argues that employees of state and local governments earn salaries and benefits significantly less than similar private-sector workers. But this study omits unfunded pension and retiree health benefits for public-sector workers. Once unfunded promises are included, state and local employees may receive significantly greater total compensation than private-sector workers.