Politics

The Fog of Stimulus

The news is full of stories about the the impact of the ARRA on job creation, including this one from the The Wall Street Journal about a shoe store owner who created or saved nine jobs with less than $900.  read more »

Smart Growth Places 3rd in Houston Mayor's Race

Houston city councilman Peter Brown, unique as a devotee of smart growth (compact development) in this city of light land use regulation, placed third in the mayoral election yesterday. Brown had long advocated Portland-style smart growth land use and development policies for the city of Houston and looked likely to garner the most votes in the four-way race. Brown, an architect and urban planner, spent more than $3 million of his own money in the election.  read more »

Republicans Sweep from Reston to Roanoke

Republicans dominated the Virginia elections, sweeping all three statewide offices and gaining at least three House of Delegates seats. Former Attorney General Bob McDonnell crushed state Sen. Creigh Deeds by a margin of 59-41% and beat him in 113 of the commonwealth’s 134 counties and cities.

McDonnell dominated every part of the state from the subdivisions of Northern Virginia to the Piedmont to Richmond to the Northern Neck to the Shenandoah Valley to coal country to Southside to Tidewater. It wasn’t even close.  read more »

Bifurcated American Politics

Bifurcated means to split or divide something into two parts. It is a term often used to describe trees, but today it can also be applied to our politics in America. It seems that right and left, liberal and conservative, Republican and Democratic have never been more at odds than in our recent history.  read more »

Subjects:

High Speed Rail in Springfield: "The Whole City Would Look Like Crap"

Not every local official is smitten with the romance of high-speed rail. Graphic evidence of this was provided by Springfield, Illinois mayor Tim Davlin, who expressed his concern that the proposed rail overpasses would slice the city in half. Davlin told the State Journal Register that the “Whole city would look like crap.” This is a problem faced not only by historic Springfield, the state’s capital and location of many Abraham Lincoln sites.  read more »

Britain, the Big Blue State

This week in the UK saw the publication of a much-awaited report on social mobility. Member of Parliament Alan Milburn chaired the “Panel on Fair Access to the Professions,” which studied which segments of the British population are advancing upward into the professional class. The report has generated coverage and discussion in nearly every media outlet. So what did the report conclude?  read more »

Rural-Urban Rift on Healthcare Reform

While much of the media coverage on the ongoing healthcare reform debate has focused on partisan division, a less mentioned point of conflict exists between rural and urban healthcare interests.  read more »

Fears of Stimulus Favoratism to Pro-Obama Counties is Overblown

A recent USA Today analysis of government disclosure and accounting records has revealed that counties that supported Obama last year have reaped more of the benefits of the stimulus package than those counties that supported Senator John McCain.  read more »

Bailout Success!!

“I guess the bailouts are working…for Goldman Sachs!” The Daily Show With Jon Stewart

Goldman Sachs reported $3.4 billion second quarter earnings. Mises Economics Blogger Peter Klein says these earnings are the result of political capitalism – earned in the “nebulous world of public-private interactions.” Klein points to an interesting perspective offered by The Streetwise Professor (Craig Pirrong at University of Houston): Moral Hazard.  read more »

Smart Growth Bill Vetoed

Texas Governor Rick Perry has vetoed a bill that would have created a state level “smart growth” program. The veto message is below.

June 19, 2009

Pursuant to Article IV, Section 14, of the Texas Constitution, I, Rick Perry, Governor of Texas, do hereby disapprove of and veto Senate Bill No. 2169 of the 81st Texas Legislature, Regular Session, due to the following objections:  read more »