October 25, 2013
Quotes of Note
“If a government resorts to inflation, that is, creates money in order to cover its budget deficits or expands credit in order to stimulate business, then no power on earth, no gimmick, device, trick or even indexation can prevent its economic consequences.” – Henry Hazlitt
Teacher programs flunk: A recent report by the National Council on Teacher Quality asserts that “approximately 1,100 of the nation’s 1,400 teacher-preparation programs are inadequate.” The Wall Street Journal proposes some solutions in an op-ed: “Require aspiring teachers to major in something other than education” and “take state funding for colleges of education and give it to school districts instead.”
Moving on MOOCs: Michael Horn of the Christensen Institute, who addressed the Foundation in 2011 and in 2013, is so convinced that MOOCs — massive open online courses — are the learning wave of the future that he and several colleagues are producing a MOOC curriculum. Read about what they’re doing.
Eliminating driver error: Computers make ideal drivers: They don’t drink and then climb behind the wheel. They don’t do drugs, get distracted, fall asleep, run red lights or tailgate. And their reaction times are quicker. They do such a good job, in fact, that a new study from the Eno Center for Transportation says self-driving cars and trucks hold the potential to transform driving by eliminating the majority of traffic deaths, significantly reducing congestion and providing tens of billions of dollars in economic benefits.
Age Wave: The number of Georgians over age 85 will more than quadruple by 2050, the third highest projected growth rate in the nation. Georgia currently has the nation’s fifth highest percentage of nursing facility residents who rely on Medicaid as their primary payer.
Don’t tell? The Obama administration asked North Dakota’s largest health insurer on Monday not to publicize how many people have signed up for health insurance through a new online exchange, according to Blue Cross Blue Shield of North Dakota. In fact, just 14 state residents had successfully enrolled since October 1. That brings total statewide enrollment to 20 – less than one a day. Source: Inforum.com
You can keep your insurance: Hundreds of thousands of Americans across the country are getting cancellation notices from various insurers because their plans don’t meet ObamaCare requirements. Kaiser Health News reports that Florida Blue is terminating about 300,000 policies, about 80 percent of its individual policies in the state; Kaiser Permanente in California has sent notices to 160,000 people, about half of its individual business in the state. Insurer Highmark in Pittsburgh is dropping about 20 percent of its individual market customers, while Independence Blue Cross, the major insurer in Philadelphia, is dropping about 45 percent.”
Rocky Mountain High Taxes : Coloradans will vote next month on a referendum that would “repeal the state’s current flat income-tax rate of 4.63 percent that liberals loathe because raising it requires raising taxes on nearly all Coloradans.” The Wall Street Journal editorializes that “Colorado’s liberals may aspire to join the left coasts, but that won’t make the state any more competitive in its interior U.S. neighborhood, where states like Kansas and Oklahoma are cutting tax rates. High-tax states created one net new job for every four in states without an income tax from 2002-2012, according to a study for the American Legislative Exchange Council.”
YouTube: We have more than 32,000 views on our YouTube channel already! View the sessions from the recent Georgia Legislative Policy Forum at http://tinyurl.com/l8mswe7. Photographs of the event are on our Facebook page at http://tinyurl.com/k7xd84g. View other Foundation events at http://tinyurl.com/b7a3mzk.
Visit www.georgiapolicy.org to read our latest commentary, “Proposed CO2 Standards: Expensive Hot Air,” by Benita Dodd.
Have a great weekend!
Kelly McCutchen and Benita Dodd
When I served four terms in the state Senate, one of the few places where you could go to always and get concrete information about real solutions was the Georgia Public Policy Foundation. That hasn’t changed. [The Foundation] is really right up there at the top of the state think tanks, so you should be very proud of the work that they are doing!