Category: Commentaries

By Nina Owcharenko This week, the U.S. Supreme Court ruled in favor of the administration to allow ObamaCare subsidies to flow through HealthCare.gov. This is a disappointment for the rule of law and for the states that have fought to keep some of ObamaCare’s flawed policies out of their states. While the administration and ObamaCare supporters attempt to convince the American people that it is now smooth sailing for ObamaCare, nothing could be further from the truth. Despite the decision, the problems with ObamaCare are real and not getting better. The law’s flawed foundation continues to make ObamaCare unworkable, unaffordable and unpopular. As my colleague Ed Haislmaier skillfully points out, “The complexity and cascade of adverse effects are the… View Article

Health Reform 2.0

RON BACHMANSenior Fellow, Georgia Public Policy Foundation By Ronald E. Bachman Whatever you think about the Affordable Care Act (ACA), more changes are on the way. What will the next wave of health reform look like and when will it happen? With the pending Supreme Court decision on the ACA subsidies, Health Reform 2.0 may happen sooner rather than later. Whether the changes are modifications, replacements, repeal or expansion, certain basic principles should be at the core of Health Reform 2.0. Objectives: 1. Personalized Healthcare – Government mandated one-size-fits-all plan designs should be eliminated in favor of more options that are affordable and meet individual and family needs. Individuals should be rewarded for healthy choices and engagement in healthy… View Article

Health Care Proposal Improves With Age

By John R. Graham You’ve got to give credit to Congressman Tom Price, MD: He introduced his first post-ObamaCare bill as early as 2009 and has reintroduced an updated version in every Congress since then. The latest Empowering Patients First Act (H.R. 2300), introduced this month, is the fourth iteration. Many critics complain Republicans in Congress have taken too long to develop an alternative to Obamacare. However, President Obama is running the show until January 2017. It is responsible for Congressional Republicans to take all the time and space they need to develop their alternative for the next president’s consideration. A fully baked repeal and replacement bill today would serve no purpose, while doing nothing until a president committed to… View Article
By Brandon Arnold and Benita M. Dodd The congressional debate over trade has been white-hot in recent weeks. With the support of both Georgia senators, Johnny Isakson and David Perdue, the U.S. Senate just approved Trade Promotion Authority, which would help the United States enter into more trade agreements with foreign nations, benefiting people right here in Georgia. As the debate shifts to the U.S. House of Representatives, a bizarre political coupling has emerged against Trade Promotion Authority (TPA): the union bosses and many of their traditional anti-trade friends on the left seem to have forged an alliance with some members of the Tea Party, which is traditionally aligned with the right. In one corner of this odd alliance the… View Article

Making Military Lives Matter

  By Benita M. Dodd BENITA DODD Memorial Day Weekend, as you’ve heard time and again, is that long weekend marking the unofficial start of the summer: beaches, boats and barbecue fun in the sun. With all the frolicking, many may overlook that Monday is, first and foremost, a special day set aside to remember those Americans who have died serving in our armed forces. Two encounters in the week before the holiday have reinforced how times have changed in the military but, in many ways, they remain the same. They highlight the positive changes brought by technology. And they’re a reminder that even though military service may be voluntary, families still make heart-wrenching sacrifices. The first was a Facebook… View Article
The Atlanta Journal-Constitution published an op-ed on May 19, 2015, about the Atlanta Streetcar by Foundation Vice President Benita Dodd, “A streetcar named denial.” Read it on the newspaper’s Web site here (subscription required); the full text is below. A streetcar named denial By Benita Dodd After almost five months of official Atlanta Streetcar operation, city officials are exploring route expansion to the Beltline. But storefronts boarded up and covered by newsprint along the route are their own news story on the economic-development promise. It may be that the promises are simply slow to be fulfilled. Nevertheless, looking ahead to Streetcar promises should require looking back on past promises. Deadlines: The streetcar was originally scheduled to begin operating in… View Article

The Ethanol Scramble

By Harold Brown Harold Brown, Senior Fellow, Georgia Public Policy Foundation The Renewable Fuels Standards (RFS) were enacted to solve perceived problems with energy independence, carbon footprints, job creation and the farm economy, among others. They are proof positive that government solutions are always complicated, especially with mandates that address future, undefined problems. The legislation mandated fuel uses that were not yet developed and of questionable benefit. Proposed rules in the Federal Register announced in 2006 that, “Under the Clean Air Act … the Environmental Protection Agency is required to promulgate regulations implementing a renewable fuel program.” The most controversial mandate was for the use of ethanol as a fuel. The main goal was to replace petroleum fuels with renewable… View Article
By Russ Moore While you were distracted by this year’s transportation funding or Opportunity School District debates – or possibly ignoring the Legislature entirely – Gov. Nathan Deal, Lt. Gov. Casey Cagle, and both parties in both chambers unanimously set a tiny pebble rolling from the top of the mountain known as Public Education. That pebble may become an avalanche leading to an earthquake or, as we policy geeks like to say, a “Paradigm Shift.” Fortunately, the tectonic plates crumbling are Irrelevance, Dropouts and Waste, and the new Himalayas rising will be named Relevance, Graduation and Productive Citizenship. The context: For years, Georgia has ranked near the bottom of states in the quality of public education. Say what you will… View Article

The Concrete Road Less Traveled

The concrete paving industry wants a level playing field in Georgia, where asphalt covers 95 percent of the state’s roads. By Benita M. Dodd BENITA DODD What if you were told that 95 percent of Georgians are using a product that may not always be the best value for money? What if you were told that 95 percent of Georgia’s roads are asphalt, even though that may not always be the best value for money? “The whole point of competition in the market is to create economic efficiency which, by its very nature, means eliminating the less efficient producers,” economist and syndicated columnist Thomas Sowell wrote recently. Georgia’s concrete paving companies aren’t inefficient, but they have been overlooked. Working to… View Article
By Kelly McCutchen  KELLY McCUTCHENPresident, Georgia Public Policy Foundation Many older Georgians recall our economic leadership in what were called the “Four Ps” – peanuts, poultry, pine trees and pecans. These were solid building blocks of the Georgia economy decades ago, and we can be proud that Georgia still leads in these areas. Over the years, Georgia became home to worldwide industry-leading businesses like Delta, UPS, Coca-Cola, Home Depot, Aflac, Gulfstream, AGCO, Shaw Industries, Mohawk Industries, Newell Rubbermaid, Flowers Industries and many others. Moving into the 21st-century economy, Georgia added highly innovative communities of industry to the state. The state has become a leader in health care information technology, financial technology, information security, video game development, interactive marketing, logistics, communications… View Article

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