Quotes of note
“The function of education is to teach one to think intensively and to think critically. Intelligence plus character – that is the goal of true education.” – Martin Luther King Jr.
“Dependence begets subservience and venality, suffocates the germ of virtue, and prepares fit tools for the designs of ambition.” – Thomas Jefferson
“There are two ways of exerting one’s strength: one is pushing down, the other is pulling up.” – Booker T. Washington
January 22: Have you registered to celebrate National School Choice? Lunch and Learn Tuesday with us at “National School Choice Week: A Capitol Choice,” a noon Policy Briefing Luncheon in the Empire Room, 20th floor, Sloppy Floyd Building in Atlanta (opposite the State Capitol). Speakers are Dr. Ashley Berner, deputy director at the Johns Hopkins University Institute for Education Policy, and Georgia Public Policy Foundation Senior Fellow Dr. Ben Scafidi, professor of economics at Kennesaw State University. $35. Information and registration here.
February 7: Register for “Romance of the Rails,” a noon Policy Briefing Luncheon and Book Forum with Randal O’Toole of the Cato Institute on Thursday, February 7, at The Metropolitan Club in Alpharetta. $35. Information and registration here.
March 21: “Shining a Light on Government,” a Leadership Breakfast with Richard Belcher of WSB-TV in celebration of Sunshine Week on Thursday, March 21, at the Georgian Club in Cobb County. $30. Information and registration here.
Legislative session: Georgia’s 2019-20 General Assembly opened Monday. Governor Brian Kemp, Lt. Governor Geoff Duncan and statewide elected officials were sworn into office, along with state representatives and senators. At his inauguration, Kemp said, “Elections can rip us apart. But after visiting all 159 counties, I can tell you we have so much in common. As governor, I will fight for all Georgians, not just the ones who voted for me.” Visit www.georgia.gov to find out more about Georgia government.
Day 28: With no end to the impasse, today is the 28th day of the partial federal government shutdown. About 800,000 workers have not received their paychecks as Democrats refuse to allocate $5.7 billion in the budget that President Trump wants to fund a wall at the Mexican border. Trump signed the Government Employee Fair Treatment Act of 2019 this week, guaranteeing back pay for federal employees’ wages lost during the shutdown. Source: News reports
Food stamp fraud: The Supplemental Nutrition Assistance Program (SNAP) provided about $64 billion in benefits to about 42 million people in over 20 million households in Fiscal Year 2017. The Government Accountability Office, citing uncertain tracking methods, estimates food stamp fraud “could be anywhere from $960 million to $4.7 billion.”
Hope: Scientists used rapid 3D printing technologies to create a spinal cord and successfully implanted that scaffolding, loaded with neural stem cells, into sites of severe spinal cord injury in rats. “This marks another key step toward conducting clinical trials to repair spinal cord injuries in people,” said scientist Kobi Koffler of the research reported by the University of California San Diego School of Medicine and Institute of Engineering in Medicine.
Foundation in the news: The Atlanta Business Chronicle quoted Kyle Wingfield in an article on expectations about the 2019 legislative session. (“Everybody’s going to take a little time to see how the ground has shifted,” he said.)
This month in the archives: In January 10 years ago, the Foundation published, “Competition Drives Cost Savings in Auto Insurance.” It noted, “If one thing stands out from recent news reports on auto insurance in Georgia, it’s that economic regulation and rate review are not needed to protect the state’s consumers from rate gouging.”
Visit www.georgiapolicy.org to read the Foundation’s latest commentary, “Faces Behind School Choice are as Diverse as the Options Ahead,” by Benita M. Dodd.
Have a great weekend!
Kyle Wingfield and Benita Dodd
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