Friday Facts: May 3, 2019

It’s Friday! 

Events 

David French of the National Review Institute keynotes the Foundation’s May 23 Policy Briefing Luncheon.

May 23: “You Can Say That: How Courage Can Defeat Political Correctness,” a noon Policy Briefing Luncheon with David French of the National Review Institute, on Thursday, May 23. Register by May 21. Georgian Club. $35. Information and registration here.

Quotes of note

“No people will tamely surrender their Liberties, nor can any be easily subdued, when knowledge is diffused and virtue is preserved. On the contrary, when people are universally ignorant, and debauched in their manners, they will sink under their own weight without the aid of foreign invaders.” – Samuel Adams (1775)

“For the most part, proposals being marketed as ‘Medicare for All’ or ‘Medicare Buy-in’ aren’t really expansions of the program, but every single proposal being discussed on the left would increase federal obligations for health care spending, further draining the general funds that have been propping up the Medicare program. Without serious reforms to Medicare, we won’t be facing Medicare for All, but rather Medicare for none.” – Christopher Holt

“Who says there’s no bipartisanship in Washington? Democrats in Congress visited the White House on Tuesday, and they emerged to say that they and President Trump had agreed to spend $2 trillion on public works. When it comes to spending more money, Washington can always find common ground.” – Wall Street Journal

Health care

Telehealth: Walmart, which has 1.1 million people in its health plan, has adjusted copays for virtual visits from $40 to $4 and is partnered with Grand Rounds, a healthcare company that connects patients with local and remote specialty care, so its workers can receive second opinions, remotely, from leading experts on their specific condition. Grand Rounds has 4.5 million patients from 120 employers. Source: Becker’s Hospital Review

Cost of coverage: The average cost of employer-provided health insurance will rise 6 percent in 2019 to reach nearly $15,000 per employee, with employers paying 70 percent, according to the Society for Human Resource Management. Source: Grand Rounds

War on opioids: When the U.S. Centers for Disease Control and Prevention published its opioid prescribing guidelines in 2016, it was warned about “unintended consequences,” including “the potential effects of strict dosage and duration limits on patient care.” The authors of the CDC guidelines now acknowledge in The New England Journal of Medicine their advice has been “misimplemented,” resulting in needless suffering, patient abandonment, and “adverse psychological and physical outcomes” (including suicide). Source: Reason.com

Education  

Punishing schools over discipline: Schools with high rates of disciplinary action of their students face unfair discrimination in rankings, which hurts schools that successfully educate thousands of poor and minority students, Chester E. Finn Jr. writes for the Fordham Institute. “It’s a fact that one of the secrets – not the only secret – of their success are behavioral standards as rigorous as their academic standards, and little or no tolerance for youngsters who cannot or will not meet those standards.” 

Media

YouTube: Click here to view the Foundation’s April 17 event with Congressman Doug Collins of Georgia, “Second Chances 2019.” To view the Foundation’s April 10 Athens event on school choice (three parts) click the links for Part I, Part II and Part III.

Foundation in the news: The Citizen published Benita Dodd’s commentary on tax reform. Neal Boortz quoted the Foundation’s Friday Facts of April 26 in his daily segment on WSB Radio.

Social media: The Foundation’s Facebook page has 3,493 “likes” this week; our Twitter account has 1,888 followers! Join them!

Friday Flashback

This month in the archives: In May 20 years ago, the Foundation published, “The Tide is Turning.” It noted, “While the Labor Party champions tax cuts across the Atlantic, here in the United States there has been talk about major tax reform for more than a decade, but little of substance has occurred.” It took 19 more years to get tax reform of substance, championed by President Trump.

On a personal note

Best wishes: Lawrence Reed, who served as president of the Atlanta-based Foundation for Economic Education for the past 11 years and spent the previous 21 years as president of the Michigan-based Mackinac Center for Public Policy, stepped down this this week to become FEE’s President Emeritus. The new president is Zilvinas Silenas. We’re honored to count Larry as a friend, counselor and mentor through the decades and wish him well on his next adventures.

Congratulations to former Foundation Board Member Carolyn Meadows, who this week became the new president of the National Rifle Association.

Visit www.georgiapolicy.org to read the Foundation’s latest commentary, “Still Asking for Whom Georgia’s Roads are Tolled?” by Benita M. Dodd

Have a great weekend!

Kyle Wingfield and Benita Dodd

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