Category: Free Enterprise

By Benita M. Dodd Every year, the Washington, D.C.-based Competitive Enterprise Institute releases “Ten Thousand Commandments,” an analysis of the numerous federal rules and regulations that govern Americans’ lives. This year, CEI’s first chapter is titled, “9,999 Commandments? Six Ways Rule Flows Have Been Reduced or Streamlined.” It examines President Trump’s executive order to reduce regulation and control regulatory costs; specifically, that two regulations be eliminated for every “significant” regulation issued. In spite of the effort to reduce red tape, “The overarching reality is that the government is far larger than ever, and Trump’s executive branch reorganization initiative undertaken alongside regulatory streamlining resulted in the elimination of no regulatory agencies,” CEI declares. Even with Trump’s directive, CEI notes,… View Article
Kyle Wingfield, president of the Georgia Public Policy Foundation, was invited to provide testimony to the Georgia House Agriculture and Consumer Affairs Committee on February 20, 2019, regarding architectural ordinances. His prepared testimony is published below.   GEORGIA HOUSE AGRICULTURE AND CONSUMER AFFAIRS COMMITTEE WEDNESDAY, FEBRUARY 20, 2019 KYLE WINGFIELD, PRESIDENT, GEORGIA PUBLIC POLICY FOUNDATION   To Chairman McCall and members of the House Agriculture and Consumer Affairs Committee: Thank you for the invitation to provide testimony today about the issues addressed by House Bill 302. My name is Kyle Wingfield, and I’m the president and CEO of the Georgia Public Policy Foundation, a nonpartisan, nonprofit, 501(c)(3) research institute based in Atlanta. The Foundation does not endorse or oppose specific… View Article

Case for Incentives Strikes Out

This commentary by John Hood, chairman of the John Locke Foundation, appeared in the Carolina Journal’s August 2018 edition. Read it online here. Case for Incentives Strikes Out By John Hood North Carolina politicians and policy analysts have been arguing for decades about targeted economic incentives. I have my own view on the subject, which I’ll share later in this column, but I think it would be helpful first to describe four very different takes on the issue. The central question is whether North Carolina’s state and local governments ought to try to compete with other jurisdictions across the country in offering targeted tax or cash incentives, either to lure new businesses or to entice current employers to stay… View Article
Jeffrey H. Dorfman Hurricane Michael made landfall in the Florida Panhandle and sustained major, hurricane-force winds as it entered southwest Georgia’s agricultural heartland. It appears the losses to Georgia agriculture alone will exceed $2 billion. This unprecedented hit may require similarly unprecedented responses from the private sector and government. As of this writing, I estimate Georgia cotton growers suffered $550 million in losses. Worse, Georgia pecan growers suffered $560 million in lost crop, damaged and destroyed trees, and lost future income while waiting for replanted orchards to mature. Georgia vegetable farmers also suffered heavy losses, perhaps over $400 million. Topping even that, Georgia timber owners may have lost $1 billion, with 250,000 acres completely lost and 750,000 acres with varying… View Article

Feeding on Problems: From World Hunger to Abundance

By Harold Brown Remember when India was a poster-country for overpopulation and starvation? In just one sign, The New York Times carried more than 100 articles per year from 1965 to 1980 that linked India’s name and population. How times have changed. In August 2017, an article in The Times of India proclaimed, “Govt raises foodgrain output to record 275.68 tonnes” (metric). In 1961, the harvest was less than 100 metric tons. This tripling of cereal grain production occurred with almost no change of the land area used for these crops. (See attached chart.) India’s food supply per person has increased over 20 percent since 1970, even as the population more than doubled. At the same time life expectancy has… View Article

The Unintended Consequences of Trade Protectionism

By Jeffrey Dorfman The International Trade Commission has ruled that imported solar panels from China and other countries were injuring U.S. manufacturers, which will provide President Trump with the opportunity to impose tariffs in order to protect American solar panel producers from this “unfair” foreign competition. However, to protect the jobs of Americans who manufacture solar panels, the President would have to endanger the jobs of a larger groups of Americans: those who install the solar panels at our homes and businesses. Thus, solar panels are a perfect illustration of the dilemma inherent in opposing free trade. Justin Worland reports in Time magazine that solar panel manufacturers employ about 8,000 Americans while another 240,000 U.S. jobs are related to selling… View Article
By Benita M. Dodd The Georgia Public Policy Foundation’s 25th Anniversary Celebration Dinner and Freedom Award takes place on November 11 at the Cobb Energy Performing Arts Centre and is keynoted by John Stossel. Through the years, the Georgia Public Policy Foundation has presented the prestigious Freedom Award to a notable Georgian who has exemplified the principles of private enterprise and personal integrity. Previous recipients include U.S. Supreme Court Justice Clarence Thomas, Flowers Industries chairman emeritus William Flowers, the former U.S. Attorney General Griffin Bell, Chick-fil-A founder Truett Cathy; Deen Day Smith, chair of the Cecil B. Day Investment Company; former Governor and United States Senator Zell Miller; former Southern Company president Bill Dahlberg, Medal of Honor recipient General Raymond… View Article
In an excellent op-ed, Eric Tanenblatt writes in the March 4-10 edition of The Atlanta Business Chronicle on how government and elected officials stifle and resist innovation “by protecting a legacy structure.” The former chief of staff to Gov. Sonny Perdue who served in the administrations of both Presidents Bush cites as examples the initial reaction to Amazon and responses to Airbnb, Uber, Lyft, Tesla and personal lender LendingClub.  (Georgia also saw this in the uphill battle faced by craft breweries and distilleries trying to sell their wares.) “Government’s inclination to snuff out innovation when it threatens incumbents is a cancer on our body politic that must be excised,” Tanenblatt writes. “The new sharing economy, an expansive market built on… View Article

Which Way Employment?

By Harold Brown                                             A person who wants a job and doesn’t have one knows exactly what unemployment means. Sadly, most of us who depend on the media to tell us about the nation’s unemployment don’t quite know. The “unemployment rate” supposedly tells us the proportion of people unemployed, and is often presented as the whole story.  But there is much more to it: The official “unemployment rate” is the percentage of people in the labor force who don’t have a job and are seeking one. What about changes in the size of the labor force? The labor force is not a fixed group. The focus may on the unemployment rate, but changing demographics affect the labor force as much as,… View Article

Opportunity’s Knocking Hard at Georgia’s Door

By Benita M. Dodd Six years after the economic downturn, the job market for able-bodied adults in Georgia remains one of the worst in the nation, according to recent figures. The challenge is not insurmountable, but strengthening the job market and Georgia’s economy requires the buy-in of this state’s policy-makers. Georgia has experienced the second-largest decline in the nation in the employment rate for 25- to 54-year-olds – the prime working years – the Pew Center reports. Today, there are 5.4 fewer working 25- to 54-year-olds out of every 100 than there were in 2007. Only New Mexico beat out Georgia for last place. Add to that the startling numbers that led to Georgia’s slate of criminal justice reforms:… View Article

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U.S. Attorney General Griffin Bell more quotes