Where bad tax policy meets special interest politics
North Carolina passed a law during the 2014 legislative session taxing the liquid used in electronic cigarettes at an additional 5 cents per milliliter. This tax will hurt small businesses and violates the most important principle of good tax policy—neutrality. The North Carolina General Assembly should repeal the electronic cigarette tax.
"Reverse logrolling" would help legislators produce a sound spending plan
Reverse logrolling applied to the current state budget would result in a General Fund budget of $20.6 billion and a $667 million surplus, which would allow legislators more flexibility when discussing spending priorities, including teacher pay increases. It would also allow enough to be set aside in savings and reserves to avoid any unforeseen shortfalls in the next fiscal year.
Scholarly research shows gains from school choice and competition
This study synthesizes findings from 888 articles published since 1990. Based on these, we can say that in recent years North Carolina has been moving in the right direction on school reform. Policymakers should continue the momentum and resist attempts to backtrack.
Haywood County already has a million dollars annually from existing tax
Officials from Haywood County have proposed an increase in the county’s occupancy tax by 50 percent, which would disadvantage Haywood compared to surrounding counties with lower rates. Taxation is justified only for necessary purposes of government. Tourism promotion is not such a function and can best be served by the private sector.
Scholarly research reveals economic benefits of fiscal restraint
Most studies find that lower levels of taxes and spending, less-intrusive regulation, and lower energy prices correlate with stronger economic performance. The implications of this research track well with recent public policies adopted in North Carolina. Judging from the available empirical evidence, North Carolina’s new policy mix is likely to result in stronger economic growth in the coming years.
How the Map Act threatens NC property owners
The North Carolina Map Act virtually freezes property development within proposed road corridors and can encumber and devalue property indefinitely. North Carolina should protect the constitutional property rights of its citizens by repealing or reforming the Map Act.
The way forward
The NC General Assembly should create two permanent commissions charged with raising the quality and rigor of state standards, curricula, and assessments. Each commission should employ a large and diverse group of stakeholders and should modify or replace the Common Core State Standards, specify content that aligns with the standards, recommend a testing program, and provide ongoing review.
Jim Geraghty, a contributing editor at National Review, writes the Campaign Spot blog on the Web magazine National Review Online. He regularly appears on CNN, Fox News Channel, and MSNBC, and guest-hosted the nationally syndicated Hugh Hewitt show on the Salem Radio Network.
In 2008, Best Life magazine called Geraghty one of "the 10 most important voices to listen to this election cycle," and his blog was awarded for having the "Best Political Dirt" by WashingtonPost.com in 2004. The London Times praised his "killer insight" in that election cycle. His columns also have appeared in The Philadelphia Inquirer, The Washington Times, The Washington Examiner and The New York Sun.
His first book, "Voting to Kill: How 9/11 Launched the Era of Republican Leadership" was published by Simon and Schuster in August 2006. His new book, The Weed Agency: Federal Bureaucracy without Limits, published by Random House, has just been released.
Geraghty was a 2008 Media Fellow at the Hoover Institution at Stanford University and has been a guest speaker at Bahçeşehir University in Istanbul, Turkey and Pomona College in Claremont, California.
Geraghty was among the bloggers who skeptically questioned Dan Rather's reporting of a memo that claimed to criticize President Bush's military record. After a network official dismissed the criticism as coming from "a guy sitting in his living room in his pajamas," Jim coined the phrase "pajamahadeen" to describe his fellow skeptics. The American Dialect Society declared the term the "most creative" new word of 2004.
A former reporter at States News Service, Geraghty's reporting appeared in the Washington Post, Boston Globe, Denver Post, Detroit Free Press, Bergen Record, and scores of other papers. Earlier in his career, he reported for the Dallas Morning News, Congressional Quarterly, and the now-departed web sites Policy.com and IntellectualCapital.com.
Specialties: Besides his award-winning campaign coverage, Geraghty spent two years in Ankara, Turkey working as a foreign correspondent and studying Islam and terrorism. In his career, he has also reported from Egypt, Great Britain, Italy, Germany, Spain, and Jordan.
John Locke Foundation analysts and staff have traveled to every corner of North Carolina. We’ve listened to your greatest hopes and worst fears for our state, and we’ve heard a consistent message: You want JLF to be a more prominent resource in your community.
JLF's regional clubs will host meetings for like-minded conservatives, on your home turf. We'll bring you events with well known thinkers and writers, give you reports on our activities and new research, update you on issues that impact your neighborhood and wallet, and learn more about the threats to liberty you face in your city and country.
We have established 7 regional clubs covering every part of North Carolina.
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Jul 17, 2014
Winston-Salem city government has set up new restrictions for door-to-door salesmen, unless they're hawking newspapers.
Jul 10, 2014
The impact on climate of these costly regulations would be so tiny, so close to zero, that it is not worth mentioning.
Jul 03, 2014
Two large counties cite public education as justification for a sales tax increase. The timing is curious.
Sep 06, 2012
The N&O buries the one moment of real drama at the Democratic National Convention.
Mar 21, 2012
The world's media found the neo-Nazi meme in stories about the school shooting in France just too enticing.
Jan 16, 2012
In a Sunday piece, <i>The Charlotte Observer</i> employs all the steps used by the mainstream media to mislead readers.