The Locker Room

January 15, 2009

Economic Stimulus Bill

Posted by Daren Bakst at 8:38 PM

Details about the U.S. House economic stimulus bill have just been released.  The legislation, called the American Recovery and Reinvestment Bill of 2009 has all kinds of goodies for almost every special interest.  Here's the report language for the bill (provides a detailed summary).

The House Appropriations Committee released this press release/summary that also lists all the wonderful things that our taxpayer dollars will help fund.  If you can think of it, taxpayers are probably going to pay for it.

The House Appropriations Committee Minority web site (i.e. Republicans on the Committee) released this fact sheet  on the bill.  Rep. Lewis, who is the ranking member of the committee, issued this press release earlier today.

The bill should be called the "No Special Interest Left Behind Act."

If you don't care about the economy and only care about yourself: Hurry to DC now like the home builders and make sure you get your money too.  Don't Delay!   This special offer won't last long!*

*You may have to wait at least three whole months before you get another chance like this!

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Re: Atlas Shrugged more relevant than ever

Posted by Eric Root at 5:38 PM

Of course it would be nice to eliminate the income tax--there was a reason the Founders believed a capitation tax was problematic: it was inimical to limited government.

But, I wonder about the prudence of using Rand as our model. She is not, perhaps, the most prudent use of argumentation against the modern state, in part because hers is fiction--do we really expect the savvy business leaders to, in effect, go on strike to teach the "looters" a lesson? And do we really want the the childless world (Whittaker Chambers) that she presents?

Rand and other free marketers have much in common--I am not sure Rand advances the ball to the goal either desires.

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Perdue's latest budget order ...

Posted by Mitch Kokai at 5:04 PM

... offers legislators one more reason to consider Joe Coletti's ideas for closing down North Carolina's spend-and-tax roller coaster ride.

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Re: The Not So Greatest ...

Posted by Mitch Kokai at 4:42 PM


Professor Bauerlein will also join us later this month on Carolina Journal Radio. Click play below for a preview.

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The eugenics eco-alarmist connection

Posted by Dr. Roy Cordato at 3:58 PM

As a follow up on my post below. It should be noted that there are connections between the modern day progressive pseudo-science/religion of global warming and the progressive movement's similarly grounded, earlier cause of eugencis. Sir John Huxley (d. 1975) was not only a famous evolutionary biologist, environmentalist, and founding member of one of the world's most extreme global warming alarmist organizations the World Wildlife Fund, but he was also a member and President of the British Eugenics Society.

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Global warming alarmists need to hurry

Posted by Dr. Roy Cordato at 1:40 PM

The idea that there is an urgency to global warming legislation and/or CO2 controls is getting sillier and sillier in light of a climate record that shows at least a decade worth of cooling, with apparently more to come. This is why those in the progressive movement (formerly known as liberals) know they have to hurry up and get new laws and regulations in place. In Washington progressive icon Henry Waxman is promising quick action on climate change while in North Carolina Waxman's ideological soulmates in North Carolina's Division of Air Quality--a unit of the state's Department of Environment and Natural Resources (DENR)--are moving forward on requiring NC's businesses to report their CO2 emissions. (Also see David Bass' post immediately below.) The reason for the urgency is that CO2 control is the latest best excuse for implimenting progressivist ideas of social engineering. It should be noted that the progressive movement, starting with its overwhelming support for eugenics in the early 20th Century and extending to its present day clammering for CO2 controls and manipulating lifestyles in the name of fighting global warming, has always been about remaking society in the image of a master vision.

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New climate-change positions at Air Quality?

Posted by David N. Bass at 12:57 AM

Yes, the Tar Heel State is facing a $2 billion budget shortfall, but no situation is dire enough to curb our financial commitment to fighting the giant hobgoblin of climate change, right?

The N.C. Division of Air Quality wants to create 11 new positions devoted to global warming. From DAQ spokesman Tom Mather:

DAQ has submitted a request to the Department of Environment & Natural Resources for 11 new positions dealing with climate change issues. This request will have to go through the normal channels -- that is, DENR will decide whether to include in its request to the Governor. If the Governor concurs, it would be included in her budget request to the General Assembly. Then the legislature would need to approve it. When that all happens is open to question.

Meanwhile, state government agencies have been directed to come up with strategies for reducing their budgets by as much as 7 percent. Why do I suspect that green endeavors will be spared the axe?

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The Not So Greatest Generation

Posted by David N. Bass at 12:35 AM

Is my generation dumb, misunderstood, or somewhere in the middle? For baby boomer Mark Bauerlein, the answer is the first of those three options.

Bauerlein came to UNC-Chapel Hill in November to give a lecture on his new book, The Dumbest Generation: How the Digital Age Stupefies Young Americans and Jeopardizes Our Future (Or, Don't Trust Anyone Under 30). Mitch blogged about it here.

My own take on the book is posted on today's American Spectator online. I didn't instant message, text message, or use an iPod while writing it. Honest.

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Inauguration pics

Posted by Jon Ham at 11:55 AM

Carolina Journal's Don Carrington and David N. Bass took photos last Saturday at the inauguration of Gov. Beverly Perdue. Click here to see them. Who knows. You just might be in one of the crowd shots.


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Peering into the crystal ball

Posted by George Leef at 11:14 AM

Cato economist Richard Rahn here peers into the crystal ball to see what the U.S. might look like in the future -- specifically if the Obama administration and Congress follow the the Keynesian folly that what the economy needs is lots more federal spending, and enact new laws favored by the special interests that fought all-out to get the Democratic sweep last fall.

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Atlas Shrugged more relevant than ever

Posted by George Leef at 11:04 AM

Stephen Moore hererevisits Ayn Rand's Atlas Shrugged and finds that the governmental trends she was writing about in 1957 have gotten worse since then.

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Rasmussen Reports Americans Strongly Oppose Economic Plan Without Tax Cuts

Posted by Dr. Terry Stoops at 08:34 AM

Courtesy of

Fifty-eight percent (58%) of American adults are opposed to a government economic recovery plan that does not cut taxes, according to a new Rasmussen Reports national telephone survey.
The survey also found that only 21% would support "a stimulus package with more government spending but no tax cuts."

A little birdie told me that people wanted Congress to spend more money to create jobs instead of cutting taxes.

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Group recommends some incentives be ditched

Posted by David N. Bass at 07:52 AM

A report from the University of North Carolina Center for Competitive Economies argues that some incentives no longer create jobs and should be discontinued, reports the AP:

The study was based on the center's review of tax returns and other state records for thousands of companies - documents the Legislature gave special permission for the UNC-Chapel Hill business school organization to examine.

"The incentives that worked well 10 years ago are not performing as well today and suggests that the portfolio should be reallocated to capture higher returns and changing (to) the types of incentives that we use," center director Brent Lane told the Joint Select Committee on Economic Development Incentives.

North Carolina also should lower its corporate income tax rate from 6.9 percent to 6.5 percent so it will no longer be the highest rate in the Southeast, the report said. A UNC survey found that executives preferred the lower rate to targeted incentives.

The reduction would cost at least $56 million annually, but the report said that could be made up through the potential $574 million in savings between 2010 and 2015 if incentives previously under the state's William S. Lee Act were eliminated rather than extended this year.

Triangle Business Journal reports that lawmakers are drafting a bill that would "cut the state’s corporate income tax rate and make fundamental changes in the tool bag of incentives the state uses to lure companies to North Carolina."

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Today's Carolina Journal Online features

Posted by Mitch Kokai at 06:53 AM

Today's Carolina Journal Online exclusive features Michael Sanera and Katie Bethune's report about Wilson's ill-advised plan to compete with the private sector in providing fiber-optic cable service.

John Hood's Daily Journal pokes holes in arguments for taxpaper financing of election campaigns.

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