The Locker Room

October 17, 2008

Watt says RNC alleging Obama himself is a terrorist

Posted by Hal Young at 3:10 PM

Congressman Mel Watt (D-12) told WPTF's Bill LuMaye that "robo-calls" are going to independent voters and charging Barack Obama himself with terrorism. When LuMaye expressed his dismay at such allegations and asked for details, Watts said the Republican National Committee is taking responsibility for the calls.

"We've had this conversation for ten minutes. That's what I was scheduled for. ... I hope you all will be thinking about the future of this country and not people who make more than $250,000 per year," Watt concluded.

LuMaye promises to play the actual "robo-calls" later in the program. The interview should be available here later.

UPDATE: Corrected a digit and a character. Thanks to both of you who pointed them out.

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Private sector bails out government health care

Posted by Joseph Coletti at 2:21 PM

A private insurance provider is stepping in to insure children the Hawaiian government cannot afford to cover, just seven months after starting the program. "A state official said families were dropping private coverage so their children would be eligible for the subsidized plan," reported the AP. the government's private sector partner, Hawaii Medical Service Association, will cover the 2,000 children already enrolled in Keiki (Hawaiian for child) Care through the end of the year.

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Voter Registration Controversy at N.C. State

Posted by Jenna Ashley Robinson at 1:30 PM

Today, I wrote about NCSU Student Body President Jay Dawkins' refusal to distribute liberal/leftist propaganda from the United States Student Association to all new voters registered on campus.

Surprisingly, Dawkins is one of four conservative students who lead the NCSU Student Government. The Student Senate President, Treasurer and President of the Student Center are all conservative.

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Newer isn't always better

Posted by Mitch Kokai at 12:04 AM

It's rare to find a negative connotation attached to the word "innovation," so it was interesting to read this section from William Safire's Political Dictionary entry on "checks and balances":

Among the early users was James Madison, one of the primary Federalist advocates. During the ratification debate, he explained how the landed gentry's rights would be protected: "our government ought to secure the permanent interests of the country against innovation."

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Is Jason Furman the Dan Gerlach of national politics

Posted by Joseph Coletti at 11:44 AM

Eight years ago Dan Gerlach was director of the NC Budget and Tax Center and was fairly well respected on fiscal policy even by those who disagreed with him. Dan opposed economic incentives and a state lottery. Then he became budget adviser for Gov. Mike Easley and is now president of Golden LEAF, an organization that helps local governments provide economic incentives to companies.

Jason Furman is a Brookings Institution scholar and an economic policy adviser for Barack Obama and has been fairly well respected on health economics even by those who disagree with him. But Furman's earlier thoughts on how to solve health care more closely match John McCain's proposal than they do Barack Obama's.

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That 70's Country

Posted by Daren Bakst at 10:23 AM

The Wall Street Journal has a very good editorial outlining federal policies that we likely would see if current polls hold.  In discussing the impact of the election, they argue:

"Though we doubt most Americans realize it, this would be one of the most profound political and ideological shifts in U.S. history. Liberals would dominate the entire government in a way they haven't since 1965, or 1933. In other words, the election would mark the restoration of the activist government that fell out of public favor in the 1970s. If the U.S. really is entering a period of unchecked left-wing ascendancy, Americans at least ought to understand what they will be getting, especially with the media cheering it all on."

The op-ed then goes on to explain what we would be getting.

Lowlights include:

- Union card check
- Cap and Trade
- Prescription drug price controls
- Windfall profit taxes on oil
- Higher taxes
- Fairness doctrine
- Net Neutrality
- Trying terrorists in civilian courts

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The federal role in education

Posted by Dr. Terry Stoops at 09:59 AM

According to the Learning First Alliance website, "The Learning First Alliance is a partnership of 18 national education associations dedicated to improving student learning in America’s public schools."

On Monday, the Alliance released "Transforming the Federal Role in America’s Public Schools," a short statement of six principles for increasing federal involvement in public schools.

The statement begins,

Our nation’s founders understood that a well-educated citizenry is essential to the success of our democracy. This holds especially true today.
Our nation's founders also understood that it was generally a bad idea to get the federal government involved in public education. That is why the United States Constitution doesn't establish federal oversight of public schools.

Strangely, the Alliance complains that we now have "top-down micromanagement of our public schools." None of the Alliance's six recommendation would change that. Indeed, one of their recommendations calls for "health services and programs to encourage parents’ involvement in their children’s education, as well as early childhood, preschool, after-school and summer programs that offer enrichment opportunities and reinforce learning in school." Of course, the federal government would no longer just micromanage public schools, they would micromanage lives, as well.

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Nozick vs. Rawls in "spread the wealth"

Posted by Joseph Coletti at 08:53 AM

Greg Mankiw gives a brief look at the philosophical differences seen in response to Obama's "spread the wealth" comment. In doing so, he highlights one of McCain's difficulties: "Senator McCain took exception to Obama's statement, but he did not fully explained [sic] why."

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This weekend on Carolina Journal Radio

Posted by Mitch Kokai at 06:55 AM

Some North Carolinians are willing to accept higher taxes than those paid in neighboring states, as long as taxpayers get better government services. But a new John Locke Foundation analysis shows that Tar Heel taxpayers get a lower “bang for the buck” than taxpayers in most other states. Joe Coletti explains in the next edition of Carolina Journal Radio.

Speaking of taxes, one of the most pervasive forms of federal taxation gets very little attention in debates between Democratic and Republican political candidates. Kristina Rasmussen of the National Taxpayers Union will join us to discuss problems associated with excise taxes.

Michael Hethmon of the Immigration Reform Law Institute will discuss steps local governments can take to address illegal immigration, George Leef will discuss union organizers’ efforts to get rid of secret-ballot union elections, and Terry Stoops will react to a Duke professor’s recommendations for changing the way public school teachers are paid.

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Today's Carolina Journal Online features

Posted by Mitch Kokai at 06:48 AM

This week's Carolina Journal Friday interview features Donna Martinez's conversation with John Hood about the contrast between investor politics and welfare politics.

George Leef's guest Daily Journal warns of "the curse of visionary politicians."

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