John Hood's Syndicated Weekly Column | 2016 Archive


Mar. 16th — NC Primary Results Still Matter
If Cruz fails to stop Trump during the remaining primaries, how McCrory and other GOP candidates for state office fare this fall will tell us a great deal about the future of Republican politics.

Mar. 14th — Errors Should Not Be Crimes
North Carolina has a serious problem. Adopting a default mens rea provision would go a long way to solving it.

Mar. 9th — Primaries Expose Prediction Failures
If elections are hard to predict, just imagine how hard it is to make accurate predictions about systems that are even more complicated, such as an economy.

Mar. 7th — News For McCrory Is Mixed
Rising optimism about North Carolina’s economic prospects helps to explain why McCrory’s approval rating is now 48 percent in the HPU poll, up from 43 percent this time last year and 38 percent in 2014.

Mar. 2nd — Trump Challenges Carolina Conservatives
We don’t have to settle for a choice between anemic, European-style social democracy and septic, European-style demagoguery. We can still fight for freedom, American-style.

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Feb. 29th — Dream Big, Start Small
Successful leaders articulate ambitious goals to motivate their followers and then keep them motivated by winning and celebrating gradual victories along the way, rather than thinking of politics as an all-or-nothing game.

Feb. 24th — You Gain From New Businesses
Reforming North Carolina’s archaic system of licensing occupations is just one of many regulatory changes we could make to keep that pipeline open. Much of the benefit will flow directly to you.

Feb. 22nd — Resist Impulses on Budget Surplus
Too often in the past, state politicians counted their fiscal chickens before they were hatched and made promises they couldn’t deliver. The wiser course is to wait, so as to avoid the political equivalent of laying an egg.

Feb. 17th — Our State Gets Boring
By becoming more like the rest of America, North Carolina may have lost some of its earlier distinctiveness. But it has gained a great deal from the deal — including the attention of the rest of the country.

Feb. 15th — NC Schools Ranked Seventh
Spending more money on well-constructed school reforms is fine with me, but don’t fall into the trap of believing the primary issue is funding.

Feb. 10th — NC Cuts Save Taxpayers Billions
North Carolina has become a national test case. Conservatives across the country have cheered our tax reforms. Liberals have savaged them. And you can expect to hear much more about them in the months and years to come.

Feb. 8th — How Republican Is North Carolina?
As the political index clearly shows, presidential candidates and administrations have a large effect on state party success. To forecast what will happen next for North Carolina’s Democrats and Republicans, start by watching the presidential primaries.

Feb. 3rd — Iowa Offers Lessons for NC
Those seeking office or running campaigns in North Carolina would be well advised to look to Iowa, another purple state, for lessons about the press, the polls, and the parties.

Feb. 1st — Don’t Oversell College Subsidies
North Carolina’s state spending on higher education is double or more that of Colorado, Florida, Montana, Oregon, Utah, or Washington, after adjusting for student enrollment.

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Jan. 27th — What Explains Job Growth
The study’s findings suggest that people tend to move to warmer places with lower costs of living (including taxes), thus supplying more labor to potential employers.

Jan. 25th — School Reform Takes Big Strides
The school-reform plan contained five elements: standards, tenure, accounts, regulation, and scholarships. North Carolina policymakers have moved in the right direction in four of these areas.

Jan. 20th — Most Arts Funding Is Private
North Carolina has many corporations, foundations, and individuals who give generously to support the arts in their communities. But there’s plenty of room for more.

Jan. 18th — Relief Can Become a Trap
To recognize that people actively choose their paths through the labor market is not to say that they always get what they want. In many situations, the choice is between unattractive alternatives.

Jan. 13th — Session Comes Into Focus
Since Republicans won majorities in the North Carolina House and Senate in 2010, each subsequent legislative session has been dramatic and consequential.

Jan. 11th — NC Sets A Good Example
North Carolinians are doing their part to win the broader argument for economic freedom — and for a better future for our nation.

Jan. 6th — Make a Federal Case of It
A truly federal form of government gives states, communities, and individuals lots of room to breathe. It promotes diversity and competition. Do we have a truly federal form of government?

Jan. 4th — Anger Is Not Enough
Anger is a powerful emotion. It certainly has its place in politics. But hope is even more powerful.

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