• John Locke Update

    What Are School Mask Mandates Doing to Children?

    posted September 7, 2021 by Jon Sanders
    Nearly every public school district in North Carolina is forcing face masks on students. Researchers are sounding the alarm about the psychological, physical, social, developmental, and academic harms of masks on young schoolchildren. With the benefits so uncertain and the potential costs so large, we must be asking whether these mandates are really worth it.
  • John Locke Update

    The House Budget Had Good Ideas for Opticians, and the Final Budget Can, Too

    posted August 17, 2021 by Jon Sanders
    An earlier version of the House budget would have relaxed some of the restrictions North Carolina places on its licensed opticians. Those reforms would have followed some of the John Locke Foundation's principles for reforming occupational licensing, including universal license recognition as well as moving the state in the right direction toward a least-cost-state standard. The reforms were not in the final House budget, but they could be restored in the final conference report.
  • John Locke Update

    North Carolina: No Excess Deaths From Covid Since Mid-March

    posted July 29, 2021 by Jon Sanders
    Data from the CDC and state DHHS show that North Carolina has not been suffering excess deaths from Covid-19 since mid-March 2021. While Covid-19 is still out there, its effect on North Carolina is no longer causing a statistical anomaly in terms of deaths, meaning it is behaving more and more like an endemic virus, such as a flu, not a pandemic. If North Carolina is no longer witnessing excess deaths owing to Covid-19, then why does Gov. Cooper still keep the state in the minority of U.S. states still under a "State of Emergency"?
  • John Locke Update

    Progressive Recommendations Would Harm, Not Help, Hourly Workers

    posted July 22, 2021 by Brian Balfour
    A new report published by a left-wing group included policy recommendations they claim will help hourly workers. The recommendations, however, largely introduce more restrictions, costs, and burdens to hiring hourly workers, which leads to less hiring. A better recipe to help hourly workers would be to peel back layers of government meddling in the labor market, not introduce more layers.
  • John Locke Update

    How an Overzealous Licensing Board’s Threat Shows the Need for Structural Licensing Reform

    posted July 16, 2021 by Jon Sanders
    The state licensing board for massage and bodywork said reflexologists didn't practice massage and bodywork — then they changed their mind. House Bill 434 would ward off this licensing threat by creating a state healing arts commission to oversee reflexologists and music therapists, with other practices sure to be added. North Carolina needs structural overhaul of its occupational regulation, especially a careful, thoughtful approach in law to make sure any future regulation of a practice is the "least restrictive regulation necessary to protect consumers" and "demonstrably necessary and narrowly tailored to legitimate health, safety, and welfare objectives."
  • John Locke Update

    To mask, or not to mask, that is the question

    posted July 15, 2021 by Dr. Terry Stoops
    North Carolina is one of only ten states that continue to schoolchildren to all be masked. Elected officials want mask policies to be in the hands of local communities and not the Cooper administration. A recent ABC Science Collaborative study of COVID-19 transmission in schools is misleading and ignores scientific research on the harms of face coverings.
  • John Locke Update

    “Need”? Health Consumers Don’t Need So Much Time Wasted, Money Spent on CON Shenanigans

    posted July 8, 2021 by Jon Sanders
    In 2018, the state Division of Health Service Regulation determined that the people of North Carolina "needed" one — and only one — new mobile PET scanner. Three years and a fight in the courts later, we still don't even have that, but we do have a record of the bad behavior inspired by this "Soviet-style" central planning. This episode illustrates why North Carolina should join the 15 states that have already repealed their CON laws.
  • John Locke Update

    How Much Are Cooper’s Orders to Blame for Non-Covid Excess Deaths in North Carolina?

    posted June 25, 2021 by Jon Sanders
    Research continues to find serious, deadly effects of lockdowns and severe government restrictions over Covid-19, such as Gov. Cooper's, while failing to find evidence of their purported benefits. From March 2020 through January 2021 (the end of available data), under Cooper's unrelenting orders, North Carolina has been witnessing a second excess death event other than Covid-19. It is disheartening to see evidence of an ongoing, non-Covid death event months and months after citing science and data to sound the alarm repeatedly in the hopes of warding off such grim results.
  • John Locke Update

    Reducing the Burden to Get a License to Teach Cosmetic Arts

    posted May 13, 2021 by Jon Sanders
    Occupational licensing imposes many costly burdens on would-be workers: taking hundreds of hours of coursework, passing required exams, logging job experience, paying license fees, etc. A bill that passed the House unanimously would significantly reduce the years of experience required for practitioners of cosmetic arts to qualify for licenses to teach those practices.

John Locke Updates by Author