Thu, May 31, 2012
Reflections on Memorial Day
This past week saw the 155th observation of Memorial Day, a holiday first codified by General John Logan on May 5, 1868, in his General Order number 11. It used to be celebrated every May 30th, ...
Mon, May 07, 2012
PA Property Tax System Broken
For time out of mind, Pennsylvania has funded public education from a locally imposed and collected property tax, supplemented annually by state funds. The idea behind it was simple — tie ...
Mon, April 23, 2012
Reform? No, Not Really
A few weeks ago the State House took a step that many believe was courageous — they voted to cut the size of the Pennsylvania House from 203 members to 153, and voted to cut the state senate ...
Wed, April 11, 2012
Independent Voters Will Decide Election
On election night 1992 — my first as a voter — I watched the returns in great dismay as it became evident that Bill Clinton would capture the White House. As I sat Smokey Joe's listening ...
Thu, November 03, 2011
Obama College Loans: Rich Get Richer
Four years ago President Obama's victory was attributed in no small part to the youth vote — both in terms of their increased turnout and the 69% of it they gave to Obama. But as the realities ...
Thu, October 20, 2011
States: Laboratories of Policy
A few weeks before he announced his own run for the White House, Gov. Perry made the following statement: "Our friends in New York six weeks ago passed a statute that said marriage can be ...
Thu, October 06, 2011
States Can Pick Method of Allocating Electoral Votes
Article II, section 1 of the Constitution is the very model of legislative clarity. It reads:
"The executive Power shall be vested in a President of the ...
Fri, September 23, 2011
Money, Consultants Play Outsized Role in Campaigns
In 1774, John Adams was approached by the leaders of Boston and asked if he would serve as a delegate to the Continental Congress. Adams did not seek the office and in fact struggled with accepting ...
Fri, September 09, 2011
The Heroes of 9-11
There are moments in life so vivid that they never leave you; their sense is trapped inside your consciousness in a way that stands out from ordinary memories. Your heart still skips thinking about ...
Fri, August 26, 2011
Uncomfortable Truth About Hybrid Cars
When I was a kid a friend gave me a Chinese finger trap — a woven bamboo tube that got wider when compressed and narrower when stretched. These characteristics made it very easy for you to get ...
Fri, August 12, 2011
Several years ago I heard a phrase that has stayed with me: "Any fool can point at the leak and tell you the dam is cracked. A leader has a plan to fix it."
Fri, July 29, 2011
There is an unfortunate propensity in America that is growing uglier by the day — a need to elevate one's own sense of well being through the dragging down of others.
Tue, July 12, 2011
What Tax is Fair?
There is an old saying in politics: "we you stand usually has a lot to do with where you sit." It is a callous concept — implying that most of us cannot see past our own parochial ...
Fri, July 01, 2011
Life, Liberty, Pursuit of Happiness
There are perhaps a handful of documents whose importance will stand the test of time — the dead sea scrolls, the bible, or magna carta, for example. One of those documents, pulled from the ...
Fri, June 03, 2011
State Money is Limited
Mark Twain, a true libertarian and a committed realist with a cynic's wit, once noted "Facts are stubborn, but statistics are more pliable." No where is this more evident than the ongoing ...
Wed, May 18, 2011
Silencing the Opposition
I want you to imagine the following scenario.
The Governor of a large industrial state — one that allows anonymous coordinated campaign contributions — ...