On July 4, 1776, American colonists declared their independence from a distant monarchy in Great Britain that had passed mandate after mandate without input from the people over which it ruled. Today, lawmakers and bureaucrats in Washington, DC and state capitals across the country pass mandates local schools hundreds or even thousands of miles away must obey or else face severe budget cuts.
No matter how many courts have rejected their pleadings, enemies of school choice appear committed to a 100-year-long judicial war in quest of some ultimate edict that will keep American students forever captive in government schools.
In this episode of the Heartland Institute’s weekly Budget & Tax News podcast, managing editor and research fellow Jesse Hathaway talks with Nelson J. Rockefeller Institute of Government director of fiscal studies Don Boyd about a new study examining how the assumptions and gimmicks public pension boards use to fund pensions are affected by investment risks, and how those risks affect taxpayers and government employees.
In this edition of The Heartland Daily Podcast, Leo Huang, a student of petroleum engineering and a founding member of the Hydraulic Fracturing Public Awareness Committee (Frac PAC) and Heartland Institute Research Fellow Isaac Orr discuss what Frac PAC is, and how they are working to educate people about the oil and gas industry and make a positive impact on the surrounding community.
The U.S. Environmental Protection Agency (EPA) issued its final methane rule on May 12. The 600-page rule is agenda-driven and backed by pseudoscience, emotions, and unicorn dust, and it’s important to note one specific change in the final rule amounts to a regulatory taking. The final rule imposes costly regulations on wells producing fewer than 15 barrels per day, effectively shutting down those businesses.
Austin voters have approved a ballot referendum to regulate peer-to-peer transportation network companies such as Lyft and Uber, forcing the companies to suspend service in a city otherwise known for its forward thinking and friendliness toward innovation.
The Sunday Telegraph reports that the EU is poised to fine Google an EU record ~€3b for “web search monopoly abuse” and that “Google will be banned from continuing to manipulate search results to favour itself and harm rivals.”
Legislators have long attempted to reduce the negative health impacts of smoking through taxes, bans, and regulations. Some have tried to extend these same policies to electronic cigarettes or “e-cigarettes,” even though they contain no tobacco and are substantially less harmful than traditional cigarettes. This week, the Food and Drug Administration (FDA) unveiled new regulations placing electronic cigarettes under an avalanche of new rules requiring that they be approved as a new type of tobacco product — effectively treating them like traditional cigarettes.
The first week in May is National Charter Schools Week, a time to celebrate the advancements made in the charter school movement over the past 25 years. Because of the nation’s hundreds of new and developing charter schools, thousands of parents and their children now have the opportunity to enroll in a school that better meets children’s specific education needs.
DPS has operated its school system using a top-down, bureaucrat-run model for decades. Under this structure, teachers are protected with outdated tenure rules and rewarded for the amount of time they work in the system, rather than for performance. Innovation is scarce, and administrators, who often enjoy exorbitant salaries, are not encouraged to make the sort of radical changes that are needed to turn the city’s schools around.
In a recent article published by Bloomberg View, Harvard law professor Cass Sunstein discusses “an important but widely overlooked speech” made by Elizabeth Warren (D), in which the Massachusetts senator bemoans the influence of powerful industry groups on the regulatory process. To Warren, the problem is not overzealous administrative bodies, eager to impose unwanted, unnecessary new rules, but regulatory capture—the notion regulation is, in the words of economists Michael E. Levine and Jennifer L. Forrence, “simply an arena in which special interests contend for the right to use government power for narrow advantage.”
Public Health England last in August of 2015 became the first national government agency to endorse e-cigarettes as safer options for current smokers. Its report also dispelled several bogus anti-tobacco claims. Why is it that e-Cigarettes are seen as life-savers by the UK Government, but condemned by the US? Find out why by checking this recent article of Wednesday, April 13, 2016.
Would it be constitutional for a public school board to offer grants and scholarships to families wishing to choose private schooling, yet exclude those benefits for families who prefer for their children’s private school to be a religiously affiliated one?
According to the World Health Organization (WHO), Zika is, like Ebola, a Public Health Emergency of International Concern. Now the U.S. Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC) has stated that it is “clear” that the Zika virus causes a serious birth defect, microcephaly (small head).
According to Mark Twain, “Everybody talks about the weather, but nobody does anything about it.” Now six state attorney generals (AG) have banded together to do something about it by initiating governmental legal prosecution. Can a modern “Reign of Terror” be far behind?
A national survey of 1,500 public middle and high school science teachers, representing all 50 states, found just half of those who discuss climate change in the classroom have partaken of the climate alarmists’ Kool-Aid and are brainwashing students to believe humans are causing catastrophic climate change. The survey was conducted by the National Center for Science Education and published in the widely read academic journal Science.
Hillary Clinton’s “trustworthiness” problem is fed by a long history of “varying credibility,” as a recent Politico story delineated, including cattle-futures trading, law firm billing records, muddled sniper fire recollections and e-mail use.
While Scalia’s time serving on the Supreme Court influenced a wide range of issues, his critical analyses and carefully crafted opinions on environmental issues had an outsized impact on environmental policy and law. Scalia’s vote was often the difference between protecting individual liberty against attempts to expand government power and rulings that would have imposed the misanthropic wishes of radical environmentalists on the public.
President Barack Obama repeatedly pledged he would run the most transparent administration in the history of the United States during both of his presidential campaigns, but the evidence shows Obama’s administration has not only failed to meet that standard, it has actively worked to conceal important information from the public.