“The Economy of the Past Is Over.” But What Comes Next? (3)

August 20, 2014 • Category: Economy, Top Story

So, Virginia faces a $2.4 billion projected budget shortfall, which Governor Terry McAuliffe blames largely on defense funding cuts mandated by sequestration. Surprise, surprise. We’ve seen this train wreck coming for years. Some have seen it more clearly and shouted about it more loudly than others. Now it’s here — the slowing economic growth, the […]

Full Story»

Agriculture»

EPA’s Plan for VA Farmers, Part II (Comments Off)

(The first part of this article was run in the last issue of the Jefferson Policy Journal here.) On March 30, 2012, Virginia’s Secretary of Natural Resources submitted Phase II of Virginia’s Watershed Implementation Plan. “The Phase II WIP supplements the Phase I WIP and the activities already implemented in [Virginia's] efforts to reduce phosphorus, […]

Appreciation»

Great American Heroes (Comments Off)

With all the grim economic news and continued partisanship in our great nation, one must look to the true character of regular men and women in our work force who are making a tremendous difference and saving lives.

Civil Liberties»

Is the End of America’s Culture Wars in Sight? (Comments Off)

Have the Culture Wars peaked? Is the national debate over God, Gays and Guns on the downward slide? Michael Lind, a conservative thinker and co-founder of The New America Foundation, thinks the end is foreseeable. Just as the Civil War didn’t end after Gettysburg — the Confederate states still had a lot of fight left in […]

Crime»

Gun Control Clamor Needs a Thoughtful Response (5)

Second Amendment supporters must rise to another challenge in coming months. The horrific Newtown, Connecticut school massacre has heightened anti-gun rumblings to a crescendo. It was also predictable that weapons sales would surge in Virginia and nationwide, at least partly in fear that new federal laws might be enacted. Although anti-gun clamors have arisen after […]

Defense»

Virginia Can Help Keep U.S. Air Superiority (Comments Off)

Guaranteeing the future of American air superiority is a task that extends well beyond the five walls of the Pentagon. In fact, we in Virginia have an important part to play. This is certainly the case with the futuristic and important new F-35 Lighting II stealth fighter currently under development. There are eighteen companies throughout […]

Economic Development»

Virginia’s Employment Declines (1)

Employment in the nation is finally starting to pick up. Nonfarm payrolls rose by 192,000 in March, which is 1.7% higher than a year ago. The Richmond metropolitan area is seeing similar growth. Employment rose 1.5% over the year ending with February, which is the latest data available at the regional level. In contrast, employment […]

Economy»

“The Economy of the Past Is Over.” But What Comes Next? (3)

So, Virginia faces a $2.4 billion projected budget shortfall, which Governor Terry McAuliffe blames largely on defense funding cuts mandated by sequestration. Surprise, surprise. We’ve seen this train wreck coming for years. Some have seen it more clearly and shouted about it more loudly than others. Now it’s here — the slowing economic growth, the […]

Education»

Save on Back to School Sales (Comments Off)

By Nancy Thomas and Ray Mattes Each year, Virginia shoppers seeking back-to-school bargains have an added incentive to make those purchases during the back to school tax-free holiday leading up to the beginning of the school year. This year, it occurred this past weekend, August 1-3. The bitter irony about that isolated weekend is its […]

Energy»

Trampling on Coal Country Families (0)

Between 1989 and 2010, Congress rejected nearly 700 cap-tax-and-trade and similar bills that their proponents claimed would control Earth’s perpetually fickle climate and weather. So even as real world crises erupt, President Obama is using executive fiats and regulations to impose his anti-hydrocarbon agenda, slash America’s fossil fuel use, bankrupt coal and utility companies, make […]

Environment»

EPA’s Myths and Misinformation (2)

EPA Administrator Gina McCarthy spoke to the Agricultural Business Council on July 10 in Kansas City. One news report claims she said to forget about the myths and misinformation about EPA’s proposed interpretative rule for the Clean Water Act. I suggest you read Ms. McCarthy’s remarks. It is sad to see an Administrator give an […]

Feature»

Wetlands: The New Land Grab by EPA (1)

EPA’s draft guidance on identifying waters which may be wetlands was issued on April 27, 2011. My recent blog discussed the concern an Illinois congressman had regarding the impact of this guidance on agriculture and farmers.

Government Reform»

Some Thoughts on Social Security (1)

Today our local newspapers headlines were that the president was backing off from Social Security cuts in his budget which will be released early in March. As someone who receives Social Security, and also one hoping his own children will have a decent retirement which will include Social Security, it got me to thinking about […]

Health Care»

Medicaid Expansion Is Bad Policy, Period (1)

(The Jefferson Policy Journal ran a column on June 19, 2014 highlighting the positive aspects of how Indiana has expanded Medicaid, This column offers another perspective.) It is time to stop, take a breath and ask some basic questions about health care:  Do we want to see greater government control over health care dollars and […]

History»

Remembering Reagan at 101 (Comments Off)

It was an honor to know and work for Ronald Reagan, whose 101st birthday we celebrate this month. I “cut my political teeth” working for him in West Texas in 1976 and 1980, running for the U.S. House at his suggestion in 1978, and later serving in his administration in several executive positions. I was […]

Housing»

Economic Impact: Home affordability in Richmond area Hits Highest Level (2)

(This column ran in the Richmond Times Dispatch on February 4, 2013.) Home affordability in the Richmond region stood at its highest level in the third quarter of last year since 2003. The region had 51.9 percent of households that could afford to buy a median-priced home — with half the houses selling for more […]

Immigration»

Immigration Reform Needs to be Realistic (5)

Our economy is in desperate need for more middle-class job creation. Recent statistics continue to show a very weak recovery – one of worst recoveries since World War II. Once Congress gets back to it, the immigration debate needs to focus on reality and not “news bites” and unrealistic concepts. A 2011 survey by the […]

Land Use»

The Obamacare of Real Estate (Comments Off)

Top Senate Banking Committee members released plans this week to wind down mortgage giants Fannie Mae and Freddie Mac and replace them with a complicated apparatus disturbingly similar to Obamacare. While the proposal by Senators Tim Johnson (D-SD), the chairman, and Mike Crapo (R-ID), the ranking member, was announced with great fanfare, it simply follows […]

Law and Justice»

Confusing Ability with Intent: Why the NRA Should Not have Joined Forces With the ACLU (2)

The recent controversy concerning alleged “unconstitutional” National Security Agency (NSA) collection of vast telephone “metadata”—records already collected by private sector telecommunications companies that identify what phone numbers were connected with what other phone numbers along with when the calls occurred and how long they lasted—has sadly been driven by misinformation, misunderstanding, and ignorance of both […]

Local Government»

Local, State Government Assets Cause Budgetary Pains (1)

For a moment, let’s accept President Obama’s recent statement on its face value: “the private sector is doing fine. Where we’re seeing weaknesses in our economy have to do with state and local government, oftentimes cuts initiated by, you know, governors or mayors who are not getting the kind of help that they have in […]

Media»

Keep the Redskins’ Name (4)

I was once told that the only bad thing about being a good sport is that you have to lose to prove it. So it is with democracy; you have to have the freedom to disagree to prove that it works. This brings me to the issue of the Washington Redskins. They are one of […]

Nice & Curious Questions»

A Rocky Business: Quarries in Virginia (Comments Off)

Modern quarries in the Old Dominion owe their existence to the automobile – and muddy roads. In fact, in 1928, before the state took over road maintenance, Fairfax County opened a quarry near Centreville to extract crushed stone for county roads. Now privately owned, the Luck Stone Corporation quarry site on Route 29 provided material […]

Politics»

Cantor’s Loss: Lessons Learned … Again (5)

To my many friends on both sides of the political aisle, if you learn just two things from the Eric Cantor loss last month I hope you infuse your political blood with: 1 – Challengers don’t win, incumbents lose. 2 – Relationships require work. A year ago when two senior Republican members of the Virginia […]

Regulation»

Government Regulations Impact Industries (1)

Increasing government regulations tend to have varying degrees of effect on different industries. Even though their impacts on the broader economy may be modest, for certain industries, the impact can be quite severe. Susan Dudley, director of the George Washington University’s Regulatory Studies Center, said in a report that the Obama administration’s own estimates shows […]

State Government»

Fostering Regional Collaboration Case by Case (1)

For reasons rooted in local identity and entrenched political interest, Virginians are unlikely to consolidate their local governments into units aligned with the metropolitan regions they serve. But it is not impossible to imagine governments partnering regionally on specific projects. A new study by the Joint Legislative Audit and Review Commission, “Encouraging Local Collaboration through […]

Taxes»

Virginia, Stop Getting Slapped (2)

“There ought to be a law,” is not a phrase that slips easily from my keyboard. Generally, I think there are far too many laws and, particularly, too many new laws. Old laws that have long outlived any usefulness are too seldom revisited and removed from the statute books. At the rate we add new laws, one would […]

Technology»

Flying Blind Does Not Serve Taxpayers (1)

In order to implement and measure the effectiveness of the programs proposed by President Obama and Governor Kaine we need a better understanding of our land. The US and Virginia both need better maps.

Top Story»

Reauthorizing the Export-Import Bank is a No-Brainer (3)

(Editor’s Note: Many Virginia businesses are involved in international trade. This article deals with an issue directly impacting Virginia’s economy.) Today, exports are more important than ever to American businesses, manufacturers, and the overall strength of our nation’s economy. With 95 percent of the world’s consumers living outside the United States, many companies can be […]

Transparency»

Is Virginia’s P3 Program at Risk? (Comments Off)

(This article is reprinted by Surface Transportation Innovations, a monthly newsletter by Reason Foundation.) The state with the longest track record in public-private partnerships (P3s) for transportation infrastructure is clearly Virginia. It enacted the first workable general enabling legislation for P3s back in 1995 (the Public-Private Transportation Act—PPTA) and despite a few early stumbles, has generated substantial private capital […]

Transportation»

Opponents Try to Sink All Aboard Florida Rail Project (1)

(Editor’s note: If high speed rail can work in Florida without government subsidy, maybe we can do the same here in Virginia under the right circumstances.) As regular readers of this newsletter will recall, I have been generally supportive of the effort by a division of the company that owns and operates the Florida East […]

Uncategorized»

As the Highway Trust Fund Runs Low, States Come to the Rescue – Part II (Comments Off)

(Part I of this article was run in the Jefferson Policy Journal on May 8, 2014) Fortunately states and local governments are assuming a larger role in funding transportation, thus lessening the pressure to increase the level of federal assistance. Having concluded that they no longer can count on a reliable and growing stream of federal revenue, states and local jurisdictions are […]

Virginia Roundup»

Virginia Roundup (Comments Off)

A roundup of news from the last two weeks around the state.

Disclaimer

The views expressed in Bacon's Rebellion are those of the authors and do not necessarily represent the views of the Thomas Jefferson Institute or its Board of Directors. The authors in this electronic journal are free express their own opinions. Nothing in these columns should be construed as the Jefferson Institute supporting or opposing any specific piece of legislation.