Category: PowerLinks

Blog author: jcarter
Thursday, December 10, 2015
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Influence of Churches, Once Dominant, Now Waning in South
Jay Reeves, Associated Press

Prayers said and the closing hymn sung, tea-drinking churchgoers fill Marble City Grill for Sunday lunch. But hard on their heels comes the afternoon crowd: craft beer-drinking, NFL-watching football fans.

Americans Who Don’t Buy Health Coverage Face Heftier Fine in ’16, Analysis Finds
Abby Goodnough, New York Times

Americans who remain uninsured in 2016 despite having the option of buying health coverage through an Affordable Care Act marketplace will owe an average tax penalty of $969 per household, a new analysis has found.

Senate Approves Overhaul of No Child Left Behind Law
Emmarie Huetteman, New York Times

The Senate on Wednesday approved a sweeping revision of the contentious No Child Left Behind law, sending to President Obama’s desk a proposal that ends an era of federal control in education policy after 14 years.

Christians, the State Department, and Genocide
Mark Movsesian, First Things

ISIS is driving Christians from their homes, seizing their property, and, quite often, killing them in the most horrible ways. How does that not qualify as a genocide?

Blog author: jcarter
Wednesday, December 9, 2015
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Welfare Isn’t Dead
Thomas Main, City Journal

Many eligible and truly needy families don’t apply for TANF, as a new book inadvertently demonstrates.

Mobility and Money in U.S. States: The Marriage Effec
W. Bradford Wilcox, Robert I. Lerman, and Joseph Price, Family Studies

Marriage and family structure matter for the well-being of not just individual kids but entire communities.

This Free Market Solution Can Help Improve Access to Healthcare
Amelia Hamilton, Opportunity Lives

A lack of affordable healthcare options continues to leave many Americans uninsured and with little or no access to medical care. A Florida volunteer program is filling the gap. And if that program were to go national, it could provide more than $2 billion in free health care to Americans in need.

Ten reasons economists object to the minimum wage
Mark J. Perry, AEI Ideas

Proponents of a higher minimum wage point to the obvious and visible benefits to some workers – those who may find a job at the higher wage or keep their existing job and get a higher wage. But that is only part of the story – there are many less obvious downsides to an artificially high minimum wages that take longer to recognize, and it’s those inevitable negative effects that lead economists to generally oppose minimum wage laws.

Blog author: jcarter
Tuesday, December 8, 2015
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Europe’s End-of-History Dream Dies
Walter Russell Mead, The American Interest

Still obscure to most European elites (and to their American counterparts) is the understanding that neither the values nor the liberties of liberal civilization can long flourish if the religious and spiritual foundations of that civilization are allowed to decay, and are treated with scorn and neglect by society’s leaders.

Economic Lessons for Children from The Hunger Games
Matthew Rousu, Library of Economics and Liberty

The Hunger Games also does a good job of showing the poverty that results from this form of government control. An economy is not well-served when government violates people’s right to sort themselves into the work they can best accomplish.

Wellspring Living Helps Victims Of Sex Trafficking Rebuild Their Lives
Jay Caruso, Opportunity Lives

The city of Atlanta is known for its sports teams and its southern hospitality. Atlanta is the home base of Delta Airlines, Coca Cola, Home Depot and UPS. Unfortunately, it is also the largest hub for sex trafficking in the United States. Thankfully, organizations such as Wellspring Living exist to assist the victims of sex trafficking.

Bee of Good Cheer
Steven Hayward, PowerLine

We take the brief time out from the climate apocalypse in Paris—also known as “thermageddeon”—to make note of the official cancellation of the “Bee-pocalypse.”

Blog author: jcarter
Monday, December 7, 2015
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A Lodestar of Religious Liberty
Arne Panula, Wall Street Journal

Dignitatis Humanae confirmed in 1965 a basic human right that today is under assault.

Shifts in family, work, and government support have changed the face of deep poverty in the US
Angela Rachidi, AEI Ideas

A new study by researchers at Columbia University analyzed deep poverty in the United States from 1968 to 2011. The report is based on their “historical supplemental poverty measure,” which — unlike the official poverty measure — reflects cost of living differences and includes government resources such as SNAP and the EITC. The report is their latest in a series using this measure, and focuses on deep poverty and the characteristics of those in deep poverty.

Why Environmentalism Needs Economic Freedom
Israel Ortega, Opportunity Lives

Although some of the headlining dignitaries have already departed in their private jets, the United Nations climate change summit in Paris continues apace. Amid the pomp and glamour, lofty promises (mostly from affluent countries) are being made while much scorn and ridicule is being directed at climate change skeptics.

Republicans divided by income over government’s role in ‘safety net’ issues
Meredith Dost, Pew Research

Republicans are far less supportive than Democrats of a strong government role on issues related to the social safety net, but it’s a subject on which the party has notable divisions within its ranks.

Blog author: jcarter
Friday, December 4, 2015
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A Unique Moment in History
Ecumenical Patriarch Bartholomew, Huffington Post

As the world’s expectations rise, our prayer is that political leadership will also rise to the occasion. From November 30 to December 11, 2015, the COP 21 meeting in Paris is a unique historical moment, a critical opportunity to make the right choice. Political leaders may and should broker an agreement; but our planet is not negotiable.

Policy Riders: What They Are, How Congress Uses Them and Why They Matter to You
Philip Wegmann, The Daily Signal

In broad strokes, it’s simple how a bill becomes law. But in detail, that process can be much more complex. One legislative provision in particular, the appropriations policy rider, is little understood but enormously significant.

Why Missouri might be the next big battleground in the right-to-work debate
Jacob Bogage, Washington Post

First the General Motors assembly plant in Hazelwood, a St. Louis exurb, closed in 2006. The Chrysler plant in south Fenton shuttered two years later, then the plant on the north side of town a year after that. And then came the Great Recession.

“Cleansing the Caliphate:” ISIS and Genocide of Christians
J.J. Daniels, Providence

Reports that the White House will declare that the Islamic State of Iraq and Syria (ISIS) has committed genocide against Iraqi Yazidis, but not against Christians, are of grave concern.

Blog author: jcarter
Thursday, December 3, 2015
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Regulation Not the Answer for the Unbanked
Tyler O’Neil, Values & Capitalism

A little-known government agency that is virtually unstoppable is tightening its grip over banks and lending institutions, taking away new innovative options from people who are already struggling to safeguard and access their money.

How Large Are the EITC’s Marriage Penalties?
Angela Rachidi, Family Studies

Low-income parents are more likely to be punished than rewarded by the earned income tax credit for being married.

The CEO Paying Everyone $70,000 Salaries Has Something to Hide
Nathanael Turner, Bloomberg Businessweek

It seemed too good to be true. On April 13, with reporters from the New York Times and NBC News hovering nearby, Dan Price, the young chief executive officer of Gravity Payments, a Seattle-based credit card processing company, told his staff he was raising their minimum salary to $70,000 a year.

Free Market Food Banks
Alex Tabarrok , Marginal Revolution

In 2005, however, a group of Chicago academics, including economists, worked with Feeding America to redesign the system using market principles. Today Feeding America no longer sends trucks of potatoes to food banks in Idaho and a pound of chicken is no longer treated the same as a pound of french fries.

Blog author: jcarter
Wednesday, December 2, 2015
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Pope Calls for End to Religious Violence at Central African Republic Mosque
Francis X. Rocca, Wall Street Journal

Pope Francis launched a call for an end to religious violence on Monday, capping his trip to Africa with a visit to a Central African Republic mosque that is a haven for Muslims fleeing violence by Christian militias.

Abraham Kuyper on the Sovereignty of God as Political Limit
Derek Rishmawy, Reformedish

Dutch Theologian and Statesmen Abraham Kuyper had a particular knack for taking high-level political theology and–instead of keeping it at an academic level–putting it into popular form for the benefit of the Dutch masses, the middle-class citizens he was burdened to shepherd and lead in both church and state.

Progressives against progress: Maybe the saddest thing you’ll read all day
James Pethokoukis, AEI Ideas

It is discouraging, sad almost, that Robert Atkinson felt he had to write “The Progressive Case for Productivity Growth: How a pro-productivity agenda can raise wages, lower inequality and sustain the middle class.”

Pay the Piper – And Let Only the Piper Call the Tune!
Don Boudreaux, Cafe Hayek

For the head of Planned Parenthood to self-righteously complain about the “politicization” of women’s health care as her organization receives hundreds of millions of dollars annually in government subsidies – money forcibly extracted by government from taxpayers and then given to Planned Parenthood – is an astonishing feat of hypocrisy. No one who is ethically mature demands money from Smith and simultaneously complains when Smith expresses opinions about how that money is spent.