Must-Reads for August 31
Chicago Tribune: Hold firm, CPS
The union is not going to abandon those children because it's fighting for the best way to educate those children. It's fighting to protect the jobs of adults, the union members.
Foriegn Policy: Everything you think you know about China is wrong
The latest news from Beijing is indicative of Chinese weakness: a persistent slowdown of economic growth, a glut of unsold goods, rising bad bank loans, a bursting real estate bubble, and a vicious power struggle at the top, coupled with unending political scandals.
Forbes: In the age of austerity, public school financial reform is very necessary
School boards will find it increasingly difficult to defend the status quo—teachers receiving above-average salaries while also enjoying premium fringe benefits and superior job security—while the incomes of those who pay their salaries languish due to prolonged economic sluggishness.
Chicago Tribune: Don't back down: spare the kids, decertify the CTU
Instead of ceding to CTU's demands, the mayor and the school board should accelerate plans for reform. In addition to merit pay, Emanuel should offer "teacher choice" to parents by providing teacher evaluation scores and feedback to them. Parents will gravitate toward teachers who are producing results for children.
Must-Reads for August 30
Chicago Tribune: Illinois, the 6th-rate state
This latest demotion — Congrats, Illinois, you're a sixth-rate state! — aggravates a debacle that's already costing taxpayers some $550 million a year.
Forbes: The collapse of Europe's welfare state exposes its false hopes - is America next?
Fundamentally this is about the great lie at the heart of the all-encompassing welfare state, with its empty promises of eternal security and freedom from want. The welfare state and its advocates would have us believe that they have a political solution for a world where scarcity and human brokenness still hold sway
Washington Post: Voters, are you bluffing?
Twice as many Americans identify themselves as conservative as opposed to liberal. On Nov. 6 we will know if they mean it.
Must-Reads for August 29
National Review: CAFE kills
What is real for consumers is the $2,000-per-vehicle added cost that the new fuel standards will impose now. That figure comes from the National Highway Traffic Safety Administration (NHTSA) and the Environmental Protection Agency (EPA).
MarketWatch: QE3 and the looming currency war
Because the dollar is the world’s reserve currency, the Fed has a responsibility that far exceeds that of other central banks. And these days, in an increasingly interconnected global economy, it is in America’s interest for the Fed to take this responsibility seriously.
MSN Money: The weak spot in China's economy
China -- and this should come as no surprise, given the history of other centrally controlled economies -- is really, really bad at shrinking supply when demand falls. The current supply-side disaster is so bad, in fact, that the Chinese government has been obviously falsifying economic data to hide the extent of the problem.
The Wall Street Journal: A grand old growth party
Tax revenues have remained below 16% of GDP for the last four years because the economy is in a slow growth rut. The growth deficit, not the budget deficit, is the great issue of our time.
Must-Reads for August 28
Real Clear Politics: A rational discussion of the federal budget
The Economist: When business and government are bedfellows
We are not yet Greece, but we are not exempt from the same rules of arithmetic that eventually caught up with Greece. We just have a little more time. The only question is whether we will use that time to make politically difficult changes or whether we will just kick the can down the road.
There should be more competition in areas that are subsidised by, and distorted by, the government. Health care is one of those areas. Tertiary education is another.
Reason: Someone's watching
If consumers become sufficiently annoyed with mercantile snooping and excessive marketing, they can take their business to competitors who are more respectful of privacy. Not so with the citizens of an intrusive state.
Must-Reads for August 28
Chicago Tribune: Their pension fiasco, your income tax
The longer this state's leaders skirt pension reform, the likelier the rest of us are to be stuck forever with the allegedly temporary income tax hike that's scheduled to shrink after 2014.
The Wall Street Journal: Cheesecake factory medicine
No doubt health care could learn a lot about efficiency from a lot of industries, but to understand the core problem with assembly-line medicine, recall that ObamaCare actively promotes medical corporatism.
Reason: How farmers markets dodged a regulatory bullet in Pennsylvania
Celebrating America’s farmers means more than simply buying their products. It also means being vigilant to ensure that farmers are not hamstrung by needless, senseless, and costly regulations.