Topics

City/Town Government

A Town Run by a Triumvirate and a Union

On the latest episode of Tiverton on Track, I Zoomed with Tiverton Town Council Members Donna Cook and Nancy Driggs.

As may or may not be happening in other Rhode Island towns, the governor’s emergency declaration (not to mention the example that she’s setting) has dramatically reduced the number of town officials who actually matter.  With three Town Council members — Joseph Perry, John Edwards (the Fifth), and Stephen Clarke — as well as the leadership of the Budget Committee completely abdicating their authority and shirking their responsibility, the town is being entirely run by the triumvirate of Town Council President Patricia Hilton, Interim Town Administrator Christopher Cotta, and Town Solicitor Michael Marcello, with a supporting role for Vice President Denise DeMedeiros.  No other elected officials in town matter.  Even the town’s Home Rule Charter bends to what the Triumvirate decrees.

Meanwhile, on the school side, the suspended teachers’ union president and the National Education Association of Rhode Island are taking advantage of the fact that the school department is forbidden by law from disclosing details of the incident.  NEARI is also pledging to stick it’s well-funded, mobster-like nose in the town’s elections to ensure that the town has management that the union prefers starting in November.


Politics This Week with John DePetro: Pockets of Rebellion

My weekly call-in on John DePetro’s WNRI 1380 AM/95.1 FM show, for May 18, included talk about:

  • Providence College kids rebel
  • The Catholic bishop sends the governor a message
  • Narragansett Town Council considers resistance
  • Justice Flanders signals a challenge
  • Rally-goers take up the call
  • A delay of Phase 2 reopening
  • The teachers’ union flexes in Tiverton

I’ll be on again Monday, May 25, at 12:00 p.m. on WNRI 1380 AM and I-95.1 FM.


Clay Johnson: Officials Forgetting Foundational Importance of Hum of Running Economy

I applaud the decision makers, at all levels of government, that quickly responded to the medical crisis. But health issues only represent one component of the challenges in front of us. We all hunkered down for weeks to ‘flatten the curve.’ Our common goal was to ensure that, as a community, we had enough hospital beds for those most vulnerable. Well, we’ve flattened the curve. (And we know now that the survival rate of COVID-19 in the United States is almost 95%.) Why then are governments having a hard time moving to the next stage during this time of testing? I can only believe that most people were more familiar with the fears and responses to the medical side of the crisis.

Let’s explore the impact on small businesses. Almost half of all employees in the United States work for a small business. In fact, 96% of Rhode Island businesses are small businesses. They are the engine of our economy. Business owners can feel in their bones, the impact of this shutdown on Rhode Island. We owe it to the rest of the citizens of Rhode Island to communicate this feeling.


Back to top



Civil Rights

David de la Cruz: East Providence PD Shut Down Religious Service in March

Days after an executive order from the governor forbade gatherings, the East Providence police shut down a church despite voluntary plans to limit risks.


Politics This Week with John DePetro: In Search of Other Authorities

My weekly call-in on John DePetro’s WNRI 1380 AM/95.1 FM show, for May 27, included talk about:

  • #WeWantOurSummerBack
  • Justice Flanders still protecting rights
  • Trump v. Gina
  • General Assembly… still out
  • Mail ballots
  • Money for insiders
  • No jobs for Rhode Islanders

I’ll be on again Monday, June 1, at 12:00 p.m. on WNRI 1380 AM and I-95.1 FM.


A Demonstration Intended for an Audience of One


Back to top



Congress

Politics This Week with John DePetro: Government and Twitter Flames

My weekly call-in on John DePetro’s WNRI 1380 AM/95.1 FM show, for March 30, included talk about:

  • Raimondo v. Cuomo
  • Cheit v. Fung
  • Rhode Islanders v. the state budget
  • Democracy v. mail ballots
  • and the U.S. Senate as the means of grabbing money

I’ll be on again Monday, April 6, at 12:00 p.m. on WNRI 1380 AM and I-95.1 FM.


Political Monday with John DePetro: Bad Positions for Political Actors

My weekly call-in on John DePetro’s WNRI 1380 AM/95.1 FM show, for January 6, included talk about:

  • RI Congressmen’s bad alignment with the enemy
  • Projo points to key issues for the legislature
  • Linc finds another party to run with
  • RI pols try to get out of the way of the Census

Open post for full audio.


Very Political with John DePetro: Pols Go for Positioning

My weekly call-in on John DePetro’s WNRI 1380 AM/95.1 FM show, for July 22, Mayor Jorge Elorza’s self-positioning on the schools problem, Gina Raimondo’s national adventures, and David Cicilline’s impeachment vote.

Open post for full audio.


Back to top



Culture & Family

Politics This Week with John DePetro: Socially Undistant Protests

My weekly call-in on John DePetro’s WNRI 1380 AM/95.1 FM show, for June 1, included talk about:

  • Double standards for “protests”
  • One narrative to rule them all
  • Raimondo continues to play politics
  • A better approach to budgeting

I’ll be on again Monday, June 8, at 12:00 p.m. on WNRI 1380 AM and I-95.1 FM.


New Report Lays Out a Budget Strategy for Rhode Island Prosperity

With about one-billion dollars in anticipated revenue shortfalls, and with recent statements from leading Rhode Island lawmakers indicating a general feeling of helplessness, the Rhode Island Center for Freedom and Prosperity published a new report this week with proven budget strategies that can help put the state on a long-term trajectory towards prosperity.


Survival Rate Hits New High of 99.6% Yet Policy Continues to Badly Lag

The CDC’s current best estimate of the survival rate of COVID-19 is 99.6%. This is a new high for the reported survival rate which has been climbing for weeks.


Back to top



Economy

Video Business Meetings Require Preparation

The global pandemic has thrust women and men into a new professional world, and RI Women for Freedom & Prosperity Executive Committee member Judith Bowman has some valuable advice.


New Report Lays Out a Budget Strategy for Rhode Island Prosperity

With about one-billion dollars in anticipated revenue shortfalls, and with recent statements from leading Rhode Island lawmakers indicating a general feeling of helplessness, the Rhode Island Center for Freedom and Prosperity published a new report this week with proven budget strategies that can help put the state on a long-term trajectory towards prosperity.


Survival Rate Hits New High of 99.6% Yet Policy Continues to Badly Lag

The CDC’s current best estimate of the survival rate of COVID-19 is 99.6%. This is a new high for the reported survival rate which has been climbing for weeks.


Back to top



Education

Survival Rate Hits New High of 99.6% Yet Policy Continues to Badly Lag

The CDC’s current best estimate of the survival rate of COVID-19 is 99.6%. This is a new high for the reported survival rate which has been climbing for weeks.


Contrary to the Impression We May Have, Survival Rate of COVID-19 in United States is Over 94%

This is to offer an important data point about COVID-19 that doesn’t get much attention. The United States has, to date, experienced 1,092,815 confirmed and probable cases of COVID-19.  64,283 of those cases, or 5.88%, have resulted in death.  To be clear, 5.88% of people who got the disease have died from it, not 5.88% of the US population as a whole.  (If you want that figure, divide by 328,200,000.)

This is not the picture that you are getting from the mainstream media.  They largely mean well but if you notice, when reporting on this subject, the MSM crafts headlines that invariably include the words “COVID-19″ and “death” and content that is comprised of the number of new cases and new deaths. Most people only pay attention to the news with half an eye or ear. So they understandably may have gotten the impression that the death rate from COVID-19 is sky high.

So let’s repeat this figure because it is important.  Of the 1,092,815 confirmed and probable cases of COVID-19 in the United States, 64,283 deaths have resulted.  That means that over 94% of people who got the disease have survived it.

And 94% is almost certainly on the low side because the figure of 1,092,815 only includes medically defined “confirmed and probable” cases. People can have the disease or get it and recover from it without ever knowing or being tested. As they were not counted, those are not included in that denominator of 1,092,815. Anti-body test surveys unanimously point to COVID-19 being far more infectious and, therefore, far less deadly than originally feared. Accordingly, that case fatality rate of 5.88% will almost certainly drop.

Next for our consideration is the very serious implications of this data point with regard to our government’s choice of course (not to mention that the original goal of the chosen course was accomplished weeks ago). Those will be laid out here a little later this morning.


The COVID-19 Lesson That We Need More Civics Education


Back to top



Energy & Environment

In the Dugout: RI DEM Head’s Scheme for Revenue in “Climate Change” Lawsuit


TCI Carries the Old RhodeMap RI Flames


Casimiro and Vella-Wilkinson on Pending Legislation

Guests: Julie Casimiro, State Representative, H-D 31, rep-Casimiro@rilegislature.gov
Camille Vella-Wilkinson, State Representative, H-D 21, rep-vella-wilkinson@rilegislature.gov
Host: Richard August
Topic: Vaping and other pending legislation
Host: Richard August Time: 60 minutes
Representatives Casimiro and Vella-Wilkinson discuss a broad range of pending legislation and other matters, which have their concern. Topics include vaping legislation; a veteran joint oversight committee; pharmacist having birth control prescription authority; reproductive health; firearm legislation; climate control; out of school time learning; early parole for young rehabilitated offenders; military sexual assault trauma; and more. Other matters include the need for a constitutional convention; line item veto; minimum wage; and candidate endorsements.


Back to top



Gambling

Political Monday with John DePetro: Many Forms of Political Performance Art

My weekly call-in on John DePetro’s WNRI 1380 AM/95.1 FM show, for December 9, included talk about:

  • Cicilline v. Trump
  • Energy protesters at the State House
  • Empty Wexford
  • Sports gambling lawsuit goes forward
  • Truck toll lawsuit goes forward
  • The Transportation & Climate Initiative (TCI) tax

Open post for full audio.


Political Monday with John DePetro: Hints of a Constitutional Crisis

My weekly call-in on John DePetro’s WNRI 1380 AM/95.1 FM show, for November 18, included talk about:

  • Raimondo fundraising as governance
  • The governor sues the General Assembly
  • Municipalities sue the state government
  • Protestors’ liberal-meeting interruptions
  • Cranston seeks investigation of another department

Open post for full audio.


What’s in..What’s out…10/4/19

A run-down of items in Rhode Island political news for the week.


Back to top



General Assembly

Politics This Week with John DePetro: Socially Undistant Protests

My weekly call-in on John DePetro’s WNRI 1380 AM/95.1 FM show, for June 1, included talk about:

  • Double standards for “protests”
  • One narrative to rule them all
  • Raimondo continues to play politics
  • A better approach to budgeting

I’ll be on again Monday, June 8, at 12:00 p.m. on WNRI 1380 AM and I-95.1 FM.


New Report Lays Out a Budget Strategy for Rhode Island Prosperity

With about one-billion dollars in anticipated revenue shortfalls, and with recent statements from leading Rhode Island lawmakers indicating a general feeling of helplessness, the Rhode Island Center for Freedom and Prosperity published a new report this week with proven budget strategies that can help put the state on a long-term trajectory towards prosperity.


Better and Worse from the Hiding General Assembly


Back to top



Government

In the Dugout: Explosive Nursing Home & COVID-19 Claims by RI DOH Whistleblower


Coming Out of the COVID Shadows

The (possibly related) stories about disproportionate COVID-19 cases among Hispanics and COVID-19 deaths at nursing homes fall in a range of topics about which we’re not allowed to have straightforward discussions, and that’s a dangerous problem.


Politics This Week with John DePetro: Pockets of Rebellion

My weekly call-in on John DePetro’s WNRI 1380 AM/95.1 FM show, for May 18, included talk about:

  • Providence College kids rebel
  • The Catholic bishop sends the governor a message
  • Narragansett Town Council considers resistance
  • Justice Flanders signals a challenge
  • Rally-goers take up the call
  • A delay of Phase 2 reopening
  • The teachers’ union flexes in Tiverton

I’ll be on again Monday, May 25, at 12:00 p.m. on WNRI 1380 AM and I-95.1 FM.


Back to top



Governor

Politics This Week with John DePetro: Socially Undistant Protests

My weekly call-in on John DePetro’s WNRI 1380 AM/95.1 FM show, for June 1, included talk about:

  • Double standards for “protests”
  • One narrative to rule them all
  • Raimondo continues to play politics
  • A better approach to budgeting

I’ll be on again Monday, June 8, at 12:00 p.m. on WNRI 1380 AM and I-95.1 FM.


In the Dugout: Explosive Nursing Home & COVID-19 Claims by RI DOH Whistleblower


Survival Rate Hits New High of 99.6% Yet Policy Continues to Badly Lag

The CDC’s current best estimate of the survival rate of COVID-19 is 99.6%. This is a new high for the reported survival rate which has been climbing for weeks.


Back to top



Healthcare

In the Dugout: Explosive Nursing Home & COVID-19 Claims by RI DOH Whistleblower


Survival Rate Hits New High of 99.6% Yet Policy Continues to Badly Lag

The CDC’s current best estimate of the survival rate of COVID-19 is 99.6%. This is a new high for the reported survival rate which has been climbing for weeks.


Fear Is How You Frame It

As we claw back our liberty little by little in the months ahead, we must adjust for the degree to which our opinions (and those of our neighbors) can be swayed by the Zeitgeist.


Back to top



History

Fear Is How You Frame It

As we claw back our liberty little by little in the months ahead, we must adjust for the degree to which our opinions (and those of our neighbors) can be swayed by the Zeitgeist.


“Publick Occurrences” – The Fundamentals: Patriotism & Faith

As part of the recent Providence Journal sponsored “Publick Occurrences” panel discussion at RI College, I’d like to share some thoughts I prepared, but did not have the chance to put forth. The event’s premise – “Why Can’t We All Just Get Along?” and the polarization of public discourse – leaves us two factors to consider:


Cable Street and the Facially Fascist

Comparing the Battle of Cable Street with today’s Antifa attacks would be a good lesson in critical thinking, if our education system were keen on teaching that skill.


Back to top



Immigration

Coming Out of the COVID Shadows

The (possibly related) stories about disproportionate COVID-19 cases among Hispanics and COVID-19 deaths at nursing homes fall in a range of topics about which we’re not allowed to have straightforward discussions, and that’s a dangerous problem.


2019 Census: States Change Their Populations

States, like Rhode Island, that can’t compete for domestic residents seem to be back-filling their populations with new immigrants from other countries.


Political Rorschach in the Wyatt Protest

If we were inclined to pause and review video of incidents with an eye toward understanding why each person is doing what he or she is doing, maybe we could reduce the level of conflict in our society, but where’s the profit in that?


Back to top



Infrastructure

Changing Gears, 3/14/20

On Saturday, March 14, 2020, Changing Gears hosts Mike  Collins and Chris Maxwell offered a different view on Ocean State goings on and beyond!

  • The link to Joe Biden’s coronavirus plan starts w/campaign donation page.
  • Coronavirus dangers, overreaction, political one-upsmanship & impact on RI businesses.
  • Len Lardaro’s compelling remarks about what RI officials are still not doing to grow the state’s economy.
  • Truckers file request for preliminary injunction to stop RI’s collection of truck tolls.

Listen to “Changing Gears 3/14/2020″ on Spreaker.


Changing Gears, 3/7/20

On Saturday, March 7, 2020, Changing Gears hosts Mike  Collins and Chris Maxwell offered a different view on Ocean State goings on:

  • Caw! Another set of coattails out of RI for gov crashes.
  • Susan Wynne calls in to announce a new voice of reason, RI Women for Freedom & Prosperity.
  • RI selling overweight permits yet “trucks do all the damage.”
  • Rob Cote calls in about Warwick DPW’s awful quality control for road construction.

Listen to “Changing Gears 3/7/20″ on Spreaker.


Chris Maxwell on the Truck Toll Shortfall

Guest: Chris Maxwell, RI Trucking Association, www.ritrucking.org
Host: Richard August Time: 30 minutes
In a recently completed study the state of RI learned that truck toll revenues have not yielded what had been expected or predicted by the RI Department of Transportation. This shortfall is consistent with what the local trucking industry has been predicting since the state announced its plans to toll trucks. The RI Trucking Association has filed a court case challenging the plan and more. Maxwell discusses various consequences of the tolling and the court case his Association has filed.


Back to top



Legislation

Larry Fitzmorris: Portsmouth Looks to Raise Taxes Over 4% With Unemployment Over 15%

The budget for next year is one of the worst produced in the last twenty years. This budget is characterized by the Council’s complete lack of interest in reducing costs to prepare for the economic downturn and its continuing emphasis on the growth of Town government. In fact, the only changes over a routine year are using the Fund Balance to provide revenue for routine spending and to cover any shortfalls in State funding. Currently the budget is at the Provisional stage and there are further votes, but significant changes after this point are rare.

The budget that begins next July 1 has a residential property tax increase of 4.43% at a time when the unemployment rates for Portsmouth taxpayers are probably at least 16%.


Watching Legal Alchemy Empower a Local Monarchist

Brushing aside the responsible-government reputation he strove to build as a state representative, Tiverton Town Solicitor Michael Marcello insists the law gives every town council president or mayor the power of the governor during emergencies.


Tiverton Takes the Lead on Emergency Dictatorship

As Americans across the country attempt to deal with a global pandemic while respecting each other’s rights, Tiverton Town Council President Patricia Hilton has given herself total power over town government.


Back to top



Media

Politics This Week with John DePetro: In Search of Other Authorities

My weekly call-in on John DePetro’s WNRI 1380 AM/95.1 FM show, for May 27, included talk about:

  • #WeWantOurSummerBack
  • Justice Flanders still protecting rights
  • Trump v. Gina
  • General Assembly… still out
  • Mail ballots
  • Money for insiders
  • No jobs for Rhode Islanders

I’ll be on again Monday, June 1, at 12:00 p.m. on WNRI 1380 AM and I-95.1 FM.


Fear Is How You Frame It

As we claw back our liberty little by little in the months ahead, we must adjust for the degree to which our opinions (and those of our neighbors) can be swayed by the Zeitgeist.


Distorted Details to Make Church Seem Deadly

Turning anecdote into fearful narrative is a disservice from our information institutions.


Back to top



Musings & Announcements

My Message of Hope During This Coronavirus Crisis

During these times that “try men’s and women’s souls” and that are causing such upheaval in our lives, we are all left to wonder how we will cope. I pray for your health and for the safety of everyone in your family.

May I also offer why I am personally hopeful and confident that America and Rhode Island will weather the Coronavirus crisis. In our hearts and minds, we must hold true to the core American values that were the basis for the founding of our nation and for its unprecedented prosperity… our true north.


Mainstream Women’s Group Launches in Rhode Island

A new group for Rhode Island women will put aside both the idea that women are required to be progressive radicals and the bare-knuckle political assaults that the Left thinks public discourse entails.


Why I Will Carry the Torch at the Gloria Gemma Foundation’s “Illuminations of Life”

Personal experience with the ravages of cancer inspires an active response.


Back to top



National Security

Charles Callanan: The Chinese Problem, Part Two

The world will demand (and deserves) accountability from the coronavirus’s country of origin, China, but imposing a cost will bring the global community into a perilous dance.


Charles Callanan: Something Missing in East Greenwich on Veterans Day

The public events during East Greenwich’s Veterans Day activities did not match the reverence remembered from childhood or that the day deserves.


Media Language and a Virtue-Signaling Lie

A small example of political “news” can illustrate the language by which journalists promote partisan and ideological positions.


Back to top



On a Lighter Note

What’s in… What’s out… #WaterFire,#Sharks, #TwinRiver, and more. 8/16/19

A run-down of items in Rhode Island political news for the week.


Proud of my Dad’s Big-League, Historic Anniversary

This week, let’s have a change of pace. Instead, I’d like to share something personal with you.

I’d like you to know how PROUD I AM OF MY DAD.


Finding a Word for the New Ennui

What do adults call this feeling of boredom with all the tasks that must be done?


Back to top



Pensions

Charles Callanan: Unholy Alliance Murdering American Dream in RI

The common interests of labor unions and progressives are draining the Ocean State of its lifeblood.


Political Monday with John DePetro: Doubting the People in Charge

My weekly call-in on John DePetro’s WNRI 1380 AM/95.1 FM show, for January 13, included talk about:

  • A union president accuses race heretics
  • OPEB swamping Providence and Warwick
  • Fear about “red flag” laws
  • The legislative session starts
  • RI losing claim to a Congressional seat,
  • The rolling fundraising party of the State House

Open post for full audio.


Political Monday with John DePetro: Connecting Political Dots

My weekly call-in on John DePetro’s WNRI 1380 AM/95.1 FM show, for November 11, included talk about:

  • The problem of public sector pensions
  • The value of the Fung brand for the Mrs.
  • Mayor Pete’s no-media, no-controversy event
  • Nanny Bloomberg and Gina’s RFP
  • No warning on the homeless transplants

Open post for full audio.


Back to top



Political Theory

Travis Rowley: Cure for Social Unrest Is to Make Facts Matter

Progressives’ dedication to narrative over facts ensures that we’ll keep seeing incidents transformed into social turmoil.


Fear Is How You Frame It

As we claw back our liberty little by little in the months ahead, we must adjust for the degree to which our opinions (and those of our neighbors) can be swayed by the Zeitgeist.


Achorn and the Constitution

As Ed Achorn reminds us, the Constitution is only as strong as the people’s willingness to enforce it, and too many Rhode Islanders apparently believe our founding document can be waived if they’re scared or can claim that lives will be saved.


Back to top



Politics

Politics This Week with John DePetro: Socially Undistant Protests

My weekly call-in on John DePetro’s WNRI 1380 AM/95.1 FM show, for June 1, included talk about:

  • Double standards for “protests”
  • One narrative to rule them all
  • Raimondo continues to play politics
  • A better approach to budgeting

I’ll be on again Monday, June 8, at 12:00 p.m. on WNRI 1380 AM and I-95.1 FM.


Better and Worse from the Hiding General Assembly


Politics This Week with John DePetro: In Search of Other Authorities

My weekly call-in on John DePetro’s WNRI 1380 AM/95.1 FM show, for May 27, included talk about:

  • #WeWantOurSummerBack
  • Justice Flanders still protecting rights
  • Trump v. Gina
  • General Assembly… still out
  • Mail ballots
  • Money for insiders
  • No jobs for Rhode Islanders

I’ll be on again Monday, June 1, at 12:00 p.m. on WNRI 1380 AM and I-95.1 FM.


Back to top



Regulation

Guidance on an Open-Ended Shutdown

The inability of Newport hotel owners to make plans points to a failure of Rhode Island’s political system, especially the General Assembly, to make decisions in the correct way.


In the Dugout: Chris Maxwell On RITA’s Call To #REOPENRI


The Lockdown, Not the Disease, is Overwhelming Hospitals.  End It.

The COVID-19 shutdown is financially decimating hospitals. End it now.


Back to top



Science

Fear Is How You Frame It

As we claw back our liberty little by little in the months ahead, we must adjust for the degree to which our opinions (and those of our neighbors) can be swayed by the Zeitgeist.


600 Physicians’ Letter: Governors Can No Longer Ignore Deaths & Dire Health Consequences of Lockdown

Wow, this letter to President Trump from six hundred physicians about the catastrophic health consequences of the needlessly prolonged COVID19 lockdown does not mince words.

More than 600 of the nation’s physicians sent a letter to President Trump this week calling the coronavirus shutdowns a “mass casualty incident” with “exponentially growing negative health consequences” to millions of non COVID patients.

“The downstream health effects…are being massively under-estimated and under-reported. This is an order of magnitude error,” according to the letter initiated by Simone Gold, M.D., an emergency medicine specialist in Los Angeles.


Achorn and the Constitution

As Ed Achorn reminds us, the Constitution is only as strong as the people’s willingness to enforce it, and too many Rhode Islanders apparently believe our founding document can be waived if they’re scared or can claim that lives will be saved.


Back to top



Sports

Political Monday with John DePetro: Many Forms of Political Performance Art

My weekly call-in on John DePetro’s WNRI 1380 AM/95.1 FM show, for December 9, included talk about:

  • Cicilline v. Trump
  • Energy protesters at the State House
  • Empty Wexford
  • Sports gambling lawsuit goes forward
  • Truck toll lawsuit goes forward
  • The Transportation & Climate Initiative (TCI) tax

Open post for full audio.


Political Monday with John DePetro: Shaking Up the Personalities

My weekly call-in on John DePetro’s WNRI 1380 AM/95.1 FM show, for December 4, included talk about:

  • The return of Laffey (?)
  • RI’s suffocating labor unions
  • Progressive tricks with statistics
  • Getting a kick out of soccer stadiums
  • Smiley’s pay-cut stepping stone

Open post for full audio.


Correcting Higher Education as a Funding Mechanism for Nonsense

If URI’s anti-Brady professor were expressing the ideological opposite views, we know how the school would be reacting, so maybe it should flip the script.


Back to top



Taxation

New Report Lays Out a Budget Strategy for Rhode Island Prosperity

With about one-billion dollars in anticipated revenue shortfalls, and with recent statements from leading Rhode Island lawmakers indicating a general feeling of helplessness, the Rhode Island Center for Freedom and Prosperity published a new report this week with proven budget strategies that can help put the state on a long-term trajectory towards prosperity.


Clay Johnson: Officials Forgetting Foundational Importance of Hum of Running Economy

I applaud the decision makers, at all levels of government, that quickly responded to the medical crisis. But health issues only represent one component of the challenges in front of us. We all hunkered down for weeks to ‘flatten the curve.’ Our common goal was to ensure that, as a community, we had enough hospital beds for those most vulnerable. Well, we’ve flattened the curve. (And we know now that the survival rate of COVID-19 in the United States is almost 95%.) Why then are governments having a hard time moving to the next stage during this time of testing? I can only believe that most people were more familiar with the fears and responses to the medical side of the crisis.

Let’s explore the impact on small businesses. Almost half of all employees in the United States work for a small business. In fact, 96% of Rhode Island businesses are small businesses. They are the engine of our economy. Business owners can feel in their bones, the impact of this shutdown on Rhode Island. We owe it to the rest of the citizens of Rhode Island to communicate this feeling.


Politics This Week with John DePetro: The Emergence Begins…?

My weekly call-in on John DePetro’s WNRI 1380 AM/95.1 FM show, for May 4, included talk about:

  • The governor and reopening
  • Hospitalization counts
  • The General Assembly peeks its head out
  • Mattiello and the AG
  • Achorn drops from the Providence Journal editorial branch
  • A big budget hole

I’ll be on again Monday, May 11, at 12:00 p.m. on WNRI 1380 AM and I-95.1 FM.


Back to top



Unions

A Town Run by a Triumvirate and a Union

On the latest episode of Tiverton on Track, I Zoomed with Tiverton Town Council Members Donna Cook and Nancy Driggs.

As may or may not be happening in other Rhode Island towns, the governor’s emergency declaration (not to mention the example that she’s setting) has dramatically reduced the number of town officials who actually matter.  With three Town Council members — Joseph Perry, John Edwards (the Fifth), and Stephen Clarke — as well as the leadership of the Budget Committee completely abdicating their authority and shirking their responsibility, the town is being entirely run by the triumvirate of Town Council President Patricia Hilton, Interim Town Administrator Christopher Cotta, and Town Solicitor Michael Marcello, with a supporting role for Vice President Denise DeMedeiros.  No other elected officials in town matter.  Even the town’s Home Rule Charter bends to what the Triumvirate decrees.

Meanwhile, on the school side, the suspended teachers’ union president and the National Education Association of Rhode Island are taking advantage of the fact that the school department is forbidden by law from disclosing details of the incident.  NEARI is also pledging to stick it’s well-funded, mobster-like nose in the town’s elections to ensure that the town has management that the union prefers starting in November.


Education in the Time of the Pandemic

Public schools and teachers unions in RI and MA are providing our state an education that can lead us to a post-plague renaissance if we’ll learn the lessons.


Politics This Week with John DePetro: Decision Time!

My weekly call-in on John DePetro’s WNRI 1380 AM/95.1 FM show, for April 13, included talk about:

  • The governor’s handling of the virus crisis
  • The silence from everybody else
  • The RI Center for Freedom & Prosperity’s suggestions
  • The decisions facing the governor and the people of RI

I’ll be on again Monday, April 20, at 12:00 p.m. on WNRI 1380 AM and I-95.1 FM.


Back to top



Welfare

Priorities During the Great Loosening

The desire to open up the economy isn’t selfish or reckless; it’s humanitarian.


The Independent Man Needs YOU: Consider This Call To Civic Action

Is it time for you to get involved… to save our state? If we are ever going to change the policies that are driving away families and crippling businesses, the sad truth, my friend, is that we are going to have to change the players.

Rhode Island’s political class is so beholden to so many special interest groups and agendas, that they are paralyzed when it comes to considering common-sense, pro-growth policy reforms.


A Far-Reaching Conversation on State of the State

State of the State co-host Richard August invited me on for a full hour of the show to cover a broad range of topics, from Tiverton’s recall election to broad political philosophy.

12-9-19 A Different View of Matters from John Carlevale on Vimeo.


Back to top