Sales Tax and Government’s Break from the People

It behooves us to keep a watchful eye on how the incentives of government change and shift over time, and COVID offers many exercises for doing so.

Roland Benjamin: COVID-19 Lockdown: The Preferred Intervention of the Elite

It is commonly accepted that an effective vaccine for COVID-19 will save lives.

The vaccine, be it BioNTech’s, Moderna’s, or any other pharmaceutical intervention, will most effectively bring an end to the COVID era. The “science” needed to bring this intervention into the world is astounding, with tens of thousands of test subjects undergoing trials for each version. Months and months and months of careful testing, and yet A SINGLE ADVERSE EVENT among any of the study participants halts the progress. One event. Savings lives is critical, so long as no harm is done in the process.

Simultaneously, governments all over the world have become obsessed with their own interventions. The non-pharmaceutical interventions (NPIs) range from mask mandates, to required testing, to full scale economic lockdown. In the most extreme, China even resorted to welding people into their homes.

There has been no shortage of speculation that the lockdowns have caused harm. The argument has always been that they save lives by mitigating spread, but there really has not been comprehensive proof of that. Florida and California, two comparable states in climate and demography, have had comparable disease spreads with remarkably different approaches to inhibiting its residents. In other words, the NPIs adopted by California, draconian in some respects, have not proven any more effective than the “control group”…Florida’s non-interventionist approach.

Politics This Week with John DePetro: Them and the Rest of Us

My weekly call-in on John DePetro’s WNRI 1380 AM/95.1 FM show, for December 14, included talk about:

  • The administration’s COVID outbreak
  • The governor’s quarantine
  • A budget through the roof
  • The governor’s house becomes an official protest spot

I’ll be on again Monday, December 14, at 12:00 p.m. on WNRI 1380 AM and I-95.1 FM.

Demand Transparency on Covid-19 Cycle-Threshold Data

The full release and analysis of detailed testing data could be critical in shaping more focused and less intrusive COVID-19 restrictions for Rhode Islanders.

This data, which measures “viral load” (how much of the virus is present) and which is routinely collected by labs that conduct COVID tests, can be critically important in determining both public policy and individual regimens. Take action now to demand it.

The Rhode Island Center for Freedom and Prosperity has launched a new campaign, sending over a sixteen hundred pre-written emails (in just days) to officials petitioning the state to take action to collect and publish this vital cycle threshold data.

We have good news to share… they have taken the first steps in making a small portion of this data available. Our campaign is clearly working, but we need full transparency on this critical information.

You can take action by clicking on the link here now. Don’t wait, because your voice is powerful and it will make a difference for the people of Rhode Island!

Mattiello, Shekarchi, Ruggerio, Raimondo Prolonging Failed Lockdown – Due to Filthy Federal Lucre?

Let’s review eight months of unconvincing reasons for implementing, then not ending, Rhode Island’s COVID-19 lockdown, then go to the video tape for what’s looking like the real explanation.

Politics This Week with John DePetro: The Governor’s Court

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

  • The Pause arrives
  • The Queen’s bid for a higher court
  • McKee’s bid for the Queen’s attention
  • The General Assembly as courtiers
  • Is the jester in the Britt trial still relevant?

I’ll be on again Monday, November 30, at 12:00 p.m. on WNRI 1380 AM and I-95.1 FM.

Politics This Week with John DePetro: A Pause Before Dying

My weekly call-in on John DePetro’s WNRI 1380 AM/95.1 FM show, for November 23, included talk about:

  • The governor hits “pause” on freedom
  • The Board of Elections hits “stop” for GOP challenges
  • Congressional Democrats hit “no” on Cicilline’s bid
  • A police review board director hits “send” on a leak
  • The General Assembly hits “go” on a progressive agenda

I’ll be on again Monday, November 30, at 12:00 p.m. on WNRI 1380 AM and I-95.1 FM.

Lockdowns are Now a Proven Failure As Their Collateral Damage Rises Inexorably

Eight months into the COVID-19 pandemic and lockdown, let’s examine the goal of the lockdown, the critical matter of its effectiveness and the collateral damage it has caused.

State Senate’s Hard Left on Progressive Street

Political leaders who can look at an economy in which nearly 20,000 people stopped looking for work during a pre-COVID-surge month when the nation was recovering and in which there are 36,000 fewer jobs than a year ago and conclude that this is what’s needed are not just pandering. They’re dangerous.

Following the Science Where Science Can’t Lead

We should acknowledge reality (you know, believing in science and all), respect rights, and do what planning and management we can around those to great Rs.

How Bad Things Are in RI… Even Pre-Pause

There are 36,300 fewer jobs in Rhode Island than there were a year ago, and our governor is talking about tightening her shut-down policies and blaming our families in the process.

Adapting to Change

Mark Zaccaria insists that Rhode Island can bounce back, but we have to be willing to adapt to a changing world.

Chris Maxwell: RITA Never Forgot Better Days of Eventually Turbulent Relationship with Nick Mattiello

The Rhode Island Trucking Association (RITA) made a conscious effort to never publicly target recently-ousted Speaker of the Rhode Island House, Nicholas Mattiello.

Nationally Renowned Epidemiologist: Data Shows Gov’s Action to be Bogus

The Governor needs to stop trying to control our lives.

On the latest episode of our Mikes with Mics, nationally renowned epidemiologist, Dr. Andrew Bostom, explained that an “un-hysterical” analysis of the data does not support the Governor’s actions, which he called “bogus.”

Clay Johnson: Let Us Be Thankful

We are living through one of the most peaceful times in human history. Given the tumult of 2020, it is easy to lose perspective. The number of people living in poverty is plummeting – globally. And even with a pandemic raging, we are seeing extraordinary advances in our ability to fight disease. Whether together or apart, we will soon see the arrival of Thanksgiving – a pause to give thanks, and maybe gain some perspective.

Before we arrive at this pause, we have an election to endure. The Gaspee Project board is committed to advocating for free market principles and supporting conservative candidates. These principles lead to more freedom. Freedom leads to prosperity (jobs). History has shown this to be true.

Conservatives believe in the individual rights and a free society. This is why private property and a limited government are so important.

… Except that Rhode Island’s COVID Positivity Rate Is Lower than Two Months Ago

Graph by epidemiologist Dr. Andrew Bostom basis State of R.I. data

At her press conference currently ongoing, Governor Gina Raimondo is announcing new restrictions, including reduction from fifteen to ten at social gatherings; no spectators at any sports for next two weeks; and fines, including fines on households, saying she doesn’t want cases to “explode”.

You’d reasonably conclude from these serious measures and language that Rhode Island’s case positivity rate, the newest panic-promoting selling point of the lockdown, was at a recent high, wouldn’t you? In fact, as epidemiologist Dr. Andrew Bostom said yesterday on the R.I. Center for Freedom and Prosperity‘s “Mikes with Mics” and shows in his graph, above, the current, very modest rise in case positivity is actually lower than the modest rise of August 1.

Steve Laffey Jumps in for Gaspee Project – and Rhode Island

From a just-issued press release by Gaspee Project Chairman Clay Johnson:

Steve Laffey, the former Mayor of Cranston, has volunteered his time and voice to bolster an ad blitz for The Gaspee Project in the final week of the 2020 campaign season.

Laffey’s has recorded a radio spot and multiple robo-call ads that will run this week in support of 8 General Assembly candidates and the Republican party. In the spots, Laffey stresses how the Democrat party is no longer the party of JFK and has been taken-over by radical-left mobs, while the Republican party is still the party of Lincoln and stands for common-sense, pro-jobs policies.

Also this week, a second round of mailers, social media ads, and print ads by Gaspee are expected to run, which in combination with previous Gaspee election materials, will reach almost one-hundred thousand households, social media accounts, print ad readers, and radio listeners.

Thanks very much to Steve Laffey for doing this. He understands, as many of us do, that Rhode Island would be very poorly served by the election of far left, “progressive” candidates who will push to put on steroids the misguided, leftie policies that have already damaged the state: raising of taxes (often disguised as fees, tolls and budget scooping) even higher; ratcheting up of already burdensome regulations (that often pose as a redundant effort at diversity) on business; more encroachment on private property rights; and the cramming down of effectively non-existent, exorbitantly expensive, politically correct energy sources.

(Seriously, “progressive policies” has to be one of the biggest oxymorons in the history of political branding.)

If you are alarmed at the prospect of the expansion of these non-progressive policies in Rhode Island, please consider pushing back by donating to the Gaspee Project to bolster the reach of these radio ads and mailers.

Hospitalization Data: Why is Rhode Island Still Locked Down Five Months after Flattening the Curve?

What does perhaps the most important COVID-19 data point show and say about the case for continuing Rhode Island’s lockdown?

Charles Callanan: Rhode Island’s Leadership Void

So far this year, this is what your state government has produced. If you want to talk about business as usual, well here it is.

In the Dugout: Stephen Moore

RI Center for Freedom & Prosperity CEO Mike Stenhouse speaks with nationally renowned conservative Stephen Moore about economics, President Trump, and politics.

Aging Population No Excuse for RI

Putting aside whether we should care about the size of our labor force, it isn’t true that Rhode Island’s has been disproportionately affected by the aging population.

More than Just a Tax Increase from Raimondo

Our state’s record following the COVID-19 recession shows Raimondo’s approach to the economy simply doesn’t work. And now she wants to make things worse with taxes?

Last Impressions #50: The Laughable & the Ominous

A new Not Real News segment explores what RI politicians are really thinking, the Conservative Binder catches up on some right-leaning news from the state, and Justin discusses the Providence College lockdown and ominous economic news for the state.

Wrong Direction Rhode Island: Employment

According to the Rhode Island Department of Labor and Training (DLT), the unemployment rate actually went up in August.

Income Distribution “What Ifs”

“Proofs” of systemic inequality tend to skip over important points.

Use Your Voice – Huge Deficits Cannot be Plugged with Even Higher Taxes

Before the coronavirus crisis… the Ocean State was already hemorrhaging people, because of its existing cruel business climate. Now, Rhode Islanders cannot afford tax hikes to plug huge projected budget deficits.

Lawmakers are being pressured by public sector unions and the radical far left movement to put the burden on you… and to raise your taxes. That’s why the Center has launched a new counter campaign to the government-union led effort to raise taxes in RI. Take action now.

Raise Sales, Not Taxes

Because we are not in the best of times, now is the worst of times to raise taxes.

Watching the News Without the Scary Soundtrack

If Block Island tourists’ behavior isn’t having a measurable effect, maybe it isn’t actually “behaving badly.”

Observations from a Circle of Rhode Island

Nobody seems concerned that we’ve turned summer into winter on America’s Cup Ave.

Politics This Week with John DePetro: Protests and Snitches

My weekly call-in on John DePetro’s WNRI 1380 AM/95.1 FM show, for August 10, included talk about:

  • Protests at Gina’s house
  • The snitch line
  • A dictated last call
  • Will schools open?

I’ll be on again Monday, August 24, at 12:00 p.m. on WNRI 1380 AM and I-95.1 FM.

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