Still over-tired from the General Assembly’s final night in session, Justin draws some lessons from the experience.

Netroots & Rhode Island More Alike than Patinkin Admits

In Justin’s view, the similarities between Netroots and Rhode Island extend to similar internal contradictions.

The Titles of Offices or Offices of Titles?

Justin muses about the inappropriateness of honorifics in American politics… especially in Rhode Island.

Trading Budgetary Restraint for Economic Recovery

Projections of a sales-tax phase-out in Rhode Island show a stark decision for the people of the state, with a little government restraint yielding accelerated economic recovery.

Educating in America Is Not Like Educating Elsewhere

Teacher unionization may work in smaller, less-diverse systems, but that’s proof that those systems are different, not that the United States should match them.

Tax Credits Need Transparency

Channel 10’s Bill Rappleye interviews Justin about hidden profits from tax credit programs.

The Real Disconnect in the “Skills Gap”

Continuing talk of the “skills gap” in RI’s labor force (with the call for more resources) further defines the extent to which advocates are on the wrong path entirely.

Despite DE Status, RI Will at Least Receive $500 Minimum Tax from 38 Studios

Despite legally residing in Delaware, 38 Studios will be subject to Rhode Island’s $500 minimum corporate tax.

In (Partial) Defense of the RI Mainstream Media

News media too often goes for the flash, but Justin suggests that the impulse begins with the audience.

Policing for Profit, from Google to the Little Guy

An example of civil asset forfeiture in Northern Massachusetts adds punctuation to Justin’s concerns about the local forfeiture windfall taken from Google.

Rhode Island Doubling Down in Risky Economic Development

38 Studios has brought into stark relief the problems of government-run economic development.

Common Sense and the Google Windfall

Using a police windfall award to (possibly) eliminate pension problems may seem like common sense, but when the dynamics of government are considered, Justin suggests rationality goes in the other direction.

A Little Perspective on the 38 Studios “Hook”

It is definitely a matter of concern that 38 Studios may cost RI some large portion of the debt that it guaranteed, but Justin suggests a little perspective might be in order to learn from the experience.

“Did You Know” All Presidential History Points to Obama?

President Obama’s staff has been promoting his agenda on the biographical pages of previous presidents.

Moving Forward, Double Dip or Not

The specter of a double-dip recession brings into stark relief, for Justin, the lack of vision among those leading the state.

A Math Technique Custom Made for Government

New methods of math education remind Justin of the math that professionals and politicians are using, even now, to conceptualize pension funds.

Rhode Island, nos trata a todos como extraños

Al igual que un conductor que no sabe donde los edifi cios que solían ser, los que no conocen los canales secretos del gobierno de RI tienen tres opciones.

Various Lifestyle Stories Vaguely Related (Taking Our Treats Away)

A jumble of news and commentary headlines leads Justin to wonder where the cause and effect lie in entitlement and nanny-statism.

Tax Breaks for the Trendy, Not the Ordinary

Tax breaks for artists raise the question of why all Rhode Islanders shouldn’t have more control over their own destinies

Transportation Infrastructure: Making a High Priority Low

Local transportation funding is vulnerable to federal vicissitudes because it is entirely federal dollars build on a bed of local borrowing. That ought to raise questions among voters about the management of the state.

The Technocrats’ Deal with the Devil

The intricate machinations suggested by Gary Sasse in the “tax-the-rich” debate raise the question of whether RI can afford the risk (or the wait) involved with technocratic designs.

What’s Nuttier than a 7% Rate of Return Expecation?

Polemics can give a sense of the debate concerning reasonable predictions, and investment returns are no different.

What’s the Complaint, with ALEC?

In some circles, local ties to ALEC have been hot news this week, but Justin isn’t sure that the complaint against the group is really what it’s being articulated

When Is a Sleazy Politician Non-Partisan?

The Providence Journal publishes an entire article about him without letting on that John Edwards is a Democrat, much less that he was almost vice president on that party’s ticket.

Two Economies, or One with Exceptions?

Is it the bull or the bear for Rhode Island? Justin suggests that if Rhode Island is to cease to be a drag on its region, the model has to be quite different.

If They Know What to Do to Fix Education, Why Not Do It?

A consulting group under contract with two of RI’s most-struggling cities is sufficiently confident in its turnaround estimates to proclaim a specific dollar amount; Justin suggests they just go ahead and find the money.

Central Falls Charter Panel Selected (Not Elected)

The process for selecting charter review commissioners in Central Falls has Justin concerned that an important lesson in self-governance is being missed.

Rhode Island Treats Us All as Strangers

Operating in RI government is like following directions based on where things used to be; Justin says outsiders are disadvantaged and vulnerable.

The Downer Side of Centralization and Lost Social Capital

An interview with Charles Murray leads Justin to muse on the possibility that avoiding judgmentalism in the name of tolerance might just make it less likely that others will have the opportunity to judge us good and worthy of advancement.

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