Minimum Wage, Maximum Suffering

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Yesterday, I attended a press conference hosted by Give Arkansas A Raise Now. What I heard were a bunch of demands that Arkansas raise its minimum wage -- and a bunch of assertions that doing so would have a positive impact on our state’s economy. What I didn’t hear was any empirical evidence that backs up this claim. The group is led by Steve Copley, a United Methodist pastor. One reporter at the briefing asked him to respond to the argument that raising the minimum wage will force layoffs … [Read more...]

Heritage Has A Plan That Could Actually Fix Healthcare

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Supporters of Obamacare love to instruct us all that we can’t repeal this disastrous law because people will be left without health insurance, people with cancer won’t be able to get treatment, etc. Unfortunately, it appears increasingly likely that Obamacare will actually exacerbate many of the problems it has sought to relieve (such as uncompensated care costs and lack of access to doctors). Supporters of the law also love to explain that those who call for Obamacare’s repeal are pursuing a … [Read more...]

State Legislators Recognized For Conservative Principles

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Tuesday night, the Conduit For Commerce (CFC) hosted an appreciation dinner for conservative members of the Arkansas legislature. Approximately 25 lawmakers were in attendance to receive awards of appreciation for their commitment to limited government and lower taxes. I was privileged to attend the dinner and share a table with Senators Bart Hester and Alan Clark. CFC co-founders Brenda Vassaur Taylor and Joe Maynard, in brief remarks, expressed gratitude to lawmakers for holding the line … [Read more...]

Myers: Earth Day Exposes the Ironies of the Left’s Trendy Environmentalism

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The following is a guest op-ed from Todd Myers, director of the Center for the Environment for the Washington Policy Center: Today, in cities across America, some environmental activists will celebrate Earth Day, claiming only increased government control can protect the environment. Those celebrations will expose a couple ironies. First, many activists will arrive in a Toyota Prius, which has become the symbol of environmental consciousness. Ironically, however, the Prius is not a … [Read more...]

Stephen Speaks!

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Those thinkers over at the Advance Arkansas Institute made good on their promise yesterday to bring Steve Moore to Little Rock for a speech. And might I just add: it was quite a barn burner. I’ve provided a video excerpt of Mr. Moore’s comments below. The clip begins with Moore emphatically telling the audience of approximately 100 -- which included a large number of state legislators of both parties -- about the importance of reforming the tax code in Arkansas. “If you just stand pat, … [Read more...]

Arkansas Needs Higher Taxes!

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After 200 years of ranking at the bottom of the 50 states for poverty, we have finally identified what ails us in Arkansas: our taxes are too low! If you don’t believe me, take our Lieutenant Governor’s word for it: in a statement released by his office yesterday, Lt. Gov. Mark Darr said “Today I am announcing my support of Ballot Issue #1 concerning Arkansas Highways. No one hates taxes more than me; however, one of the primary functions of government is to build roads and infrastructure … [Read more...]

Mike Beebe, Crony Capitalist

Governor Beebe speaking to the American Wind Energy Association. Photo courtesy of Morris News Service/ Walter C. Jones

Arkansas Governor Mike Beebe generated a windstorm with his comments during a speech in Atlanta Monday regarding the renewal of federal tax breaks for the windpower industry.  Apparently he is not too pleased with opponents of government favoritism. According to the Log Cabin Democrat, Beebe told conference attendees, “Anyone standing in the way of this industry, frankly, they’re un-American.” What is the governor saying?  Does he think it is ‘un-American’ to eliminate any tax breaks?  Or … [Read more...]

Should You Need the Government’s Permission to Work?

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When he was in the state legislature, AAI President Dan Greenberg worked to limit the reach of the state’s bureaucracy.  Namely, he tried to rein in the state’s Interior Design Board, as detailed in this story from Reason; he ultimately succeeded in limiting its powers by combining it with two other agencies and depriving it of a majority on its governing board. Last November, David Kinkade wrote about the state’s contractor licensing racket that was ‘hammering’ builders in the state.  So you … [Read more...]