Archive for April, 2013

GovFees.con


Tuesday April 30th, 2013   •   Posted by K. Lloyd Billingsley at 9:08am PST   •   1 Comment

Taxes are not the only way government wrings money out of the workers. Governments also impose fees, and the Sacramento Bee has recently exposed one of California’s favorite tricks: Government establishes fees, which the Bee describes as “targeted assessments to people who participate or benefit from a state program for the purpose of funding...
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Coming Soon!


Tuesday April 30th, 2013   •   Posted by Craig Eyermann at 6:24am PST   •   1 Comment

We’re very close to releasing an updated version of the MyGovCost calculator, with all the latest projections for government spending. Stay tuned!...

Federal Fisker Failure, Continued


Monday April 29th, 2013   •   Posted by K. Lloyd Billingsley at 9:26am PST   •   3 Comments

Fisker Automotive, Inc, got a federal loan of $529 million to produce its $100,000 Fisker Karma hybrid, built not in America by American workers but in Finland by Finnish workers. Fisker has not produced a car since last summer and recently dumped all its rank and file employees. The company faces bankruptcy and could...
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Feds Spend Money for Nothing


Thursday April 25th, 2013   •   Posted by K. Lloyd Billingsley at 9:31am PST   •   3 Comments

The federal government spends nearly $1 million a year on fees for bank accounts with a balance of zero. The Washington Post calls this “one of the oddest spending habits in Washington” and explains how it works. When federal agencies hand out grants they don’t just send out checks. Rather, they create “an account...
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Will FDA Keep Apples Away?


Wednesday April 24th, 2013   •   Posted by K. Lloyd Billingsley at 8:59am PST   •   4 Comments

The Federal Food and Drug Administration (FDA) is keeping busy overhauling the nation’s food-safety system, a legacy of the 2010 Food Safety Modernization Act, which tasked the FDA to prevent food-borne illnesses rather than just respond to them. That means the FDA will have to decide which fruits and vegetables will be subject to...
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Bouncing Checks Fallout of Foreclosure Crisis


Monday April 22nd, 2013   •   Posted by K. Lloyd Billingsley at 9:00am PST   •   4 Comments

After the mortgage crisis left many homeowners in foreclosure, the federal government cut a $3.6 billion settlement with banks accused of wrongful evictions and such. But now those settlement checks are being returned for “insufficient funds.” As the New York Times noted, the government chose Rust Consulting to distribute the checks. But Rust failed...
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An Academic Controversy with Real World Consequences


Monday April 22nd, 2013   •   Posted by Craig Eyermann at 7:20am PST   •   4 Comments

As a rule, most things that academics argue most about among themselves tend to have very few or little real world consequences. At least, that’s the main insight of what has become known as Sayre’s Law, which states: “Academic politics is the most vicious and bitter form of politics, because the stakes are so...
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Comparing the Big Budget Proposals


Saturday April 20th, 2013   •   Posted by Craig Eyermann at 9:58am PST   •   6 Comments

How do each of the big budget proposals now circulating about Washington D.C. compare to each other? And better still, how much do each spend per average American household? Political Calculations did the math: Veronique de Rugy of the Mercatus Center provides a year-by-year comparison of each of the different spending proposals: She notes:...
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Deficit Reduction and the Coming Inflation?


Thursday April 18th, 2013   •   Posted by Carl Close at 12:23pm PST   •   2 Comments

Would a higher rate of inflation be a worthwhile tool for lowering the federal deficit? Some in Washington, DC, think so. In a blog post written last month, Doug Elmendorf, director of the Congressional Budget Office (CBO), makes the case that greater inflation would raise revenue more than it would raise spending. Here’s an...
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Why Feds Can Not Duck Quack Research


Wednesday April 17th, 2013   •   Posted by K. Lloyd Billingsley at 1:56pm PST   •   2 Comments

The federal government funds many things, among them solar energy companies that quickly go bankrupt, such as Solyndra, and luxury cars built in Finland by Fisker, a company that just laid off most of its workers. The federal government also funds the study “Sexual Conflict, Social Behavior and the Evolution of Waterfowl Genitalia.” Patricia...
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