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Archive for October 3rd, 2009

Uh oh III

The grey lady of journalism has now set forth and opined. President Obama erred in wooing the IOC for the Olympics according to the New York Times.

When your supporters go after you for the little things ….. watch out for what’s next.

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Last Sunday, the Washington Post wrote an editorial with the title: Charter Success - Poor children learn. Teachers unions are not pleased.

The entire editorial can be found here. The study from the NBER can be found here. The editorial references a Stanford University study that used a lottery system to completely randomize the students going into either a Charter School or a regular district school. The results are that Charter Schools significantly outperform district schools. When I was in the Senate, the most frequent excuse I heard from many in the education community (usually union lobbyists) was that “There is nothing that we can do. It is the parents lack of involvement.” Evidently, that just isn’t true.

The editorial finishes with the following:

Now the facts are in. The desperation of poor parents whose children are stuck on waiting lists for charter schools is well-founded. And every time the union scores another lobbying success in Albany — or Annapolis, Richmond or Washington, D.C. — to hold charters back, more poor children will pay a price.

Can Delaware escape from the union lobbyists grasp? Will we give our children the education that they deserve?

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Addicted to gambling.

Like drugs, booze and according to some, sex, it appears many Delawareans have become addicted to the notion of expanded gambling. The rational for such an obsession is the vaunted promise of “jobs” and tax revenue.  In today’s paper a likely Democratic candidate for Treasurer touts an idea that we should negotiate with the pro sports industry for a way to make all of these good things happen.

Hmmm……. I wonder how many shop keepers the Mafia negotiates their protection rates with. (this is for allegorical purposes only for you that fear I have now offended the Phillies or Ravens or even the Detroit Lions)

Back to the issues that gaming will allegedly solve:

Jobs – yea paying someone 10.25 and hour to stand at a table and spin a wheel is indeed a job. However this same job won’t qualify for a mortgage or a new car let alone pay rent on a apartment. 

State revenue – with other states expanding into gaming the fact remains that to keep revenues solid we’ll be playing ‘beggar thy neighbor’ and build more and more attractions to keep people coming here from other states. In case some have forgotten; our population is small and aging.

So why are we chasing after minimum wage jobs and a shrinking market?

30 years ago TV ads were a dime a dozen touting the economic renaissance gambling would bring to Atlantic City. Modern, sleek neighborhoods would appear, a regional shoppers destination would bloom, schools would become the envy of the East Coast, etc.

Go to Atlantic City today and you’ll see boarded up housing, shops selling condoms and rolling papers and schools that are under lock down on a regular basis.

In the early eighties after Gov duPont put the economic engine back in the train Readers Digest did a story titled, “the little state that could” and yet now it seems we’ve been reduced to ‘c’mon 7″

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