Wintery Knight

…integrating Christian faith and knowledge in the public square

New poll finds one third of young New Yorkers plan to leave state

Eastern United States Map

Eastern United States Map

From CBS News.

Excerpt:

A New York poll provides grim evidence of a continuing exodus from the state, once the national leader in manufacturing and other high-paying jobs.

The NY1-YNN-Marist College poll released Thursday night finds 1 in 3 New Yorkers under age 30 plans to move to another state at some time, while 1 in 4 adults overall plans an exodus from the Empire State within five years.

“Right now, many young people do not see their future in New York state,” said Marist pollster Lee Miringoff. “Unchecked, this threatens to drain the state of the next generation.”

According to the survey, most of those who plan to move will do so because of economic reasons including jobs, the cost of living, and taxes. Although the recession has been officially over for months, many New Yorkers still feel the worst is yet to come.

Thirty-seven percent of New Yorkers polled feel the economy is getting worse, up from 31 percent in February’s poll. The number who feels the economy is improving dropped to 16 percent, from 19 percent in February.

[...]The American Legislative Exchange Council reported that New York lost 1.9 million residents from 1998 to 2007, most of them young and educated.

Why is this happening?

Mary sent me this article from the Manhattan Institute, which gives some clues.

Excerpt:

For one thing, according to a recent survey in Chief Executive, New York State has the second-worst business climate in the country. (Only California ranks lower.) People go where the jobs are, so when a state repels businesses, it repels residents, too. It’s also telling that in the Marist poll, 62 percent of New Yorkers planning to leave cited economic factors—including cost of living (30 percent), taxes (19 percent), and the job environment (10 percent)—as the primary reason.

In upstate New York, a big part of the problem is extraordinarily high property taxes. New York has the 15 highest-taxed counties in the country, including Nassau and Westchester, which rank first and second nationwide. Most of the property tax goes toward paying the state’s Medicaid bill—which is unlikely to diminish, since the state’s most powerful lobby, the political cartel created by the alliance of the hospital workers’ union and hospital management, has gone unchallenged by new governor Andrew Cuomo.

[...]Parts of the country are seeing a revival of manufacturing—traditionally a source of upward mobility for immigrants—but not New York City, whose manufacturing continues to decline. The culprits here include the city’s zoning policies, business taxes, and declining physical infrastructure.

Then there’s the cost of living in New York City. A 2009 report by the Center for an Urban Future found that “a New Yorker would have to make $123,322 a year to have the same standard of living as someone making $50,000 in Houston. In Manhattan, a $60,000 salary is equivalent to someone making $26,092 in Atlanta.” Even Queens, the report found, was the fifth most expensive urban area in the country.

In completely unrelated news, the Democrats just won another seat in New York state due to the incompetence of the state Republican party.

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Is Barack Obama responsible for rising gas prices?

Here’s an article that takes a look at the effects of his energy policies. (H/T Ari)

Excerpt:

With gasoline currently above $3 per gallon nationwide and economists expecting that price to rise even further in 2011, America should be getting serious about producing more of its own resources. But instead of focusing on how to bring more relief to American motorists, President Obama has imposed massive new regulations, restrictions, and even threatened higher taxes on American energy, all of which negatively impact domestic production.

What follows is a list of the five most egregious actions on the part of the Obama administration that have contributed to higher gasoline prices and greater dependence on foreign dictators for our energy…

Here’s the one I thought was the most interesting:

Cancelling existing permits: Immediately after taking office in 2009, President Obama’s handpicked Secretary of the Department of Interior, Ken Salazar, canceled 77 leases for oil and gas drilling in Utah. The fact that this was one of the administration’s first regulatory decisions meant that American energy companies were immediately concerned about their ability to produce oil and gas in the future, injecting a level of uncertainty into the market that moves the country away from job creation and economic recovery. One year later, the administration canceled 61 more leases, this time in Montana, as part of President Obama’s war on global warming.

And here’s the conclusion:

Why has President Obama led the charge to restrict American energy? The answer is elusive, and it’s anyone’s guess what his administration will do (if anything) to fight for lower gasoline prices. But if past statements from him and his administration are any indication, the U.S. could be stuck (absent major legislative and regulatory changes) with prohibitively high gasoline prices: Then-Senator Obama said on the campaign trail in 2008 that he doesn’t object to high oil prices as long as they come about gradually, and Secretary of Energy Steven Chu once famously said he hoped the U.S. would “boost the price of gasoline to the levels in Europe,” where prices are currently about $7 per gallon.

Yes, it’s true. People on the left are willing to enact policies that cost consumers more money, reduce the number of jobs for Americans, outsource energy production to other countries, and even pay our enemies to produce energy in ways that are more damaging to the environment than our ways of producing energy. This is the Democrat way. They don’t care about you having cheaper energy prices, they don’t care about creating jobs for Americans, and they don’t care about reducing pollution. If you want to see where this is going, just look at the policies of the socialist Dalton McGuinty in Ontario, Canada.

Why do they do this? Well, people on the secular left are often stuck believing in doomsday predictions about overpopulation and resource exhaustion that were discredited years ago. Having rejected God’s sovereignty over the universe as part of their embrace of moral relativism and rejection of ultimate accountability, they look to big government to reduce the uncertainties and fears of a mindless, random universe.

If no one is in charge, then anything could happen, they think – and they are frightened. Thus, they look to government to coerce people to behave predictably, and also to reduce the total number of people (abortion, DDT bans, purges of dissenters, etc.). And of course fussing about imaginary bogeymen like global warming gives them an inflated sense of self-righteousness and justifies their nanny-state micro-managing of ignorant taxpaying businesses and workers.

These are not good people. These are not competent people.

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Obama wants 23 billion more from taxpayers to bailout teacher unions again

Story from Fox News.

Excerpt:

Despite President Obama’s pledge for honest budgeting and billions of dollars in stimulus money spent to save teachers’ jobs, the Education Department is asking for off-the-books emergency funding to keep local districts from laying off school teachers next school year.

Education Secretary Arne Duncan sent Democratic lawmakers a request Thursday to pass a $26 billion emergency supplemental to fund up to 300,000 teachers’ jobs that he says will otherwise be lost in the fall.

[...]The request comes just a year after an unprecedented $100 billion in federal stimulus money was allocated to school districts as part of the $863 billion recovery act. Of that amount, $48 billion was designated for saving teachers’ jobs and investing in educational programs. Another $31 billion in stimulus funds were sent to states for Pell grants, competitive funds and programs helping disadvantaged students.

[...]An Education Department spokesman acknowledged that the stimulus funds have already saved roughly 300,000 teachers’ jobs once, but an additional $23 billion more is needed to preserve education jobs, along with $1 billion in funds to save early childhood education jobs and an additional $2 billion to support public safety.

Yet another bailout from productive private sector taxpayers, for yet another unproductive Democrat special interest group.

Oh well, at least the teacher unions are happy with their bailout. And the Wall Street bankers are happy with their bailout. And the auto unions are happy with their bailout. And the public sector unions are happy with their bailout. And so on, and so on, and so on.

I would expect that the left-wing media will getting a bailout soon. And then the left-wing trial lawyers. And then the left-wing illegal immigrants. And then the left-wing prisoners. That should about cover it, I guess.

Who else is left?

Hey Obama! Where's my bailout?

Oh. Of course.

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MUST-SEE: The John Maynard Keynes vs Friedrich A. Hayek rap video

This is from ECM.

I watched this about a half-dozen times so far. It’s awesome! I love it!

I’m sure it will come as no surprise to everyone that I come out on Hayek’s side on this debate. I like the Austrian School of Economics. I’m a supply-sider. I believe in the free market, free trade, private property, saving and investing, entrepreneurship, distributed power, small government, and freedom from government intervention.

Who was F.A. Hayek?

F.A. Hayek was the greatest economist of the 20th century. He won the Nobel prize in Economics. His greatest works are “The Road to Serfdom”, “The Constitution of Liberty”, and “The Fatal Conceit”. If you take a look at the list of the top 10 books that all conservatives should read, you will see that The Road to Serfdom is #1 and The Constitution of Liberty is #10 on the list.

And lucky you, because you can find a free condensed version of the Road to Serfdom here.

But wait! There’s more!

This is part 1 of a 3 part series produced for PBS called “The Command Heights: The Battle for the World Economy”. But the only part you need to watch to learn about Keynes and Hayek is part 1, which is 2 hours long.

This video is basically a history of the 20th century from the point of view of an economist. This is a must see for you young people who don’t know who Reagan and Thatcher were. These two leaders were the greatest defenders of freedom in the 20th century, along with Winston Churchill. And they’re both solid Christians, acting from a Christian and capitalist worldview that valued liberty, security and prosperity.

Today, Stephen Harper, the prime minister of Canada, best embodies the free-market, freedom-loving ideas of Hayek, while Barack Obama embodies the big-government, deficit-spending ideas of Keynes. Guess which economy is doing better?

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Canadian prime minister Stephen Harper visits the troops in Afghanistan

Harper: Not a primping peacock bitterly clinging to his teleprompter

Harper: Not a primping peacock bitterly clinging to his teleprompter

Joanne over at Blue Like You has the story. (Photo credit:THE CANADIAN PRESS/Sean Kilpatrick)

Here are some of the best bits from the official government press release:

Prime Minister Stephen Harper today travelled to Afghanistan, where he visited with Canadian Forces and civilian personnel stationed in Kandahar.

“From the very first day of the Afghan mission the men and women of the Canadian Forces and civilian officials, have served courageously and selflessly to help the people of Afghanistan build a better future,” said the Prime Minister. “Over the course of this mission our men and women in Afghanistan have made incredible sacrifices to defend our values and our interests. It is an honour for me to meet with them, to thank them, and to let them know that their country supports them. They make us very proud.”

Look, the Canadian general even put him to work as a field artillery spotter. (Photo credit:THE CANADIAN PRESS/Sean Kilpatrick)

Harper calls in fire mission on Taliban: "Right 1 degree. Fire for effect!"

Harper (not effeminate) calls in his third fire mission on Taliban forces: "Right 1 degree. Fire for effect!"

While Barack Obama drags 25 teleprompters with him when he travels overseas, Harper didn’t bring any teleprompters with him, and he travels into a warzone.

Here is the description of Canada’s mission in Afghanistan from the Canadian forces web site:

Canada’s efforts in Afghanistan are guided by the Afghanistan Compact, which includes a five-year framework for coordinating the work of the Afghan government and its international partners, outlining specific outcomes related to security, governance and development with benchmarks and delivery schedules.

For example, a new Afghan constitution has restored the rule of law and respect for the human rights of all Afghan citizens, including women and children. The Afghan people now vote, women and girls have rights, and children are going to school.

The biggest threat to rebuilding is continued violence and threats from the Taliban and al-Qaeda. In fact, terrorism is a clear and present threat to global peace and security, and terrorists used Afghanistan as a base of operations during the seven-year Taliban regime. In the interest of collective security, Canada and its international partners share a duty to help ensure that terrorism cannot take root again in Afghanistan.

And Canada is busy spending money on things like this:

The Prime Minister announced that the Government of Canada is deepening its partnership with UNICEF and the Afghan Ministry of Education to invest in improved learning centres, construct new schools for 18,000 children in Kandahar, and provide funding for a 10-month literacy course for 2,500 women in the region.

“Investing in education is vital to improving human rights and, in particular, the rights of women in Afghanistan,” said the Prime Minister. “My message to the people of Afghanistan, and to our international partners is clear. Canada will do its part.”

The Prime Minister also visited Kandahar’s Dahla Dam project on the Arghandab River. Eighty percent of Kandahar’s population lives along the Dahla irrigation system. The Government of Canada is investing up to $50 million over three years to repair the dam and improve its surrounding irrigation system while helping train local farmers in new water management and crop production techniques.

“Canada’s Afghan mission is more than just a security operation. It is also about making a real difference in the quality of life for thousands of Afghan families,” said the Prime Minister. “I am delighted to have had the opportunity to see, first hand, the kind of meaningful contribution Canadians are making to Afghanistan’s future.”

Hmmmn. Obama is spending a lot of money, too. I wonder what the trillions of dollars he spent on his special interest groups is accomplishing? Well, Warner Todd Huston at Stop the ACLU managed to track down some of it.

If we need no other example of why government can’t “stimulate” an economy, we have but to look at the use to which the city of Akron, Ohio wants to put some of its “stimulus” money. Akron, it seems, wants to spend some of that money for suicide prevention. Oh, not a general suicide prevention program that might at least employ people. No, Akron wants to build a fence on a bridge that seems to emit a siren call for jumpers to prevent them from killing themselves.

Akron’s All-American Bridge, a “Y” shaped structure that serves as a main artery into the city, has been a platform for suicide jumpers for so long now that area residents have nicknamed it the suicide bridge. Consequently, city officials have proposed using more than one million dollars of the city’s “stimulus” money to erect a fence that will help prevent people from being able to use the span as a means to an end.

There’s other stuff we could do with that money you know. Like making the rest of the world freer and reducing threats from terrorists to the homeland.

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