Tea Party

Opinion: GOP economics devastated Kansas

An op-ed on the Kansas economy needs context and correction. An op-ed about the Kansas economy needs a few corrections before the people of Illinois get a wrong impression of Kansas. The article is Opinion: GOP economics devastated Kansas, published in the Alton (Illinois) Telegraph. The author is John J. Dunphy. First, Dunphy refers to Sam Brownback as the "Tea Party" governor of Kansas. As far as I know, the tea party favors reducing not only taxation, but spending too. Given the choice, Brownback preferred raising taxes rather than cutting spending. Not very tea party-like. Dunphy: "Moderate Republicans who voiced…
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Kansas newspapers against the children

A Kansas newspaper editorial illustrates that for the establishment, schools -- the institution of public schools, that is -- are more important than students. An unsigned editorial in the Garden City Telegram proclaimed "Another attempt to undermine public schools materialized last week in the Kansas Statehouse." (Legislators turn to ALEC for poor plan on schools, March 25, 2014.) What was in a bill that so worried the Telegram editorial writers? According to the op-ed, the dangerous provisions are "expansion of charter schools, overhaul of teacher licensing and tax breaks for private school scholarships." To the Telegram, these ideas are "radical"…
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Kansas Senator Jerry Moran wants to pick losers in the market: His choice is big wind

In Kansas, we have a lot of wind -- no doubt about that. But the economics of wind as a source of electricity generation is another matter. There's a split in Kansas over this. On one side are Kansas Governor Sam Brownback, who has been vocal in his support of wind power, along with Wichita Mayor Carl Brewer, who has been busy promoting Wichita as a site for wind energy-related industry. Now we see Kansas' newest U.S. Senator Jerry Moran jumping in to promote the wind power subsidy program. Contrast this with U.S. Representative Mike Pompeo of Wichita, who has…
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The creeping expansion of government power

Trackside is a column written occasionally by John D’Aloia Jr. He lives in St. Marys, Kansas. TRACKSIDE © by John D’Aloia Jr. 12 December 2011 A belief I encounter increasingly often is that, with few exceptions, the Guardians ensconced in Washington, and their minions in the bureaucracy, The Clerks, are driven by greed, corruption, fraud, power, and immorality, not by the Essential Liberty principles of our Founding Documents. The electorate is angry and frustrated. They see their resources and their freedom being whittled away for the benefit of the Guardians and their cronies. They see the basic morality of the…
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Lies of liberal progressives, Sunday edition

On the C-SPAN television program Washington Journal (Sunday August 14, 2011) Democratic strategist Mark Mellman appeared and gave viewers a lesson on how the political left lies and distorts in order to score political points against what it sees as easy targets. Mellman said: "The tea party comes out, and has really done real damage to this country. Most people in this country think it's okay to to stop giving subsidies to oil companies. The tea party says no. Most people say it's okay in the country to make corporate jet owners pay taxes, or hedge fund managers pay taxes.…
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Kansas and Wichita quick takes: Wednesday March 2, 2011

Duplication in federal programs found. Washington Examiner Editorial: "Nobody with even minimal knowledge of how public bureaucracies work should be surprised by the Government Accountability Office's conclusion that there is a 'staggering level of duplication' in the federal government. Duplication is inevitable when professional politicians in both major parties go for decades using tax dollars to buy votes among favored constituencies, and reward friends, former staffers, family members and campaign contributors with heaping helpings from the pork barrel. With the inevitable program duplication also comes an endless supply of official duplicity as presidents, senators and representatives rationalize spending billions of…
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Tea party has nothing on Wisconsin union supporters

While the political left likes to portray tea party protesters as racist neanderthals hell-bent on violent overthrow of the U.S. government, the tea party has nothing on government union members when it comes to protesting. Union leadership can't bring itself to condemn even the worst excesses of the union protests. On Sunday's episode of the NBC public affairs television program Meet the Press host David Gregory gave AFL-CIO President Richard Trumka a chance to condemn the very nasty tone of the pro-union demonstrators in Madison: MR. GREGORY: Richard Trumka, I want to ask you one thing, again, about the tone…
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Wichita’s vision, by the urbanist elites

Why are some in Wichita so insistent on pushing their vision of what our city should look like, and why are they willing and eager to use the coercive force of government to achieve their vision? In the article below, Randal O'Toole, using a work by Thomas Sowell, provides much insight into understanding why. Reading this post, I couldn't help think of Wichita: the "manufactured crisis" of too much driving and too little walking; the desire by many, including several Wichita City Council members -- even self-styled conservative members -- to expand the power and reach of government; and the…
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Kansas and Wichita quick takes: Tuesday December 21, 2010

Steineger switches teams. Chris Steineger, a Kansas State Senator from Kansas City, has switched to the Republican Party. As a Democrat, Steineger had compiled a voting record more conservative than many senate Republicans. On the Kansas Economic Freedom Index for this year -- recognizing that supporting economic freedom is not the same as conservatism or Republicanism -- Steineger had a voting record more in favor of economic freedom than that of 15 of the senate's Republicans. Kansas school funding reform to wait. Incoming Kansas Governor Sam Brownback says that the Kansas economy comes first, and then school finance, Medicaid, and…
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Kansas and Wichita quick takes: Friday December 10, 2010

This Week in Kansas. On This Week in Kansas guests Rebecca Zepick of State of the State KS, Joe Aistrup of Kansas State University, and myself discuss Kansas House of Representatives leadership, Governor-elect Brownback's appointments, and voter ID. Tim Brown is the host. This Week in Kansas airs on KAKE TV channel 10, Sunday morning at 9:00 am. Cato scholar to speak on economic freedom. Today's meeting (December 10) of the Wichita Pachyderm Club features noted Cato Institute scholar, Principal Attorney at the Pacific Legal Foundation, and author Timothy Sandefur. He will discuss his recent book The Right to Earn…
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Pompeo, back from Washington, gives update

Yesterday Congressman-elect for the fourth district of Kansas Mike Pompeo met in his campaign office with news media for a question-and-answer session. Newly-elected members of the next Congress were in Washington last week for orientation, office selection, and leadership elections. The current Congress resumes its session on December 6th, and the plan is to be in session for two weeks -- another so-called "lame duck" session. Pompeo says that a good thing Congress could do is to extend the current tax rates -- the Bush tax cuts -- so that the new Congress doesn't have to deal with this issue…
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Kansas and Wichita quick takes: Tuesday November 16, 2010

Future of California. George Gilder, writing in the Wall Street Journal, lays out a grim future for California based on voters' refusal to overturn AB 32, the Global Warming Solutions Act. Of the requirement to reduce greenhouse gas emissions in the state, Gilder writes: "That's a 30% drop followed by a mandated 80% overall drop by 2050. Together with a $500 billion public-pension overhang, the new energy cap dooms the state to bankruptcy." He says that AB 32 may not be necessary at all: "The irony is that a century-long trend of advance in conventional 'non-renewable' energy -- from wood…
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Sedgwick County Republicans elect leadership

Last night the Sedgwick County Republican Party met in an organizational meeting to elect its leadership for the next two years. The primary news made was in the contest for chairman and vice-chairman. The secretary and treasurer positions were not contested. Some observers, including myself, saw the contest as being between "establishment" Republicans and a group associated with the tea party. Others cast the election as more between experienced and veteran party members versus relative newcomers, while still others saw the differences as based more on personalities than anything substantive. Whatever the terminology, the newcomers did not do well in…
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Political attacks not all bad

"Dr. Mel Kahn, a political science professor at Wichita State University, gave a lecture Friday on why he believes negative campaigning is essential to democracy. Kahn said that a recent study shows that there are sometimes more lies in positive ads than in negative commercials, and as long as ads are based on evidence, they help people know what’s going on in a world full of political spin." The lecture was at the Wichita Pachyderm Club as covered by State of the State KS. Kahn also said that since accountability is important to democracy, he was pleased to see the…
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Kansas and Wichita quick takes: Thursday November 4, 2010

The future of politics is here, now. After noting how California reached way back to the past to elect a governor, Denis Boyles writes in National Review Online about the future, and how it's being made right here: "If you want to see the bright and shining politics of the future, you have to go to the country’s heartland, and specifically to Kansas, a place most Democrats only know from Thomas Frank’s liberal folklore. There, the election has yielded two new congressmen -- Mike Pompeo and the remarkable Tim Huelskamp -- who were not created by the Tea Party movement…
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Kansas and Wichita quick takes: Wednesday November 3, 2010

Republican Party on probation. Noted conservative figure Richard A. Viguerie of ConservativeHQ.com expressed a common idea: "Voters have given Republicans one more chance to get it right. They are on probation, and if they mess up again, they won't get another chance. The last time the Republicans were in charge, they became the party of big spending, Big Government, and Big Business. They abandoned the philosophy of Ronald Reagan and cozied up to lobbyists and special interests. And they paid a price at the polls." Limited government and economic freedom not desired. In today's Wichita Eagle editorial assessing the election…
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Kansas and Wichita quick takes: Tuesday November 2, 2010

Only conservative and Tea Party candidates cast as extreme. "Congressional Democrats and President Obama are facing voters’ wrath because of their extreme agenda over the past two years: government-run health care; massive unsupportable spending; a proposed 'cap-and-trade' tax on energy, higher income taxes, etc. But MRC analysts found 35 evening news stories which conveyed the Democratic spin point that conservative and Tea Party candidates are 'extreme,' 'fringe,' or 'out of the mainstream,' vs. ZERO stories conveying the charge that left-wing Democrats are 'out of the mainstream.'” Also, the label "liberal" is not used as often as is "conservative," and "ultra-liberal"…
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Kansas and Wichita quick takes: Sunday October 31, 2010

Wichita city council this week. The agenda for November 2 includes two instances of corporate welfare in the name of economic development (Approval of Forgivable Loan Agreement, Nex-Tech Processing and Approval of Economic Development Incentives, TECT Power, Inc.), an ordinance that cancels the Save-A-Lot TIF district, and revisions to Wichita's Community Improvement District policy. I'm told that the last item may be deferred at the request of some developers, which -- if I were a cynic -- might cause me to wonder who is really running things at city hall. When the city had a meeting to discuss the CID…
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Kansas and Wichita quick takes: Friday October 29, 2010

This Week in Kansas. Rebecca Zepick of State of the State KS, Malcolm Harris of Mammon Among Friends and Friends University, and myself join host Tim Brown to discuss politics, elections, shale gas, and Wichita's aircraft industry. "This Week in Kansas" airs in Topeka on WIBW TV channel 13 Saturdays at 11:30 am, and in Wichita on KAKE TV channel 10 Sundays at 9:00 am. Business jets and elections. Speaking of Malcolm Harris, his recent blog post Business jets and elections provides an accurate look at the past two years, with Harris noting that our economic problems are long-term in…
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Kansas and Wichita quick takes: Tuesday October 26, 2010

Karl Rove. "Former George W. Bush aide Matt Latimer was there to observe the dealings of Karl Rove during the previous administration, and he writes that there’s no secret why most conservatives have now come to view Rove as a fraud. Latimer says that Rove has become symbolic of a GOP establishment that’s known for its utter betrayal and ruin of the Party that Reagan had left so strong. Now that his secret is out, Rove’s influence will only continue to diminish as time goes on and the Tea Parties take over." A fascinating look at the legacy of Rove,…
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