Based on the rhetoric surrounding her historic candidacy in 2008 and, in more recent months, leading up to the 2016 campaign, you’d be forgiven for thinking that Hillary Clinton was the first woman ever to run for the nation’s highest office. Far from it.
Few know, though, the name of the woman who challenged the highest glass ceiling. That honor belongs to a colorful and convention-defying woman named Victoria Woodhull, a spiritualist, activist, politician, and author, who ran for the office in 1872, 136 years before Clinton made her first run in 2008. Continue reading
Once again, Portland led the nation this July with its home prices rising 12.4 percent year-over-year versus the national average of just 5.0 percent. As of April, Portland remained the 12th most expensive rental market in the nation. These numbers are not unrelated. Housing prices are often related to what units can be built for, whether they are single-family homes or multifamily apartment houses.
Whatever the causes of rising rents in Portland and elsewhere, the political fix bubbling to the surface not only won’t help most people afford housing, it likely will make the situation worse. That political fix goes by the name of rent control.
Last year, Willamette Week published an informative and entertaining piece entitled “The Five Myths About Portland Apartments.” In response to Myth 3, which is that rent control is the answer, Jerry Johnson of Portland real-estate consulting firm Johnson Economics noted:
“Rent control is an Econ 101-level policy disaster. If you happen to get one of the rent-controlled units, good for you. But it’s basically a lottery of who wins and who loses.” Continue reading
In accordance with House Bill 2941, the Public Utilities Commission (PUC) is making recommendations to the Oregon State Legislature to ensure Oregon’s solar energy incentives are equitable, efficient, and effective.
One recommendation is to modify the compensation method for solar energy, net metering. Under net metering, solar owners consume energy their panels produce. When energy produced is insufficient, solar owners purchase additional energy from traditional sources. When excess energy is produced, solar owners sell energy. Solar owners are compensated at above-market rates and are exempt from paying their portion of incurred costs. Such costs include operation and maintenance of the grid and “spinning reserves,” the alternative power source utility companies run continuously in case solar produces less energy than projected. The state’s incentive structure shifts costs from solar owners to non-solar ratepayers. As the number of solar owners increases, ratepayers bear higher costs. The PUC is recommending these costs instead be shifted to taxpayers. While the PUC proposal’s efforts to alleviate inequity are commendable, their proposed recommendations still constrain Oregonians. Continue reading
On August 22, 2016, United States District Judge Reed O’Connor issued a nationwide preliminary injunction which blocked the Obama administration’s Title IX “Guidelines.”
This federal case (U.S District Court, Northern District of Texas, Wichita Falls Division Preliminary Injunction Order: State of Texas v. United States of America et al ) included twelve other states and two school districts suing the U.S. DOE, DOJ, EEOC and DOL. Additional states have since joined, making a total of 23 states involved in this case. This Order allows school districts around the country the ability to maintain: “[T]he status quo as of the date of issuance of this Order and this preliminary injunction will remain in effect until the Court rules on the merits of this claim, or until further direction from the Fifth Circuit Court of Appeals.” Continue reading
Part 4 in Series
Last month, I let the founding fathers do the opining for me, as to the original intention and meaning of the Second Amendment. This month you will hear from another founding father, and me, as to why we want you to exercise your Second Amendment right.
So why do Tommy J. and I want all (qualified by me: responsible) citizens to be well armed? Well, (to be serious and respectful), former President Thomas Jefferson had something to say about that, and it is eerily timeless in its advice to us today: “The laws that forbid the carrying of arms are laws of such a nature. They disarm only those who are neither inclined nor determined to commit crimes…. Such laws make things worse for the assaulted and better for the assailants; they serve rather to encourage than to prevent homicides, for an unarmed man may be attacked with greater confidence than an armed man.” (Thomas Jefferson in Commonplace Book (quoting 18th century criminologist Cesare Beccaria), 1774-1776) Continue reading
The Ford Explorer entered the SUV market in early 1991 and proved to be extremely popular with the driving public, and especially with families. It came in both two-door and four-door models. Fast forward to the new 2017 model year and you would hardly recognize they are the same vehicle except for the blue Ford medallion.
This is near the top of the pyramid in the Explorer family. It also puts the “Sport” in the Sport Utility Vehicle vernacular. The styling is impressive, the ride is comfortable, and it is quiet. I drove the Explorer on I-84 where the road bed is worn done to the aggregate. I was surprised at how quiet it was and I could actually hear the radio commentary without cranking up the volume. Continue reading
Democrats fight climate change with renewable pixie dust, while rest of world burns fossil fuels
“There’s been a record six straight years of job growth, and new Census numbers show incomes have increased at a record rate after years of stagnation,” NBC Nightly News anchor Lester Holt misinformed Americans, as he launched the first Trump-Clinton presidential debate September 26. Continue reading
What if we could have an experiment to compare the two systems? Wait – we already did.
Experimentation is a major tool in the scientist’s arsenal. We can put the same strain of bacteria into two Petri dishes, for example, and compare the relative effects of two different antibiotics.
What if we could do the same with economic systems? We could take a country and destroy its political and economic fabric through, say, a natural disaster or widespread pestilence – or a war. War is the ultimate political and economic cleansing agent. Its full devastation can send a country back almost to the beginning of civilization. Continue reading
Detecting Cr-6 droplets in Olympic-sized swimming pool doesn’t equal health or cancer risks
Erin Brockovich became rich and famous by promoting the notion that people in Hinkley, CA got cancer because of hexavalent chromium (Chromium-6) in drinking water. Pacific Gas & Electric (PG&E) settled a 1993 lawsuit for $333 million, rather than risk trial by a jury frightened by a steady drumbeat of horror stories from lawyers, activists, celebrities, “journalists” and hired “experts.” The lawyers got $134 million in fees, and Ms. Brockovich pocketed a cool $2-million bonus – plus movie royalties and other cash. Continue reading
Nonprofit Director Offers Thoughts On Daily Living
Someone asked me the other day if it’s all worth it.
They saw me on a day that I was particularly frustrated about something or another. It was hot, and I was running late, and was stressed, and when they asked me…well, in that moment, I wasn’t sure it was worth it.
Because this is hard. Don’t ever let anyone tell you it’s not hard to build a dream from the ground up. Its early mornings, late nights and never enough time in between. It’s missing your family and spending too much time with your volunteers. Its too many bills and not enough pay checks. It’s some people not knowing your business’ name and others dragging that name through the mud. Its broken air conditioners, dirty floors, stuck doors and drawers and sweat from your pores and my God, what is it all for? Continue reading