The UWIRE Forum


What young Americans want in health care reform
July 30, 2009, 11:09 am
Filed under: Uncategorized
Chris Burks

Chris Burks

Young Americans want health care reform now, but many of the plans going through Congress currently will only reform our health care systems at the margins, and would leave the youth stuck with a massive bill.

If America is to engage in systemic health care reform, we should do it wisely when the political will and firepower exists — regardless of the seemingly large cost estimates. Our elected officials shouldn’t cower away with sticker shock simply out of an aversion for big numbers. The American economy can, and must, absorb the costs of an investment in efficiency.

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When will Millennials realize we’re inheriting massive US debt?
July 23, 2009, 10:11 pm
Filed under: Uncategorized
Michael Warren

Michael Warren

Because pop sociology dictates it, we Millennials must have some overarching concept that defines us all. We won’t be the jaded Gen-Xers or the self-absorbed Baby Boomers before us. What is it that binds all of us — born roughly between 1976 and 1996 — together? Some say it will be a sense of civic and political duty, a la the election of Barack Obama or the events of Sept. 11. I don’t put much stock into this generational mumbo-jumbo, and it will probably take a few more years before we discover that metaphysical adhesive that is so important to identify.

In the meantime, real trouble brews for Millennials in the way of a sinking and flailing economy. Massive government spending, irresponsible legislation and a toxic tax code are creating a monster of an economic problem that the generations currently in charge are graciously plopping into our laps. It’s important first to see what has happened in the last few years to get us into our current predicament.

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Gates forced open: Government has no right to violate a man’s castle
July 23, 2009, 12:50 pm
Filed under: Uncategorized
Matt Cavedon

Matt Cavedon Harvard U.

President Obama was right when he said that the arrest of Professor Henry Louis “Skip” Gates, Jr. was handled “stupidly” by the Cambridge Police Department. Arresting a man in his own home after he showed ID because he wanted the police out should not be considered “loud and tumultuous behavior in a public space.”

The incident should be used to ask why our rights within our own homes are not being respected. Instead, Gates sees it as being “about the vulnerability of black men in America.” Race, not rights, is the watchword today. Radio host Kim Coleman, for example, told CNN that the arrest of Gates “just tells me we’re not in a post-racial society.” Professor Jelani Cobb of Spelman College agreed, expressing concern that “one of the most recognizable African-Americans in the country can be arrested in his own home and have to justify being in his own home.”

African-Americans are not the only ones.

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Political pendulum swings right, but leaderless GOP may lose out
July 16, 2009, 9:56 pm
Filed under: Uncategorized

By Joe Wenner
UWIRE Forum Guest Columnist

In 2001, Republicans were on an electoral high.  After crafting a shrewd GOP victory in both the presidential and legislative elections, Karl Rove made the now infamous promise of delivering a permanent Republican majority.  Had someone reminded Rove of Albert Einstein’s description of politics as a swinging pendulum, he might have tempered his guarantee. Sure enough, a mere five years later, Democrats overtook both the House and the Senate.

Today, the pendulum continues to swing. Despite winning back the White House and increasing their margins in the legislative branch in 2008, Democrats may soon see the public move away from their own “political mandate.”

Recent developments are cause for President Barack Obama’s concern.

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Euphemizing the health care debate
July 14, 2009, 10:48 am
Filed under: Uncategorized
Alex Knepper

Alex Knepper

Despite the fact that, according to a Fox News/Opinion Dynamics poll taken in late June, 89 percent of Americans are already satisfied with their health care, including 70 percent of the uninsured, the Democratic Party has convinced the nation that there’s a crisis of apocalyptic levels plaguing our nation’s health care system.  (There is a forthcoming crisis in health care, actually: it’s Medicare’s inability to keep up with declining population growth, and it’s not going to pay for itself. But I digress…)

To fix this “crisis,” President Barack Obama and his cheerleaders are promoting what they call a “public” option to promote more “competition” in the health care market. Sounds awfully capitalist-y. Competition and choice and all that, after all.

What they mean, of course, is a government option, funded by taxpayers, meant to naturally monopolize the health care market. But it isn’t “competition” for one side to start out with unlimited resources and $300 million to the kitty.

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Progressive response to ‘Transforming the way we do welfare
July 9, 2009, 11:14 am
Filed under: Uncategorized
Chris Burks

Chris Burks

Matt, Thanks for your article and I must say I agree with many of your impulses to support government programs that work.  However, an impulse being what it is, I think you go on to introduce assumptions from these impulses that lead you to less than sound public policy conclusions.

For instance, I agree that “subsidizing poor people to make their own choices in the marketplace” is a good start.

However, you go on to assert that programs such as Medicare, Medicaid, housing projects, and funding for local school districts “tend to underperform private alternatives.”  You further state that “nearly every American would choose private health insurance over going through the bureaucracy of Medicare.”

Each statement includes unnecessary assumptions and takes a narrow view that applies the rigorous lens of economics across less than the full spectrum of private activities.

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The state at fault: Why no-fault divorce is wrecking marriage
July 6, 2009, 5:43 pm
Filed under: Uncategorized
Matt Cavedon

Matt Cavedon

Matt Cavedon is working for the Acton Institute for the Study of Religion and Liberty this summer. Attending Acton University 2009 was his first assignment, where for four days nearly 400 participants from almost 50 countries came to Grand Rapids, Mich., to learn about natural law, economics, religious morality and other essential elements of a free and virtuous society. This is the final column in a three-part series of columns related to Acton U.

Why is marriage falling to pieces in America? A seemingly unrelated question sheds some insight: Why does the state protect private property rights?
Property is the way that people create wealth, and it demands time, resources and effort from its owners in order to bear fruit. Only when people know that they will be able to reap the rewards of their work will they invest themselves fully in their property. The state honors this commitment between an owner and his property because it is good for everyone when people get the most out of their property that they can and work as hard as they can to make things that other people want.

This is elementary economics, but the way that the state protects property in order to make sure that people get the most out of it is analogous to why the state has traditionally protected marriage and establishes legal structures to hold married people loyal to one another.

Only when there is a guarantee that people will be able to reap the rewards of a shared life will they give themselves entirely to each other and to their children in love. Property demands work and ingenuity; marriage demands fidelity and commitment. These are all serious investments, and it is in the best interests of the state to see that the rewards of each are fully enjoyed by society, either in the form of desirable products or in the form of family stability and good environments for children.

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