Commentary

Commentary: Tax Reform and Fiscal Responsibility

by John McClaughry Republicans in Congress have decided that with their embarrassing failure to “reform and replace” Obamacare, they absolutely must produce one popular legislative achievement to present to voters a year from now. Tax reform is an imperative. There’s not much else coming down the legislative pipeline. The one tax law change that almost […]

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Commentary: Repeal Vermont’s CON Laws

By Rob Roper Kevin Mullin, chairman of the Green Mountain Care Board (GMCB), appeared on the WDEV radio program Open Mike (10/11/17) to discuss Certificate of Need (CON) laws in the wake of a controversy regarding Copley Hospital and their highly successful orthopedic surgery center. Copley is, apparently, generating too much revenue as the result […]

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Commentary: Suter Misjudges the Impact of a $15 Minimum Wage

by David Flemming Recently, Raise the Wage Coalition member Nathan Suter wrote an editorial entitled “Economic Evidence Points to Broad Benefits of a $15 Minimum.” The letter makes several dubious claims in support of Vermont raising the minimum wage to $15/hour. To make his case, Suter relies on four Berkeley studies, one of which was […]

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Commentary: Putting the Brakes on “Sue and Settle” (October, 2017)

by John McClaughry Back in 1999 Robert Reich, President Clinton’s very liberal ex-Secretary of Labor, penned an op ed piece that said “The era of big government may be over, but the era of regulation through litigation has just begun.” Reich argued that Congress, since 1994 under the control of pro-business Republicans, will not enact […]

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Commentary: The next solar bailout (October, 2017)

by John McClaughry “Free electricity from the sun” has been a dream for decades. Although solar photovoltaic cells have been used for 40 years in spacecraft, the growth of the solar PV industry began around 1990, spurred by concerns about global warming from fossil fuel combustion. “Clean, green” solar PV electricity can charge radios and […]

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Commentary: Are Public Schools The Best Option For Low Income Students? (October, 2017)

By Rob Roper The latest standardized test scores for Vermont students are out, and the results are disappointing. Overall, proficiency percentages dropped a bit from where they were last year, and, as Secretary of Education Rebecca Holcomb stated, “The achievement gaps between our vulnerable youth and students with greater privilege remain….” Cut and paste from […]

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Commentary: Boards Need to Stand Up To Striking Teachers

by Dr. Robert Letovsky It has been five years since I left my positions as chairperson of the then-Chittenden East Supervisory Union Executive Committee and of the board’s Negotiations Committee. However, watching recent teacher contract talks in both Burlington and South Burlington, it’s clear that nothing has changed in the bargaining strategy and tactics of […]

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Commentary: The Climate Action Commission Goes A-Listening (September, 2017)

By John McClaughry On July 20 Gov. Phil Scott issued an executive order creating a 21-member Climate Action Commission. Scott named as co-chairs his Deputy Secretary of Natural Resources Peter Walke and Vermont Council on Rural Development Executive Director Paul Costello. The governor charged the Commission to come up with at least three tangible proposals […]

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Commentary: American Politics Gone Insane (September, 2017)

by John McClaughry Jonathan Rauch is a senior fellow at the liberal-leaning Brookings Institution in Washington. He is himself a bona fide liberal, or at least, what passed for a thinking liberal a decade ago. He is a sharp commentator on American politics, and has given us a brilliant and timely essay in the July-August […]

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Vermont’s Greenhouse Gas Mandate: Costly, Symbolic Environmentalism

by Jonathan A. Lesser, PhD. Vermont, along with 19 other states, has a long-term greenhouse gas (GHG) reduction mandate. The original mandate, signed into law in 2006, called for a 75% reduction below 1990 emissions levels by 2050. In 2011, then- Governor Shumlin raised the goal to a 90% reduction by 2050, something which the […]

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The Ethan Allen Institute is Vermont’s free-market public policy research and education organization. Founded in 1993, we are one of fifty-plus similar but independent state-level, public policy organizations around the country which exchange ideas and information through the State Policy Network.
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Latest News

Second Homeowners Testify Condos’ Office Okayed Voting In Vermont

by Rob Roper The case surrounding voter irregularity in Victory, Vermont, currently in the Essex superior court, involves a number of people who do not live in the...

“Clean Energy” vs. Renewable Energy Jobs

by Guy Page The solar power industry in Vermont employs about 1,680 Full Time Equivalent (FTE) workers, based on calculations derived from statistics in a 2017 report. The...

Another Carbon Tax Proposal!

by Rob Roper The Carbon Tax really is the zombie, body snatcher legislation that will not die. The past couple of months have seen a massive ramping up...

CON Laws Hurt The Most Vulnerable

by David Flemming Brookside Health and Rehabilitation Center, a nursing home in White River Junction is set to close, leaving 33 seniors in the lurch. The nursing home’s...

The Communism Centennial

by John McClaughry A hundred years ago last week armed Bolsheviks seized the Winter Palace in Petrograd—now St. Petersburg—and arrested ministers of Russia’s provisional government. The world’s first...

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