Commentary

Commentary: What the ESSEX Carbon Tax Would Do for Vermont

by John McClaughry With much fanfare, climate change activists have presented the legislature with two bills (H.791, S.284) to implement their latest (seventh!) version of a Vermont carbon tax. It’s called the ESSEX Plan, which stands for “Economy Strengthening Strategic Energy eXchange”. They firmly believe that carbon dioxide released by humans burning fossil fuels – […]

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Commentary: The Steady Erosion of Liberty (February, 2018)

by John McClaughry From Revolutionary days into modern times, Vermonters have championed the liberty extolled in our 1777 Constitution. Article I declared that “all men have certain natural, inherent , and unalienable rights, amongst which are the enjoying of and defending life and liberty, acquiring, possessing and protecting property, and pursuing and obtaining happiness and […]

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Commentary:  To Turn Around, You Have to Change Direction (January, 2018)

By Rob Roper We have some pretty serious issues facing our state: a shrinking workforce, a public school system that is hemorrhaging students while it vacuums money, and a structural state budget deficit, to name just a few. These problems are not new, and the policies our state government has enacted to address them have […]

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Commentary: Gov. Scott’s Budget Plan (January, 2018)

by John McClaughry Gov. Phil Scott has delivered his budget address, and the consensus of various pundits seems to be that it’s mostly a no-excitement, small-bore initiative, hold the line, need more thinking, and “help me!” production. But let the governor take credit for this: “For the second consecutive year, Gov. Scott has proposed a […]

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Commentary: A State Health Insurance Purchase Mandate? (January, 2018)

by John McClaughry The House and Senate health care committee chairs in Montpelier are pondering new adventures in health care policy for 2018. High on their list is a Vermont individual insurance mandate. The mandate to purchase government-approved insurance has had a four year run in Washington. It was made a cornerstone of Obamacare because […]

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The Difficult Legislative Agenda of 2018 (January, 2018)

By John McClaughry The biennial session of the Legislature that convenes this week will face more than its share of hot button issues. Here’s a quick survey of the 2018 agenda. State finances: The legislature faces a FY2019 General Fund budget deficit projected to surpass $40 million. The bright side of this coin is that […]

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Commentary: Time For Congress To End “Dues Skimming” (December, 2017)

by Rob Roper  Medicaid is a program intended to help the sick, elderly, disabled, and poor, but in Vermont, it is also being used to quietly pad politically friendly unions’ bank accounts. Here and in just 10 other states, a practice — or scheme, according to the U.S. Supreme Court —known as “dues skimming” is taking place. […]

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Commentary: VPIRG’s New Appliance Prohibition Plan (December, 2017)

by John McClaughry A recent announcement from the Vermont Public Interest Research Group (VPIRG) brought back vivid memories of a long- forgotten legislative episode of 25 years ago. The announcement came two weeks ago in a webinar sponsored by VPIRG and its ally the Vermont Natural Resource Council. The purpose of the webinar was to […]

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A $15 Minimum Wage Would Be Disastrous (December, 2017)

By Rob Roper When the legislature returns in January, it appears that passing a law mandating a $15 minimum wage in Vermont will be a top priority. This is what Senate President Pro Tem Tim Ashe (D/P-Chittenden) has promised, and a six member summer study committee voted 4-2 along party lines to recommend moving forward […]

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Commentary: A Global Renewable Energy Power Play (November, 2017)

by John McClaughry Here’s an interesting insight into the arcane world of global renewable energy politics, based on the October 30 column in Forbes by widely-read energy blogger Rod Adams. Last week the annual “Conference of Parties” (COP23), the consultative body for the United Nations Framework Convention for Climate Change, convened in Bonn, Germany.  For […]

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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

EAI Supports Federal Rule Ending “Dues Skimming”

July 19, 2018 by EAI Staff On July 10, the US Department of Health and Human Services (HHS) announced a Notice of Proposed Rulemaking to protect the integrity...

Gov. Candidate Hallquist Comes Out for Carbon Tax

Refuses to call it that July 17, 2018 by Rob Roper In a July 9th interview on WDEV’s Dave Gram show, Democratic gubernatorial candidate Christine Hallquist came out...

Judge Kavanaugh and the Constitution

July 12, 2018 by John McClaughry President Trump has nominated Judge Brett Kavanaugh of the D.C. Circuit Court of Appeals, to serve on the Supreme Court. The President...

Brattleboro Bans Plastic Bags

July 10, 2018 By Rob Roper As of July first, it is illegal in the town of Brattleboro to give out “single use” plastic bags; the flimsy, shapeless...

WalletHub Ranks Vermont 4th Worst State to Start a Business

June 9, 2018 by Rob Roper The personal finance website, WalletHub, just published an analysis of the best and worst states to start business. As the site points out, one...

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