Articles of Interest

Government intervention, Kansas budget, open records, Obamanomics, social security

Did government or greed cause economic distress? (Thomas Sowell in the Detroit News) “An economist specializing in financial markets gave a glimpse of the history of housing markets when he said: ‘Lending money to American homebuyers had been one of the least risky and most profitable businesses a bank could engage in for nearly a century.’ That was what the market was like before the government intervened.”

Budget based on hopeful numbers (Topeka Capital-Journal) “A $13 billion-plus state budget is likely to win approval from legislators this week, but it’s built on what seems a convenient fiction.” The problem is that revenues may again fall short of forecasts. The danger is that government spending lobbies will view this as an opportunity to press for tax increases.

Exemptions from Kansas Open Records (Kansas Meadowlark) “The Kansas legislature recently extended certain exceptions to the Kansas Open Records Act to hide certain records from the public view at least until 2014.”

Obamanomics Isn’t About Big Government (Robert B. Reich in the Wall Street Journal) The former secretary of labor says public investment is the defining characteristic of President Obama’s economic policy.

Recession Puts a Major Strain On Social Security Trust Fund (Washington Post) “With unemployment rising, the payroll tax revenue that finances Social Security benefits for nearly 51 million retirees and other recipients is falling, according to a report from the Congressional Budget Office. As a result, the trust fund’s annual surplus is forecast to all but vanish next year — nearly a decade ahead of schedule — and deprive the government of billions of dollars it had been counting on to help balance the nation’s books. … And at some point, perhaps as early as 2017, according to the CBO, the Treasury would have to start repaying the billions it has borrowed from the trust fund over the past 25 years, driving the nation further into debt or forcing Congress to raise taxes.”

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