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Critical Race Theory is the New Technocracy

Robert Pondiscio - June 17, 2021

At a recent Manhattan Institute event on building new education institutions, Stephanie Saroki de Garcia, the co-founder and managing director of Seton Education Partners, which serves 5000 students in underserved communities including the South Bronx, was asked what students and parents were looking for in their schools. Her answer was forthright and bold. She said the parents her schools serve want safety, respect, character, and civic education. What they don’t want — or at least aren’t asking for — she added, is “antiracist” education. “We have...

Washington Shouldn't Follow Europe's Crackdown on Big Tech

Edward Longe - June 17, 2021

Over the past year, lawmakers in the United States and Europe have turned their attention to cracking down on big tech through reforming antitrust laws. Both Democrats and Republicans have offered competing visions of reforms that would see a departure from the consumer welfare standard as the basis for antitrust law and a return to a “big is bad” mentality. Last December, the European Union Commission proposed its own slate of regulations under the Digital Markets Act (DMA) that could have wide-ranging consequences for consumers on both sides of the Atlantic. Given the desire of...

The Future of Medicine is Now — If Bureaucrats Get Out of the Way

Naomi Lopez - June 17, 2021

When Jonas Salk developed one of the first polio vaccines, he based the vaccine on a “killed” or deactivated virus as opposed to a live one. That innovative approach bucked the conventional wisdom of the time — and countless people have undoubtedly benefited from it. Today, we yet again have the opportunity to receive untold benefits from the bold work of scientific trailblazers in our ongoing fight against COVID-19 — if government gets out of the way. Hungarian-born scientist Katalin “Kati” Kariko has spent her career working on the idea that messenger RNA...

The Hydrodynamics of Defecation – A Study of Beasts Pooping

Adam Andrzejewski - June 17, 2021

This half-million dollar federal grant – funded by the U.S. taxpayer – stinks. Did you know that an African elephant can poop up to 16.3 pounds per day? If that is more than you ever wanted to know about feces, you will not appreciate the rest of the findings of an April 2017 study. The study published in the scientific journal The Royal Society of Chemistry was titled “Hydrodynamics of Defecation” and measured the size, shape and other measurements of feces from various mammals. It was funded with $1,490 from Georgia Tech President’s Undergraduate Research...


Public Schools Gush over Equality But Neglect Poor Kids & Students of Color

Dave Trabert - June 16, 2021

School boards across the nation are gushing over their devotion to equality and their determination to stamp out racism, but until they stop ignoring their own systemic educational discrimination for low-income kids and students of color, their words are merely political posturing. According to the 2019 National Assessment of Educational Progress (NAEP), White 4th-graders are 2.5 times as likely to read proficiently as Black students (45% vs. 18%), and twice as likely to be proficient as Hispanic students (45% vs. 23%). The raw NAEP scores show that Black students and Hispanic students are...

Time to Ditch the WNBA?

Mark T. Mitchell - June 16, 2021

Recently the sports world took note of a remarkable feat: American gymnast Simone Biles became the first woman to complete a Yurchenko double pike in competition. On the one hand, this is clearly something to celebrate. Biles is a rare athlete who stands head and shoulders above her competition. Any time an athlete dominates his or her sport – consider Mike Tyson, Serena Williams, or Michael Jordan – fans and competitors alike take notice. On the other hand, Biles was not the first person to accomplish this feat. Curiously, it’s not easy to locate a definitive list of men...

Resilient Supply Chains Require Small Business Contractors

Maria Contreras-Sweet & Olympia Snowe - June 16, 2021

One of the previously under-appreciated vulnerabilities of our economy exposed by the COVID-19 pandemic has been supply chain resilience. Now, rightly, it is a shared priority for all policymakers, and America’s small businesses are a critical piece of strengthening that resilience. An important way to strengthen supply chains is by ensuring robust participation of small businesses through government procurement. Recent trends, however, threaten to undermine small businesses’ role in buttressing supply chain resilience. In our past work as, respectively, Administrator of the Small...

Federal Study: Are Non-Heterosexual Women Drinking Too Much?

Adam Andrzejewski - June 16, 2021

Non-heterosexual women may be drinking too much and the National Institute of Health wants to stop that. The NIH gave $210,776 to Loyola Marymount University to study such female Facebook users in Los Angeles through an “inviting, Facebook-connected, social game.” The study, titled, “A Novel, Gamified, Facebook-Integrated Personalized Normative Feedback Intervention to Reduce Alcohol Use and Negative Consequences among Sexual Minority Women” seeks to find ways to prevent heavy drinking among this group. “Sexual minority women in the United States are more likely...


Pennsylvania Public Schools Received More Covid Aid Than Healthcare Providers

Adam Andrzejewski - June 15, 2021

While the country fought a deadly pandemic for more than a year and schools remained closed, the education system in Pennsylvania received more federal aid than health care systems did. The Keystone State collected more than $34 billion in federal aid, including through the CARES Act and the American Rescue Plan Act, according to the think tank Commonwealth Foundation. But the bulk of that money did not go to the Department of Health, Medicaid programs, assisted living and nursing homes, vaccine distribution, hospitals, and other healthcare providers. Public education received 29% ($10.1...

Doing Less with More: FDA's Food Budget Ask

Richard Williams - June 15, 2021

It’s that time of year again: the annual regulatory budget ask for federal agencies. Despite a year of public frustration with the way it handled vaccine approvals and hand sanitizers, the Food and Drug Administration is looking for more cash. And with COVID-19 becoming less pressing, we have a chance to look at some of the agency’s other goals and challenges. There’s much to be skeptical of, along with several potential public health game-changers. The FDA is seeking $97 million in additional funds for food safety programs. The request for an 8 percent increase begins with...

A Record Benefits Cliff is Coming Thanks to Democrats' American Rescue Plan

Matt Weidinger - June 15, 2021

In the face of growing labor shortages, 25 states are ending federal pandemic unemployment benefits in the coming weeks. Their Republican governors argue those benefits make unemployment pay better than working, keeping workers on the sidelines of the economy. But the staggered expiration of benefits in those states over the next four weeks is just a foreshadowing of the far larger benefits cliff ahead on Labor Day. That’s when federal benefits for as many as nine million recipients will abruptly end, marking the largest benefits cliff in American history. The cliff will result directly...

North Carolina is an Economic Success Story in These Tough Times

Donald Bryson - June 14, 2021

Most state legislative sessions have adjourned at this point in the year, and the state legislative season is winding down. Yet, these have been tough months for state lawmakers, as they have had to deal with budget quagmires coming out of the Covid recession.  Some states are having to make difficult decisions about which portions of state government to cut. As early as November 2020, New Mexico Gov. Michelle Lujan Grisham called on all state agencies to reduce spending requests by up to 5% for the 2021-22 budget year. In December, Illinois Gov. JB Pritzker ordered...


Supreme Court Decides Two Cases that Could Impact Administration's Handling of Migrant Surge

John Hirschauer - June 14, 2021

The Supreme Court has delivered two unanimous rulings in June that could impact the Biden administration’s handling of the ongoing migrant surge. Immigration advocates say Garland v. Ming Dai and Sanchez v. Mayorkas, while narrow in scope, will shape the way courts process asylum claims and other attempts by foreign nationals to secure legal status. In Dai, the Court considered the cases of two men who were found ineligible to remain in the United States by an immigration judge. Both men appealed the rulings to the Board of Immigration Appeals (BIA), an administrative appellate body in...

Big City of Small Businesses: Where New York's Mayoral Candidates Stand on Entrepreneurship

Michael Hendrix - June 14, 2021

New York is a big city of small businesses. From hot dog stands to crypto startups, ninety-eight percent of businesses in the Big Apple employ fewer than 100 employees. And these small firms are suffering in a big way: Business revenue is down by more than 50%, and some 42% of small businesses in the city have shut their doors since January 2020. These revenue losses and closure rates are among the highest in the nation and are especially impacting the restaurants and nightlife that are essential to maintaining NYC’s status as The City That Never Sleeps. And now that a slate of...

Feds Fund Princeton Art Collection Catalogue

Adam Andrzejewski - June 14, 2021

Princeton University has a hefty $25.6 billion endowment, but the Tigers still received $748.8 million in grants since 2017. The Ivy League university also received $399,293 from the Institute of Museum and Library Services in 2017 to catalogue its art collection. “The Princeton University Art Museum will standardize and enhance cataloging for the 6,516 works in its drawings collection in order to increase public access for teaching, learning, research and publication, both online and onsite,” the grant summary states. Using “image annotation tools” and “an...

Wyoming Doesn't Need Medicaid Expansion to Help the Truly Needy

Scott Centorino - June 11, 2021

Wyoming has always stood out. It’s the state with the first national park and the first national monument. The first state to give women the right to vote. The first state to elect a woman as governor. And, of course, it still has the smallest and least dense population in the country. But Wyoming quietly leads the country in another category and has done so for years: Medicaid spending. As a percentage of its state budget, Wyoming spends less on Medicaid than any other state — about 14 percent.  Wyoming isn’t leading this category out of cold, heartless thrift....


Want to Solve the Immigration Crisis? Invest in the Central American Economy

Juan Jose Daboub & Gonzalo Schwarz - June 11, 2021

Vice President Kamala Harris visited Guatemala this week amid surges in U.S. border crossings, immigrants dying while trying to cross the border, and a chaotic, problematic federal response. It would be a mistake, though, to blame the Biden or Trump administrations for our current crisis: this is a crisis borne from the lack of opportunities in many Central American nations and especially in the northern triangle of El Salvador, Guatemala, and Honduras.   What the people of the region need most is jobs. Welfare programs and spending policies to ameliorate poverty provide only...

Congress Needs to Put the Brakes on Spending

Jerry Rogers - June 11, 2021

The United States Congress and the Biden administration are entering dangerous spending territory. Budget hawks and conservatives became seriously anxious – perhaps a bit ill – when they saw the price tag for all the irresponsible spending last year at a record $6.5 trillion, yet the prospective budget numbers we are seeing today from Washington will make the government spending of the past two administrations look like chump-change. President Biden recently rolled out this $6 trillion budget proposal that will transform the United States into something that looks more like France...

Hookers for Jesus Received $530,190 For Anti-Human Trafficking Programs

Adam Andrzejewski - June 11, 2021

The Department of Justice giving anti-human trafficking grants to an organization running a safehouse program for sex-trafficking victims and women who want to leave sex work may sound like noble work. But the details are somewhat questionable. Hookers for Jesus in Las Vegas received $530,190 over three years for its operations. The organization, though, possibly violated federal anti-discrimination laws. In question is the organization’s previous staff manual with its stated opinions on homosexuality and alleged rules on mandatory church attendance. Furthermore, critics question why...

We Must Make Policing Better Without 'Defunding' or 'Dismantling'

Eric Johnson - June 10, 2021

By the time I heard a local activist leader shout that he had brought a group of protesters outside my house to make my children, wife, and neighbors “uncomfortable,” I had mostly given up on the idea that meaningful systemic changes would come out of the movement sparked by the brutal murder of George Floyd. I am an African American man who grew up in rough neighborhoods in Dallas during the most violent period of our nation’s history. Before I became mayor, I had successfully pushed for police accountability measures and expanded educational opportunities during my nine...