Commentaries

Scaling Down: The Power of One

By Darla M. Romfo Earlier this fall I had the pleasure of attending the awards ceremony for the Broad Prize for Urban Education. In the ensuing days, many bloggers and journalists weighed in with criticism, including one who pointed out that “although recent winners of the Broad Prize show positive results compared to many large […]

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Kitzhaber’s “Clean Fuels Program” Is a Hidden Gas Tax

Many politicians on the West Coast have fallen in love with untested policies and programs they say will help solve global warming. Many of these policies are mind-bogglingly complicated. What, after all, is a low carbon fuel standard (LCFS), or clean fuels program? And how exactly do programs like “cap and trade” work? And, perhaps most importantly, how do these policies impact you, the consumer?

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More Tax Dollars for College ― Or Prepare Students to Succeed There?

Oregon voters are being asked this November to authorize spending more tax dollars to help some students afford an arguably unaffordable higher education. Measure 86 will create a permanent fund to subsidize certain students, which can be financed several ways including through state general obligation bonds. Any bonds issued under the so-called Oregon Opportunity Initiative […]

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The Elliott State Forest Should Be an Asset―Not a Liability―for Oregon Schools

By Jordan Lofthouse, Randy Simmons, and John A. Charles, Jr. With Oregon’s schools constantly facing budget crises, why are our lawmakers missing out on the opportunity to give more money to our kids? As part of the Common School Trust Lands, the Elliott State Forest has the constitutional obligation to generate money for Oregon’s schools. […]

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It’s Time to Change Our Failed Federal Lands Policy

In 1976, Congress changed its “policy” regarding our public lands (Federal Lands Policy Management Act, or FLPMA). This “policy” change sought to retain public lands in federal ownership―ignoring the 200-year-old obligation of Congress to transfer title to our public lands.

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Conservation Is Not Always the Best Option

The Oregon Public Utility Commission (PUC) is considering a request by the Energy Trust of Oregon (ETO) to allow the Trust to spend ratepayer dollars on certain energy efficiency measures that don’t pencil out. The Oregonian has correctly noted that if the estimated benefits of such projects are less than costs, we should stop spending […]

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Will Parent Rebellion Spell Doom for Common Core?

If one asked most people a couple years ago about the Common Core national education standards, the response would have been a blank stare. Now, Common Core is a front-burner political issue because parents are discovering that their children are struggling under the new standards.

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Will the Supreme Court’s Ruling on Subsidies Be ObamaCare’s Downfall?

By Sally C. Pipes The battle over ObamaCare has shifted to the courts. This time, the president is on the defensive. Last month, a three-judge panel of the U.S. Court of Appeals for the D.C. Circuit ruled 2-1 in Halbig v. Burwell that the federal government lacks the authority to provide subsidies to offset the […]

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Eight Out of Ten Oregonians Agree: Let employees choose whether or not to join a union or pay union dues

Because of a deal struck by Governor John Kitzhaber, Oregonians won’t have the opportunity to end forced union dues in the public sector this year. However, a just-released public opinion poll makes it clear that if the Public Employee Choice Act had been on this November’s ballot, most voters likely would have supported it. The poll, conducted for National Employee […]

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A free-market guru with ties to Portland

In honor of Milton Friedman’s 102nd birthday this July 31, below is Steve Buckstein’s op-ed in Friedman’s memory, which appeared in The Oregonian the day after Friedman passed away in 2006. Full text A great champion of human liberty passed away on Thursday at the age of 94.  Milton Friedman won the Nobel Prize in economics in 1976, […]

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