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Commentaries

Feb 13, 2013
As best I could, I watched the president’s State of the Union address from a non-ideological viewpoint, detaching my personal views from my opinion about his delivery. Of course I couldn’t help but instinctively decipher his rhetorical code
Feb 13, 2013
It's time to join the pause in global luke-warming and also pause in the building of multibillion-dollar projects like Cape Wind and Ivanpah Solar that produce modest amounts of usable energy. There is time to spend some of the money on research into what is really happening with our climate.Adaptation will be as effective as the costly mitigation programs that are currently in vogue.
Feb 11, 2013
Most people may want to make the world a better place, but relatively few have given a moment’s thought to what may actually work to achieve that goal. Instead, most of us pick teams and outsource our thinking to them — and the quality of that “thinking” is, on the whole, simply terrible.
Feb 10, 2013
Excitement over new early childhood education initiatives is building at the State Capitol. No wonder. After years of frustration and failure in trying to shrink our state's yawning K-12 racial and income achievement gap, there's hope that we may have found a new, and simpler, route to success.
Feb 10, 2013
American Experiment offer key recommendations on building a state budget to promote prosperity for all Minnesotans. These include recommendations on redesigning the state’s budget process. A fiscally sound budget process should institutionalize spending restraint, prioritization, performance review, efficiency, accountability, and transparency.
Jan 31, 2013
We spend a lot of time talking and debating about marriage, but not so much reflecting on what we need to do to support and encourage marriage and family life. Mitch Pearlstein, founder and president of the Center of the American Experiment, is the author of From Family Collapse to America’s Decline: The Educational, Economic, and Social Costs of Family Fragmentation. He talks about the state of the American family and what can be done to help it with National Review Online’s Kathryn Jean Lopez.
Jan 29, 2013
Dayton's tax plan violates the basic principles of tax reform. It intensifies the pain of taxation by imposing hidden taxes on intermediate business purchases. This causes "tax pyramiding," which is a big mistake.
Jan 28, 2013
We have heard a lot about the danger of using martial metaphors in public debates, but that hasn’t stopped anybody from throwing them around. Metaphorical wars seemingly erupt daily, and with good reason: accusing your opponent of waging war against something “good” assures the general public that they are for bad things while “we” are for good things.
Jan 28, 2013
Back in 1991, my home state of Minnesota was a national leader in promoting the progressive reform of parental school choice. The Star of the North had begun allowing parents to claim a state income tax deduction for school expenses, including tuition at private schools, in 1955. In the 1980s, it pioneered the concept of public-school choice through open enrollment. In 1991, St. Paul became home to the nation's first public charter school.
Jan 24, 2013
Minnesota Governor Mark Dayton’s proposal to raise cigarette excise taxes by 94 cents per pack to help thwart additional smoking appears well-intentioned. Unfortunately, it won’t work, at least not to the degree many believe.