What’s government doing? Category

As with any major industry, there has to be a representative body to speak out if there are problems and, when necessary, to lobby for changes. Nationally, America cannot survive without an effective distribution system. It’s a big country and there are a multiplicity of goods to move. That’s why we should all sit up and take notice when the American Trucking Associations (ATA) warns we need another 30,000 truck drivers right now. Now you may think that’s not a large number to recruit, but there are problems. Because ofRead More

Posted On August 8, 2014By adminIn What's government doing?

Poor neighborhoods lose out

When it comes to priorities, lawmakers tend to listen to the electors who can vote them back into power. After all, they have probably spent quite large sums of money getting into office and don’t want to lose the value of that investment. This is particularly important when it comes to setting the policy priorities for the budget. Now at this point we must admit the majority of city and state budgets are in trouble with falling tax revue and rising commitments. That puts a lot of pressure on theRead More

Posted On July 28, 2014By adminIn What's government doing?

Regulating cycling

America is the land of roads. There are interstate highways and dirt roads out in the rural backwoods. But, for some, there are never enough roads. At least, that’s true so long as the cost of gas remains affordable. At some point, the political wind may change and a new wind may begin to blow. This time, instead of personal transport based on electric vehicles, the feeling may be the bicycle is the most environmentally friendly form of personal transport on the planet. Since Americans are also putting on extraRead More
One of the ways in which we Americans argue we have the best economy in the world is by pointing to our free markets. The theory says there’s complete openness between supply and demand. Sellers and buyers are free to agree prices and exchange money for goods or services. Government is not supposed to get in the way by passing laws unless something is interfering with the freedom of the market, e.g. the seller is a monopoly and gouging the buyers. Except, of course, the power of lobbies is sufficientlyRead More

Posted On July 15, 2014By adminIn What's government doing?

Background checks

It’s always a good idea to start off articles like this with a reminder that background checks are not certain to catch people who might represent a risk. The best they can do is to narrow the field. Those who know there’s a background check may be deterred from applying for the job if they fear detection. But Edward Snowden passed routine checks both to move from one job to another, and then to move up the scale of confidence to gain access to increasingly “secret” data. Coming down theRead More

Posted On July 9, 2014By adminIn What's government doing?

Should you fit a dashcam?

If you go back even ten years, the idea of fitting a camera in your vehicle to produce a permanent record of what’s happening in its line of sight would only have been for the rich. The standard cameras retailed at hundreds of dollars, had limited recording time, and were quite fragile—an inconvenience if there was an accident and the driver then discovered the vital evidence had been lost. Only some law enforcement departments invested taxpayer dollars. Their recordings became vital evidence, particularly in roadside sobriety tests. Today, the averageRead More
If you go back fifty years, the world was such a simple place. When it came to driving, everyone waited until their birthday came around, then jumped in the family car, and no one ever looked back. It was the call of the open road, particularly during the summer months, when young people loved to go cruising. Now everyone is concerned about the number of young people who are injured or killed on our roads. There’s actually an unintended consequence to the engineering developments in new vehicles to make themRead More
You may have noticed a slight improvement in the behavior of the political parties in Washington. For now, they have stopped feuding over the deficit and the debt ceiling. Apparently, we’re no longer due to fall off the fiscal cliff. Sorry that fiscal cliff. Unfortunately tax revenues have been falling in many states, and the feuding in Congress has not gone away. All the budgetary problems could be solved with a little horse-trading. Unfortunately, those of a Tea Party persuasion are not in a mood for bipartisan cooperation. This makesRead More

Posted On May 16, 2014By adminIn What's government doing?

Europe shows the way

The European Union (EU) now includes 28 member states and, as of 2012, it has an estimated population of 507,890,000. The European Transport Safety Council (ETSC) has just published a report showing that, in 2012, 12,345 people were killed on the roads. Just so we keep this in proportion, as of 2014, the USA has an estimated population of 317,996,000. In 2012, the last year for which statistics are available, 34,080 were killed on the roads. So America has a significantly smaller population and kills getting on for three timesRead More
How many times have you been driving down a regular road and found yourself coming up behind a slow-moving driver? It’s one of these frustrating moments, particularly if you’re late for an appointment and it’s difficult to overtake. So many times this situation leads to a dangerous overtaking maneuver. In effect, you risk involving both the slow driver and the oncoming driver in a crash, just so you get past. Now, of course, this can be a driver who just stays within the speed limit and, because you’re in aRead More