LATEST BLOGS

Is capital gains income a stable and sustainable tax source?
By JASON MERCIER  | 
Dec 15, 2018

Beside the fact a capital gains income tax is unconstitutional in Washington, imposing one would also be bad budget policy for the state. Washington currently has one of the most stable tax bases in the country (property taxes are very stable). A capital gains income tax, however, is one of the most volatile tax sources possible. To illustrate this fact, I would like to call California Governor Jerry Brown to the stand to testify . . .

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Federal Judge Rules Obamacare Unconstitutional
By ROGER STARK  | 
Dec 14, 2018

Earlier this afternoon a federal judge in Texas ruled the Affordable Care Act (ACA) to be unconstitutional. This is the first step in a legal process that will undoubtedly result in the case being heard by the U.S. Supreme Court.

Republican attorneys general from 19 states sued the federal government on the constitutionality of Obamacare. Their case is based on the fact that the major Congressional tax reform bill of 2017 eliminated the “tax” on Americans who do not own health insurance under the ACA. Without the penalty, the AGs claim that the entire law is unconstitutional. 

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State Board of Education proposes using state-sponsored racial discrimination in charter school admissions
By LIV FINNE  | 
Dec 14, 2018

I recently got hold of a copy of the State Board of Education’s Annual Report on Charter Schools: 2017-18 (located here), and just finished reading through it.  Buried snugly within page 15 of the 40-page report is this surprising nugget:

“Students of color are vulnerable within our public school system, not because having black or brown skin is a defect, but because of the insidious implicit bias throughout our public education system.”

It is rare for government officials to openly acknowledge their implicit bias in the way they operate the state’s public schools.  The achievement gap is as bad as ever, the drop-out rate for black students is much higher than for students of other races, and administration officials routinely send black and brown students to the state’s 252 recognized failing public schools.

Their proposed solution, presented in Section III, under “Recommended Changes to State Law or Policy,” is to use the implicit racial bias that officials use in traditional public schools as the reason to require charter schools to select students based on race.  Currently charter schools comply with the Washington Civil Rights Act (RCW 49.60.400) in not using race, color, national origin or ethnicity to discriminate for or against students in accepting applications.  In fact, charter schools are so popular among minority parents that most of children attending charter schools are non-white.

Given our country’s dark history of government-sponsored racism, and the admitted bias of school officials today, now is not the time to introduce race-conscious state policy in the operation of charter schools.

Actually, the time for school administrators and state regulators to engage in a policy of official racism against school children is “Never,” whether as a regulatory policy imposed on independent public charter schools or, as the School Board reports, in the functioning of traditional public schools now.

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