a service of NPRI

May 24, 2006 
Vol. 2, No. 9

Also in this issue:

Tracking bags at
McCarran via RFID

Laborers' union drops
AFL-CIO for rivals

Ed schools not preparing teachers to teach reading

States not meeting teacher provisions of NCLB

Fed chairman
admits a 'lapse'

U.S. corporate income tax
now world's highest

Pixar's magic man


Prevailing wage as
a union practical joke

The myth of functional finance: Mises vs. Lerner

The market fears
the Fed, not inflation

The myth of gas-gouging


from NPRI:

You’re not dreaming

Nevada businesses are being set up for a big new hit

YOU'VE GOT THIS recurring nightmare.

You have a zillion things to do, but nevertheless find yourself stuck out in the middle of heavy traffic.

You know it’s dangerous. You’re carrying scars from earlier collisions.

But now, once again, hurtling at you are a couple of big new rigs. And the drivers clearly intend you harm.



Prevailing wage as a union practical joke

By David Denholm
Public Service
Research Foundation

THERE'S A STORY that the Irish invented the bagpipe to keep wolves away from their flocks and then as a practical joke told the Scots it was a musical instrument.

Immigrants seeking work might feel the same way about the provision in the immigration reform bill in the Senate, S. 2611, mandating prevailing wages for newly documented (H-2C) immigrant workers.


The myth of functional finance: Mises vs. Lerner

By D.W. MacKenzie
Mises Institute

Those familiar with the history of twentieth 20th-century economic thought know of the dominance of "Keynesian economics" following the Second World War. While John Maynard Keynes typically receives credit for transforming economics, much postwar Keynesian economics was actually developed by his interpreters and followers.

Perhaps the single most important one of these followers was the Romanian born economist Abba P Lerner.


The Fed
The market fears the Fed, not inflation

By Bill Fleckenstein
MSM Moneyl

Though the inflation genie has been out of the bottle for quite some time, it took last Wednesday's consumer-price-index results -- which were reported at 0.3% instead of 0.2%, excluding the bad stuff -- to finally get people's attention. (The wake-up call was not without pain -- witness the bruising that day.)

When one-tenth matters

Before delving into the subject, let me first note how completely absurd it is to get upset about one-tenth of a percent -- especially about a number that's nearly fictional (thanks to hedonics and substitution) and radically understated in the first place.)


The myth of

Wall Street Journal

We're beginning  to wonder how many times Congress is going to call for an investigation into gasoline "price gouging" -- and how many times the Federal Trade Commission is going to report none exists -- before that august body begins to grasp the basics of supply and demand.

Yesterday FTC Chairman Deborah Platt Majoras testified to the Senate about her agency's latest non-findings of price manipulation.

[continued] These articles will be available to non-subscribers of the Online Journal for up to seven days after being e-mailed.

WHY BusinessNevada

A class apart

State tax officials insist
they are above the law ’

By Steven Miller

Following the G-Sting and other recent Nevada scandals, some in the state’s political establishment are trying to tamp down suspicions that corruption in the Silver State could be deep and systemic.

“You’ll notice that you won’t read about the guys at the top of the [political] game involved in the current [G-Sting] scandals,” former gubernatorial aide and longtime political insider Pete Ernaut told a Las Vegas Sun reporter earlier this month.

It takes world-class audacity to argue that when three of seven Clark County Commissioners get caught taking payoffs from a skin-joint sleazoid, it’s proof of effective “self-policing” inside the state’s political establishment. But that’s the way Ernaut wants it seen.

No wonder he and the establishment’s other R&R operatives get the big bucks. In the old days the line would simply have been: “So who are you going to believe—me or your own lying eyes?”

If you trust your eyeballs, you might want to use them on a recent Nevada court decision posted on the BusinessNevada website. These official findings of a respected Northern Nevada district court judge suggest that suspicions about the integrity of state tax agencies are, indeed, well founded—and have been for decades.


Tracking bags at
McCarran via RFID

By Arnold M. Knightly
Las Vegas Business Press

Symbol Technologies executives have been spending a lot of time in Las Vegas over the past couple of years because the New York-based company is contracted to supply 100 million radio frequency identification (RFID) tags to McCarran International Airport during an initial five-year, $25 million contract.


Laborers' union drops AFL-CIO for rivals

By Will Lester
Associated Press

The Laborers' Union, which represents 700,000 workers in the construction industry, has decided to leave the AFL-CIO, officials said.

The Laborers were already part of the Change to Win coalition, breakaway unions that have left the giant federation of more than 50 unions in an effort to forge a new direction for organized labor. But the Laborers had remained in the federation.


Teaching teaching
Ed schools not preparing teachers to teach reading

By Kathleen Kennedy Manzo
Education Week

Most of the nation’s colleges of education are doing an inadequate job of preparing aspiring elementary teachers for what is often characterized as their most important task: teaching children to read, a report by a Washington-based advocacy and research organization concludes.


Read the report:

What education schools aren't teaching about reading—and what elementary teachers aren't learning

from the National Council on Teacher Quality.

The money chase
States not meeting teacher provisions of No Child Left Behind

Some face loss of federal funds

By Bess Keller

No state is expected to meet the looming deadline for putting a “highly qualified” teacher in every core-subject classroom, federal officials confirmed last week.

Nine states, along with Puerto Rico and the District of Columbia, face losing federal money because of foot-dragging, the officials said. But those jurisdictions could also get off with agreeing to changes in the way they have been defining or tallying teachers’ status under the No Child Left Behind Act.


Loose lips
Fed chairman admits a 'lapse'

Confronted on Bartiromo report

By Chris Isidore

Federal Reserve Chairman Ben Bernanke admitted Tuesday to Congress that he made a mistake talking to a television reporter about market perception of his inflation-fighting credentials.


U.S. corporate income tax now world's highest

By Scott Hodge, Chris Atkins
The Tax Foundation

In the Tax Reform Act of 1986 (TRA’86) the U.S. Congress lowered the top corporate income tax rate from 46 percent to 34 percent, the largest reduction since the tax was enacted in 1909.

This change, along with an earlier move in the United Kingdom, started a wave of corporate income tax reduction worldwide. But today the U.S. has the highest combined statutory corporate income tax rate among OECD countries.


The Web
Pixar's magic man

Fired as a young man from Disney, John Lasseter returns to bring its famed animation division back to life.

By Brent Schlender
Fortune Magazine

Here's the scene: It's 3 P.M., Wednesday, Jan. 25, in Sound Stage 7 on the studio lot of Walt Disney Co. in Burbank. Five hundred cartoon people - artists, producers, voice artists, etc. - are jammed into the warehouse-like building, murmuring and fidgeting in anticipation.


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