The Danger of the Gas Tax: to People, Businesses, and even to the Environment

By: Joe Zender

Representative Earl Blumenauer of Oregon proposed an amendment earlier this year to raise the federal ‘gas tax’ from 18 cents per gallon to 33 cents.[1] While the proposal failed, this 82 percent increase is endemic of the exorbitant gas taxes and increases around the country, both at the federal and state levels. Even as gasoline consumption has leveled off in the U.S., national production of gasoline has increased drastically, leading to lower gas prices.[2][3] Even so, legislatures have moved to increase the burden on each gallon consumed by the taxpayers. The gas tax is now to a point where it unduly burdens businesses, citizens, and even potentially the environment. It should be eliminated and replaced with a more efficient and effective system for funding infrastructure.

The retail cost of a gallon of gasoline across the U.S. on October 1, 2015 was $2.42.[4] At the same … Read the rest

Why Everyone Should Condemn the BDS Movement

By: Jacob Mezei

The Boycott, Divestment and Sanctions (BDS) movement is a global movement started by 171 Palestinian organizations in 2005 with the goal of harming the Israeli economy by urging people, private corporations, and governments to boycott Israeli goods and services, divest funds, and establish economic sanctions on Israel. [1] Simply put, the BDS movement is bad. It is bad for the Palestinians. It is bad for the Israelis. It is bad for the world. The BDS movement harms third world countries in dire need of economic stimulus and hampers the growth of business and the development of technology. In addition, it incites hatred and discrimination, is harmful to future peace negotiations, and, as the Cour De Cassation (the highest court in France) recently ruled, it is illegal.[2]

The point of a peaceful boycott movement is to harm the entity being boycotted more than harming the ones doing … Read the rest

National Security Space Launch: No Contest

             Competition and innovation are key ideals in American society, and they were the main focus on March 5, 2014 when the CEOs of SpaceX and United Launch Alliance (“ULA”) testified before the Senate Appropriations Subcommittee on Defense.[1] The ULA, a joint venture between aerospace giants Boeing and Lockheed Martin, currently provides launch services for the U.S. National Security Space Launch programs.[2] SpaceX, a relative newcomer to the space launch business,[3] is seeking to break ULA’s current monopoly on national security launches and open the procurement process to other launch providers.[4]     

The EELV Program

            In 1994, the U.S. Air Force initiated the Evolved Expendable Launch Vehicle (“EELV”) program to ensure that the U.S. military and civilian national security organizations would have reliable access to Earth’s orbit for spy satellites, military communications, and other important payloads.[5] As … Read the rest

Take Your Business Elsewhere: Why the Federal Corporate Income Tax is Destroying our Economy

The national debt of the United States now exceeds $16 trillion. Current estimates suggest that the present year’s deficit will amount to approximately $1.1 trillion, a negligible improvement upon 2011’s $1.3 trillion deficit. The present unemployment rate is one of the highest of the past sixty years, with approximately eight percent of Americans unable to find work. Unless significant changes are made in both federal income and expenditure, the economic livelihood of future generations is bleak.

Searching high and low for a remedy to our nation’s economic woes, many politicians and businessmen have set their sights on the federal corporate income tax. Hoping to simultaneously create jobs and stimulate our economy, individuals from across party lines, including Barack Obama and Mitt Romney, have suggested that we lessen the federal taxation of corporate profits. A small group, though, including individuals such as Gary Johnson and Ron Paul, are of the Read the rest

Election 2012 – Business Leaders and The Social Contract Referendum

 

Next week’s presidential election is not a simple referendum on Barack Obama’s first term in office, nor is it another routine debate over the appropriate size and role of the federal government. The contest between Barack Obama and Mitt Romney is a referendum on the American social contract as we know it. This November, the electorate will answer a meaningful question – to what extent do our country’s most successful captains of business and industry have a contributive, financial duty to the maintenance of the American economy?

The modern understanding of the American social contract first took form with Franklin Roosevelt’s New Deal, passed in the wake of the Great Depression. In FDR’s view, the government could only continue to fulfill its obligation to those it governed by securing some measure of economic protection for its citizens. “As I see it, the task of government in its relation to Read the rest

The Failure and Future of E-Voting in America

    1.    Introduction

On September 28, 2007, Judge Winifred
Smith of the Superior Court of Alamada County, California, took the
extraordinary measure of invalidating an election result – an event
that has only happened once before in California’s history.[1] Measure
R, originally voted upon in November 2004, was ordered back onto next
year’s ballot not because of electoral fraud or force majeure, but
because 96% of the results from the election had vanished.[2] There was
not any suggestion of dastardly doings; no ballots mysteriously
vanished; no warehouses caught fire under unusual circumstances. These
ballots had vanished because in a very real way they never existed in
the first place. The election deciding Measure R’s fate took place
entirely on computerized voting machines.

In
the middle of litigation over the fate of the election, the machines
were returned to the manufacturers, without the data having been backed
up.[3] It
Read the rest

Power Auction: Rates in Illinois to Rise

The cost of “running” your business, not to mention heating your home, in Illinois may change after the Illinois Commerce Department’s recent power auction. [1] Currently, power rates have been frozen since 1997, but the freeze will expire in 2007. [2] It is then that some people, including state legislators, feel power rates will increase and the results of the power auction will be felt. [3] The current statute governing power rates in Illinois is known as the Electric Service Customer Choice and Rate Relief Law of 1997. [4] In the next paragraphs this article will attempt to synthesize some of the information surrounding this topic by explaining the power auction, the extent of potential rate increases, and the potential for a continuation of the Rate Relief Act of 1997.

 

The power auction took place from September 5 to September 8. [5] During the power auction state suppliers placed

Read the rest