Republicans Plan Pension Raid, Again

Economics, Education, Kentucky, Politics

If you are not paying attention, let me catch you up. Since 2009, the KY State Senate and House have been raiding the State Employee Insurance fund each year to offset the underfunding of state budgets. In this year’s budget Governor Matt Bevin proposed a $200m raid, but today the House ($400m) and Senate ($300m) both propose their own taking of money paid by workers into the fund. By decreasing the state employee insurance, they are shifting the out-of-pocket burden on to a smaller group and thus reducing the economic impact of those 250,000 workers. Neo-Cons preach trickle down econ but reducing the take-home pay of state workers is actually the opposite of that by taking spendable money out of the families lives. Additionally, if it costs more to receive medical care, people are less likely to go out and get the medical care. This feeds into reduced efficiency in the workplace and the higher chance of teachers, first responders, desk clerks, etc showing up sick to work.

If you still do not understand how they can refuse to reassess the tax revenues streams of the state while reducing the take-home pay of over 6% of the state population, I think this is the plan. By creating a more dramatic raid on the system from the House or Senate, the plan from Gov. Biven seems more accessible. These other two plans can also be used as bargainingĀ chips to force SB1 “reforms” that haven’tĀ been supported by KEA or JCEA. We saw last week that Republican leadership was willing to hold up passage of an HB for families of fallen officers to move FOP against workers not supporting SB1.

Book Review: The Conservatarian Manifesto

Book Reviews, Politics, Reviews

The Conservatarian Manifesto: Where Conservative and Libertarian Politics MeetThe Conservatarian Manifesto: Where Conservative and Libertarian Politics Meet by Charles C. W. Cooke

My rating: 4 of 5 stars

I would have to say one of the best political books in a long time. Charles Cooke, writer for National Review, clearly and openly debates the struggle of the Conservative and Libertarian wings within the Republican Party. This dense but quick read covers the history of the current Conservative Debate and how it is dominated by Social Conservatives, Fiscal Conservatives and Libertarians. The crux of his book is based around the idea that Libertarians can take advantage of both Social And Fiscal challenges in the Republican party by shifting the party narrative and embracing more moderate voters that are turned off by Progressive Democrats. Cooke builds his argument by using major writers in the Conservative media and Libertarian Writers.

One of the big short falls is that the majority of the narrative was written before the 2014 mid-terms and may come off as dated by the time it is published. A great plan for the second edition would be to go back and look at the progress of the Conservatarian Narrator in 2016 as the Presidential election approaches. I particularly enjoyed his narratives on Abortion and Foreign Policy as it relates to debates between both parties. Cooke lays out how both parties are simply using Abortion as a means to speak to their base instead of addressing the general public opinion and that foreign policy has been hijacked by Imperialist in both parties. Cooke is clearly in the Conservative camp but has a heavy leanings towards the Libertarian views as it is a means to break away from Social Conservatives who no longer align with moderate conservatives.

Anyone interested in how a millennial conservative is thinking about the power struggle between Neo-cons and Paleo-cons would be interested in this good read. It reads like a Libertarian primer written for the National Review, because that who he is and what he writes. Others have knocked it for being this but that is what makes the book great for the moment. It feels like Barry Goldwater‘s spirit is in the room as he would more than likely be with Cooke as Conservatarian.

ARC Read and Reviewed for NetGalley.

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