Minnesota surging

The Minneapolis Star Tribune reports that Minnesota now has a $1.9 billion state budget surplus. This comes after the state in 2013 raised its top income tax rate to 9.85 percent from 7.85 percent for families with incomes over $250,000.…

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John Austin and Jim Townsend

What worries most about Michigan politics is that we have two parties who by and large are trying to make the 20th Century work again. A factory-based economy supported by farming and tourism. As we have documented in our reports,…

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Talent attraction in Oklahoma City

As we explored in our last post young professionals are concentrating in record numbers in vibrant central cities. Across the country––in red and blue states––state, regional, and city leaders understanding that where talent concentrates economic growth will follow, have made…

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Still addicted to tax cuts

In a previous post I explored the nearly two decade bipartisan addiction Michigan policy makers have to cutting taxes. The latest evidence of the continuation of the addiction is the near unanimous vote by both houses of the Michigan legislature…

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Bipartisan addiction to tax cuts

I have written previously that the state budget policy on a bipartisan basis for two decades has made tax cuts, corrections and health care the priorities. Which by necessity –– or as Bill Clinton says math –– has meant that…

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Big picture themes

As we start the new year I thought it would be helpful to take a step back from the specifics I normally write about to delineate the themes that these posts are about. For the past several years––no matter who…

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Education and inequality

We have written frequently on the correlation between college attainment and both income and employment. It is now the best predictor of  both. (See data in this previous post.) Education attainment is also a––if not the–major cause of rising income…

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Choosing to be Mississippi again

Brian Dickerson's Detroit Free Press column "What Rick Snyder wants most of all" column is highly recommended. It raises all the right questions about what direction the Governor wants Michigan to head in. Using the Governor's proposal for another big…

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