They paved paradise

Years ago (think late 1960s and early 1970s), I collected stamps.  I learned much about a variety of subjects looking at them and learning about the events, people, and places they displayed.  One that struck me was this: Being young and ignorant, I was puzzled: there was a Golden Gate without a bridge?  Well, yes, of course there was: (By Ansel Adams, from Flikr) "The Golden Gate is One of … [Read more...]

Helping convenience stores by encouraging smoking?

Photo: Flikr Creative Commons "Tobacco users get tax break from Legislature," reads the headline in today's StarTribune.  The tax break in question involves the cigarette tax.  In 2013, the legislature and governor approved three years of annual increases in the tax, with an inflation adjustment built in to maintain the real value of the tax.  The tax bill includes a provision to eliminate the … [Read more...]

Why Governor Dayton should veto the spending and tax bills

Source: Flikr Creative Commons Session implodes at midnight over roads and public works That headline pretty much sums up the legislative session in general from an economics perspective. The Legislature made no progress on long-run issues such as infrastructure spending and pre-K education and probably worsened the medium-term budget outlook. I am especially disturbed by the tax and spending … [Read more...]