Author Archives: Derek Monson

Infographic: How many drinks per week?

The above chart contains some interesting – and eye-popping – information about American alcohol consumption. First, 60 percent of Americans either don’t drink at all (30 percent) or, on average, have less than one drink per week (30 percent). But the top … Continue reading

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Energy development boosts poor and middle class

Amid the agonizingly slow recovery from the last recession, policy-makers on both sides of the aisle have turned their focus to improving economic mobility for the poor and economic security for the middle class. So from the political left we … Continue reading

Posted in Economic Development | Tagged , , , , , , | 1 Comment

Strong family culture and policy help drive Utah’s dynamic economy

Utah has heard a lot of praise lately for its economic performance, and rightly so. Utah has the nation’s 2nd lowest unemployment rate (3.6 percent), 2nd highest rate of job growth (3.5 percent or 44,700 new jobs), 3rd highest household … Continue reading

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State school board selection: The ‘partisan elections are unconstitutional’ argument

After federal Judge Clark Waddoups’s recent ruling that Utah’s current state board election system is unconstitutional, a new argument from advocates of nonpartisan state school board elections has begun to make the rounds: that partisan state school board elections are … Continue reading

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Is Healthy Utah a good idea? More information changes people’s minds – Sutherland Soapbox, 9/16/14

This post is a transcript of a 4-minute weekly radio commentary aired on several Utah radio stations. Sutherland Institute commissioned a poll by Magellan Strategies that was released yesterday about Utah voters’ support for Medicaid expansion in its various forms, … Continue reading

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Conservative focus on helping vulnerable is long overdue – Conservatively Speaking, 9/2/14

This post is a transcript of a 4-minute weekly radio commentary aired on several Utah radio stations. For conservatives, poverty and eroding economic security for middle income families are not simply social problems, but moral problems as well. Beyond the … Continue reading

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Poll: 82% of Utahns support right to work

  Roughly 4 out of every 5 Utah adults support allowing union employees to leave their union without force or penalty, a concept generally referred to as right to work. That’s the finding of a new poll, released today by … Continue reading

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The war on (unborn) women

We’re constantly told by liberal politicians and media claiming to be “progressive” that conservative thinkers and policymakers are waging a “war on women.” As the argument is spun, the right’s “war on women” oppresses women’s quality of life by opposing … Continue reading

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Deseret News op-ed: Healthy Utah plan would hurt the most vulnerable Utahns

Good public policy requires three elements: doing the right things for the right reasons in the right ways. These elements are the difference between good policy and bad. The proposed Healthy Utah Plan does some of the right things and … Continue reading

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The next broken Obamacare promise

Remember the lie of “if you like your health care plan, you can keep your health care plan”? Now, it seems, Obamacare’s “promise” of free preventive health care, such as checkups, screenings and immunizations, is also turning out to be … Continue reading

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Am I the only one skeptical of projections for 36 years from now?

You may have seen recent news coverage about a report projecting that Utah’s population will double by the year 2050. On the heels of this reporting, some voices have been calling for “smart growth” policies to preserve quality of life … Continue reading

Posted in Environment | Tagged , , | 1 Comment

Economic forecast: optimism or doom and gloom?

The federal Commerce Department announced recently that growth of the U.S. economy was “near zero,” as reported by some media outlets. Growth was estimated at 0.1 percent, a pitiful rate that comes after several years of sluggish economic recovery from … Continue reading

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Could blended learning fend off tuition increases?

A recent Deseret News story reported that the Utah Board of Regents approved a statewide college tuition hike of four percent for the 2014-2015 school year, with increases up to 5.5 or 6 percent at the University of Utah, Utah … Continue reading

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Dueling perspectives on the minimum legal drinking age

Here’s the opinion-based conjecture perspective (provided by Camille Paglia and Time): A drinking age of 21 is responsible for … Making the U.S. like Third World countries The global drug trade Cruelty to young people College binge drinking Date rape … Continue reading

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Where your tax dollars are going … and what you’re (not) getting in return

A reminder of where your federal income tax dollars are going … and what you’re (not) getting in return.  Happy tax day. Graph courtesy of this Cato Institute policy report.

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