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Is the economy recession prone?

Most of us focus on decisions affecting our daily lives — earning an income, spending, investing and looking ahead to our retirement. Businesses face similar choices about production, advertising, workers and pricing. Economists call these types of choices microeconomic...

Licensing boards protect businesses, not consumers

Professional licensing boards are prevalent in states across the country and pretend to be consumer protection agencies. But in reality, such boards were established as — and continue to be — political tools to protect the current class of professionals and businesses from...

There has to be a better way to run a state

Exhausted legislators finally saw the closing gavel and heard the fat lady sing the “sine die,” followed quickly by the Hallelujah chorus striking up the perennial tune, “There has to be a better way to run a state.” Republicans sang that song when Democrats ran things. Now the...

Incumbents squash challengers in fundraising

Chalk it up as another way that incumbent legislators in general have a distinct advantage over challengers in N.C. General Assembly races this and every other election year. Besides the name recognition and the drawing of legislative districts to favor one political party over...

From poet to potter, and that’s OK

The recent flap about Gov. McCrory’s probably well-meaning, but totally clueless appointment of a new North Carolina poet laureate (who later resigned) sent me for a look back at my own skimpy collection of published poems. It’s been years since I’ve written any poetry other than...

Alternative energy failures abroad should serve as warning

At $3.65 a gallon, gas is already expensive enough. Now imag-ine paying an additional carbon tax every time you fill up. That’s what a new report from the United Nations has recommended. To combat global climate change, the United Nations has urged governments everywhere to...

Sticking with the winning playbook

Gov. Pat McCrory and some Republican lawmakers in the General Assembly say they need more tools for economic development in North Carolina — by which they mean targeted tax breaks and corporate subsidies. They often point to South Carolina, Georgia, Virginia, Tennessee and other...

Land purchase raises many questions

To the editor: Remember this quote from then-Speaker of the House, Nancy Pelosi, “We have to pass the (healthcare) bill to know what is in it, and get away from the fog of controversy.” It appears to be the same flawed logic used by the Franklin County Commissioners to purchase...

Cougars start season large, in charge

By David Allen Staff Writer WAKE FOREST – Wake Forest dominated Friday night’s football game against Panther Creek. Allowing only 105 yards in 59 plays and a total of six first downs, it would have been a shutout if Panther Creek’s quarterback Brenden Magner hadn’t snuck in on an...