Opinion: Let’s be honest about the Covid relief bill

On March 12, President Biden signed into law another stimulus bill to address the enormous damage done to our economy through COVID-19. There are principled arguments for and against most details of the $1.9 trillion bill. I feel Congress could’ve passed a much smaller bill, maybe half the size, and put in place an automatic…

Opinion: Two sides of the minimum wage

With a minimum wage increase once again prominently featuring a policy debate, it seems wise to treat the issue a bit differently. Instead of outlining the positive and negative effects of a particular increase of the minimum wage, I’ll offer the best arguments for and against any minimum wage. In so doing I’ll attempt an…

Letter: The Jasper Chamber is here for you

Spring is nearly here – warm weather is tempting us every week – birds are chirping, and as you start to think about springing forward. We bet there are many things you did not know about The Jasper Chamber of Commerce. The Chamber has been a full-time “essential service business” in Dubois County through the…

Opinion: Our biggest economic challenge is school funding

Last week’s column on school funding in Indiana stirred a great deal of conversation around the state. I am glad it did, but cannot take credit for the interest. Most Hoosiers are keenly attentive to their local schools and concerned about the economic performance of their cities and towns. These issues are intimately linked, yet…

Letter: 100th anniversary a reminder of reason for Tomb of the Unknown Soldier

This week our nation will mark the 100th anniversary of the Tomb of the Unknown Soldier, approved by Congress on March 4, 1921. Originally conceived in memory of the war dead, especially the unidentified Allied soldiers of World War I, for a century the Tomb of the Unknowns has held the remains of one such…

Opinion: Teacher pay is the symptom of deeper problems

The Next Level Teacher Compensation Commission released their report in mid-December. All Hoosiers should be interested in what it did and did not say about teacher pay, along with recommendations they offered. I begin with some stark observations about education finance. After adjusting for inflation, Indiana spending per student is down more than 7.0 percent…

Letter: Riverview Energy’s coal-to-diesel and global climate change

To the readers, I write to you as a climate scientist here at Indiana University. The Riverview Energy Corporation has proposed a coal-to-diesel plant for Dale, Indiana at the same time the world, including the US, is focusing on moving rapidly away from coal to less carbon-intensive natural gas, and then to the carbon-free renewables…

Letter: Attend the next Mid-States Corridor meeting

I am happy to see many Stop the Mid-States Corridor signs in yards across Dubois County. We are a county that cares!  While the signs are great, if you are one that is strongly against this issue, please know we all need to be active and attend any and all meetings and rallies regarding this road….

Letter: Public education matters

Wednesday, February 3, the Indiana House Education Committee, the legislative committee that decides which Education bills will get to the House floor for a vote, will hear testimony on House Bill 1005. This piece of legislation will allow the state to increase the amount of money going to private school vouchers as well as increase…

Opinion: How this recession is unfolding

We approach a full year since the start of the COVID recession. So, it is timely to assess where the recession has turned out differently that seemed likely at the start. Some of the developments are happy, while others are not. I begin by noting that employment in Indiana fell throughout 2019. For much of…