New Study Ranks Tennessee Roads in Top 10 List of ‘Most Dangerous’ in the Country

New research by 1-800 Injured shows that Tennessee roads rank as some of the most dangerous in the country. For the study, states were ranked based on an index of fatality rates per 100,000 people, per 100 million vehicle miles traveled, and per 100,000 licensed drivers to determine a “Road Danger Rating”.

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Governor Lamont Awards Contract for Study to Ensure ‘Equitable Outcomes’

Connecticut Governor Ned Lamont announced on Monday a new contract that was awarded to Griffin & Strong, P.C, a law and public policy consulting firm in Atlanta, Georgia.

The contract will give the group almost $900,000 for an “independent disparity study relative to the State of Connecticut’s contracting practices and procedures.”

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Study Recommends ‘Dynamic Upgrades’ to Address Disparities in Michigan’s Per-Pupil School Funding

Ben DeGrow

Asserting “student aid should take precedence over school aid,” a new study seeks to address among other topics the funding disparities between traditional public schools and charter school academies.

Released earlier this week, “From School Aid to Student Aid” was written by Ben DeGrow, Education Policy director at the Mackinac Center for Public Policy.

DeGrow notes the COVID-19 pandemic played a significant role in parents selecting alternatives to publicly funded schools for their children. He also says schools are recognizing the effects of declining birth rates.

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Study Finds Nashville Crime Rate as One of the Highest in the Country

In a new study conducted by WalletHub, the city of Nashville ranked fourth overall in having the highest crime rates per 1,000 residents among state capitals in the country. According to the study’s findings, Little Rock, Arkansas ranked the highest for crime while Concord, New Hampshire was the lowest. Following Little Rock is Salt Lake City, Utah, Baton Rouge, Louisiana, Nashville, and then Charleston, West Virginia.

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U.S. Economy Adds Just 199,000 Jobs in December, Far Below Expectations

Man in a hard hat pointing his finger

The U.S. economy recorded an increase of 199,000 jobs in December and the unemployment dipped to 3.9%, the U.S. Bureau of Labor Statistics (BLS) announced Friday.

Total non-farm payroll employment increased by 199,000 in December, according to the BLS, and the number of unemployed Americans dipped to 6.3 million. Economists surveyed by The Wall Street Journal projected the economy to add 422,000 jobs in December and for unemployment to fall to 4.1%.

December’s jobs report leaves the U.S. economy with roughly 6.5 million more jobs than at the end of 2020 but still 3.5 million short of pre-pandemic levels.

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Commentary: The Biggest Junk Science of 2021

Doctor with protective gloves handling vaccine

Just as it did last year, the most dangerous pandemic in a century spawned all sorts of junk science in 2021, running the gamut from pure quackery to ideology-fueled misinformation. Unfortunately, it’s not always easy to spot junk science, especially when it’s disguised in techno-babble or parroted by governments, doctors, or other traditionally trusted sources. This sneakiness, combined with the unprecedented stress of a novel, highly-infectious disease, makes almost anyone prone to falling for BS.

To help identify junk science in the future, it’s useful to showcase junk science from the present and past. Here are six of the worst examples from this year:

6. Star NFL Quarterback Aaron Rodgers Was ‘Immunized’ Against COVID-19 With Homeopathy. Through much of the NFL season, Green Bay Packers starting quarterback Aaron Rodgers led reporters and fans to believe that he had been vaccinated against COVID-19. But when Rodgers was diagnosed with the illness in early November, it was revealed that he had not in fact been vaccinated, but rather had been ‘immunized’ with a homeopathic remedy. Homeopathy is a ridiculous, utterly disproven pseudoscience based on the magical notions that “like cures like” and that water can ‘remember’ the essence of a substance. Furthermore, according to practitioners, diluting a substance down to infinitesimal, often nonexistent amounts actually makes the homeopathic remedy stronger. In keeping with this fairytale logic, Rodgers likely imbibed a homeopathic potion (essentially just water) that before dilution may have had some sort of virus in it, and claimed that it raised his antibody levels, rendering him ‘immunized’. It’s utter nonsense.

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Commentary: Americans Believe Damaging Sleep Myths

Woman sleeping

A new survey suggests that at least half of Americans fall for a number of sleep myths, some of them quite damaging for sleep health.

Assistant Teaching Professor Elizabeth Pantesco and Associate Professor Irene Kan, both in the Department of Psychological & Brain Sciences at Villanova University, spearheaded the research, which was recently published to the journal Sleep Health.

The duo surveyed 1,120 adults residing in the United States via CloudResearch’s Prime Panels. Participants were queried about their demographics, then asked whether they agreed or disagreed with twenty statements about sleep, for example, “Watching television in bed is a good way to relax before sleep” and “For sleeping, it is better to have a warmer bedroom than a cooler bedroom.” Unbeknownst to them, the statements were all widely recognized as myths by sleep experts.

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Healthcare Activists Push for Policies to Hardwire Marxism in Medicine

Healthcare worker in hair net and mask on

The Biden administration proposed giving bonus payments to physicians who acknowledge systemic racism as the primary cause of health differences between racial groups and incorporate so-called “anti-racism” into their medical practices.

The move to pressure healthcare professionals to repeat the claim that racial health disparities are caused by racism and not lifestyle choices is part of a broader, years-long push to hardwire “race Marxism” into the medical field. The effort stretches from medical schools and research institutions to patient care and medical administration, with potentially devastating effects for patients and the healthcare system as a whole.

“Race Marxism,” analogous to “anti-racism” as popularized by Ibram X. Kendi, seeks to promote equal outcomes across racial groups, as opposed to a “colorblind” approach which favors equal opportunity and does not take race into account.

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Commentary: Falling Unemployment Rate Is Entirely Due to Minnesotans Leaving the Labor Force

man in yellow hardhat and work jacket

‘Minnesota job growth outpaces US, unemployment at 3.3%‘– Duluth News Tribune

‘Jobless rate in Minn. hits pre-pandemic level‘ – MPR News

‘Minnesota jobless rate falls to 3.3%, lowest since pre-pandemic‘ – Fox 9

‘Minnesota Unemployment Rate Fell in November‘– Twin Cities Business

(Center of the American Experiment) — These were some of the headlines in Minnesota’s media covering the monthly jobs data from the Bureau of Labor Statistics (BLS). They paint a pretty rosy picture. So what was the Minneapolis/St. Paul Business Journal reporting with this headline: ‘Minnesota unemployment rate continues to drop, but labor force concerns grow‘?

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37 Percent of Democrats in College Say They Refuse to be Friends with a Republican Voter

A man with a track backpack walks across the BYU campus in autumn.

New polling from Axios and Generation Lab shows that Democrat college students are far more likely than their Republican classmates to refuse to date, work for, or even be friends with someone who voted for the other party’s presidential candidate.

71 percent of Democrats in college said they would not go on a date with someone who voted for the GOP presidential candidate. 41 percent would not shop at a business owned by the same. 37 percent would not be friends with someone who voted for that candidate, and 30 percent would not work for that person.

Republicans in college were far more tolerant of those with differing views. Though 31 percent said they would not go on a date with someone who voted for the opposing presidential candidate, only 7 percent said they would not work for or support a business owned by the same. 5 percent of Republicans in college said they would not be friends with someone who voted for the Democratic presidential ticket.

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New Study Suggests Natural Immunity Is More Protective over Time Than COVID-19 Vaccine

According to a new study out of Israel, the immunity individuals experience after recovering from COVID-19 is better than the protection experienced by individuals following an immunization against the virus.

Scientists who looked at the country’s health database over a number of months found that COVID infections and severe illness were higher among individuals who were vaccinated than those who recovered from the illness – those with natural immunity.

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COVID Survivors with Natural Immunity at Low Risk for Reinfection or Severe Symptoms, Study Finds

Patients who survived COVID-19 have such strong natural immunity that their chance of reinfection or serious side effects is minimal, according to a new study published in The New England Journal of Medicine.

The study conducted by researchers in Qatar reviewed global databases for 353,000 coronavirus patients who were infected between Feb. 28, 2020 and April 28, 2021.

The researchers excluded about 87,500 people who were vaccinated, and found of the remaining population only 1,304 got reinfected, with none requiring ICU hospitalization.

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Report: Minneapolis Carjackings Increased by More Than 289 Percent Since 2019

Cars in a parking garage at night

One Minneapolis man has taken pains to record all reported carjackings since 2020 on an interactive map.

Resident Steve Taylor created the map on Maps.co. It gives users the coordinates where each carjacking occurred, dates and times when they occurred, and even the distance between the locations of the previous and next carjackings.

Red pins indicate carjackings in 2021, while yellow pins indicate carjackings in 2020.

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Internal Poll Shows Trump up in Five Pivotal Swing States

An internal poll shows former President Donald Trump up in the five states that President Joe Biden flipped as he flirts with a third White House bid in 2024.

Biden flipped Wisconsin, Michigan, Pennsylvania, Arizona and Georgia in 2020, handing him a decisive 306-232 Electoral College victory over Trump. But Trump’s internal poll shows him up in all five and leading in some by double-digits.

Trump leads Biden by 10 points in Wisconsin, 12 points in Michigan, six points in Pennsylvania, eight points in Arizona and three points in Georgia, according to the poll. Biden won all five states by less than three points in 2020.

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Commentary: The Navy’s New Emphasis on ‘Diversity’ Puts the Nation at Risk

group of Navy members sitting on bleachers

After the 2020 summer of riots, the U.S. Navy’s Chief of Naval Operations stood up Task Force One Navy (TF1N) on July 1, 2020. After a six-month effort, the final 142-page report was submitted on January 28, 2021 Its two operating assumptions are, first, that the Navy, as an institution, is systemically racist, and, second, that “Mission readiness is stronger when diverse strengths are used and differing perspectives are applied.” Notwithstanding several key military principles—such as unit cohesion, strict discipline across the chain of command, and, well, uniforms—the Navy is now ideologically committed to the mantra that “diversity is strength.”

Not surprisingly, considering the key entering assumptions, the task force report identified problems with Navy systems, climate, and culture; and submitted almost 60 recommendations aligned with four lines of inquiry: Recruiting, Talent Management/Retention, Professional Development, and Innovation and STEM (as well as a fifth line for miscellaneous recommendations).

One should be skeptical, however, about the entire exercise and the recommendations that flow from it. It inaccurately depicts the proud institution of the United States Navy as systemically racist—a slander that has more potential to undermine morale, good order, discipline, and military effectiveness than any geostrategic adversary. 

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Poll: Vast Majority of Americans Want to See Political Change

Woman holding sign that says "Our future's on the line"

A significant majority of Americans see the need for changes to their political system, a Thursday Pew Research Center poll found.

At least 85% of Americans polled stated that their political system “needs to be completely reformed” or “needs major changes,” according to the poll. Meanwhile, 66% of Americans saw the need for change or reform in the U.S. economic system and 76% saw the need for transformation in the healthcare system, the poll found.

Less than half of respondents expressed satisfaction with U.S. democracy, while 58% said they were “not satisfied,” according to the poll. Pew Research Center noted that “Dissatisfaction with functioning of democracy is linked to concerns about the economy, the pandemic and social divisions.”

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Nearly 47 Percent of Americans Think Natural Immunity to COVID-19 as Effective as Getting Vaccinated, Poll

Person in green protective gear in lab with safety glasses and mask on

Nearly half of Americans believe natural immunity to COVID-19 is as effective as the getting vaccinated, according to a new Convention of States Action/ Trafalgar Group poll.

Among the roughly 1,000 respondents in the national survey of likely 2020 voters, 46.5% said they believe people who have recovered from COVID with natural immunity from antibodies have the same level of protection as those that are fully vaccinated.

The survey was conducted from Oct. 7-10, as the public debate continues over government-mandated vaccines and the efficacy of the shots and masks.

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New Study Sounds the Alarm on Students’ ‘Self-Reported Cognitive Distortions,’ Support of ‘Trigger Warnings,’ and ‘Safetyism’

College student studying

A recent study examined the association between college students’ “self-reported prevalence of cognitive distortions and their endorsement of safetyism-inspired beliefs, the belief that words can harm, and the broad use of trigger warnings.”

Published in the journal Personality and Individual Differences, the article utilizes the definition of “safetyism” found in the book The Coddling of the American Mind, intending the term to mean a “culture that treats safety – including emotional safety – as a sacred value, which results in adherents diminished willingness to sacrifice safety for other moral or practical considerations.”

The four-person research team included three members from the University of California, Irvine, including the lead author, and one investigator from St. Edward’s University in Texas. 

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Biden Tax Proposal Would Cost Arizona Thousands of Jobs: Report

President Joe Biden’s proposal to increase the United States’ Global Intangible Low-Tax Income (GILTI) tax will lead to job losses at 266 public companies in Arizona, according to research from Arizona State University. 

The proposal doubles the GILTI rate to 21% from 10.5%. Ninety-four percent of U.S manufacturers believe the increase will harm their business, according to a National Association of Manufacturers (NAM)survey on Sept. 9. 

The study by the Seidman Institute at ASU’s W. P. Carey School of Business and Ernst & Young’s Quantitative Economic and Statistics Team (QUEST) said the tax “is specifically targeted at the income earned by foreign affiliates of those companies from intangible assets including intellectual property such as patents, trademarks, and copyrights.” 

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Marijuana Use Soaring Among College Students While Alcohol Use Drops, Study Finds

two people passing a blunt

Marijuana use among college students has surged while alcohol use dropped, according to a recent National Institute of Health and National Institute of Drug Abuse study.

The “Monitoring the Future” study found that 44% of college students said they used marijuana in 2020, an increase from 38% in 2015. More, “daily” or “near daily” marijuana use among college students increased from 5% to 8% over the last five years.

The number of college students who said they consumed alcohol, on the other hand, dipped from over 62% in 2019 to 56% in 2020, according to the report. Binge drinking among college students, defined as having five or more drinks in one outing, decreased from 32% in 2019 to 24% in 2020.

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An Analytical Review of the Central Scientific Facts About the Efficacy of Face Masks and Claims They Reduce the Transmission of COVID-19

In a terse essay titled “Science and Dictatorship,” Albert Einstein warned that “Science can flourish only in an atmosphere of free speech.” And on his deathbed, Einstein cautioned, “Whoever is careless with the truth in small matters cannot be trusted in important affairs.”

With reckless disregard for both of those principles, powerful government officials and big tech executives have corrupted or suppressed the central scientific facts about face masks. The impacts of this extend far beyond the issue of masks and have caused widespread harm and countless deaths.

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Hunger Didn’t Rise During Pandemic Thanks to Government Programs, Study Says

Two men in grocery aisle, shopping

The expansion of several government programs last year likely prevented hunger from rising despite the sudden economic downturn caused by the pandemic, a study showed.

The percentage of U.S. households that reported food insecurity was virtually unchanged in 2020 compared to the year prior despite the recession, according to a report from the Department of Agriculture’s Economic Research Service released Wednesday. More than 20.5 million Americans lost their jobs in April 2020 as state and local officials implemented strict restrictions on business activity to curb the spread of coronavirus, Labor Department data showed.

“This is huge news — it shows you how much of a buffer we had from an expanded safety net,” Urban Institute researcher Elaine Waxman told The New York Times. “There was no scenario in March of 2020 where I thought food insecurity would stay flat for the year. The fact that it did is extraordinary.”

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The Number of White People in America Has Declined for the First Time Since 1790

Crowd of people walking in New York City near the subway

The number of white people in the United States has dropped for the first time since 1790, according to new data from the 2020 Census.

Data from the 2020 count of people living in America shows that the country has become substantially more ethnically diverse, particularly in the under-18 category. Additionally, the country’s population grew 7.4% in the last ten years, a slower rate than any decade since the 1930s.

The numbers indicate that growth in the American population for the last decade has been driven by minority populations. While whites still make up a little less than 58% of the American population, that figure dropped below 60% for the first time since the census-taking began.

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Majority of Independent Voters Says Federal Government Reporting on COVID Vaccines Is Biased

COVID Testing station

Anew poll conducted by the Trafalgar Group in association with Convention of States Action, finds that Americans are losing confidence in the ability of the federal government to present unbiased information about COVID-19 vaccine efficacy.

Just over half of U.S. voters are, at this point, not confident that the federal government is reporting unbiased information related to the Covid-19 vaccines; 44.5% remain confident in the government’s ability to do so.

Those figures are further broken down by political affiliation to reveal that among Independents, the feds are underwater. Among the politically unaffiliated or affiliated with a non-mainstream party, 53.4% of voters said they are not confident in the unbiased nature of government vaccine information – 40% of those polled specified they were “not confident at all.”

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U.S. Economy Added Whopping 943,000 Jobs in July as Recovery Accelerates

Group of people gathered, talking next to an office desk

The U.S. economy reported an increase of 943,000 jobs in July and the unemployment rate fell to 5.4%, according to Department of Labor data released Friday.

Total non-farm payroll employment increased by 850,000 in July, according to the Bureau of Labor Statistics report, and the number of unemployed persons decreased to 8.7 million. Economists projected 845,000 Americans would be added to payrolls prior to Friday’s report, The Wall Street Journal reported.

“The jobs recovery is continuing, but it’s different in character to any we’ve seen before,” payroll software firm ADP economist Nela Richardson told the WSJ. “I had been looking at September as a point when we could gain momentum—with schools back in session and vaccines widely available. But with the delta variant, we need to rethink that.”

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Study: Democrats’ Capital Gains Tax Hike Could Cost More Than 745,000 Jobs

Chris Van Hollen

A new Democratic proposal to increase the capital gains tax could cost 745,000 jobs, a study published by the Regional Economic Models Inc. (REMI) projects.

The Sensible Taxation and Equity Promotion (STEP) Act, which would tax unrealized capital gains when heirs inherit assets, among other things, would have a “significantly negative impact” on the economy, including average job losses of 745,000 over 10 years, the report found.

The analysis, conducted for the Committee to Unleash Prosperity, found that sustained annual job losses from eliminating a tax benefit on appreciated assets known as the step-up in basis could eliminate between 537,000 to 949,000 jobs, with models predicting a base of 745,000 lost jobs through 2030.

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Commentary: Historians Selling Out for Leftist Star, Nikole Hannah-Jones

Nikole Hannah-Jones

The University of North Carolina’s decision on June 30 to offer tenure to Nikole Hannah-Jones came about through a torrent of threats (often tweeted), profanities, doxxings, and assaults—tactics that have become increasingly commonplace among professional activists and racial grievance-mongers.

Hannah-Jones, of course, is the Pulitzer Prize-winning opinion writer and architect of the New York Times’ notorious “1619 Project,” which claims that America’s true founding was not in 1776 but rather in 1619, when 20 or so African slaves arrived in Virginia. Hannah-Jones contends, moreover, that the American War of Independence was fought solely to preserve slavery. 

More than two-dozen credible historians, many of them political liberals and leftists, have debunked Hannah-Jones’ claims. Though, as we’ll see, some are less firm in their convictions than others. What’s clear, however, is that peer review is passé in the era of “diversity, equity, and inclusion.” Forget a stellar record of scholarly accomplishment—that’s a relic of “Eurocentrism.” Far more important these days is a candidate’s enthusiasm for social justice. It was Hannah-Jones’ celebrity activism and her “journalism,” not her scholarship, that formed the basis for the university’s initial offer of tenure earlier in the spring.

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Facebook Faces Lawsuit for Suspending User Who Cited Lack of Evidence for Masking Children

Blonde child wearing hair up, holding journal and wearing a mask

An influential COVID policy skeptic is threatening to sue Facebook for suspending his account based on a graphic he posted Tuesday, titled “Masking Children is Impractical and Not Backed by Research or Real World Data.”

Justin Hart was identified in a recent MIT paper as one of a handful of “anchors” for the anti-mask network on Twitter. He’s also chief data analyst for the COVID contrarian website Rational Ground.

A warning letter to Facebook from Hart’s lawyers at the Liberty Justice Center said the graphic was “science-based and contains footnotes to scientific evidence supporting its claims.” Facebook issued him a three-day suspension the next day, citing the post as misinformation. The page remains live but the post is no longer there.

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Minneapolis Has Experienced One of the Largest Homicide Increases in the Nation, Study Finds

A new study found that Minneapolis experienced the fifth-highest increase in homicides in the nation between 2019 to 2021.

The overall rankings were based on both a city’s current homicide rate and the change in its number of homicides across the last two years. Minneapolis landed in the 11th position overall, behind cities like New Orleans, Cincinnati, Baltimore, Philadelphia, and Detroit, according to the WalletHub survey.

From the second quarter of 2019 to the second quarter of 2021, the city of lakes saw the fifth-highest increase in per capita homicides in the nation. In this time, Minneapolis endured the death of George Floyd, unprecedented levels of rioting, mass unemployment caused by COVID-19 lockdowns, and a political assault on its police department.

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Study: Ohio COVID-19 Vaccine Lottery Failed to Increase Rates

Giving away millions of federal tax dollars and hundreds of thousands of dollars in college scholarships did nothing to improve Ohio’s COVID-19 vaccination rate, a recent study concluded.

Those results have Democratic leaders saying the state needs to do more to address vaccine hesitancy and deal with what they call root causes of Ohio’s stagnant vaccination rate.

The study, conducted by the Boston University School of Medicine using information from the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention, concluded reports that the state’s Vax-a-Million lottery program increased rates failed to factor in vaccinations expanded to ages 12-15.

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STUDY: Anxiety From Reactions to COVID-19 Will Destroy at Least Seven Times More Years of Life Than Can Be Saved by Lockdowns

One of the most important principles of epidemiology is weighing benefits and harms. A failure to do this can make virtually any medical treatment seem helpful or destructive. In the words of Ronald C. Kessler of the Harvard Medical School and healthcare economist Paul E. Greenberg, “medical interventions are appropriate only if their expected benefits clearly exceed the sum of their direct costs and their expected risks.”

Likewise, a 2020 paper about quarantines published in The Lancet states: “Separation from loved ones, the loss of freedom, uncertainty over disease status, and boredom can, on occasion, create dramatic effects. Suicide has been reported, substantial anger generated, and lawsuits brought following the imposition of quarantine in previous outbreaks. The potential benefits of mandatory mass quarantine need to be weighed carefully against the possible psychological costs.”

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The Long, Ignoble History of the ‘Homeless Industrial Complex’ in America

by Edward Ring   In his final speech from the White House in January 1961, President Dwight D. Eisenhower warned the nation that the military had joined with the arms industry and had acquired unwarranted influence over American politics. His term for this alliance was the “military industrial complex.” Since that time,…

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Report: Ohio Prison Population Still Growing Despite Bipartisan Criminal Justice Reform

Despite bipartisan calls for a reduction in the prison population and a slew of laws aimed at doing just that, a new report released this week has found that the prison population of Ohio has continued to climb over the past decade. Since 2011, the state has passed several new…

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Study: After a Generation Lost to the Opioid Epidemic, Ohio is Among the Few Hardest Hit to See Signs of Recovery

According to a study released Friday, Ohio is among the 8 states with the highest overall rates of opioid-related deaths in the 18-year span from 1998-2016. However the study also suggests that among those states hardest hit, Ohio is seeing a drop in opioid-related deaths in 2018. Connecticut, Illinois, Indiana, Massachusetts, Maryland,…

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$87 Million Government-Run Pre-Kindergarten in Tennessee Failing Kids, Report Says

Teacher and Kids

A report examining findings from a randomized controlled trial of Tennessee’s $87 million voluntary prekindergarten program for low-income children casts doubt on its effectiveness. Indeed, the report’s authors say the data show adverse effects on math and science achievements.

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Study: Pro-Trump Tweets Swamped Clinton’s in Michigan

Tennessee Star

  Voters in Michigan received nearly three times as many Twitter messages favoring Donald Trump from their fellow Michiganders in early November compared with posts supporting Hillary Clinton, a British research team found. Among the politically related messages that included links to content from Nov. 1-11, nearly as many shared…

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