9.21.2011

Probe finds no voter fraud


According to the Sun Journal, voter fraud investigations in Maine have uncovered no cases of wrong doing, but Republican leaders are still challenging that the system is ripe for abuse.
"Our election system is long overdue for a comprehensive reexamination of our methodologies and ways in which we govern our elections," Secretary of State Charlie Summers said during a news conference in his office. "We're still operating on an 1820 law, but this is 2011."
Usually if there are loop holes that can be exploited and have existed even for a relatively small period of time - they get filled pretty quick by the exploiters. If we're following 1820 laws and can still find no examples of abuse, that in and of itself speaks volumes regarding the efficacy of the voting system. I think it's safe to say that there are people out there that would practice voter fraud if they could. But they don't because they can't.

9.15.2011

SMCC confirms need for investment in higher ed


Monday I wrote about my feelings regarding efforts in Maine to retain dying industries. As an alternative, I touched on the need for human capital formation to build a work force compatible with industries the US has a comparative advantage with in the global market. This morning, Portland Press Herald published a jobs skills analysis conducted by Southern Maine Community College that further confirms the need.

9.12.2011

Paper Mills don't present a sustainable solution for Maine


The Portland Press Herald recently published an Op-Ed lauding Gov. LePage's decision to have the state take over a leaky landfill in Millinocket. The move has opened the door for a NH based company to buy and reopen the mills, salvaging at least 200 jobs.

I'm elated for the hundreds of people up north that will benefit, but I don't share the Press Herald's enthusiasm about the deal. They highlight the seemingly daunting alternative:
The mills would have only drawn interest from firms that wanted to dismantle them and send the papermaking machines to India or China. The jobs would have gone with them, and neither would have ever come back.
However, the state's decision amounts to no more than a last ditched effort to save a dying industry. While the machinery and the jobs that go with them won't leave us this year, they'll end up in India or China (or Africa) eventually anyways.