CEI Daily Update

Issues in the News



The House of Representatives prepares for a vote to override President Bush’s veto of the children’s health insurance plan known as “SCHIP”.   

CEI Expert Available to Comment: Policy Analyst Michelle Minton on how taxpayer-funded insurance crowds out private providers:

“The whole point of SCHIP is to increase the availability of care for children, but studies show that an increasing presence of government provided insurance, which can offer better rates than private, will actually decrease the availability of insurance by decreasing competition. According to a study by the congressional budget office, ‘for every 100 children who enroll as a result of SCHIP, there is a corresponding reduction in private coverage of between 25 and 50 children.’”



South Carolina reforms insurance regulation to expand coverage in storm-prone coastal areas.

CEI Expert Available to Comment: Senior Fellow Eli Lehrer on the ideas behind the South Carolina plan:


“In early 2007, South Carolina created a new system for windstorm insurance: It expanded a long-existing state-run wind pool and introduced a number of tax credits to help individuals purchase policies in the private market and mitigate against storm damage while providing modest tax subsidies for private companies willing to write “full coverage” wind insurance. Relative to those implemented in other hurricane-prone states, this set of reforms seems more likely to unleash market forces in a way that makes insurance more affordable for much of the state’s population.”



Expanded ethanol production is blamed for rising food prices.

CEI Expert Available to Comment: Adjunct Analyst Steve Milloy on ethanol and subsidies:


““We acknowledge that stupid subsidies exist, they are pork and pork is part of politics.  We understand that even if we don’t like it.  Ethanol advocates declare in the most sanctimonious manner imaginable that ethanol isn’t pork, that it is, in fact, the morally, socially, economically, environmentally-sound fuel of the future.  They verge on hysteria when they tell you about the so-called Brazilian miracle, which actually boils down to fueling cheap, tiny cars in 2 Brazilian cities.  They become apoplectic over the carbon imprint of gasoline, conveniently forgetting how much fossil fuel is needed to produce their miracle fuel.  They sold ethanol to the public not as pork, but as the fuel that will transform industrial economies and make the world a better place.  Now, Bob Dinneen of the Renewable Fuels Association is on the verge of a hissy fit demanding governmental protection and financial assistance to protect his lobby from an “insidious campaign” of his critics.  Dinneen doesn’t understand that when you change the image of a product from pork to a marketable item, the marketplace decides what to do with it.  He needs to calm down, stop the rent-seeking and convince Wall Street that ethanol isn’t an organic black hole.”


Blog feature: For more news and analysis, updated throughout the day, visit CEI’s blog, Open Market.



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