Maurice McTigue (Photo of courtesy George Mason University)
Maurice McTigue is an interesting man.
He served as a member of parliament and cabinet minister in his native New Zealand, and was his country’s ambassador to Canada. He helped craft pro-growth, market-driven policies to reform the nation’s government and economy, which became so successful that some call the results the “New Zealand miracle.”
Now McTigue shares his vast experience as a consultant to state governments and federal agencies, and as vice president of outreach at the Mercatus Center, a think tank at George Mason University in Arlington, Virginia.
Despite reports from state officials who say our economy is growing and creating jobs, McTigue believes Kentucky needs to do better. In July, he told a state-wide Chamber of Commerce business summit that the Commonwealth should be more competitive with other states when it comes to job creation by becoming more business friendly.
This Sunday at 1 p.m. on KET, I’ll talk with McTigue on One to One. We’ll discuss why Kentucky’s economy isn’t doing better. (The show also airs Tuesday at 7:30 p.m. on KET2.)
I’m eager to hear your thoughts about McTigue’s assessment, and what you think Kentucky can do to better compete with our neighboring states. You can post your comments here, or share them with me on Facebook (billgoodmanKET) or on Twitter (@BillKET). I look forward to hearing from you.
In a speech at Georgetown University last week, the President said we are already feeling the effects of climate change with more severe weather and rising sea levels. As one step to address the issue, Obama called upon the Environmental Protection Agency to develop standards for carbon dioxide emissions from power plants. If enacted, those tougher rules would likely result in Kentucky moving farther away from coal and coal mining.
Over the past two years, a glut of cheaper natural gas has flooded the U.S. energy market. Less coal is being mined, power plants are burning more natural gas, and many environmentalists are pushing for renewable energy sources like solar, wind, and hydroelectric power.
A number of viewers and listeners contacted us Monday night with their comments and questions about the future of coal as an industry and as an energy source for the Commonwealth. Here’s a sample of the conversation.
Tune in Kentucky Tonight next Monday, July 8 at 8 p.m., as we discuss the recently passed Senate immigration bill.
Note from Bill Goodman:We continue our special series with Kentucky’s federal delegation from Washington, D.C., which began airing last week. My colleague Renee Shaw provides the highlights of tonight’s One to One interview with Rep. Thomas Massie which airs on KET tonight at 6:30 ET.
Kentucky’s 4th District Rep. Thomas Massie began his service in Washington under a rare political scenario back in 2012. He won a special and general election on the same day to fill the vacancy left by retiring Congressman Geoff Davis. He was sworn into office immediately after the November election –a trajectory that explains the “freshmore” nomenclature.
In a crowded field of seven Republicans with the Tea Party winds and Greenbacks firmly at his back, Massie bested the two more politically well-heeled candidates: State Rep. Alecia Webb-Edgington and Boone County Judge/Executive Gary Moore for the win last year. If the victory was a surprise to some political observers and pundits, imagine the shrills of disbelief when he refused to back John Boehner as Speaker of the House and subsequently voted ‘no’ on a Hurricane Sandy relief measure. Massie’s maverick moves of going rogue in the Republican Party have earned him the nickname “Mr. No.”
A relative newcomer to politics, Massie earned his first electoral victory in 2010 as Lewis County Judge/Executive. The Massachusetts Institute of Technology (MIT) engineering graduate with two dozen patents under his belt, tells Bill Goodman tonight at 6:30 ET how he relies on his engineering background to analyze legislation. Rep. Massie says he doesn’t operate on intuition, but facts. He adds that his policy making motivations are not to broker deals, but mine solutions. He also complains of the lack of time lawmakers actually are afforded to read bills before acting and how the moniker of “Mr. No” needs some correcting.
Visitors to his Washington office get a blunt reminder of Rep. Massie’s top priority: debt reduction. A large flat screen monitor, showing nothing more than upward-ticking national debt numbers approaching $17 trillion, greets you as you enter his office in the Cannon House building. Assuming a minimalist spartan approach to office decorating that matches his preference for less government spending, the only Kentucky memento to be found is a hemp pillow with “My Old Kentucky Home” embroidered in black stitch. On a coffee table flanking his desk is a prominently displayed press release on hemp paper announcing his introduction of an industrial hemp bill on February 6th of this year. Most members of the Kentucky delegation are backing measures in Congress to legalize hemp or push for a federal waiver to allow Kentucky to grow it.
Bill Goodman talks with Rep. Massie about industrial hemp, immigration, why he thinks the sequester is a clumsy way of dealing with government spending, and why he’s frustrated by what he says are federal lawmakers’ “propensity to abandon ideology to pursue some fixed partisan goal.”
Watch the entire interview tonight at 6:30 ET on KET. Tomorrow night, the special One to One series with Kentucky’s federal delegation continues with Rep. Hal Rogers.