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Entries posted by contributing.writer

Is the current U.S. Supreme Court — or more accurately, a slim majority of justices — pro-business? Some decisions from the just-finished court term led to the “pro-business” label being hurled in an accusatory tone. A recent New York Times analysis quoted Lisa S. Blatt, who served in the solicitor general’s office for 13 years,… Continue Reading The Supreme Court: Business-friendly or not?

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Employees deserve 1-on-1 time

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The most significant gift that any manager can give is the consistent commitment of quality one-to-one time with others. Most of us know that quality time is a necessity in the home, and the principle applies equally to any significant relationship — including in the office. We all are stretched for time, juggling the oversight… Continue Reading Employees deserve 1-on-1 time

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Christopher Buckley wrote a funny novel a decade-and-a-half ago titled, “Thank You for Smoking.” It focused on three lobbyists billing themselves as the MOD (Merchants of Death) Squad, representing the tobacco, alcohol and gun industries. It was an amusing send-up of politics, lobbying, and neo-Puritan political correctness focused on “sins” as defined by the political… Continue Reading Sin taxes hurt business and society in general

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Streetcars can help Springs’ economy

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Bring back a streetcar to Colorado Springs? Why would we want to do that? What could an electric streetcar do for Colorado Springs? A citizen group, the Colorado Springs Streetcar Task Force, asked those same questions in January 2009. The task force undertook a streetcar feasibility study, the first step in a formal planning process… Continue Reading Streetcars can help Springs’ economy

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Removing barriers to change

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Even as the global recession gradually recedes, our volatile economy makes change unavoidable for all of us. Whether it’s lingering high unemployment, rollercoaster financial markets or political turmoil, the landscape for leaders keeps shifting — and most of us are quite uncomfortable in it. That’s understandable. Change, after all, entails risk and conflict. It brings… Continue Reading Removing barriers to change

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Based on various polls, it’s clear that solid majorities of voters are worried about federal government spending, debt and taxes, and related to all of that, where the economy is headed. As a result, incumbents feel uneasy heading into the November elections, especially with the Tea Party movement generating political uncertainty. However, one of the… Continue Reading Business experience can help, hurt candidates

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I don’t attend a lot of events in my official capacity as city councilman. I hope most of the hosts don’t take it personally. Not an evening or morning or lunch hour would be free if I made it a habit. And the dry cleaning bills would gobble up my fat council paycheck. I probably… Continue Reading Chamber has lost its way with pot position

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Broad participation needed for 6035 success

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By Phil Lane If you look up the word “renaissance,” you find “rebirth” or “revitalization.” The renaissance, as a period of history, ran from the 14th to 17th centuries, when the arts, culture and science underwent a rebirth and again began to flourish. A central theme to this time period was that communities began a… Continue Reading Broad participation needed for 6035 success

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‘Energizers’ create sense of urgency

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Leaders in all industries are discovering that energy plays a critical role in individual, team and organizational performance. As leadership expert Richard Neslund puts it, “Energy is the fuel that powers the engines of performance.” Consider this: Researchers from IBM’s Institute for Knowledge-Based Management, the University of Michigan, and the University of Virginia collaboratively studied… Continue Reading ‘Energizers’ create sense of urgency

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NASCAR fans better at economics than most

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As an economist dealing with public policy issues, and teaching business and economics classes at the graduate level, I often wonder why some people grasp basic economic principles while others don’t. After explaining the economics of a policy issue, for example, it’s not unusual for a student to say, “But I feel differently.” Indeed, from… Continue Reading NASCAR fans better at economics than most

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