Is the militarization of police making us safer?

The images that make Ferguson, Mo., look like a war zone demonstrate the dangers of militarizing our police forces. The New York Times has developed an interactive map to see precisely where military-grade equipment has been distributed to state and local police. For example, you can see that one grenade launcher has been sent to a law enforcement agency in Blaine and Bannock counties, while one law enforcement agency in Kootenai, Ada and Canyon counties has received a mine-resistant, ambush-protected armored vehicle (MRAP). While many people have heard about the “free” surplus equipment provided to local police forces, they often
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No one is dying from a lack of Medicaid expansion

  Some who advocate Medicaid expansion claim that failing to expand Medicaid will result in thousands of people dying. When translated to Idaho specifically, those estimates typically range from 200-600 people dying every year. While this might be a compelling narrative if it were true, the truth is far less persuasive. The study on which most of these claims are based was methodologically flawed from the beginning. It included data from just three states, two of which showed a decrease in mortality when Medicaid was expanded and one of which showed an increase in mortality when Medicaid was expanded—hardly conclusive.
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IACI seems to be taking dead aim … at itself

The Idaho Association of Commerce and Industry (IACI) appears to be having a change of heart; it now opposes Medicaid expansion. Or so you should assume from its tactics of late. The organization’s political action committee has launched a website berating gubernatorial candidate A.J. Balukoff for supporting Obamacare, among other things. IACI’s new website targeting the Boise Democrat says, “Idahoans know that a federal government ‘solution’ isn’t what we need. We can’t afford a governor who embraces Obama and his failed health care policies.” Balukoff, for his part, does say on his website that he opposes repeal of Obamacare, and
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We can handle the truth: U6, not U3, is real unemployment number

One of my favorite movies is “A Few Good Men.” Probably the most memorable scene in that movie is between Tom Cruise and Jack Nicholson. Cruise, confronting Nicholson on the witness stand during a military hearing, yells “I want the truth!” To which Nicholson replies, “You can’t handle the truth!” Which brings me to unemployment. Really. Well, besides the fact that I will use any excuse to quote from a good movie, it seems the government thinks we can’t handle the truth. Eleven percent. That’s the number of unemployed in Idaho from the third quarter of 2013 through the second
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