As regular visitors to our Web site know, we post new Current Comments — “CCs” — five days a week. Current Comments provide the Mackinac Center with a unique forum for addressing breaking issues, such as September’s county property tax controversy, or for reflecting on important topics, such as the perennially disputed “Proposal A.”
During this holiday week, we are offering a year-end retrospective. The following is a list of the 25 Current Comments that generated the highest rates of traffic at our Web site among the articles posted in 2004.1 Please note that these are opinion pieces; we have excluded Current Comments that were primarily news-driven — for example, Michigan Education Digest, or the Center's news releases. The five news releases that drew the most intense interest this year are listed underneath the Current Comments below.
One final note: In looking back at the successes of 2004, we would be remiss not to mention two Mackinac Center staff who don’t get bylines, but help make our Current Comments a truly dynamic forum. LeAnn K. Hadley, the Mackinac Center administrative assistant who serves as our “Web secretary,” deftly manages a constant flow of text, while helping maintain an error-free format and graciously accommodating last-minute requests. Daniel E. Montgomery, our graphic arts manager, routinely surprises us with the freshness and vigor of the visuals he creates to enhance our Current Comments and bring them to our readers' attention. Our hats are off!
"Tax Cut Stories Miss the Picture," by John R. LaPlante
"Undereducated Today, Outsourced Tomorrow?" by Andrew J. Coulson
"County Tax Shift: It Quacks, It Waddles; It’s a Duck," by Jack McHugh
"Union Subjects Religious Objector to Modern-Day Inquisition," by Dale D. Buss
"Playing Monopoly With Detroit’s Kids," by Andrew J. Coulson
"Make America Safer by Making Government Smaller," by Lawrence W. Reed
"Storm Drain," by Justin W. Marshall
"Pivotal? Probably Not," by Lawrence W. Reed
"Government Policies Make Gas Situation Worse," by John R. LaPlante
"AFL-CIO Says: Union Rules Hurt Us," by John R. LaPlante
"Are Jobs the Object?" by Dr. Gary L. Wolfram
"Why Socialized Health Care in Canada Is Not the Model to Follow," by Dennis Owens
"Home Schooling: An 'Encouraging and Robust' Movement," by Tait Trussell
"Are Targeted Incentives Constitutional?" by Michael D. LaFaive and Jeffery Weeden
"Dancing Around Education: A 170-Year Waltz With Reform," by Brian L. Carpenter
"Asian Food for Thought," by Andrew J. Coulson
"Adam Smith’s Principles of a Proper Tax System," by Jack McHugh
"Alexander Graham Bell Meets George Eastman," by Lawrence W. Reed
"Strange Lessons in School Discipline," by Andrew J. Coulson
"Is Affirmative Action the Right Fight?" by Andrew J. Coulson
"Sinful Sin Taxes," by Michael D. LaFaive
"Earth Day, Not Doomsday," by Russ Harding
"Spurring Economic Growth and Jobs in Michigan," by Michael D. LaFaive
"Political Correctness Suppresses Education," by Tait Trussell
"'Proposal A,' 10 Years Later," by Lawrence W. Reed
1 Weighing Web traffic invariably requires some rough assumptions, since articles that were posted at different times of the year must be compared to each other on an equal footing. Most of the pieces listed here, however, would appear on a list of our top Current Comments under any set of reasonable assumptions.
Thomas A. Shull is senior editor for the Mackinac Center for Public Policy, a research and educational institute headquartered in Midland, Mich.