Synthetic Drugs, Common Core Results, Progressive Economics and More

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Controlling Synthetic Drugs: One of the most likely causes of the spike in urban violent crime is the steep rise in the use of synthetic drugs. These substances, which are cheap and widely available in high-poverty neighborhoods, are believed to cause some to become unusually violent. The National Alliance for Model State Drug Laws has three model bills here to deal with these “Novel Psychoactive Substances.”

Common Core “Results” Aren’t Actually Test Scores: Over the next couple of months we can expect a flood of PR efforts to tout the results of Common Core standardized tests. But these will be largely misleading because they will reflect subjective lines in the sand, not actual test scores. Read about it on IdeaLog, our blog intended to raise eyebrows and engage minds.

Three Principles of Progressive Economics: Thursday, September 10 @3pm Eastern, 2pm Central, 1pm Mountain, Noon Pacific. Americans generally understand conservative economic principles: free markets are essential, the rich deserve their wealth, the rich are job creators, government should be small and taxes need to be low. How do we push back and talk about progressive economics? Register for the webinar here.

State Earned Income Tax Credits: State EITCs are among the simplest and most effective of anti-poverty measures. Here is a simple explanation of the policy from our friends at the Center for Budget and Policy Priorities.

Auto Insurance Discrimination: Companies charge low-income residents more for auto insurance by increasing rates based on credit scores, occupation and level of education. Some states are now limiting what insurers can consider in calculating premiums, explains the Pew Trust’s Stateline.

Looking for policies to introduce in 2016? Our Progressive Agenda for States and Localities contains hundreds of ideas for new laws on many subjects, including hyperlinks to model bills. It’s all right here.