Thursday, September 16, 2010

How Obama Thinks (Forbes Magazine)

From Forbes Magazine comes this insightful analysis of the policies of Barack Hussein Obama, by Dinesh D'Souza. A couple of paragraphs will give you the flavor, but read the entire article.
Barack Obama is the most antibusiness president in a generation, perhaps in American history. Thanks to him the era of big government is back. Obama runs up taxpayer debt not in the billions but in the trillions. He has expanded the federal government's control over home mortgages, investment banking, health care, autos and energy. The Weekly Standardsummarizes Obama's approach as omnipotence at home, impotence abroad.
Theories abound to explain the President's goals and actions. Critics in the business community--including some Obama voters who now have buyer's remorse--tend to focus on two main themes. The first is that Obama is clueless about business. The second is that Obama is a socialist--not an out-and-out Marxist, but something of a European-style socialist, with a penchant for leveling and government redistribution.
These theories aren't wrong so much as they are inadequate. Even if they could account for Obama's domestic policy, they cannot explain his foreign policy. The real problem with Obama is worse--much worse. But we have been blinded to his real agenda because, across the political spectrum, we all seek to fit him into some version of American history. In the process, we ignore Obama's own history.
It may seem incredible to suggest that the anticolonial ideology of Barack Obama Sr. is espoused by his son, the President of the United States. That is what I am saying. From a very young age and through his formative years, Obama learned to see America as a force for global domination and destruction. He came to view America's military as an instrument of neocolonial occupation. He adopted his father's position that capitalism and free markets are code words for economic plunder. Obama grew to perceive the rich as an oppressive class, a kind of neocolonial power within America. In his worldview, profits are a measure of how effectively you have ripped off the rest of society, and America's power in the world is a measure of how selfishly it consumes the globe's resources and how ruthlessly it bullies and dominates the rest of the planet.
Rejecting the socialist formula, Obama has shown no intention to nationalize the investment banks or the health sector. Rather, he seeks to decolonize these institutions, and this means bringing them under the government's leash. That's why Obama retains the right to refuse bailout paybacks--so that he can maintain his control. For Obama, health insurance companies on their own are oppressive racketeers, but once they submitted to federal oversight he was happy to do business with them. He even promised them expanded business as a result of his law forcing every American to buy health insurance.
Obama supports the Ground Zero mosque because to him 9/11 is the event that unleashed the American bogey and pushed us into Iraq and Afghanistan. He views some of the Muslims who are fighting against America abroad as resisters of U.S. imperialism. Certainly that is the way the Lockerbie bomber Abdel Baset al-Megrahi portrayed himself at his trial. Obama's perception of him as an anticolonial resister would explain why he gave tacit approval for this murderer of hundreds of Americans to be released from captivity.
Clearly the anticolonial ideology of Barack Obama Sr. goes a long way to explain the actions and policies of his son in the Oval Office. And we can be doubly sure about his father's influence because those who know Obama well testify to it. His "granny" Sarah Obama (not his real grandmother but one of his grandfather's other wives) told Newsweek, "I look at him and I see all the same things--he has taken everything from his father. The son is realizing everything the father wanted. The dreams of the father are still alive in the son."
In his own writings Obama stresses the centrality of his father not only to his beliefs and values but to his very identity. He calls his memoir "the record of a personal, interior journey--a boy's search for his father and through that search a workable meaning for his life as a black American." And again, "It was into my father's image, the black man, son of Africa, that I'd packed all the attributes I sought in myself." Even though his father was absent for virtually all his life, Obama writes, "My father's voice had nevertheless remained untainted, inspiring, rebuking, granting or withholding approval. You do not work hard enough, Barry. You must help in your people's struggle. Wake up, black man!"
Colonialism today is a dead issue. No one cares about it except the man in the White House. He is the last anticolonial. Emerging market economies such as China, India, Chile and Indonesia have solved the problem of backwardness; they are exploiting their labor advantage and growing much faster than the U.S. If America is going to remain on top, we have to compete in an increasingly tough environment.
But instead of readying us for the challenge, our President is trapped in his father's time machine. Incredibly, the U.S. is being ruled according to the dreams of a Luo tribesman of the 1950s. This philandering, inebriated African socialist, who raged against the world for denying him the realization of his anticolonial ambitions, is now setting the nation's agenda through the reincarnation of his dreams in his son. The son makes it happen, but he candidly admits he is only living out his father's dream. The invisible father provides the inspiration, and the son dutifully gets the job done. America today is governed by a ghost.
Dinesh D'Souza is president of the King's College in New York City

Monday, August 30, 2010

Who is this guy?

Peggy Noonan raises the questions that most Americans have already been pondering in their own minds for the past couple of years. A quote from her column, dated August 27, 2010:
When the American people have looked at the presidents of the past few decades they could always sort of say, "I know that guy." Bill Clinton: Southern governor. Good ol' boy, drawlin', flirtin', got himself a Fulbright. "I know that guy." George W. Bush: Texan, little rough around the edges, good family, youthful high jinks, stopped drinking, got serious. "I know that guy." Ronald Reagan was harder to peg, but you still knew him: small-town Midwesterner, moved on and up, serious about politics, humorous, patriotic. "I know that guy." Barack Obama? Sleek, cerebral, detached, an academic from Chicago by way of Hawaii and Indonesia. "You know what? I don't know that guy!"
Who among us can say that they really have an understanding of who he is, what he thinks, where he comes from?

Wednesday, February 17, 2010

The Failure of Liberal Governance

From the Wall Street Journal today:
To fix the economy, Democrats sent federal spending to peacetime heights in the name of replacing private investment with "public demand." But instead of spurring recovery, this spending spree has retarded it by frightening the public and business about future tax increases and the rising burden of public debt. The new jobs Democrats promised still haven't arrived, and while the recovery should finally produce job growth this year, Americans know they have received little for their $862 billion in "stimulus."

The rest of Mr. Obama's liberal agenda has foundered on its own overreaching implausibility. To fight the speculative threat of global warming, Democrats have tried to impose vast new taxes to raise energy prices. To address rising health-care costs, they proposed huge new health subsidies and political control of medical decisions. Medicare is heading toward bankruptcy, yet Mr. Obama's response is to make the entire health-care system like Medicare. And to fix the financial system, they have declared war on bankers while proposing reforms that would do little to prevent future bank bailouts.

Tuesday, February 9, 2010

Monday, January 18, 2010

The Obama Disconnect

Peggy Noonan points out the disconnect between our current president and the people of the country. It's not just a rhetorical disconnect, not just an iconic disconnect. No, these reflect a deeper disconnect, the truly problematic one, and that is over policy. Read the article here.

Monday, January 4, 2010

Criminal Activity or Terrorism

L. Gordon Crovitz' article in today's Wall Street Journal points out the fallacy of treating suspects in the war on Terror the same way we would treat potential terrorists. The Obama administration has taken us back to the pre-911 days of the Clinton administration, and is making it easier, not harder, for those who hate our country to plot and conduct their murderous mayhem.

Thursday, December 31, 2009

Obama and Post-Modern Rascism

A thoughtful article yesterday by Shelby Steele in the Wall Street Journal suggests that the Emperor has no clothes. Steele says:
I think that Mr. Obama is not just inexperienced; he is also hampered by a distinct inner emptiness - not an emptiness that comes from stupidity or a lack of ability but an emptiness that has been actually nurtured and developed as an adaptation to the political world.

The nature of this emptiness becomes clear in the contrast between him and Ronald Reagan. Reagan reached the White House through a great deal of what is called "individuating" - that is he took principled positions throughout his long career that jeopardized his popularity, and in so doing he came to know who he was as a man and what he truly believed.

He became Ronald Reagan through dissent, not conformity. And when he was finally elected president, it was because America at last wanted the vision that he had evolved over a lifetime of challenging conventional wisdom. By the time Reagan became president, he had fought his way to a remarkable certainty about who he was, what he believed, and where he wanted to lead the nation.

Mr. Obama's ascendancy to the presidency could not have been more different. There seems to have been very little individuation, no real argument with conventional wisdom, and no willingness to jeopardize popularity for principle. To the contrary, he has come forward in American politics by emptying himself of strong convictions, by rejecting principled stands as "ideological," and by promising to deliver us from the "tired" culture-war debates of the past. He aspires to be "post-ideological," "post-racial" and "post-partisan," which is to say that he defines himself by a series of "nots" - thus implying that being nothing is better than being something. He tries to make a politics out of emptiness itself.

Tuesday, December 29, 2009

Smarter Security, not More Money

The Heritage Foundation published an article this morning regarding how our bloated Federal bureaucracy is responding to the recent foiled terror attack. Read the article; here's a tidbit from it:

"The Flight 253 attack was the 28th foiled terror plot against the United States since 9/11. What is notable is that of the 28 failed plots, 26 were stopped by intelligence, military, and law enforcement agencies. Only two were stopped by citizens on the scene - Umar Farouk Abdulmutallab in 2009, and Richard Reid in 2001. In both these cases, America just got lucky - the plots were clumsy and the passengers and crew responded bravely and quickly. There are many valuable lessons to be learned from the failed Christmas attack on a Detroit-bound airliner; throwing more money at airline security is not one of them."

Monday, December 21, 2009

Tiger and Barack

Lisa Schiffren wrote an article on the American Thinker back on December 8 titled "Tiger, Barack, and the Law of Transitivity." It's quite interesting in its premise: the squeaky-clean image of Tiger Woods was a creation of businesses interested in extracting money from the public, and is very similar to the image created for Barack Obama leading up to the election of 2008. In both cases the image that was created, and widely believed, was significantly different from the personal reality of the individual. Give it a read.

"If I were watching the public's disgust with the newly revealed Tiger Woods from an office in the West Wing, I'd be concerned. Because Barack Obama is about as completely manufactured a political character as this nation has seen. His meteoric rise, without the inconvenience of a public record or accomplishments, and the public's willing suspension of critical evaluation of his résumé allowed his handlers and the media to project whatever they wanted to on his unfurrowed brow."

Hentoff: America under Obama

John Whitehead of the Rutherford Institute conducts an interview with Nat Hentoff, of whom Whitehead says, "he has angered nearly every political faction and remains one of a few who has stuck to his principles through his many years of work, regardless of the trouble it stirred up."

Hentoff speaks to many of the issues of the day, including government health care, unemployment, public education, and the Fourth Amendment.

Wednesday, December 9, 2009

An Overdue Debunking

Cal Thomas's column in today's paper carried the title indicated above. In the archives, it's titled "The Flathead Society." Either way, if you have an interest in joining the debate over global warming you would do well to give it a read.

Cal cites an essay by Dr. Leonard Weinstein, a NASA research scientist with over 30 years of experience.

Tuesday, December 8, 2009

Attack on America Redux

American History, as mis-told by Harry Reid

There's no shortage of lunacy and outright lies coming from the left side of the political spectrum. Senator Harry Reid (D-Nev) recently mis-represented the women's suffrage and emancipation movements as having been blocked by Republicans. In fact, it was members of his own party that blocked and obstructed such advances.

Read John Fund's story in the Wall Street journal, setting the record straight.

Sunday, December 6, 2009

Mr Independant

Mr. Lieberman notes that the public option serves no other purpose: "It doesn't help one poor person get insurance who doesn't have it now. It doesn't compel one insurance company to provide insurance to somebody who has an illness. And . . . it doesn't do anything to reduce the cost of insurance."

Mr. Lieberman dismisses Democratic arguments that it is necessary to keep insurers honest. "Sometimes the private sector does things that are wrong, and when they do, you regulate—sometimes you litigate," he says. "But never in the history of America . . . have we tried to keep one industry honest by having government go into that business to compete with the industry."

Read Joe Lieberman's article in the Wall Street Journal.

"What Were You Thinking?"

Friday, November 27, 2009

Lincoln's Thanksgiving Proclamation

A message from Abraham Lincoln, delivered on October 3, 1863...
The year that is drawing toward its close has been filled with the blessings of fruitful fields and healthful skies. To these bounties, which are so constantly enjoyed that we are prone to forget the source from which they come, others have been added which are of so extraordinary a nature that they can not fail to penetrate and soften even the heart which is habitually insensible to the ever-watchful providence of Almighty God.
In the midst of a civil war of unequaled magnitude and severity, which has sometimes seemed to foreign states to invite and to provoke their aggression, peace has been preserved with all nations, order has been maintained, the laws have been respected and obeyed, and harmony has prevailed everywhere, except in the theater of military conflict, while that theater has been greatly contracted by the advancing armies and navies of the Union.
Needful diversions of wealth and of strength from the fields of peaceful industry to the national defense have not arrested the plow, the shuttle, or the ship; the ax has enlarged the borders of our settlements, and the mines, as well as the iron and coal as of our precious metals, have yielded even more abundantly than heretofore. Population has steadily increased notwithstanding the waste that has been made in the camp, the siege, and the battlefield, and the country, rejoicing in the consciousness of augmented strength and vigor, is permitted to expect continuance of years with large increase of freedom.
No human counsel hath devised nor hath any mortal hand worked out these great things. They are the gracious gifts of the Most High God, who, while dealing with us in anger for our sins, hath nevertheless remembered mercy.
It has seemed to me fit and proper that they should be solemnly, reverently, and gratefully acknowledged, as with one heart and one voice, by the whole American people. I do therefore invite my fellow-citizens in every part of the United States, and also those who are in foreign lands, to set apart and observe the last Thursday of November next as a day of thanksgiving and praise to our beneficent Father who dwelleth in the heavens. And I recommend to them that while offering up the ascriptions justly due to Him for such singular deliverances and blessings they do also, with humble penitence for our national perverseness and disobedience, commend to His tender care all those who have become widows, orphans, mourners, or sufferers in the lamentable civil strife in which we are unavoidably engaged, and fervently implore the imposition of the Almighty hand to heal the wounds of the nation and to restore it, as soon as may be consistent with the divine purpose, to the full enjoyment of peace, harmony, tranquility, and union.
In testimony whereof I have hereunto set my hand and caused the seal of the United States to be affixed.
A far cry from the current administration.

Thursday, November 19, 2009

Mindless Mantra of "Diversity"

Read what Ann Coulter has to say about diversity at WorldNetDaily. Here's a blurb to whet your appetite:
"Never in recorded history has diversity been anything but a problem. Look at Ireland with its Protestant and Catholic populations, Canada with its French and English populations, Israel with its Jewish and Palestinian populations.

Or consider the warring factions in India, Sri Lanka, China, Iraq, Czechoslovakia (until it happily split up), the Balkans and Chechnya. Also look at the festering hotbeds of tribal warfare - I mean the beautiful mosaics - in Third World hellholes like Afghanistan, Rwanda and South Central L.A.

'Diversity' is a difficulty to be overcome, not an advantage to be sought. True, America does a better job than most at accommodating a diverse population. We also do a better job at curing cancer and containing pollution. But no one goes around mindlessly exclaiming: 'Cancer is a strength!' 'Pollution is our greatest asset!' "

Friday, November 13, 2009

Tuesday, November 10, 2009

Reagan's Role

This morning from the Heritage Foundation:

On June 12, 1987, President Ronald Reagan stood at the Brandenburg Gate in West Berlin and said: "General Secretary Gorbachev, if you seek peace, if you seek prosperity for the Soviet Union and Eastern Europe, if you seek liberalization: Come here to this gate! Mr. Gorbachev, open this gate! Mr. Gorbachev, tear down this wall!"

On November 9, 1989, just two years after Reagan made his Brandenburg Gate speech, the people of Germany did tear down "this wall" and in so doing they freed hundreds of millions of people from the tyranny of communism. Reagan by no means single-handily brought about the fall of the Berlin Wall, but his leadership against despotism was widely recognized by the victims of communism. When he visited Poland in 1990, a dissident leader presented Reagan with a sword explaining: "I am giving you this saber for helping us to chop off the head of communism."

But the leftists in America do not want us to remember Reagan’s role in history. That is why President Barack Obama (the same man who found time to jet to Copenhagen at the drop of a rumor that his presence could win the Olympics for his hometown of Chicago) could not be bothered to attend the 20th anniversary of the wall’s fall last night. Instead, President Obama taped a video message that completely failed to mention Reagan or British Prime Minister Margaret Thatcher.

More than petty partisan slights are at stake here. President Obama’s refusal to recognize the role President Reagan’s and Prime Minister Thatcher’s leadership played in defeating despotism goes to the core of Obama’s foreign policy priorities. Heritage scholar Nile Gardiner explains:
Barack Obama simply does not view the world as Reagan did, in terms of good versus evil, as a world divided between the forces of freedom on one side and totalitarianism on the other. For the Obama administration the advancement of human rights and individual liberty on the world stage is a distinctly low priority, as we have seen with its engagement strategy towards the likes of Iran, Burma, Sudan, Venezuela and Russia.
We commemorate the fall of the Berlin Wall to celebrate the collapse of communism, to honor those who died resisting communism, and to resolve that never again will peoples and nations allow so evil a tyranny to terrorize the world.

Yet, at a time when the United States currently faces challenges as complicated as those confronted by Reagan (war in Afghanistan, the global fight against Islamist terrorism, the rise of a nuclear-armed Iran) Obama is bent on apologizing for our nation’s actions, betraying Cold War allies, and dithering on troop deployments.

Monday, November 9, 2009

November 7, 2009: a Day that will Live in Infamy

You can find a link to the text of H.R 3962, the Pelosi health-care bill passed by the House of Representatives, HERE. You can read a short summary of what's in those 1,900+ pages, by Betsy McCaughey at Wall Street Journal, HERE.

If you think people ought to be thrown in jail for not buying insurance, you'll probably love the bill. If you think old folks are getting off easy today, you'll love what's gonna happen to them when this bill goes into effect. If you think that all the uninsured will get free health care, you're sadly mistaken. If you think that you personally will benefit, you're probably wrong about that, too.

Saturday, October 31, 2009

WSJ on ObamaCare

If you're the sort of person that wants to know what's going on in the debate over health-care reform, you might consider looking at this Wall Street Journal web page. They have links in one place on many (all?) of the articles they've published on this issue.

'Obama Is Average'

The German news magazine 'Der Spiegel' presents an interview with noted conservative collumnist Charles Krauthammer.  Here's a teaser where Dr. K offers an opinion of Obama's foreign policy:
SPIEGEL: You famously coined the term "Reagan Doctrine" to describe Ronald Reagan's foreign policy. What is the "Obama Doctrine?"
Krauthammer: I would say his vision of the world appears to me to be so naïve that I am not even sure he's able to develop a doctrine. He has a view of the world as regulated by self-enforcing international norms, where the peace is kept by some kind of vague international consensus, something called the international community, which to me is a fiction, acting through obviously inadequate and worthless international agencies. I wouldn't elevate that kind of thinking to a doctrine because I have too much respect for the word doctrine.
SPIEGEL: Are you saying that diplomacy always fails?
Krauthammer: No, foolishness does. Perhaps when he gets nowhere on Iran, nowhere with North Korea, when he gets nothing from the Russians in return for what he did to the Poles and the Czechs, gets nowhere in the Middle East peace talks -- maybe at that point he'll begin to rethink whether the world really runs by international norms, consensus, and sweetness and light, or whether it rests on the foundation of American and Western power that, in the final analysis, guarantees peace.
SPIEGEL: That is the cynical approach.
Krauthammer: The realist approach. Henry Kissinger once said that peace can be achieved only one of two ways: hegemony or balance of power. Now that is real realism. What the Obama administration pretends is realism is naïve nonsense.

Friday, October 23, 2009

Black Scholars speak to Our Times

Allan Erickson, on his "Goodness World Life Blog," recently posted a letter written shortly after the 2008 presidential election by Dr. Anne Wortham, an associate professor of sociology at Illinois State University.
This blog post also includes the text of a speech by Justice Janice Rogers Brown given to the Federalist Society at the University of Chicago back in 2000.  Also included are links to relevant articles by columnists Thomas Sowell, Walter Williams, and Larry Elder.
Here's a quote from Justice Brown to whet your interest:
         "Writing 50 years ago, F.A. Hayek warned us that a centrally planned economy is 'The Road to Serfdom.' He was right, of course; but the intervening years have shown us that there are many other roads to serfdom. In fact, it now appears that human nature is so constituted that, as in the days of empire, all roads led to Rome; in the heyday of liberal democracy, all roads lead to slavery. And we no longer find slavery abhorrent. We embrace it. We demand more. Big government is not just the opiate of the masses. It is the opiate. The drug of choice for multinational corporations and single moms; for regulated industries and rugged Midwestern farmers and militant senior citizens.
         It is my thesis today that the sheer tenacity of the collectivist impulse - whether you call it socialism or communism or altruism - has changed not only the meaning of our words, but the meaning of the Constitution, and the character of our people."
Here's a quote from Dr. Sowell regarding the government-based health-care/medical insurance debate:
         "Politicians are already one of the main reasons why medical insurance is so expensive. Insurance is designed to cover risks but politicians are in the business of distributing largesse. Nothing is easier for politicians than to mandate things that insurance companies must cover, without the slightest regard for how such additional coverage will raise the cost of insurance.
         If insurance covered only those things that most people are most concerned about-- the high cost of a major medical expense-- the price would be much lower than it is today, with politicians piling on mandate after mandate."
You can find the Thomas Sowell archives here, the Walter Williams archives here, and the Larry Elder archives here.  I commend them to your reading if you would understand more of the direction in which our country seems headed.

Saturday, October 17, 2009

Cash for ... Golf Carts?

Did you like the "Cash for Clunkers" deal that Congress came up with for us?  Did you replace your old car with a new one?  Did you know that a golf cart qualifies as an "Electric Car" under new government regulations and that you can get a tax credit when you buy one?  Just one more example of the Unintended Consequences that happen over and over again when Big Government tries to use taxpayer money to curry favor.  Is this really the bunch you want in charge of your health care?
Read the Wall Street Journal article here.  Then go out and find yourself an "electric car."

Friday, October 16, 2009

Obamacare and Abortion

In Thursday's article, the fourth in a week-long series on "Obamacare," the Heritage Foundation discussed what some might call dishonesty coming from the White House.
While Obama has made public promises -- "Under our plan, no federal dollars will be used to fund abortions" -- no specific language has been put into the legislation currently being considered.  White House spokesman Robert Gibbs has been less than forthcoming on the issue.  a quote from the article:
"Conservatives introduced amendments in all five committee markups (three in the House and two in the Senate) that would have specifically prohibited federal funds from being used to cover abortion. None of them passed. Worse, the "compromise" the White House has adopted is an amendment sponsored by Rep. Lois Capps (D-CA) who has a 100% pro-abortion voting record according to the National Abortion Rights Action League (NARAL). Not only does the Capps amendment allow for federal money to subsidize abortions in private plans and mandate federal funding for abortions in the public option (this according to, it also requires that at least one insurance plan cover abortion in every geographical region in the country."
Friday's article discusses another ramification of the so-called health-care reform, the way that such reform will be implemented.  They expect to reduce the number of uninsured by 29 million, but the devil is, as always, in the details.  Here's a quote:
"..of those 29 million with new insurance coverage, almost half (14 million), will get their coverage through the welfare programs Medicaid and the State Children's Health Insurance Program (SCHIP).  That is equivalent to adding every resident of Ohio and Nevada to the welfare rolls.
In other words, for half of those Americans who are being promised health reform, they are going to be stunned to find themselves in a welfare office applying for Medicaid. Under the current baselines for Medicaid and the State Children's Health Insurance Program (SCHIP), there will be 76 million individuals served by these programs for at least some part of the year in 2019. If the SFC proposal becomes law, the number on Medicaid/SCHIP will top 90 million. So why do Obamacare supporters want to put 90 million Americans on the welfare rolls? It is cheaper than providing them with real quality health care."
This is nothing less than cost-shifting, plain and simple.  Another quote:
Medicaid was originally created to provide access to health care for families on welfare. Medicaid pays providers 20-25 percent less than does the private sector, forcing doctors and hospitals to subsidize Medicaid through lower rates. This deters doctors and hospitals from participating in the program, creating a lack of access that itself is a form of rationing.

Wednesday, October 14, 2009

The Cost of Health-care Reform 2 & 3

You can find subsequent parts of The Heritage Foundation's week-long series on the costs of health-care reform at their blog, The Foundry.  They have an entire category of health care, with articles they have generated as well as links to enough other sources to give the interested reader an admirable breadth of information on the issues involved with the current debate.
Part Two is titled "Obamacare sends Deficits Off Cliff" and quotes an article at the Washington Post titled "Health Reform Shell Game." The Post article cites "smoke and mirrors" in the Baucus bill that you should find interesting. Neither are long reads, both are well-researched and have enough evidential citations to satisfy even the most discriminating (or biased) reader.
Part Three is titled "It's All Downhill From Here."  Here's a quote:
"The scariest part about yesterday's Senate Finance Committee vote passing its version of Obamacare, is not what is in their bill (to the extent that it even exists), but that the Finance Committee bill promises to be the high water mark for "bipartisanship" in health care reform.
Now all of the other bills will be merged together behind the closed doors. All the bills are fundamentally flawed and will only get worse as the leaders in the House and Senate have to commit to actual details."

The Baucus Bill

The Senate Finance Committee has passed chairman Max Baucus's pet bill out to conference. Now a small group of politicians will try to bring about a resolution between this and HR 3200 and whatever ideas that Obama and his White House cabal see fit to bring to the table.  What do these proposals portend for the people of the country?
Here's a quote for your consideration:
"Remember when health-care reform was supposed to make life better for the middle class? That dream began to unravel this past summer when Congress proposed a bill that failed to include any competition-based reforms that would actually bend the curve of health-care costs. It fell apart completely when Democrats began papering over the gaping holes their plan would rip in the federal budget.
As it now stands, the plan proposed by Democrats and the Obama administration would not only fail to reduce the cost burden on middle-class families, it would make that burden significantly worse."
Here's another line from this Wall Street Journal editorial:
"The Joint Committee on Taxation indicates that 87% of the burden would fall on Americans making less than $200,000, and more than half on those earning under $100,000.
Industry fees are even worse because Democrats chose to make these fees nondeductible. This means that insurance companies will have to raise premiums significantly just to break even. American families will bear a burden even greater than the $130 billion in fees that the bill intends to collect. According to my analysis, premiums will rise by as much as $200 billion over the next 10 years - and 90% will again fall on the middle class."
It is amazing to me that seemingly intelligent people will ignore evidence such as this and still believe that they will benefit from this massive  new entitlement program.  Read the entire article here.

Monday, October 12, 2009

The Cost of Health-care Reform

The Heritage Foundation begins a week-long report on how "ObamaCare" will affect each of us.  This first segment makes interesting reading, even for those who support this political initiative into the private sector.  Here's a teaser for you:
The Senate Finance Committee bill written by Chairman Max Baucus (D-MT) (the Baucus bill) first drives up the cost of health insurance for all Americans and then forces everyone to buy it or face tax penalties or jail time. While the Baucus bill does cap out-of-pocket costs based on a person's income, the effect on American families is still staggering. According to the Center for Data Analysis, the Baucus bill would:
  • For individuals making $34,140 (three times the Federal Poverty Level) the Baucus health care proposal could mandate up to $4,097 in annual premiums, a sum which could have been spent on over nine months of food, almost four months of housing or well over a year of utilities.
  • For a family of four making $69,480 (300% above poverty) the Baucus bill mandates annual health insurance premiums of $8,338, which would be worth the equivalent of over ten months of food, four months of housing or almost two years of utilities.
  • For individuals earning $45,520 (400% above poverty) Baucus mandates $5,462 for health insurance, or over a year of food, four months of rent or a year and a half of utilities.
  • For families earning $92,640 (400% above poverty) Baucus mandates $11,117 in health premiums, the equivalent of over a year of food, five months of housing or two years of utilities.
And those numbers include the subsidies for health insurance in the Baucus bill. To pay for all this new health care spending, plus the massive expansion of Medicaid, the Congressional Budget Office estimates that the Baucus bill will collect $4 billion in fines from those who do not purchase insurance, $200 billion taxing health insurance companies with generous health plans, and $25 billion in taxes on employers. Not to mention the billions in cuts to Medicare payments to hospitals which will result in significant cost shifting to consumers.
Read the article at  or and then ask yourself, "can I afford free health care?"

Tuesday, October 6, 2009

Global Climate Change

What's your take on the issue? Do you believe, as that great climatologist AlGore preaches, that we are in a man-caused time of warming that requires us to drastically curtail our economy in order to "save the planet?" Or do you perceive climate change as naturally occurring, a cyclical series of warming and cooling that has been going on since God created the earth?

Well, you might be interested in an interview with someone who has vastly more credibility than AlGore, a man with years of experience in the field of climatology. It may well be that this man is right, and that the public has been fed a 'bill of goods' for less-than-honorable purposes by politicians eager to control their lives. Read the interview with Dr. Reid Bryson, a man who holds the 30th PHD ever granted in the field of Meteorology. Read his credentials, consider what he says, and then ask yourself why Al Gore refuses to debate anyone who holds an opinion at odds with his own.

You might also, if you're a thinking person who would rather make up your own mind, consider this article at the American Thinker that calls into question the motivation of those who would lead us back into the dark ages. Oh, and be sure to read the comments.

Friday, October 2, 2009

The Role of Mothers in Society

There were three special ladies on the Glenn Beck show today.  Three mothers who are, as are many of us, concerned about the future we will leave to our children and grandchildren.  Each of them has established a blog or website where they share their opinions on the great issues that face our nation, it's citizens, and our leadership.  Each of them offers the perspective of a mother on these issues, and I commend their writings to you.  I also suggest that you consider joining the "Sisterhood of Mommy Patriots."
Mary is a mother of seven, a Christian Conservative who says, "This blog has been created to bring a Christian Biblical and Conservative prospective about events and issues of the day."
Mary Conley - "As A Mom... A Sisterhood of Mommy Patriots" -
Barbara Curtis - "Mommy Life" -
Barbara, who is a mother of twelve, says, "..I'd judged Christians harshly all my life. But I discovered being a Christian wasn't about following Christians - it's about following Christ."

Thursday, September 24, 2009

Medicare and Gag Orders

A short, interesting bit in the Wall Street Journal this morning, one you likely didn't hear about if you only pay attention to what was once the "Mainstream Media." Here it is, in its entirety, for your edification. It is sad enough that our elected legislators do not read the bills they vote on; it is truly unfortunate that those who write the laws for our country don't think that we have the right to find out the truth from other sources. Do yourself a favor; read the first and last paragraphs a couple of times. The article is sub-titled "Humana gets whacked for telling the truth; AARP gets a pass for spreading falsehoods."
Maybe Senate Finance Chairman Max Baucus should put a gag order on Douglas Elmendorf too. On Tuesday, the Congressional Budget Office director told Mr. Baucus's committee that its plan to cut $123 billion from Medicare Advantage - the program that gives almost one-fourth of seniors private health-insurance options - will result in lower benefits and some 2.7 million people losing this coverage.
Imagine that. Last week Mr. Baucus ordered Medicare regulators to investigate and likely punish Humana Inc. for trying to educate enrollees in its Advantage plans about precisely this fact. Jonathan Blum, acting director of a regulatory office in the Centers for Medicare and Medicaid Services (CMS), said that a mailer Humana sent its customers was "misleading and confusing to beneficiaries, who may believe that it represents official communication about the Medicare Advantage program."
Mr. Blum has also banned all Advantage contractors from telling their customers what Mr. Elmendorf has just told Congress. Mr. Blum happens to be a former senior aide to Mr. Baucus and a health adviser on the Obama transition team.
Meanwhile, we have the case of the Association for the Advancement of Retired Persons (AARP), and its fanciful Medicare claims. The self-styled seniors lobby is using all its money and influence to cheer on ObamaCare, even though polls show that most retired persons oppose it. AARP has spent millions of dollars on its TV ad campaign and bulletins and newsletters to its members, including eight million direct-mail letters over Labor Day. The AARP Web site claims that it is a "myth" that "health care reform will hurt Medicare," while it is a "fact" that "none of the health care reform proposals being considered by Congress will cut Medicare benefits or increase your out-of-pocket costs."
So why hasn't AARP also come under CMS scrutiny? Could that be because AARP, which markets its own branded Advantage plans with United HealthCare that have 1.7 million enrollees, is a reliable liberal ally? Certainly its claims are "misleading and confusing" - given that in this instance it is empirically untrue, unlike Humana's attempt at edification. Seniors might even think AARP's falsehoods represent official communication about the Medicare Advantage program. But don't expect Mr. Baucus or CMS to impose its gag rule on the AARP's pro-ObamaCare advocacy.
We don't think AARP should be muzzled in a political debate, but neither should the insurance industry - especially by an influential Senator getting favors from his crony in a supposedly impartial regulatory agency that has enormous power to harm or destroy private companies. Seniors have a right to know how they may be affected by Washington's health-care planning.
So, for the record, CBO's Mr. Elmendorf says that cuts to Medicare Advantage "could lead many plans to limit the benefits they offer, raise their premiums, or withdraw from the program."

Tuesday, September 22, 2009

Economic Vandalism

Probably not a lot of folks on this side of the pond read The Economist, one of Britain's premier news and business magazines. That's a shame. The current issue (September 19th-25th 2009) has an article entitled Economic Vandalism, investigating the potential cause and effects of the President's recently enacted 35% tariff on tires imported from China. The Economist calls this "A protectionist move that is bad politics, bad economics, bad diplomacy and hurts America." How about a few teasers before you click the link to read the entire article?
You can be fairly sure that when a government slips an announcement out at nine o’clock on a Friday night, it is not proud of what it is doing.

In every other way the president’s decision to slap a 35% tariff on imported Chinese tyres looks like a colossal blunder, confirming his critics’ worst fears about the president’s inability to stand up to his party’s special interests and stick to the centre ground he promised to occupy in office. one can seriously imagine that any American tyre-making job will be saved; firms will simply import cheap tyres from other low-cost places like India and Brazil.
The tyre decision needs to be set into the context of a string of ominously protectionist policies which started within weeks of the inauguration with a nasty set of "Buy America" provisions for public-works contracts.

Besides these sins of commission sit the sins of omission: the president has done nothing at all to advance the three free-trade packages that are pending in Congress, with Colombia, Panama and South Korea, three solid American allies who deserve much better.
In a section headed "Dumb and Dumber" are these comments:
Evidence of a weak president being pushed leftward might cause investors to worry whether he will prove similarly feeble when it comes to reining in the vast deficits he is now racking up; and that might spook the buyers of bonds that finance all those deficits. Looming large among these, of course, are the Chinese.
Under the relevant trade laws, Mr Obama had the absolute discretion not to impose the recommended tyre tariffs on the grounds of overall economic interest or national security. Given everything that is at stake, his decision not to exercise it amounts to an act of vandalism.
If you think, "well, that's just one tariff. What harm could that do?" Here's another article, this one in the Wall Street Journal today, that talks about a similar tariff enacted in the early 1960's that still causes problems and significant waste as businesses find ways to get around the onerous tax that are still in place long after the situation that brought it about has been made moot.