Friday, November 22, 2013

2:01 PM November 22, 1963: That's My Friend Lee Harvey Oswald!

The mind is an uncooperative filter. Fewer memories pass through it as events become more remote. Trivial memories can loom larger than significant ones. But Friday, November 22, 1963, jumps out of stored recollections in sharp focus, even though separated in time by fifty years.

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Friday, November 15, 2013

Germany Bashing With Bad Economics and Wrong Facts

If this were a football game, the referee should call unnecessary roughness for piling on Germany. The American Left led by Paul Krugman (The Harm Germany Does and Those Depressing Germans) excoriates Germany for forcing austerity on the rest of Europe. The U.S. Treasury (no newcomer to spending) demands that miserly Germany spend more to pull the PIIGS (Portugal, Italy, Ireland, Greece and Spain) out of their economic doldrums. Angela Merkel and her scrooge Germans are pictured as eating their Kuchen mit Schlag as Greek public employees lose jobs and unemployed youths riot in the streets. Even the sober Financial Times (Germany Is a Weight on the World) accuses the German juggernaught of piling up export surpluses to “beggar their neighbors.”

To understand the liberals’ beef against Germany, we must go back to the PIIGS borrowing spree that followed the creation of the Euro. As part of a single currency with strong partners to the North, even the PIIGS could borrow at low interest rates, and they borrowed voraciously not for investment but to pump up public spending. Their solvency in doubt as the financial crisis exploded, the PIIGS could no longer borrow. Suddenly, they had to live within their own means, except for the limited official loans the European Union, the European Central Bank and the IMF begrudgingly handed out to prevent the collapse of the Euro. Greece, Spain, and Portugal descended into deep recession with one quarter of the work force unemployed.

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Sunday, November 10, 2013

To Achieve ObamaCare's Insurance Goals, We Must Abolish ObamaCare

ObamaCare was sold to the American people as an “effort to help 40 to 50 million Americans with low income or people with preexisting conditions.” (Democratic Rep. Earl Blumenauer,  ObamaCare’s original promises (now long forgotten) were that we can help those 40 to 50 million unfortunates who can’t get insurance, keep our doctor and plan, lower premiums by $2,500, and it will  cost less than a trillion dollars over a ten year period. Sounds almost too good to be true, and it was!

If your car is acting up, you want the mechanic to fix the problem. Only if the car’s problems are catastrophic would you consider junking it. However, Obama is ready to junk our health care system because of problems with the uninsured poor and pre-existing conditions that affect only three percent of the population. He did not ask, like in the case of  the auto mechanic, what it costs to insure the poor and those with pre-existing conditions, while keeping the rest of the system that is working just fine (such as our current plan and doctor) for the 97 percent of us.

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Wednesday, November 6, 2013

President Obama's Loss Of Trust Over Obamacare Imperils Immigration Reform

The President’s “misspeaking” on his Obama Care pledges have doomed any chance of immigration reform, or any other major reform, for that matter. Obama may go into campaign mode on immigration reform to gain Hispanic votes, but it will be only talk. There can be no comprehensive reform of anything – immigration, entitlements, or the national debt — if legislators and, more importantly, the voters do not trust the President’s word.

Obama has declared immigration reform his top legislative priority for the rest of his term. In June of 2012, the Senate passed the Border Security, Economic Opportunity, and Immigration Modernization Act, which spends more on border security, provides provisional legal status and eventual pathway to citizenship for people living in the country illegally, and outlines reforms for the existing visa programs for immediate relatives and skilled workers.

House Speaker John Boehner declared the Senate bill a nonstarter and expressed hope that the House would produce its own bill. A House bi-partisan group of four Republicans and four Democrats began drafting such a plan but has subsequently fallen apart with only one Republican remaining. The chances of passage of any comprehensive immigration reform during the Obama years are about zero.

Sunday, November 3, 2013

A New 1 Percent: The Tiny Sliver Of Obama Care 'Winners'

Beleaguered Obama Care supporters use three arguments to dismiss the cancellation of insurance policies that millions of Americans were satisfied with. First, the cancelled policies are no good in the first place. (How can a one-size-fits-all bureaucrat determine that?) Second, greedy insurance companies are canceling the policies, not Obama Care. (The insurance companies must cancel under Obama Care rules). Third, those families being cancelled “represent the relatively small part of America that the Obama administration did not talk about while campaigning for the Affordable Care Act.” (See: New York Times When Insurers Drop Policies).  Did he really forget about them or did he decide not to share this information with American voters?

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