Thursday, January 6, 2011

Obamacare, Wikileaks, Government jobs, Nancy Pelosi, How bills actually become laws, and other subjects of interest

A Frog in the pot

One thing we can thank Nancy Pelosi and the Democrats for is getting the country to realize we have to change our policies. The past four years of the Democrat controlled House and Senate; the nation debt went from $8.7 Trillion to $14 Trillion for an increase of $5.3 trillion dollars. There are old analogies that if you put a frog in a pot and slowly turn up the heat, the frog will slowly boil to death. If you throw that frog into a pot of boiling water, the frog will jump free. Pelosi and the Democrats threw the American economy into a pot of boiling water. We can’t be very happy with the past four years, but this is the silver lining in all that debt.

Obamacare's Dirty Tricks

Most commentators have focused on the revelation just before Christmas that Obamacare's end of life death panel consultations rejected by Congress were resurrected by the Obama Administration by regulatory requirement. There is no truth to the rumor that President Obama has agreed, after his term of office ends, to head up a new organization called DEMOCRATS AGAINST DEMOCRACY.

But while this regulatory authoritarianism is, indeed, yet another dirty trick of Obamacare, it is SMALL POTATOES COMPARED TO THE REAL DIRTY TRICKS OF OBAMACARE. A dirty trick is defined here as burying in vague language in the abusive, several thousand page Obamacare legislation socially repulsive policies that the public overwhelmingly opposed and THAT CONGRESS DENIED IT WAS ADOPTING. Like the end of life death panel consultations.

Phasing Out Private Insurance

But as indicated above, the emerging abuses of Obamacare are much graver than that. Also just before Christmas, on December 21, HHS COMMISSAR KATHLEEN SEBELIUS CLAIMED AUTHORITY BURIED DEEP WITHIN THE OBAMACARE ABOMINATION TO IMPOSE FEDERAL PRICE CONTROLS ON HEALTH INSURANCE COMPANIES, which members of Congress again denied they were adopting when they passed Obamacare. In fact, she issued a 136 page "regulation" providing precisely for such federal rate regulation.

In all of history, it has been shown that price controls do not work. When the government tries to control prices what they do is create shortages. Welcome to Obamaland.

Whitehouse backs down on Death Panels

THE WHITE HOUSE IS DELETING REFERENCES TO DEATH COUNSELING in a new Medicare rule, reversing policy after it was reported that the administration was seeking to reintroduce a provision under the health care law that Sarah Palin famously called “death panels.”

The New York Times reports that ADMINISTRATION OFFICIALS CLAIMED THE TOUCHY POLICY WAS CHANGED FOR “PROCEDURAL REASONS,” though the paper adds that “it was clear that political concerns were also a factor.” The regulation on doctors discussing death with Medicare patients was put into effect Jan. 1.

The Democrats lied and the Press complied

While the media have been quick to run with WikiLeaks’ U.S. State Department cable releases to undermine Washington’s efforts to effect stability in unstable parts of the world, it is slow, if not silent, in giving credit where credit is due. Although other credible sources confirmed it before WikiLeaks did, in receiving similar disinterested responses from the media, it should be clear now that PRESIDENT BUSH’S CONCERNS ABOUT SADDAM HUSSEIN’S WEAPONS OF MASS DESTRUCTION (WMD) PROGRAM WERE WELL-FOUNDED…..

The 2003 Iraq invasion by U.S. forces also launched a massive effort to find WMDs. By late 2003, as determined in a review by a Wired Magazine editor of WikiLeaks documents on the issue, the Administration was losing faith WMDs would be found. But, as Wired reports, the WikiLeaks documents clearly show "FOR YEARS AFTERWARD, U.S. TROOPS CONTINUED TO FIND CHEMICAL WEAPONS LABS, ENCOUNTER INSURGENT SPECIALISTS IN TOXINS AND UNCOVER WEAPONS OF MASS DESTRUCTION. . . . Chemical weapons, especially, did not vanish from the Iraqi battlefield. Remnants of Saddam's toxic arsenal, largely destroyed after the Gulf War, remained. Jihadists, insurgents and foreign (possibly Iranian) agitators turned to these stockpiles during the Iraq conflict — and may have brewed up their own deadly agents."……

Five years after Joe Wilson’s op-ed claimed no yellowcake was sold to Iraq — the ease with which Saddam could have snapped his fingers and reinstituted his nuclear program became apparent. IN JULY 2008, IN AN OPERATION KEPT SECRET AT THE TIME, 37 MILITARY AIR CARGO FLIGHTS SHIPPED MORE THAN 500 METRIC TONS OF YELLOWCAKE — FOUND IN IRAQ — OUT OF THE COUNTRY FOR FURTHER TRANSPORT AND REMEDIATION TO CANADA.

Iraq will go down in history for many things, but I think the complete collapse of the MSM’s reporting the facts will be one of the major findings.

Repeal: the first salvo

Boehner's office responded to a letter sent by the Senate's top five Democrats, vowing to block a House bill repealing healthcare reform, with a terse, 65-word note.

Boehner's office wrote:

Senators Reid, Durbin, Schumer, Murray and Stabenow:
THANK YOU FOR REMINDING US – AND THE AMERICAN PEOPLE – OF THE BACKROOM DEAL THAT YOU STRUCK BEHIND CLOSED DOORS WITH ‘BIG PHARMA,’ resulting in bigger profits for the drug companies, and higher prescription drug costs for 33 million seniors enrolled in Medicare Part D, at a cost to the taxpayers of $42.6 billion.

         - Speaker-Designate John Boehner’s Press Office

Short and to the point. I’m beginning to like John Boehner more each day.

Are government jobs becoming dead end jobs?

There used to be no safer career path that landing a government post. Sure, you might be able to pull in a bigger salary in the private sector, but it was hard to beat the benefits, or the job security. Public sector labor unions are often politically influential and fiercely protective of the perquisites of the civil servant. In times of economic stress, when employees in private firms faced pink slips, government paychecks often kept coming, taken from the tax revenues raised from those under greater risk of unemployment.

However, THOSE HALCYON DAYS FOR THE GOVERNMENT WORKER MAY BE COMING TO AN END. Around the world, public sector employees are beginning to feel the bite from austerity measures aimed at reducing government debt and deficits, putting their pay, benefits and jobs at risk. THE TREND COULD HAVE MAJOR CONSEQUENCES NOT JUST FOR THE WELFARE OF MILLIONS OF CIVIL SERVANTS, BUT THE PERFORMANCE OF THE ECONOMIES OF THE WEST.

The evidence is everywhere. Andrew Cuomo, the new governor of the state of New York, is starting his first term in office with a plan to freeze the salaries of government workers. Portugal, Spain and Greece have all slashed public sector wages. The U.K. is looking at possibly hundreds of thousands of government job losses in coming years due to Prime Minister David Cameron's aggressive budget cuts. Even the labor rights of state employees are at risk. Several U.S. states are looking into legislation to limit the power of unions, especially those in the public sector. AS POLICYMAKERS IN THE WEST FACE THE GARGANTUAN TASK OF CLOSING GIANT BUDGET DEFICITS, THERE IS EVERY REASON TO BELIEVE WE'RE JUST AT THE BEGINNING OF THE RETRENCHMENT OF THE PUBLIC SECTOR WORKFORCE AND THE TAXPAYER MONEY ALLOCATED TO IT.

Keep your eye on this. You will be reading more and more about this in the coming months.

Nancy Pelosi relinquishes her post as Speaker of the House

House Speaker Nancy Pelosi will hand her gavel to incoming Speaker John Boehner today, ending two years of Democratic rule in Washington and beginning a period of divided government dominated by REPUBLICAN PROMISES OF BUDGET AUSTERITY.

Pelosi, 70, whom the GOP pilloried as a San Francisco liberal, will lead Democrats as a shrunken and much more liberal minority. SHE WILL RETURN TO HER FORMER ROLE AS A BARBED THORN IN THE SIDE OF THE GOP, and is likely to become the nation's liberal-in-chief….

Asked Tuesday to reflect on her four-year tenure as the nation's first female speaker, Pelosi replied, "I DON'T LOOK BACK. I ONLY LOOK FORWARD."

At her final news conference as speaker, Pelosi promised to be a "willing partner" with Republicans if they focus on "solving problems," specifically job creation, deficit reduction and "strengthening the middle class."

I heard Pelosi yesterday on the TV declare that the Democrats believe in pay as you go. If that’s the case how did they increase the deficit by $5 trillion dollars in just four years? But I have to admit, I couldn’t resist putting this story right after Are government jobs becoming dead end jobs. It just seemed appropriate.

Asking the right question

In his first press conference in his (nearly official) capacity as majority leader, Rep. Eric Cantor (R., Va.) outlined his vision for the new Republican-led House. “I THINK YOU COULD SUM UP WHAT OUR NEW MAJORITY IS GOING TO BE ABOUT BY SAYING IT IS A ‘CUT AND GROW’ MAJORITY,” he said.

Cantor said Republicans efforts over the past two years — dutifully opposing the Democratic agenda and crafting counterproposals of their own — came to fruition in the midterm elections. “Clearly the people of this country spoke out,” he said. “They looked at this agenda that was being promoted by the White House and the [Democratic] majority as far outside the mainstream.” It was a “repudiation of what had gone on in this town,” he said, but “wasn’t necessarily an election about [Republicans].”

With that in mind, Cantor laid out A THREE-PART RULE he by which he would seek to abide in the new Congress, which would entail asking every day if THE REPUBLICAN MAJORITY’S ACTIONS ARE FOCUSED ON 1) JOB CREATION AND ECONOMIC GROWTH, 2) CUTTING SPENDING, AND 3) SHRINKING GOVERNMENT WHILE PROTECTING AND EXPANDING LIBERTY. And if not, to ask, “WHY ARE WE DOING IT?”

This is a great idea. In trying to focus people on the right things, you need to align them as Cantor is doing with his three-part rule. And then on a daily basis, the group should look at what they are working on and if what they are working on does not comply with the rule, they need to ask, “Why are we doing it?”

How a Bill Really Becomes Law

This is really worthwhile. It’s funny and at the same time enlightening which can be frightening.

….In the House the bill first GOES TO THE RULES COMMITTEE. Every bill that comes to the floor comes with a Rule (so much time for debate, so many amendments by each side, whether introducing a substitute bill will be in order, and so on). The Rules Committee is always under the control of the Majority, so the RULE TENDS TO FAVOR THAT SIDE OF THE AISLE.


In the Congress which expired at noon today HOUSE SPEAKER NANCY PELOSI AND SENATE MAJORITY LEADER HARRY REID OFTEN BYPASSED THE WHOLE MESSY COMMITTEE THING AND HAD MASSIVE 2,000 PAGE BILLS DRAFTED IN SECRET OFFICES, by mysterious participants, who inserted cryptic elements, with wholly unpredictable results.

Older and wiser? Not a chance

DEMOCRATS ARE IN DANGER OF BECOMING THE OLD-FOGIE PARTY. "Overall, the influx of 87 new Republican House members who will be sworn in Wednesday WILL LOWER THE AVERAGE AGE OF HOUSE REPUBLICANS TO 54.9 FROM 56.5 IN THE LAST CONGRESS, a new Wall Street Journal analysis of ages in the new Congress shows.By contrast, Democrats in the House are moving in the opposite direction on the age scale. The 2010 election swept from office some of the party's younger members from moderate swing districts, and the result is a DEMOCRATIC CAUCUS THAT IS BOTH MORE LIBERAL AND GRAYER. THE AVERAGE AGE OF A DEMOCRATIC HOUSE MEMBER WILL RISE TO 60.2 FROM 58."

Somehow I am reminded of old dogs and new tricks.

NY Times shows just how classy they are

Losing is tough, but some people know how to lose gracefully. NOT SO THE NEW YORK TIMES, WHICH WELCOMES THE INCOMING GOP-MAJORITY HOUSE OF REPRESENTATIVES WITH WHAT CAN ONLY BE CALLED A HISSY FIT of an editorial. Recall that only a few weeks ago we were being lectured by liberals about civility in politics, as you contemplate the semi-hysterical prose chosen by Times editors to kick off the 112th Congress:

A theatrical production of unusual pomposity will open on Wednesday when Republicans assume control of the House for the 112th Congress.
Accusing others of "pomposity" is a particularly rich irony coming from the Times editorial board, isn't it?

But it is far from clear what message is being sent by, for instance, reading aloud the nation's foundational document. IS THIS GROUP OF REPUBLICANS REALLY TRYING TO SUGGEST THAT THEY CARE MORE DEEPLY ABOUT THE CONSTITUTION THAN ANYONE ELSE AND WILL FOLLOW IT MORE CLOSELY?

Well, CONSIDERING THE LAUGHTER AND SCORN THAT CAME FROM VARIOUS SENIOR HOUSE DEMOCRATS WHEN ASKED WHERE THE CONSTITUTION AUTHORIZES OBAMACARE'S INSURANCE PURCHASE MANDATE, such a suggestion would not be unjustified. But the Times editors found this contempt for the Constitution unremarkable.

In any case, it is a presumptuous and self-righteous act, suggesting that they alone understand the true meaning of a text that the founders wisely left open to generations of reinterpretation. Certainly the Republican leadership is not trying to suggest that African-Americans still be counted as three-fifths of a person…..

I’m always amazed by the fact the liberals like to walk out the “three-fifths” rule in the Constitution. They don’t seem to understand that the CONSTITUTION CAN BE AND WAS AMENDED and that no longer is operative. However, if you are wealthy enough, according to IRS regulations you count as zero persons for personal deductions.

Tea Party” Is Seen Less Negatively As a Political Label


A new Rasmussen Reports national telephone survey finds THAT “CONSERVATIVE” IS STILL THE MOST FAVORED DESCRIPTION. Forty-two percent (42%) of Likely U.S. Voters say they view it as a positive if a candidate is described as politically conservative. Twenty-one percent (21%) say it’s a negative description, and 36% rate it somewhere in between the two. (To see survey question wording, click here.)

Conservative, in fact, is the only political label other than “moderate” that is a net plus for a candidate.

Calling someone a Tea Party candidate is seen positively by 31%, unchanged from September, but negatively by 32%. Thirty-three percent (33%) put it somewhere in between. In September, 38% viewed Tea Party as a negative.

BEING DESCRIBED AS A PROGRESSIVE, ON THE OTHER HAND, IS A POSITIVE FOR 22% OF VOTERS AND A NEGATIVE FOR 34%, with 41% seeing it in between. But in the previous survey, voters were evenly divided, with 29% saying progressive was a positive description and 28% describing it as a negative. This marks a continuing downward trend for progressive which little over three years ago was slightly more popular than conservative.

Liberals love to say how conservatives are out of the mainstream. They just don’t get it.

IPCC Green Doctor Prescribes End to Democracy to Solve Global Warming



Moving to the preface, the authors demand that the reader be prepared to reassess their notions of what is or is not acceptable, and what actions tackling global warming may require. They ask the reader if they are committed to the well-being of future generations:

If so, are you prepared to change your lifestyle now? Are you prepared to see society and its governance change if this is a necessary solution?

You see, apparently democracy is simply not natural. As the authors put it: ’WE ARGUE THAT AUTHORITARIANISM IS THE NATURAL STATE OF HUMANITY’. THEY PROPOSE THE FORMATION OF AN ‘ELITE WARRIOR LEADERSHIP’ TO ‘BATTLE FOR THE FUTURE OF THE EARTH’ Can you see where this is going yet? Look at the January 5 stories

This is progressivism stripped bare. The basic tenant of Progressives is that an elite should rule doing things for the good of the people. My father used to tell me “A dictatorship is the best form of government, as long as you are

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