Monday, March 29, 2010

Congressman Waxman Shreds 1st Ammendment

~ by Cato

From a news story

Rep. Henry Waxman, chairman of the House Committee on Energy and Commerce, has summoned some of the nation's top executives to Capitol Hill to defend their assessment that the new national health care reform law will cost their companies hundreds of millions of dollars in health insurance expenses. Waxman is also demanding that the executives give lawmakers internal company documents related to health care finances.

My comment: Since when does the First Amendment require that one explain one's free speech before a congressional committee? If I were these executives, I'd tell Waxman to go jump in a lake and do his own economic analysis of the bill he wrote. He DID read it and understand the implications of all its provisions before he voted for it, didn't he?

Tuesday, March 23, 2010

Health Care Suicide Pact Legislation Passes - An "I Told You So"

[Updated 2/23/2010]

From a recent story  concerning the recently passage of the Health Care Suicide Pact Legislation
".......By then, most Americans will for the first time be required to carry health insurance — either through an employer, through a government program or by buying it for themselves. Those who refuse will face penalties from the IRS. ..."
Yes - And somewhere in these files at the Seneca Times there are posts  asking and answering the rhetorical questions about who really stands to benefit from these changes where everybody is required to buy something. 

I hope some of you out there took my advice and bought stock in the boxcar manufacturing companies. Oops, my bad, I meant the health insurance companies for THAT is who stands to make the money. Well, them and the government machine.

[update] - And looking again at the story itself on the Yahoo news page, I see a sidebar with the following headline

Health law will make calorie counts hard to ignore

Um Hummm,

First comes the requirement of posting of the calorie info at the restaurants,

Next comes the rules that say the restaurant has to report what meals you ate;

Next comes reporting of THAT info and the calorie counts to the government (because after all fatness IS a national emergency and the government has to pay for your illnesses, and your fatness is driving up the cost of health care, right);

Next comes the government regulation that everyone join a gym;

Next comes the requirement that all the gymsreport to the health Czar on how many workout you do a week;

Next comes the penalty or fine for eating too many French Fres and/or not going to the gym enough (call this a fries/gym ratio requirement),

Next comes the government Gestapo showing  up at your door with an arrsest warrant in hand to send you to a government run fat re-education camp;

and lastly comes ........  the Gulag.

All this, of course, a result of having a society that has educated its children to think it is our responsibility to feed starving children in Africa - which of course results in there being more children born in Africa, which of course means we get to do even more "helping".

Thursday, March 18, 2010

Why I am Against Obama Care ~ by Cato

1. No credibility. Obama demagogues and lies about the profiteering of the evil insurance companies: insurance makes up only 4 % of health care costs, and they only make 2-6 % profits. How are they be making obscene profits? You excoriate the insurance companies for denying services, but your bill itself denies services: “$202.3 billion in cuts to seniors Medicare health plans including massive cuts targeting the extra benefits and reduced cost sharing that seniors receive through Medicare Advantage; $156.6 billion in cuts to inpatient and outpatient hospital services, inpatient rehab facilities, long-term care hospitals.” And this demonization of the insurance industry is only one of the lies of ObamaCare’s proponents – not to mention Obama’s broken promises ranging from his campaign financing to transparency in government to ... well, you name it. Would you in your personal life sign any kind of contract with someone who acts this way?

2. Doesn’t work. Similar plans have failed or are in serious trouble in Hawaii, Massachusets (where the health plan is bankrupting the state), Maine, and Arizona (where “Mayo Clinic loses a substantial amount of money every year due to the reimbursement schedule under Medicare.”). Show me any place on earth where a similar system has worked. Then tell me how your system will be like those instead of like the Canadian or English health care system – or more to the point, like the insolvent Social Security or Medicare programs.

3. The American people by a large margin do not want it. But you are going to do it anyway. You want to force your vision on us. This is tyranny or very close to it. Better freedom than the fleshpots of Egypt.

4. Need is doubtful. How is it that my friend, a single mother on welfare with four kids and no other visible income can get two knees replaced and be in and out of the hospital for a variety of severe ailments – how is the system failing her? Her bills are already being paid, but how?

Here’s a clue. An acquaintance of mine wanted to get a tetanus shot at the hospital. It would have cost $500. She went to the Student Health Center instead and got it for virtually nothing. My seven minute face time with a dermatologist was billed at $552, of which I paid $18. My health insurance paid the rest.

Now the evil insurance companies aren’t going to get the money, since they are the ones paying. The doctor is not pocketing four grand an hour, nor can malpractice insurance, office space, salaries and equipment cost that much. My guess? That money is going to pay for two artificial knees in a woman who has no health insurance and for whom Medicaid does not cover the full cost. Are there people that fall between the cracks? You betcha. But do these outliers require the realignment of one-sixth the economy just to take care of them? I doubt it. I rather suspect the rationale for this monstrosity is “fairness”; might this be the same fairness Obama endorsed by raising the capital gains tax, even though it would mean a decrease in revenue!

5. Numbers do not add up. How can you add 30 million people to the rolls – well, it’s closer to 15 million, but let’s use your number – and not increase expenses? How will you service them when the New England Journal of Medicine reports that up to 30 percent of doctors will quit under your new system? Well, why would they do that? Here’s one reason: “ Wading deep into documents available from CBO and the House and Senate Budget Committees reveals that the claim that Obamacare, in the form of the Senate health bill Democrats are now trying to deem through the House, would reduce the deficit is based on the assumption of an immediate 21% cut in payments to doctors and hospitals under Medicare.”

We will pay for ten years and only have healthcare the last 6 years. What is going to happen in the second ten years? Will we be without healthcare for the first four years of this second decade? No one has explained this.

By the way, do you really believe that the money collected in the first four years will be off-limits and spent only for healthcare? Or will it be raided as was Social Security?

What is your plan when the money runs out? You have done nothing to address, much less reduce, the costs. Your so-called cost savings come either from a shell game – taking money from Medicare to pay for other care; or simply refusing to pay – reducing the payments to providers.

6. Failure to look ahead – Most of these objections are integral to the Democrat’s failure to consider the consequences. Note how many questions remain unanswered. Here are some more. Do you really think that trading the current bureaucracy for another – and the replacement a federal government bureaucracy to boot! – will make for more leniency when making denial-of-services decisions? Is government really more charitable or accountable than private industry? Have you even addressed this question?

Such denial-of-service decisions are already playing out. Why are providers (first doctors, now Walgreens) now refusing to take Medicare and Medicaid business? Because it is bad business. If it is bad business for them, it will be bad business for the government, and the American people as owners, once they become the provider. Why are states suing the government and resisting federal healthcare? Because the federal plan is, or promises to be, very bad business for them. If it’s bad business for them, it’s will be bad for us, their citizens. There is no denial-of-service decision like that made because a doctor cannot be found. How does the government plan to address this? We do not know.

7. The Alternative – yes, dear reader, I urge you to read the details of this plan, rather than react to its author or her rhetoric.

My Healthcare Plan
by Ann Coulter (more by this author)
Posted 03/17/2010 ET
Updated 03/17/2010 ET

Liberals keep complaining that Republicans don't have a plan for reforming health care in America. I have a plan!

It's a one-page bill creating a free market in health insurance. Let's all pause here for a moment so liberals can Google the term "free market."

Nearly every problem with health care in this country -- apart from trial lawyers and out-of-date magazines in doctors' waiting rooms -- would be solved by my plan.

In the first sentence, Congress will amend the McCarran-Ferguson Act to allow interstate competition in health insurance.

We can't have a free market in health insurance until Congress eliminates the antitrust exemption protecting health insurance companies from competition. If Democrats really wanted to punish insurance companies, which they manifestly do not, they'd make insurers compete.

The very next sentence of my bill provides that the exclusive regulator of insurance companies will be the state where the company's home office is. Every insurance company in the country would incorporate in the state with the fewest government mandates, just as most corporations are based in Delaware today.

That's the only way to bypass idiotic state mandates, requiring all insurance plans offered in the state to cover, for example, the Zone Diet, sex-change operations, and whatever it is that poor Heidi Montag has done to herself this week.

President Obama says we need national health care because Natoma Canfield of Ohio had to drop her insurance when she couldn't afford the $6,700 premiums, and now she's got cancer.

Much as I admire Obama's use of terminally ill human beings as political props, let me point out here that perhaps Natoma could have afforded insurance had she not been required by Ohio's state insurance mandates to purchase a plan that covers infertility treatments and unlimited OB/GYN visits, among other things.

It sounds like Natoma could have used a plan that covered only the basics -- you know, things like cancer.

The third sentence of my bill would prohibit the federal government from regulating insurance companies, except for normal laws and regulations that apply to all companies.

Freed from onerous state and federal mandates turning insurance companies into public utilities, insurers would be allowed to offer a whole smorgasbord of insurance plans, finally giving consumers a choice.

Instead of Harry Reid deciding whether your insurance plan covers Viagra, this decision would be made by you, the consumer. (I apologize for using the terms "Harry Reid" and "Viagra" in the same sentence. I promise that won't happen again.)

Instead of insurance companies jumping to the tune of politicians bought by health-care lobbyists, they would jump to tune of hundreds of millions of Americans buying health insurance on the free market.

Hypochondriac liberals could still buy the aromatherapy plan and normal people would be able to buy plans that only cover things such as major illness, accidents and disease. (Again -- things like Natoma Canfield's cancer.)

This would, in effect, transform medical insurance into ... a form of insurance!

My bill will solve nearly every problem allegedly addressed by ObamaCare -- and mine entails zero cost to the taxpayer. Indeed, a free market in health insurance would produce major tax savings as layers of government bureaucrats, unnecessary to medical service in America, get fired.

For example, in a free market, the government wouldn't need to prohibit insurance companies from excluding "pre-existing conditions."

Of course, an insurance company has to be able to refuse NEW customers with "pre-existing conditions." Otherwise, everyone would just wait to get sick to buy insurance. It's the same reason you can't buy fire insurance on a house that's already on fire.

That isn't an "insurance company"; it's what's known as a "Christian charity."

What Democrats are insinuating when they denounce exclusions of "pre-existing conditions" is an insurance company using the "pre-existing condition" ruse to deny coverage to a current policy holder -- someone who's been paying into the plan, year after year.

Any insurance company operating in the free market that pulled that trick wouldn't stay in business long.

If hotels were as heavily regulated as health insurance is, right now I'd be explaining to you why the government doesn't need to mandate that hotels offer rooms with beds. If they didn't, they'd go out of business.

I'm sure people who lived in the old Soviet Union thought it was crazy to leave groceries to the free market. ("But what if they don't stock the food we want?")

The market is a more powerful enforcement mechanism than indolent government bureaucrats. If you don't believe me, ask Toyota about six months from now.

Right now, insurance companies are protected by government regulations from having to honor their contracts. Violating contracts isn't so easy when competitors are lurking, ready to steal your customers.

In addition to saving taxpayer money and providing better health insurance, my plan also saves trees by being 2,199 pages shorter than the Democrats' plan.

Feel free to steal it, Republicans!

Friday, March 5, 2010

Pointing Fingers While Circling the Drain

~Cato & Seneca
As beleaguered climate normalcy deniers face heated opposition and ridicule from real practicing scientists, they have erupted into a bilious rage against those who have exposed their malfeasance and intrigue.

They are not going down without a fight however and as a little kid caught with his hand in the cookie jar, they are now seen throwing a tantrum and breaking dishes - all to deflect from the fact that their strident calls for cultural suicide  have now been exposed for what they really are.

From a story in the news 

In private e-mails obtained by The Washington Times, climate scientists at the National Academy of Sciences say they are tired of "being treated like political pawns"

Uh, sorry, you guys are the ones who have injected politics – and money – into this

and need to fight back in kind.  Their strategy includes forming a nonprofit group to organize researchers and use their donations to challenge critics by running a back-page ad in the New York Times.

Why don’t you try fighting back and challenging critics with science instead of ads in the NYT – hardly the place for a “non-partisan”debate.

"Most of our colleagues don't seem to grasp that we're not in a gentlepersons' debate, we're in a street fight against well-funded, merciless enemies who play by entirely different rules," Paul R. Ehrlich, a Stanford University researcher, said in one of the e-mails.

Oh, come now, on whose side is the money in this street fight?
Who stands to make millions?
Which side has the funding might of government agencies behind it?
Entirely different rules? Who has perverted the dispassionate rules of science?

Paul Ehrlich? You wouldn’t mean the Paul Ehrlich of discredited Population Bomb fame, would you? The same alarmist Paul Ehrlich that 40 years ago ran around like chicken little screaming that there would be mass starvation of humans in 1970s and 1980s due to overpopulation and advocated immediate action to limit population growth.

The battle to feed all of humanity is over. In the 1970s and 1980s hundreds of millions of people will starve to death in spite of any crash programs embarked upon now. At this late date nothing can prevent a substantial increase in the world death rate...
Of course,none of that ever came close to happening and now he and his ilk are on the  band wagon of humans burning up in a conflagration caused by not using compact fluorescents!

What a crock.

Thursday, March 4, 2010

Starvation the Best Cure for Poverty - So Says Heartless Bastard

Here today, a friend sends me a story that reads like something crafted directly from the center of "the collective".
"Because of our very vulnerable offspring, the fundamental task for human survival and gene replication is to take care of others," said Keltner, co-director of UC Berkeley's Greater Good Science Center. "Human beings have survived as a species because we have evolved the capacities to care for those in need and to cooperate. As Darwin long ago surmised, sympathy is our strongest instinct."

No, Mr. Keltner, the fundamental task for human survival and gene replication is to take care of YOURSELF. Taking care of others is one of the tools that a human can selectively use to do this, like for example, when our ancestral cave-man (or woman) would rescue THEIR child from a saber-toothed tiger (so as to save their little worker-unit without which they would have a harder time surviving(;  or when you rescue YOUR child from a burning building (and in so doing protect yourself from a sense of YOUR loss and also protect yourself from doing without a caregiver for your old age).

So then, however hard and unpalatable to accept the truth of the matter is that, whenever that (helping others) is done, the underlying basis for all of it is that the fundamental task for survival is to take care of ones self. In doing that, we may take care of others, and we may cooperate (like when we cooperate to kill others in war?), but those are tools directed and selectively used to achieve the end - survival of ourselves (and our spawn). [See my other articles regarding selfishness and altruism  - and how they are EXACTLY the same.]

Contrary to the disingenuous nature of this article, meant, I suppose, to influence the masses into committing suicide for the "need" of others, the real truth is that we have survived to this point is exactly because our ancestors and antecedent cultures operated from a foundation of helping ourselves (NOT others). The underlying theme, therefore, of survival is service to ones self, NOT service to others.

It is so sad that in today's Politically Correct climate brought about by the hot putrid off-gassing of a culture gone soft and lazy, children though are being taught a different thing - a thing that if left unchecked will result in the extinction of our culture, and later our species. For we are raising a generation that see nothing wrong with spreading the wealth; that goes to bed every night dreaming about how they should sacrifice themselves at the altar of another; and dream dreams of how their social responsibility is to become do-gooders instead of doers. To bad for our future society that in so thinking and dreaming they evolve having no concept of property, or property rights, and thinking that people are entitled simply because they have "need"  - and that the yardstick of "need" is "Does the other guy have "more".

As Ben Franklin said, "....the best way of doing good to the poor, is not making them easy in poverty, but leading or driving them out of it." Hey that is Math 101, but certainly not in today's classroom. Unfortunately, there, today's youth are being taught that the proper thing to do is to "give back", and being taught to think that people like your dear correspondent are  oh, so cold and heartless when they rail, fulminate, declaim, and inveigh against the cancerous malignancy of the "giving back" philosophy.

And another BTW - That part about taking care of our "vulnerable offspring" which Keltner conflates into evolving based on taking care of others, . No Mr Keltner, we take care of OUR vulnerable offspring.We want OUR DNA to survive, not the DNA of others.

And BTW #2 ...... Sympathy is NOT our strongest instinct.

Monday, March 1, 2010

Words Are Dangerous Things

Feb 2040
Port au Prince- Haiti

In a surprising turn of events, do-gooders all over the world had their sensibilities shaken as they came to learn that much of the aid that was collected for Haiti after the earthquake of 2010 was of little use, for  twenty  years after that devastating earthquake, Haitians still live in conditions of poverty and disease that are essentially the same as that in which their nation existed beforehand.

Such turn of events has been used by the World Nations League as poof of the niggardliness of the Western Nations and Prime Overlord Amid Kerchi chided the "West" that although they had risen themselves up from poverty and strife by having a  national pride of self responsibility,  and were now after years of national work and toil enjoying the fruits of their labors, that they should "give back" to those that are not interested in the least in helping themselves and instead demand to live off the labors of others. 

The United North American League, responded to these allegations of neglect that prior to the quake, saying that they had spent over 3 billion in aid to the Haitian nation and that such expenditure over  17 years of "giving" was of absolutely no use, citing the facts that employment and poverty at the commencement of their giving was at a lower level compared to in the subsequent years.

As example of how this all came to be, President Jacobssen of the United North American League, played at the  World Nations League general assembly a tape of a 2040 interview with Jamil JabJube a citizen of Haiti.

When asked about the impact of foreign aid to his country, Jamil JabJube said that after 1960's when the aid started pouring in from the western nations that had been made guilt ridden from their misunderstanding and conflating of the concepts of  responsibility and poverty, that people like him had seen that there was no need to work and  provide for their families, as the lower cost option was to be shiftless and wait for aid to come from a West that can always be black-bagged into a sense of guilt. Indeed, he was proud to live in a nation that has such poverty, as it helped in achieving his aim of getting something for as little expenditure of energy as possible.

He cited that he has 13 kids - all qualifying under the Western Nations Guilt Plan for direct payments and medical attention. He further stated that while in generations previous to his, married and unmarried couples practiced Haikde and Jayal, forms of sexual self or mutual stimulation and gratification without intercourse that had been developed over centuries of their society's evolution as a means to relieve sexual tension without the risk of pregnancy and consequent increase in population that would, if not practiced, soon strip the tiny nation of all its sustainable resources, there was now no need for such practices for no matter how bad it gets, as the Western guilt can always be counted on.

He went on to say that in the last 50 years the so called Western Aid has completely destroyed their one means of rising out of poverty (working/doing it themselves) , reiterating that it is because the aid has made it so that there is no need of practicing Jayal and Haikde which results in a swarms of povety stricken children and indeed has created a nation standing at every street-corner of the world demanding "need" payment to their outstretched palms.

He further heaped contempt and disdain on one particular class of do-gooders  - those that come over for 2 months every year and build a couple of homes for those that are considered "deserving" and after doing so, then jet  back to their lives of luxury and leave a couple of Haitian families in a "new home", which does nothing more than cause envy and jealousy among the neighbors.

He said that when everyone is poor, nobody is poor and such "charity" upsets the delicate balance of life that rests of personal responsibility. Citing the philosophical truism that wealth created by ones own initiative is hard enough to protect from attack by those "in need", the said that it is even harder to protect when its possession has merely been handed over. As example, he said that a man who builds his own house while the others sit and watch is soon beset by the jealousy of his neighbors, those same neighbors are even more jealous when he got that house without having to do any work other than being  judged to be "in need" and "deserving".

Asked why the Western League persists in sending "aid" he said that it is because those nations have forgotten  that need does not create a "deservement" and have conflated the word and concept of "deserve" with the concept of "a claim" and the concept of "need", citing the very definition of the word as shown above as proof. He said that the beauty of the English and French Languages of old were that they had a plethora of words intended to convey subtle but important distinctions on meaning, and that the lazy American and Western minds, due to a dumbing down from  the "no child left behind" education system which acts so that "no child gets ahead, has started conflating ideas and concepts that should not be so associated.

He ended his interview by reminding that "lack of" something should not be conflated with "need" for something, and that neither should be conflated with "claim" for something , warning that a society that does not understand the boundaries and fences erected make these terms good neighbors, will create a nation of citizens who try and stake a claim based simply on their "need".