Archive for January 19th, 2010

Video, Democratic Rep. Weiner: Health Care “Dead” If Scott Brown Wins

Tuesday, January 19th, 2010

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Economist Mark Perry — From 1965 to 2009, Big 3 automakers’ market share went from 90% to 45%

Tuesday, January 19th, 2010

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What Washington Post Story Did Not Say about Its Own Poll: Most Americans Say They Want a Smaller Government — CNS News

Tuesday, January 19th, 2010

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Beware Jerome R. Corsi, ‘friend’ of free enterprise — Daniel T. Griswold

Tuesday, January 19th, 2010

With friends like Jerome R. Corsi, the American free-enterprise system is in more trouble than we feared.

Corsi should be on the right side of the battle to defend economic freedom. Before the 2008 election, he wrote a popular book with a great title, The Obama Nation, warning that Barack Obama was not the man we needed in the White House. But in his latest book, America for Sale: Fighting the New World Order, Surviving a Global Depression, and Preserving USA Sovereignty, he sounds a lot more like Obama than like Ronald Reagan, the former president he professes to admire.

While Corsi takes passing shots at government spending and climate-change legislation, his real target is “free trade,” “globalism,” and international agreements such as NAFTA and the World Trade Organization. The villains in his book are trade agreements, trade deficits, growing Chinese foreign-currency reserves, and oil imports, all of which threaten to undermine the U.S. dollar, American independence, and the middle class. Orchestrating our decline is a cast of characters from around the globe, both familiar and obscure, working in public and in secret.

Hugo Chavez: Too Much Capitalism on TV. Chavez says producers should be making “socialist soap operas.”

Tuesday, January 19th, 2010

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Gene Healy: Mass. election refutes weak tea conservatism

Tuesday, January 19th, 2010

That ought to give pause to the “reformist” conservatives insisting that Reagan-Goldwater conservatism is dead. Yet the reformists’ unofficial leader, former Bush speechwriter David Frum, puts a different spin on what Massachusetts portends.

Brown is no “talk-radio conservative,” Frum maintains: As a state senator, he “voted in favor of Mitt Romney’s health plan” and supported greenhouse gas curbs. It would be “a travesty” if his victory empowered “anger, paranoia and extremism,” which is how Frum characterizes rank-and-file “rejectionism.”

Democrats’ health care quest has soured — Charles Babington

Tuesday, January 19th, 2010

Liberals oppose the tax on high-cost insurance plans in the Senate bill, while anti-abortion Democrats have termed the Senate’s approach to restricting taxpayer funding “unacceptable.”

Catholic bishops adamantly oppose the Senate language restricting the use of taxpayer funds to pay for abortion. They support the House’s harder line. Liberals, for their part, say the House bill would deny access to a legal medical procedure to millions of privately insured women.

As the clock ticks down on the Massachusetts election results, Democrats ponder a cruel irony: The death of Sen. Edward Kennedy, a lifelong champion of health care reform, has triggered the events that have put the effort at the verge of a last-minute demise.

WSJ — High Turnout Seen in Massachusetts. Battle Close Race for Senate Galvanizes Supporters

Tuesday, January 19th, 2010

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Edward Luttwak — The Body Scanner Scam. Why invading our physical privacy at airports won’t make us safe.

Tuesday, January 19th, 2010

The scanners that are now to be acquired would perpetuate futility at even greater cost. True, it is perfectly feasible to design very high definition scanners that could detect objects inside body cavities, and at least one manufacturer already claims that capability. But to use those scanners would throw out any pretense of preserving privacy. It also would mean subjecting every passenger to whatever level of radiation those machines will emit. Recent research has demonstrated that the cancer risks of radiation have been grossly underestimated, even for medical equipment operated by qualified radiologists and their trained technicians. It is therefore no good showing that in the manufacturer’s tests the level of radiation is only moderately harmful, because once distributed at airports, those machines will not necessarily be perfectly calibrated, nor will they be operated correctly by experts.

All along the alternative-which costs much less, inflicts much less inconvenience and would have a much higher probability of intercepting terrorists before the fact-has been staring us in the face. To screen passengers as persons instead of their bodies and belongings has an overwhelming advantage: It can detect a would-be terrorist even if the specific technique he tries to employ is not previously known.

Democrat county executive may run as Republican for New York governor

Tuesday, January 19th, 2010

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Google Sends Right Message to China’s Police State: David Pauly

Tuesday, January 19th, 2010

It’s time someone in the U.S. stopped coddling the Chinese police state. The American government can’t, or won’t.

Though Google is late coming around as an advocate of free speech in China, it still deserves applause. The company said last week it would stop censoring its Chinese search engine, Google.cn, as the communist government dictates — and might even close the business.

Google got religion after discovering that last month hackers — read Chinese government technicians — tried to access accounts of, and managed to steal information from, human-rights activists who used Google e-mail.

Bret Stephens — To Help Haiti, End Foreign Aid. For Haitians, just about every conceivable aid scheme beyond immediate humanitarian relief will lead to more poverty, more corruption and less institutional capacity.

Tuesday, January 19th, 2010

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Paying Individuals Not to Work — Bill Flax

Tuesday, January 19th, 2010

We all have formative experiences that usher us from the idealism of youth into the realism of maturity. One such event occurred long ago as an amateur boxing coach. I took several fighters for some sparring when another coach reported that he had just been laid off. I expressed my concern to the guffaws of all in earshot. The coach burst out laughing and started high-fiving everyone about, “Six months of unemployment!” As usual, the joke was on me.

Is Health Reform Unconstitutional? — Elizabeth MacDonald, Fox News

Tuesday, January 19th, 2010

If health reform is so great, why does everyone want to be exempt from it?

And aren’t those exemptions, as well as the individual mandate forcing people to buy coverage, also unconstitutional?

Answer: Yes.

Unions, federal, state and local employees, senior citizens in Florida, Michigan taxpayers in Blue Cross/Blue Shield, the states of Nebraska, Vermont and Massachusetts, along with 17 states, religious objectors, policemen, firefighters, longshoremen, construction workers, miners, and fishermen, all have won or are in the process of winning legislative exemptions that say they don’t have to abide by health reform, or certain parts of it (for details, see below).

Leaders of SEC and FDIC say agencies’ failings contributed to financial crisis — Wash Post

Tuesday, January 19th, 2010

The heads of the Securities and Exchange Commission and the Federal Deposit Insurance Corp. said that shortcomings in their agencies, coupled with flaws in the larger regulatory system, contributed to the period of great boom and even greater bust.

Paul B. Farrell, MarketWatch — 10 reasons Obama is failing 95 million investors

Tuesday, January 19th, 2010

Epilogue: Midterms? Re-election? New GOP president 2012? All irrelevant!

The endgame script won’t change. GOP-controlled House? 59 Dem senators? Romney? Palin as president? None of this matters, Mr. President. We’re all “merely actors” in an epic drama well-known to Adams as well as Shakespeare. But don’t get us wrong, we still do admire you. We know you’ll honor your Nobel legacy, like Carter and Gore, after you leave office. But meanwhile, you are playing your role well in this tragic final act. Indeed, all of America’s “merely actors” are right on cue with their “entrances and exits.” Yes, even our 95 million investors are playing their designated roles too. In fact, it really doesn’t matter much whether anyone goes to the voting booth, ever again, because the final scene has already been written … by your predecessor, John Adams.

It’s Time to Freeze Government Wages — Josh Barro

Tuesday, January 19th, 2010

There’s a recession going on, but you wouldn’t necessarily know it by looking at public employee earnings. If you work for the government, you’re far less likely than your private-sector counterparts to have been laid off in the recession, and you probably also saw relatively fast wage growth.

As states and localities continue to fight budget crises, they have an opportunity to close gaps by freezing employee wages. Because public employee compensation rose too fast over the last three years, they should be able to do this while retaining quality employees at least as well as they could back in 2006.

WSJ — Restoring Faith in Financial Markets

Tuesday, January 19th, 2010

‘Investing is an act of faith.” So I wrote in 1999, the very first sentence of my book, “Common Sense on Mutual Funds.” But as 2009 ended, writing in the updated 10th anniversary edition after the passage of this turbulent decade, I concluded that “the faith of investors has been betrayed.”

How so? Because the returns generated by our corporate stewards have often been illusory, created by so-called financial engineering and produced only by the assumption of massive risks. What’s more, too many of our professional money managers have failed to act as vigilant stewards of the money that we investors entrusted to them.

RedState — Stephanopoulos Agrees with Barney Frank: If Scott Brown Wins, Health Care Dies

Tuesday, January 19th, 2010

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True-Blue Massachusetts Is Red Alert to Obama: Margaret Carlson

Tuesday, January 19th, 2010

Jan. 19 (Bloomberg) — If Massachusetts, that bluest of blue states, goes Republican, say goodbye (or good riddance) to health-care reform and any chance that the Democrats will be able to pass much of anything in the Senate. Wisconsin Senator Russ Feingold will struggle to overcome a filibuster just to get National Cheese Week proclaimed.