News/Politics 10-26-13

What’s interesting in the news today?

Open Thread, here’s a few from me.

The US Army has finally decided to stop some of the nonsense.

From FoxNews  “The Secretary of the Army has ordered military leaders to halt all briefings on extremist organizations that labeled Evangelical Christian groups as domestic hate groups. The shutdown comes just four days after I reported exclusively about a briefing at Mississippi’s Camp Shelby that labeled the American Family Association as a domestic hate group.”

“Men and women of faith – who have served the Army faithfully for centuries – have been likened to those who regularly threaten the peace and security of the United States,” said Ron Crews, executive director of the Chaplain Alliance. “It is dishonorable for any U.S. military entity to allow this type of improper characterization.”

““The groups identified in the instruction were not ‘extremist’ organizations as that term is defined in Army Regulation,” McHugh wrote in his memorandum.”

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Holder has some more ‘splainin’ to do.

From TheHill  “Sen. Pat Toomey (R-Pa.) accused Attorney General Eric Holder of forcing  African American students in Louisiana into failing schools for the sake of  diversity. 

“The fact that Attorney General Holder would block any child from obtaining a  good education is bad enough,” Toomey said Thursday. “The fact that he is doing  so based solely on the children’s race is inexcusable.”

Toomey along with more than 20 of his Senate Republican colleagues sent  Holder a letter Thursday requesting more information on why the Justice Department filed a  petition to keep 570 students from “escaping failing public schools, solely on  the basis of the children’s skin color.”

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CBS is reporting that more Medicaid plans paid for by taxpayers are being received from the new exchange than private plans paid for by the individuals. Shocking right? 🙄

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Now who’s pushin’ Granny off the cliff? 🙄

From TheNYPost  “ObamaCare is making seniors sick.

Elderly New Yorkers are in a panic after getting notices that insurance companies are booting their doctors from the Medicare Advantage program as a result of the shifting medical landscape under ObamaCare.

That leaves patients with unenviable choices: keep the same insurance plan and find another doctor, pay out of pocket or look for another plan where their physician is a member.”

You can’t cut 700 billion and expect this wouldn’t happen. And we’re dumping even more people into the system while cutting funds and doctors. What could possibly go wrong?

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And the last one for today is an interesting one, with an easy solution. Don’t do it. And if you do anyway because you enjoy playing around in social experiments and giving away body fluids, then expect that there might be consequences.

Or will this be like weddings, cakes, and photos and you can’t refuse to perform it without being sued?

From NBCNews  “A Kansas district court heard arguments Friday in the case of a man who is being sued for thousands of dollars in child support by the state after donating his sperm to a same-sex couple he found through a Craigslist ad.

William Marotta, a mechanic, and his wife Kimberly are fighting the state’s contention that the man should be required to pay child support, arguing that a Kansas law requiring a licensed doctor to perform artificial insemination is antiquated.”

“Bauer and Schreiner have separated since the artificial insemination, and have struggled financially because of an injury that left Schreiner unable to work. Marotta has said that he has seen the girl twice in her lifetime – once soon after her birth, and another time by coincidence at the Kansas State Fair. But he has never identified himself as her father, he said.”

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27 thoughts on “News/Politics 10-26-13

  1. The moral to the story is to be careful what you do on Craig;s List. If the women wanted a baby that much they should have done what straight couples who can’t have babies do. They buy the sperm through their doctor. It used to cost about $200, but you definately knew what you were getting. Me? I was hard headed, BG is George’s. It cost more that way.

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  2. Maybe a couple who has a baby with borrowed sperm or eggs should be required to adopt the baby and the donor required to put the baby up for adoption. That way the child is theirs and only theirs and they alone will e responsible, just like in a regular adoption.

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  3. Tychicus, That’s an interesting story on Michelle’s buddy.

    When I talk to federal employees, they all tell me that federal managers spend a huge percentage of their time looking for qualified minority or female employees and a huge percentage of their time fighting EEOC complaints made by those employees after they have been hired. The unqualified female and minority employees all think they should be the boss. The result is that the federal agencies can’t actually do anything competently. In some cases, this is actually a positive. I really don’t want the Depts of Energy or Education to do what they were set up to do. However, when we actually need a federal agency or contractor to perform competently, the results are generally disappointing and/or hilarious.

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  4. I may not be up on the exact powers of the Attorney General but I doubt he has the power to force kids where to attend a certain school. The article states, he “suggested.”, I’m sure the parents can tell him what to do with his suggestion. I still have my doubts simply on the premise that where eight kids go to school shouldn’t even be on the radar for the federal gov’t. Perhaps I’m naive or don’t understand the federal role in integrating schools in the South.

    I’m not surprised most enlistees of Obamacare require subsidies as opposed to paying into the system. Those who benefit will be the first in line whereas the others will be dragged kicking and screaming to pay for their neighbour’s health care. This point, the complexity of the exchange, the change of service delivery for some (ie the senior’s story) all point to the simple fact…. Obama should have listened to the left and instituted single payer health care. Republicans called him a socialist anyway, might as well act like one.

    Men should take better care of their sperm.

    Ricky, I’m one of those leftist who deride identity politics. One of the great mistakes of the late 80s and early 90s was abandoning the economic sphere to the neo-cons and focusing on the social causes. For many, the left was social and environmental causes and very few of my fellow travelers focused on economics. Marx focused on economics because of its primacy in the modern era; the neo-cons. some of whom were ex-Marxists, also follow this train of thought. This economic fascination caused one commentator to jokingly call neo-cons the only true Marxists left.

    Identity politics and affirmative action are, for me, a means, purposely or accidentally, to separate the working and middle classes. People resent those who belong to the identified groups even if the individuals were hired on merit and instead of working together to bargain with the bosses they are divided.

    The welfare numbers are slightly inflated … they include any member of a household where at least one individual receives a means tested program. Hence, if a kid receives a free school lunch his parents are identified as receiving welfare. Not exactly what most of us think of when we hear welfare …. we think of the monthly cheque. Furthermore, many people work full time and collect various forms of social assistance. Walmart, McDonalds, and other corporations instruct their workers full time and part time on how to access gov’t programs. They may be recipents of means tested programs but they are also working.

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  5. HRW, You missed my point. Unqualified minorities are hired by the federal government. These new workers come in with a complete sense of entitlement. Instead of realizing they are unqualified and working hard to become competent, they think they should become bosses.

    For many years, federal managers have been trained to go to prisons, halfway houses and mental hospitals to recruit those always sought after black male employees.

    My funniest experience with this came almost 40 years ago when I was in college working as a room service waiter. My supervisor, who was a young black man, was seldom at his post. Another waiter, an older black man who took great pride in his work, explained that our supervisor was a drug dealer and a pimp, and only held the room service job so he could have access to hotel patrons who were customers of his two businesses. A new hotel manager fired the pusher/pimp and the pusher/pimp promptly filed a complaint with the EEOC (Equal Employment Opportunity Commission). This drug on for a while and then the man dropped his complaint and accepted a job at the EEOC. We assumed there must have been a great demand for drugs and prostitutes at the EEOC. Most whites my age have had some similar experience.

    The older black waiter had earned everything he had in the face of unfair discrimination. Blacks in the US have been favored by affirmative action for 40 years. To quote Ann Richards, people like the Obamas woke up on third base and thought they hit a triple.

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  6. I don’t think the welfare numbers are inflated. If a person has his kid fed by the government every day, I consider him to be on welfare. Importantly, he is almost certain to vote against anyone who believes he should be responsible for feeding his own child. That is why I say we are now past the point of no return.

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  7. HRW, You and I are actually not that far apart on healthcare. The UK spends 9% of GDP on healthcare. I would happily give our federal government 9% of GDP if it could then provide a sorry second-rate health care program for all Americans, including the poor and the elderly. Of course, I would never want anyone in my family to rely on such a system. I would private pay for good treatment here or abroad. Increasingly, the British are making the same decision:

    http://www.theguardian.com/business/2011/sep/13/private-healthcare-boosted-by-nhs-rationing

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  8. Ricky
    unqualified people are hired all the time for all sorts of reasons. The old boys club always took care of their own. Even within my school, I’ve seen people being hired as teachers ahead of more qualified teachers for various reasons; they (a couple)went to the same church as the principal, as a favour to another principal who in turn hired a family member of the other principal, she was a cheerleader for a local sports team the superintendent had some interest in, and finally because the staff was adamant we hire a long term supply teacher who was far more qualified than the above. I’ve also worked for a principal who deliberately hired men for primary positions as she felt there wasn’t enough men on staff. In your anecdote, a person was hired for their ability to procure goods and services. Although morally probably worse than my examples, its the same pattern — people are hired for more than their qualifications.

    Welfare numbers are inflated …. it includes social security and it would include anyone who lived with someone collecting social security. If a parent collected social security and lived with a child and his/her spouse, the couple and possibly grandkids would be considered to be on welfare. Secondly the comparison between welfare recipients and workers fails since most people collecting some form of gov’t assistance (food stamps, school lunch, medicaid) also work full time.

    Of all the single payer systems to use as a model, the NHS is probably the worst. Although most Europeans allow for private health care, some systems (such as Canada) don’t allow for any private funds in basic care. If its covered by the provincial health care system, there’s no private alternative to jump the queue. In Canada, rich or poor, you have the same access to basic health care. This ensures adequate money goes in the system as the rich are forced to participate and thus have an interest in ensuring enough money is spent on health care.

    solar
    a single payer is probably much easier to run than your current system or the system attempted to be instituted by Obama.

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  9. HRW, The article said the ones counted as being on welfare were not Social Security recipients. They only counted those on means-tested programs.

    Concerning hiring practices, there will always be mistakes. However, in most hiring situations there will also be objective standards. For forty years all governments in the US (and many companies who do government work) have had much lower standards for minorities. After forty years few competent people want to work for the government and we are unable to launch a rocket, build a website, find 13 terrorists training to fly into buildings, evacuate hurricane victims, find a terrorist bomber the Russians repeatedly warned us about, etc.

    It sounds to me like Canada’s health care system is the worst. If I lived there I would have to fly my family to another country to get good care. I would prefer a system like the one in Singapore or Switzerland, but I am confident our leaders will create one that contains the worst features of all systems. Obamacare is a good step in that direction.

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  10. HRW, I would like to see your figures that say most of those on welfare have a full time job. 20 million of the 100 million are on SSI. By rule none of those 20 million have a full time job. A huge number of Medicaid recipients are elderly who don’t work at all.

    I think the number on welfare is actually understated. I don’t think they counted those receiving Earned Income Tax Credits in excess of their actual income tax withheld. This is another form of welfare. To save time, I will remind you now that Reagan did not create that program even though that seems to be a pervasive liberal myth.

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  11. The report, entitled “Fast-food, Poverty Wages: The Public Cost of Low-Wage Jobs in the Fast-Food Industry,” found that families of non-managerial fast food workers receive government aid totaling $7 billion per year, including $3.9 billion for health care aid, $1.04 billion for food stamps, and $1.91 billion from tax credits.

    Fifty-two percent of fast food workers rely on government assistance programs, compared to 25 percent of the workforce as a whole.

    In a commentary carried by the McClatchy-Tribune News Service, the lead authors of the study, Sylvia Allegretto and Marc Doussard, wrote, “It might come as a surprise that most Americans on public assistance programs work. In the fast food industry, workers rely on public assistance programs in particularly large numbers because those jobs just don’t pay them enough.”

    http://www.wsws.org/en/articles/2013/10/23/fast-o23.html

    Factcheck.org discusses the article AJ raised. It also points out its a false comparison/dilemma. First as I point out, many people who work are on social assistance and hence are counted on both sides. Second, many collecting social assistance are children and the elderly and comparing those of working age to the young and old is inappropriate. They also note to achieve the numbers, they had to exculde all full time gov’t workers (teachers, soldiers, police, etc) and all part time workers, so even the numbers are suspect

    http://www.factcheck.org/2013/07/food-aid-foolery/

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  12. HRW, Nothing you posted supports the statement that you made that most welfare recipients “work full time”. One of the worst features of Obamacare and previous federal laws is that they discouraged employers from hiring full time workers, by placing expensive mandates on the employers of full time workers. Liberal do-gooders never are able to anticipate the reaction of business and markets in general to their well-intentioned, but foolish pieces of legislation.

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  13. So you’re not upset over 50% of fast food full time workers need social assistance to survive. In effect, the American taxpayer is subsidizing McDonald’s labour costs.

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  14. They don’t need assistance to survive. Our poor people are fat. We are the only country in the history of the world with fat poor people and skinny rich people. The government pays for food for the poor and they overconsume food. The government pays for healthcare for the poor and the elderly and they overconsume health care. It’s great for farmers, grocers, doctors and pharmacists. Not so great for everyone else.

    Back to the original point, there is no evidence that over half of those on welfare are working full time.

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