We know that President Trump, while a businessman, was hounded by the IRS and that Barack used them as his personal attack dog to launch against political enemies.
Will there be needed changes in that bureaucracy? Will the tax code be fixed and reduced to a manageable size? These are bonuses that would save ever business and every taxpayer money, likely not costing the government anything – but are they a bridge too far for a single four year presidential term? There are a lot of precious porkbarrel items in that massive tax code that lobbyists will work (on behalf of clients) to retain. The unbounded protection of sugar is one of the biggest. A clue to his intentions will come when he appoints a Secretary of the Treasury.
Then again, it’s always better to do business in cash when possible.
1. The people don’t want it! This, we would think, should have some bearing on decision-making. Yet the Democrats forge ahead without consent of the governed. In the latest Rasmussen poll, 53% opposed the Democrats’ reform while 42% were in favor. More than four in 10 “strongly” opposed; just two in 10 “strongly” favored. This jibes with other surveys, including our own IBD/TIPP Poll, taken since last year.
2. Doctors don’t want it! A survey we took last summer of 1,376 practicing physicians found that 45% would consider leaving their practices or taking early retirements if the Democrats’ reform became law. In December, the results were validated by a Medicus poll in which 25% of doctors said they’d retire early if a public option is implemented and another 21% would stop practicing even though they were far from their retirement years. Even if the bill doesn’t have a “public option,” nearly 30% said they’d quit the profession under the plans being considered.
3. Half the Congress doesn’t want it! Not a single Republican backed the health care bill that cleared the Senate on Christmas Eve 60-39. House passage was by a slim 220 to 215, and the lone Republican “aye” has since switched to “no.” Columnist Michael Barone says other changes would put the House vote today at 216-215 in favor, and he has doubts Democrats can even muster 216.
House Speaker Nancy Pelosi made her job of securing yes votes even more difficult last week when she told a meeting of county officials that “we have to pass the bill so you can find out what is in it.” (emphasis added) Members of Congress aren’t waiting: They’ve already exempted themselves from whatever they inflict on us.
4. People are happy with the health care they’ve got! Polls show that 84% of Americans have health insurance and that few are displeased with what they’ve got. Last month, the St. Petersburg Times looked at eight polls and reported that satisfaction rates averaged 87%.
Contractors also encourage mission creep, because contractors don’t count as “boots on the ground.” Congress does not consider them to be troops, and therefore contractors do not count again troop-level caps in places like Iraq. The U.S. government does not track contractor numbers in war zones. As a result, the government can put more people on the ground than it reports to the American people, encouraging mission creep and rendering contractors virtually invisible.
The painting above: The Spanish treasure fleets departs the Florida coast for Spain, by Timothy Thompson
Conquests in the New World brought wealth to Phillip II and his country and led to the growth of Spanish power. By 1600, 339,000 pounds of gold, and 16,000 tons of silver bullion had been shipped to Spain. It amounted to 32 million pesos in that year (1600).
Huge quantities of treasure had to be shipped back to Spain by sea, and the vulnerabilities of lumbering treasure galleons to pirates required that they employ a convoy system, where the Spanish Navy would sail with them and protect the hulls that were filled to the gunnels with precious metal, and jewels.
Fleets of up to 100 ships were frequently to be seen gathering the Florida coast, preparing for passage to Spain. Sometimes they sailed too late and treasure ships went to the bottom.
In other instances, “pirates”, often ships commissioned by other nations with letters of marque, authorizing them to make war on the Spanish and retrieve the treasure cut one or two out of the herd.
The Spanish Price Revolution occurred between the second half of the 15th century and the first half of the 17th century, and was most specifically linked to the high rate of inflation that occurred during this period across Western Europe. Prices rose on average roughly sixfold over 150 years. Specie flowed through Spain, increasing Spanish prices and spread across Europe. Combined with this influx of gold and silver, population growth and urbanization perpetuated the price revolution. According to this theory, too many people with too much money chased too few goods, and instead of rising dominant over Western Europe and the known world, it destroyed Spain – some would say, forever.
(The Economist) The CSI 300, an index of the country’s biggest stocks, fell by 7%, the worst-ever start to a year for Chinese markets. Small-cap stocks fared even worse, many falling by the daily maximum of 10%. Monday was the first day of operation for new “circuit breakers”—automatic 15-minute pauses in trading whenever the CSI 300 swings up or down by 5%. These are intended to restore calm when the markets are in a frenzy. No such luck: less than ten minutes after trading resumed following the first such pause, the index fell by another two percentage points. That triggered another circuit breaker, prompting a suspension in trading for the remainder of the day.
|LL in Shanghai|
Anyway, I still have friends there. We talk.
There is nonsense afoot these days that China is a communist country.
|LL in Changsha, Hunan Province|
*According to the People’s Bank of China, its foreign-exchange reserves declined by $87.22 billion from a month earlier to $3.438 trillion at the end of November 2015.
The Chinese (as with all Asians that I met in Asia) are racists down to their core. All of them that I knew were shocked when we elected an American African to be president. One Chinese (thug) politician told me that he’d steal everything that wasn’t bolted to the floor and shat where he ate. I could go on, but the description of what he thought we were in for was not flattering. I thought to my self at the time that it might not be THAT bad. I was wrong.
The New FOIA
The article linked is instructive.
Particularly hard hit during the Obama-period (June 2009-June 2011) were households where the head of household lost a job, 18.4% decline, and households with an African American (not Hispanic) head, 9.4% decline versus 4.7% for whites and 4.9% for Hispanics.
Under President Obama’s failed economic leadership, America has suffered through weak economic growth and fifty-four months of unemployment over 7.5%, the longest stretch since records began being kept in 1948.
|Large Coronal Hole Near
the Sun’s North Pole
July 19, 2013 — The European Space Agency/NASA Solar and Heliospheric Observatory, or SOHO, captured this image of a gigantic coronal hole hovering over the sun’s north pole on July 18, 2013, at 9:06 a.m. EDT. Coronal holes are dark, low density regions of the sun’s outermost atmosphere, the corona. They contain little solar material, have lower temperatures, and therefore, appear much darker than their surroundings.
Coronal holes are a typical feature on the sun, though they appear at different places and with more frequency at different times of the sun’s activity cycle. The activity cycle is currently ramping up toward what is known as solar maximum, currently predicted for late 2013. During this portion of the cycle, the number of coronal holes decreases. During solar max, the magnetic fields on the sun reverse and new coronal holes appear near the poles with the opposite magnetic alignment. The coronal holes then increase in size and number, extending further from the poles as the sun moves toward solar minimum again. At such times, coronal holes have appeared that are even larger than this one.
In the August reviews of the news, I’ll pick a new victim to appear here in this section. I’m thinking that a review of Progressive Paradise Cities (models for the nation) would be an appropriate contrast.
|Their heart is in the right place.|
|There was a time in America when a bar near an airport that catered
to pilots could be called the “cockpit” without being a magnet for
all of the gay blades in town. Not anymore. Not even in Texas.
|Is anything wrong with combining a beauty parlor, chainsaw repair
and a bar under one roof? No. And certainly not in Texas.
Now for the culture portion of this blog — never say that I didn’t bring culture to the on-line presence.
Norwegian Folk Music:
|Julia Ioffe, classless prog harpie|
Julia Ioffe, a now-ex Politico writer is set to join The Atlantic – after Ioffe tweeted regarding Ivanka Trump: “Either Trump is f—ing his daughter or he’s shirking nepotism laws. Which is worse?”
Politico swiftly cut ties with Ioffe, who subsequently deleted the tweet and apologized for the “crass joke.”
BY WAY OF FOLLOW-UP
“We are fully cognizant of the challenges to security of CPEC and Gwadar port.” Dawn reported that challenges to Pakistan’s maritime security have traditionally come from India. But Chinese involvement in Gwadar port and the launch of CPEC has complicated the security environment. India sees Gwadar as a foothold for China in the Arabian Sea and as a counter-strategy to threats at Malacca. Therefore, India is alleged to have stepped up its activities in the broader region surrounding Gwadar to undermine the project.”
The architect delivered preliminary plans for the White Wolf Mine residence/shack. I wanted to ask him whether he actually looked at my drawings which were more than gentle suggestions on my part. But I’m working with him on refining the plan. Part of the problem with the mindset in the remote area there is that people build weekend get-away cabins. There is a difference between where you are going to spend the weekend and where you are going to live. I told him that I prefer an open concept with space. He understands that but almost doubled the “space” from my drawings/scratchings. Double the space is double the price. As the design moves forward, the price tag naturally increases and managing that makes me sound cheap, but building a hovel (to code) isn’t cheap. I would prefer to pay cash for the place and not have any sort of mortgage/building loan. Since President Trump took office, my business expanded exponentially (Thanks Donald) but there will come a time when I want to become a gentleman of leisure, not a slave to a bank.
The shot heard ’round Colorado (more here). Two plumbers start the movement.
|The Biden Defense|
|John Morse (no longer a politician – left) and friend|
After two days of talks, North Korea agreed to return 50 to 55 sets of remains believed to be those of US soldiers missing from the 1950-53 Korean War — possibly within two weeks, according to media reports.
“Due to continuing attempts by Hamas to carry out terrorist attacks, Defense Minister Avigdor Lieberman, after consultation with the Israel Defense Force (IDF) chief of staff, decided to halt the transfer of gasoline via Kerem Shalom until next Sunday,” read a statement released by the Defense Ministry.
The Netflix Series, NARCOS is now in its second season. It retells the life and times of Pablo Escobar, who built an empire on the drug trade. I give the series a solid 7 out of a possible 10. That means that I didn’t binge watch it, but I still watched it and found it entertaining.
To round out your reading if you want to be an evil, manipulative politician or a drug lord who wants to go into politics as Pablo did, I recommend Alinsky’s Rules for Radicals as your Bible. Maybe it’s also useful to read Sun Tzu’s “Art of War” and Machievelli’s “The Prince”.
And before you leave, thinking that I am comparing the Clinton Global Initiative, and Hillary Clinton herself to Colombian drug kingpin Pablo Escobar, any similarity is only coincidental. I don’t think that Hillary speaks Spanish.
Fredd (fellow blogger) posited a question on what has changed in America that has caused our political system to produce curs like Barack Hussein Obama and Hillary, who rise to the top of the pond (like scum). I’ll pick up that gauntlet and throw my cracker in the soup.
Hang with the rant for a moment.
I was raised in “reduced circumstances” and was forced to work for whatever I wanted or needed. Most progressives don’t emerge from backgrounds that require labor to survive. Those are the fetid breeding grounds of self-reliant conservatives. Thus it is with some skepticism that progressives consider my point of view to be valid. Though I am educated, I was not educated under any of the ‘right’ circumstances and never joined the Skull and Bones fraternity. There is no “old school tie” around my neck. To compound that, I served in the military, wore a badge and also dabbled in the dark arts. Therefore, my credentials to have an opinion are tainted. Having established that, and having warned you, we will forge on.
Efforts to force equal employment in every company by race, sex, age, or other class doom companies that must compete with companies (outside the USA) that are not so constrained. For example, Rev. Jesse Jackson has called for Federal pressure on high tech firms to require equal employment outcomes in tech jobs. When you talk to a Social Justice Warrior about this, you get an answer remarkably similar to what socialists said in the 1970s when you asked how any country could level outcomes (“to each according to his need”) without the productive escaping to another country to achieve what they could without the shackles: “Well, that’s why they had to build the Berlin Wall.” To stop the defection of those who want to be free to follow their own preferences, this preferred system must be extended everywhere or somehow escape must be controlled and punished by, say, walls, machine guns, and Gulags.
Part Two of this post will be available on this blog later today.
Peace through superior firepower this holiday season. It’s not just a job, it’s an adventure. (Cry, Havoc!)
And there’s nothing politically correct about this blog. Shrink the size of government, build the wall, lock Her up, make America great again.
Meanwhile, if you see a young lady wearing suggestive clothing standing on a street corner, it’s not polite to call out “Ho-Ho-Ho!” no matter how factually accurate it is.
Try to remember that conspicuous consumption may help the economy, but it’s not the reason for the season.
The government has scant capability to investigate itself. There are examples when it has done well, but usually that is because an outside authority, such as Congress, screams for answers. The FBI’s cover up at Ruby Ridge, successfully investigated by the US Postal Investigation Service after the first two FBI OPR investigations were ‘compromised internally’ is one example.
Expecting the Obama Administration to investigate the rampant misconduct of the Association of Community Organizations for Reform Now (ACORN) scandal is laughable. ACORN was a conduit for laundered campaign contributions, it was an action arm of the radical left (now in power in Washington) and the “street team” to effect hope and change. That is was populated by a coterie of thugs, pimps, petty narcotics users and traffickers and tax cheats was the absolutely smallest thing. That uncounted millions of dollars vanished or were conveniently redirected is something that Barack Hussein Obama, attorney for ACORN in Chicago does not want to come out. So it’s locked as tight as his college transcripts (where he listed his religion as “Muslim”).
(IBD) In Virginia, a low-income 25-year-old will pay $127 a month for the cheapest plan after subsidies, according to the Kaiser Family Foundation. But the Government Accountability Office found that the mid-priced plan in Virginia today costs just $112 a month.
And as the New York Times discovered, even these ObamaCare prices are misleading, since the only way insurance companies could keep them low was by severely restricting their networks of doctors and hospitals.
It notes that a PriceWaterhouseCoopers study found “insurers passed over major medical centers” in many states to keep premiums down.
Those buying a Blue Cross plan in California’s exchange will have access to 47% fewer doctors and 22% fewer hospitals than subscribers can get today, the Times reports
Meanwhile the mainstream media continues to trumpet the Democratic Party line (mostly lies) and Fox News ratings climb as people turn from the propaganda machine to an effort at fair and balaned.
(Fox News) 7 out of 10 voters are concerned about their personal health care under the Affordable Care Act and a majority wants to take the health care system back to 2009, according to the latest Fox News national poll.The poll, released Tuesday, finds that 68 percent of voters are concerned about their health care under the new system. That includes 43 percent “very” concerned and another 25 percent “somewhat” concerned.The number feeling concerned is more than twice that of those who are unworried (31 percent).Even a 56-percent majority of Democrats feels concerned (31 percent “very” concerned). By comparison, 72 percent of independents and 77 percent of Republicans feel that way.
The “new normal“
Texas DPS/Highway Patrol officer pulled up next to a guy unloading garbage out of his pick-up into a ditch. The officer asked, “Why are you dumping garbage in the ditch? Don’t you see that sign right over your head.”