Friday, April 27, 2012

Fooling the elderly to get past November

"Re-electing President Obama is really important to President Obama, which isn't news. What is news are the out-of-liberal-character acts that his Administration is committing to serve this political goal. ... 

ObamaCare slashes about $145 billion from Medicare Advantage, the program that allows one of four seniors to escape the traditional entitlement and choose commercial plans. ... 

Medicare's budget counters estimate that ObamaCare's cuts in the Advantage program will result in enrollment falling by half. The cuts were scheduled to begin this year. ... 

So in November 2010 Mr. Obama's Medicare team announced a nationwide Medicare Advantage 'demonstration project' that would test if paying insurers bonus subsidies would improve quality over the next two years. Lo and behold, according to a new investigation by the Government Accountability Office, or GAO, the $8.35 billion pilot program is just enough to reverse 71% of the Advantage cuts that would have hit seniors in the run-up to November. And behold again, the demonstration project turns into a pumpkin in 2013. ... 

Obama's Health and Human Services Department is allowed to spend unlimited taxpayer dollars as long it claims the money is going to 'demonstration projects' to fine-tune Medicare Advantage. The real game here is purely political -- to give a program that is popular with seniors a temporary reprieve past Election Day. ... 

Given the pre-election timing of this short-term Medicare Advantage pardon, the Federal Election Commission should bill HHS for giving Mr. Obama's campaign what amounts to an $8.35 billion re-election contribution."



The  racist media

 Thomas Sowell 

Whatever the ultimate outcome of the case against George Zimmerman for his shooting of Trayvon Martin, what has happened already is enough to turn the stomach of anyone who believes in either truth or justice.

An amazing proportion of the media has given us a painful demonstration of the thinking -- and lack of thinking -- that prevailed back in the days of the old Jim Crow South, where complexion counted more than facts in determining how people were treated.

One of the first things presented in the media was a transcript of a conversation between George Zimmerman and a police dispatcher. The last line in most of the transcripts shown on TV was that of the police dispatcher telling Zimmerman not to continue following Trayvon Martin.

That became the basis of many media criticisms of Zimmerman for continuing to follow him. Only later did I see a transcript of that conversation on the Sean Hannity program that included Zimmerman's reply to the police dispatcher: "O.K."

That reply removed the only basis for assuming that Zimmerman did in fact continue to follow Trayvon Martin. At this point, neither I nor the people who assumed that he continued to follow the teenager have any basis in fact for believing that he did or didn't.

Why was that reply edited out by so many in the media? Because too many people in the media see their role as filtering and slanting the news to fit their own vision of the world. The issue is not one of being "fair" to "both sides" but, more fundamentally, of being honest with their audience.

NBC News carried the editing even further, removing one of the police dispatcher's questions, to which Zimmerman was responding, in order to feed the vision of Zimmerman as a racist.

In the same vein were the repeated references to Zimmerman as a "white Hispanic." Zimmerman is half-white. So is Barack Obama. But does anyone refer to Obama as a "white African"?

All these verbal games grow out of the notion that complexion tells you who is to be blamed and who is not. It is a dangerous game because race is no game. If the tragic history of the old Jim Crow South in this country is not enough to show that, the history of racial and ethnic tragedies is written in blood in countries around the world. Millions have lost their lives because they looked different, talked differently or belonged to a different religion.

In the midst of the Florida tragedy, there was a book published with the unwieldy title, "No Matter What ... They'll Call This Book Racist." Obviously it was written well before the shooting in Florida, but its message -- that there is rampant hypocrisy and irrationality in public discussions of race -- could not have been better timed.

Author Harry Stein, a self-described "reformed white liberal," raised by parents who were even further left, exposes the illogic and outright fraudulence that lies behind so much of what is said about race in the media, in politics and in our educational institutions.

He asks a very fundamental question: "Why, even after the Duke University rape fiasco, does the media continue to give credence to every charge of racism?"

Harry Stein credits Shelby Steele's book "White Guilt" with opening his eyes to one of the sources of many counterproductive things said and done about race today -- namely, guilt about what was done to blacks and other minorities in the past.

Let us talk sense, like adults. Nothing that is done to George Zimmerman -- justly or unjustly -- will unlynch a single black man who was tortured and killed in the Jim Crow South for a crime he didn't commit.

Letting hoodlums get away with hoodlumism today does not undo a single injustice of the past. It is not even a favor to the hoodlums, for many of whom hoodlumism is just the first step on a path that leads to the penitentiary, and maybe to the execution chamber.

Winston Churchill said, "If the past sits in judgment on the present, the future will be lost." He wasn't talking about racial issues, but what he said applies especially where race is involved.


If I wanted America to fail...

I’d cut off America’s supply of cheap, abundant energy.  Of course, I couldn’t take it by force.  So, I’d make Americans feel guilty for using the energy that heats their homes, fuels their cars, runs their businesses, and powers their economy.

I’d make cheap energy expensive, so that expensive energy would seem cheap.

I would empower unelected bureaucrats to all-but-outlaw America’s most abundant sources of energy.  And after banning its use in America, I’d make it illegal for American companies to ship it overseas.

If I wanted America to fail …

I’d use our schools to teach one generation of Americans that our factories and our cars will cause a new Ice Age, and I’d muster a straight face so I could teach the next generation that they’re causing Global Warming.

And when it’s cold out, I’d call it Climate Change instead.

I’d imply that America’s cities and factories could run on wind power and wishes.  I’d teach children how to ignore the hypocrisy of condemning logging, mining and farming — while having roofs over their heads, heat in their homes and food on their tables.

I would never teach children that the free market is the only force in human history to uplift the poor, establish the middle class and create lasting prosperity. Instead, I’d demonize prosperity itself, so that they will not miss what they will never have.

If I wanted America to fail …

I would create countless new regulations and seldom cancel old ones. They would be so complicated that only bureaucrats, lawyers and lobbyists could understand them.  That way small businesses with big ideas wouldn’t stand a chance — and I would never have to worry about another Thomas Edison, Henry Ford or Steve Jobs.

I would ridicule as “Flat Earthers” those who urge us to lower energy costs by increasing supply.  And when the evangelists of commonsense try to remind people about the law of supply and demand, I’d enlist a sympathetic media to drown them out.

If I wanted America to fail …

I would empower unaccountable bureaucracies seated in a distant capitol to bully Americans out of their dreams and their property rights.  I’d send federal agents to raid guitar factories for using the wrong kind of wood; I’d force homeowners to tear down the homes they built on their own land.

I’d make it almost impossible for farmers to farm, miners to mine, loggers to log, and builders to build.  And because I don’t believe in free markets, I’d invent false ones.  I’d devise fictitious products — like carbon credits — and trade them in imaginary markets.  I’d convince people that this would create jobs and be good for the economy.

If I wanted America to fail …

For every concern, I’d invent a crisis; and for every crisis, I’d invent the cause.

Like shutting down entire industries and killing tens of thousands of jobs in the name of saving spotted owls.  When everyone learned the stunning irony that the owls were victims of their larger cousins — and not people — it would already be decades too late.

If I wanted America to fail …

I’d make it easier to stop commerce than start it — easier to kill jobs than create them — more fashionable to resent success than to seek it.  When industries seek to create jobs, I’d file lawsuits to stop them.  And then I’d make taxpayers pay for my lawyers.

If I wanted America to fail …

I would transform the environmental agenda from a document of conservation to an economic suicide pact.  I would concede entire industries to our economic rivals by imposing regulations that cost trillions.

I would celebrate those who preach environmental austerity in public while indulging a lavish lifestyle in private.  I’d convince Americans that Europe has it right, and America has it wrong.

If I wanted America to fail …

I would prey on the goodness and decency of ordinary Americans.  I would only need to convince them … that all of this is for the greater good.

If I wanted America to fail, I suppose I wouldn’t change a thing.


Conservative Consumers: Stand Your Ground

Who is Rashad Robinson? And why has his fringe, race-baiting organization been able to pressure several major corporations into abandoning a pro-limited-government legislative association -- all for a few cheap social-justice brownie points?

Conservative consumers need to get informed, get active and stand their ground against free speech-squelching progressive activists who have demonized the American Legislative Exchange Council. This isn't just a battle over ALEC. It's a war against the left's shakedown artists taking aim at our freedoms of speech and association.

ALEC, as I reported last week, is the four-decade-old policy organization of state legislators and like-minded business people who believe in "the Jeffersonian principles of free markets, limited government, federalism, and individual liberty." They are under fire from a longstanding network of liberal groups -- tied to the Democratic Party -- that are unhappy with effective conservative opposition at the state and federal legislative levels.

Anti-ALEC hypocrites seized on the Trayvon Martin shooting case in Florida to blame ALEC and Republican lawmakers for their advocacy of Stand Your Ground self-defense legislation - even though the case does not implicate the policy and ALEC followed Florida's lead on the legislation. Moreover, eight of the 15 states that have adopted such polices were helmed by Democratic governors at the time of passage.

Robinson is spearheading the anti-ALEC campaign, along with Soros-backed Progress Now and a Labor political action committee, the Progressive Change Campaign Committee (PCCC). While they claim to oppose black "voter suppression" by working to undermine anti-voter fraud bills backed by ALEC, Color of Change's true agenda is to chill and suppress pro-capitalist, pro-Second Amendment, pro-low taxes and pro-law enforcement lobbying and legislating in the political marketplace.

Robinson is in charge of "Color of Change," a radical activist group founded by disgraced 9/11 Truther, anti-police agitator, Occupy movement promoter and former Obama green jobs czar Van Jones. The group used Hurricane Katrina to condemn America as institutionally racist. Most shamefully, Jones and his fledgling group helped perpetuate director Spike Lee and Nation of Islam leader Louis Farrakhan's wild conspiracy theories about government-engineered black genocide in New Orleans.

Before taking over Jones' demagogue duties, Robinson previously lobbied for felon voting rights at the left-wing Soros family-backed Fair Vote. The group has repeatedly fought common-sense efforts to rein in voter fraud. Unsurprisingly, Robinson is close to the community organizer in chief's administration. While media director at gay rights group GLAAD, Robinson traveled to Serbia in 2010 to officially represent the U.S. at a gay pride festival. He was invited by the Obama State Department, which sponsored the trip.

Robinson claims that his group has "more than 800,000 members" and "is the nation's largest online civil rights group." The numbers, however, don't add up. The Color of Change Twitter account has fewer than 14,600 followers. Robinson himself, acclaimed by leftists as a new media guru, has a measly 1,400 followers after three years on the premiere social networking platform.

But the foot soldiers of radical organizer Saul Alinsky know how to conjure up facades and false narratives. Over the past several weeks, Robinson has released a series of press releases claiming mass victories in the Color of Change campaign to boycott ALEC. The bulletins are being dutifully regurgitated by sympathetic journalists such as National Public Radio's Peter Overby -- a former staffer at the anti-ALEC group Common Cause, a fact that he failed to disclose to radio listeners in at least two recent hit pieces on ALEC.

Color of Change's corporate appeasers include McDonald's, Wendy's, Mars Inc., Coca-Cola, PepsiCo, Kraft Foods, Intuit, Blue Cross and Blue Shield Association, Reed Elsevier (owner of LexisNexis), American Traffic Solutions and Arizona Public Service. This week, Robinson also claimed that Yum Brands and Procter and Gamble had dropped their memberships as a result of "hundreds" of Color of Change phone calls.

On Tuesday, I called Procter and Gamble and asked them how many phone calls they received. Company spokeswoman Christine Wever refused to answer. I asked whether the company had met at any time over the past year with Color of Change or any other protest group regarding their specific complaints about ALEC. Wever refused to answer.

I also called the media office at Yum Brands several times with the same questions. No response by end of business Tuesday.

It's not enough for conservative consumers to avoid cowardly businesses that cave to Van Jones and company. Beating back the anti-ALEC mob means getting ahead of them. Color of Change and its "hundreds" of callers are now pressuring State Farm and Johnson and Johnson to join the spineless herd and cut ties to ALEC.

I'll say it again: Silence is complicity. Speak now or surrender your ground.


My identity: jonjayray. I have deleted my Facebook page as I rarely access it. For more blog postings from me, see  TONGUE-TIED, EDUCATION WATCH INTERNATIONAL, GREENIE WATCH,  POLITICAL CORRECTNESS WATCH, GUN WATCH,  FOOD & HEALTH SKEPTIC,  AUSTRALIAN POLITICS, IMMIGRATION WATCH INTERNATIONAL, EYE ON BRITAIN and Paralipomena  

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The Big Lie of the late 20th century was that Nazism was Rightist.  It was in fact typical of the Leftism of its day.  It was only to the Right of  Stalin's Communism.  The very word "Nazi" is a German abbreviation for "National Socialist" (Nationalsozialist) and the full name of Hitler's political party (translated) was "The National Socialist German Workers' Party" (In German: Nationalsozialistische Deutsche Arbeiterpartei


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