Some current American Fascism
It could happen to any conservative. Remember: Fascism is Leftist
One man’s tropical paradise is another man’s prison. Imagine being “stuck” on Oahu. I’m sure you could think of worse situations, but really stop and think about the following true and evolving situation. You’re a “normal” 34 year-old guy, live on the U.S. mainland in Gulfport, Mississippi, and recently married a woman who is a lieutenant in the U.S. Navy stationed in Okinawa.
You’re a citizen of the United States and possess a valid U.S. issued passport. You’re not a criminal and have no history of felony or misdemeanor convictions. In fact, you recently passed a background check to own and carry a firearm in Mississippi. You are, however, an outspoken patriot for the United States Constitution.
You miss your bride of eight months, and decide to fly to Okinawa to visit her. Because you are the “dependent” of an active duty member of the U.S. military, you make arrangements to fly from San Francisco to Okinawa on a military aircraft. You must still have a ticket, pass the screening procedures similar or even more stringent than those flying on normal commercial airlines. After the screening at the airport, you board the plane and settle in for your flight, counting down the hours until you are reunited with your wife.
The plane lands in Hawaii as scheduled for refueling and maintenance. It is here, after re-boarding the aircraft, that two heavily-armed military guards confront you and tell you that you must leave the plane. They take you to a small room at the military base and advise you that you are on the U.S. “No-Fly” list. You’re not under arrest, but you’re not free to go until they decide what to do with you. You watch as your plane, as well as your hopes of seeing your bride vanish into the air while under the careful watch of two heavily armed military police officials.
What’s going on?
As you sit in a small room, thoughts race through your mind. Why am I here? It must be some mistake. I’ve committed no crime. Like any “normal” American, You expect the matter to be resolved as there must be some mix-up. Then, an official with the Customs and Border Enforcement arrives and tells you that there is no mix-up. The official rattles off your name, date of birth, social security number and complete identifying information. It’s you alright, and you are officially on the “No-Fly” list.
“How did you get on that plane?” asks the Customs and Border Enforcement official. You reply that you had a normal ticket, passed through the screening process and boarded the plane normally and without incident. You are told that you should not have been permitted to fly. Again, you are on the “No-Fly” list. You reply that there has to be a mistake, and are met with the stern reply of the official: there is no mistake.
You then ask why you are on the “No-Fly” list and are told that you are not permitted to know. At this point, they tell you that you are free to go, but you cannot fly anywhere by orders of the United States government. And there you are, in “paradise” but unable to leave.
The above events took place on October 14, 2012. The victim in this case is one Wade Hicks, Jr., 34, a U.S. citizen and resident of Gulfport, Mississippi. I personally checked him out and verified his story. With his permission, I conducted a “basic” background check of Mr. Hicks, Jr. He has no criminal record. He is not a “wanted” man. By all normal and visible accounts, Mr. Hicks, Jr. appears to be a law abiding member of society. I did find, however, that he is an outspoken “patriot” and openly critical of the NDAA. He is a former talk-show host of a small, local radio station known for its “patriotic bias.” He is a member of “Patriots for America” and the Mississippi Preparedness Project. He is openly vocal about the erosion of our rights - and it certainly looks like he has been proven correct. Is that now a crime worthy of being denied the ability to travel freely within the United States?
Mr. Hicks detailed his plight on Monday’s edition of The Hagmann & Hagmann Report to a shocked and disbelieving audience. How can this happen in America? This is inter-STATE travel! There must be some mistake! Has he done anything to let his elected representatives know? The questions were many, and yes, Mr. Hicks, Jr. indeed pleaded for assistance from his elected officials and anyone who would listen during the last 36 hours. “I’ve got nothing to hide,” stated Mr. Hicks. Nothing. “I feel like a prisoner in my own country, but no one will tell me what I’ve done to be placed on the ‘No-Fly’ list. I’m not allowed to know.”
Although I’m tempted to insert a reference to “Gilligan’s Island,” I will refrain. If all of the facts presently known withstand more intense scrutiny and further investigation, we have a very big problem in this country. You might be next, and Hawaii might not be where you are inexplicably left on your own.
I am following the fate of Mr. Hicks and continue to search for a logical explanation. At this point, however, the only logical explanation I’ve found is a very disturbing one. Perhaps this is how it all starts. Stay tuned
Obamacare's Rationing by Another Name
How the Independent Payment Advisory Board gives sweeping powers to an unelected and unconstitutional board of bureaucrats
The stunning post-debate reversal in Mitt Romney’s fortunes may not last through the elections. But win or lose, he’ll do the country a big favor if he continues to expose the Independent Payment Advisory Board—the beloved center-piece of Obamacare—for what it is: An effort to give an unelected and unconstitutional board of bureaucrats sweeping powers to determine whether grandma gets her bypass surgery from Medicare, or a boot off the cliff.
Liberal fact-checkers have been working overtime to discredit Romney’s claim that this board will “ultimately tell patients what treatments they can receive.” PolitiFact, one self-appointed guardian of truth, rated Romney’s statement as “mostly false.” The board, it insisted, “can’t deny treatment” or “ration care” or “make health care decisions for individual Americans.” Rather it can only determine what doctors and hospitals are paid. Likewise, The Los Angeles Times maintained that the board could merely “recommend ways to reduce Medicare spending”—not cut benefits.
But the whole point of the board is to use price controls to discourage expensive treatments. Yes, it is possible that some good doctor will be willing to perform bypass surgeries for Medicare patients even when the board only allows, say, payment for aspirin. It’s also very unlikely. If the board decides to set payment for state-of-the-art dialysis at below cost, reasoning that the benefits of the procedure aren’t commensurate with the added expense, it isn’t rationing care directly. But it is indeed rationing care, because this would effectively consign patients to older treatments.
Before the recession, Medicare spending had been growing 2.6 percentage points faster than GDP. The program already pays out roughly $290 billion more in benefits than it receives in taxes, and it constitutes somewhere between $38.6 to $90 trillion in unfunded liabilities for the federal government.
The main reason for the government’s out-of-control Medicare spending is that Uncle Sam picks up most of the tab for seniors’ health care, giving them little incentive to curb consumption or shop for better prices. Instead of restoring this incentive, Congress has historically tried to curb spending by cutting reimbursement rates for providers. But this has repeatedly failed because providers are politically powerful. Every time automatic cuts have loomed, Congress has undone them by passing the so-called “doc fix.” But instead of solving this problem by exposing doctors to market accountability, Obamacare tries to solve it by shielding the IPAB bureaucracy from political accountability.
Here is how it would work: When ever Medicare inflation threatens to exceed GDP growth plus 0.5 percent—by historical standards, that’s probably every year there isn’t a recession—the 15-member board would develop a “detailed and specific” “legislative proposal” laying out which treatments Medicare would cover and at what rate. President Obama describes this as “institutionalizing best practices.” In plain English, it means determining whose ox gets gored.
What distinguishes the IPAB from the Environmental Protection Agency or the Federal Drug Administration is that those agencies give affected parties opportunities to weigh in before issuing their rules. This board would not be required to offer any avenue for patients and providers to air their concerns, nor could its decisions be challenged in court. Coaxing coverage out of heartless private insurers will seem like a piece of cake compared to confronting this all-powerful bureaucracy, which allows neither access nor appeal.
The IPAB’s proposals would automatically become law unless Congress came up with its own equivalent spending cuts—or both houses, including a three-fifths majority in the Senate, waived it and the president signed the waiver. This is an exceedingly high hurdle that would effectively turn the IPAB into a super legislature.
But the most troubling thing about the board is this: Under the constitution, the legislative power—the supreme power—is lodged in Congress along with a democratic check. Courts avoid the democratic check but forego legislative powers. But no government entity, not even the Federal Reserve, gets unchecked legislative powers. This is what the IPAB will have, contravening the core of the Constitution’s scheme of checks and balances.
Medicare spending is a pressing problem, no doubt. But the IPAB is a cure worse than the disease. It thwarts seniors’ treatment options, providers’ independence, and the constitutional balance of powers. The more Romney makes it an issue during his campaign, the more likely that the IPAB itself will be thwarted, whether he ends up in White House or not.
Death panels now official in Britain
GPs have been asked to select one in every 100 of their patients to go on a list of those likely to die over the next 12 months. The patients will be singled out for ‘end-of-life care’, potentially saving the NHS more than £1billion a year.
The listed patients may be asked to say where they would prefer to die and should be told they can draw up a ‘living will’ by which they can instruct doctors to withdraw life-saving treatment if they become incapacitated in hospital.
The ‘toolkit’ giving doctors and health and social workers new guidance on how to select candidates was launched by Liberal Democrat Care Minister Norman Lamb at a conference on end-of-life care.
It states that ‘approximately 1 per cent of people on a GP’s list [of all patients] will die each year – this equates to an average of 20 deaths a year. Around 70 per cent to 80 per cent of all deaths are likely to benefit from planned end-of-life care.’
It said: ‘Have your local practices identified the 1 per cent of their practice population who may be likely to die in the next year?’
Doctors are told to pick out such patients during routine consultations that show ‘indicators of frailty and deterioration’ and are told that ‘older people are a priority to consider’.
They are also told to use feedback from district nurses or hospital consultants, while patients in care homes should be ‘actively considered for your register’, the advice states.
Information for GPs on what happens to such patients said they would be ‘less likely to be subject to treatments of limited clinical value’.
It added that a quarter of all hospital beds are occupied by dying people and said that four in ten have no medical need to be there.
If each had one less emergency admission into hospital in their last weeks and months, that would save the NHS £1.35billion a year, the material said.
The advice tells doctors: ‘After several years of falling, the death rate is about to increase again as the baby boomers reach old age. This is a bad situation, which is going to get worse unless we act now.’
The register plan emerged amid a growing controversy over the Liverpool Care Pathway (LCP), the method adopted by hospitals with the aim of easing the last hours of those judged to be dying.
Health ministers yesterday endorsed the LCP – which can involve sedation and the withdrawal of food, fluids and life-saving treatment from patients – releasing a report which said it was ‘best practice’ and recommended by the NHS.
The Health Department’s latest report also backs the campaign for GP ‘death lists’.
Over the past week, some families have told the Daily Mail that they believe their loved ones were wrongly put on the LCP by hospitals when they were not in fact dying.
One senior NHS consultant, Professor Patrick Pullicino, has criticised it as a ‘self-fulfilling prophecy’.
But Mr Lamb told the conference yesterday that he was delighted with the latest toolkit, saying that while ‘end-of-life care in hospital is often not as good as it could be’, it should be ‘as comfortable and dignified as we can possibly make it’.
For Every Person Added to Labor Force, 10 Added to Those Not in Labor Force
A new chart from the minority side of the Senate Budget Committee details the fact that, since January 2009, for every person added to the labor force, 10 have been added to those not in the labor force. Here's a chart showing the dwindling labor force:
"For Every 1 Person Added To Labor Force Since January 2009," the chart reads, "10 People Added To Those Not In Labor Force."
That is, in nearly the four years, since President Obama took office in January 2009, only 827,000 people have been added to the labor force, while during that same time period, 8,208,000 have been added to those not in the labor force.
The chart relies on data available from the federal Bureau of Labor Statistics.
"The numbers represented in the chart are a measure of growth from January 2009 through September 2012," the Republican side of the Senate Budget Committee explains. "The data is sourced from the Bureau of Labor Statistics' Current Population Survey, a sample of 60,000 households conducted by personal and telephone interviews. Basic labor force data are gathered monthly. The labor force consists of all people aged 16 and over either employed or actively seeking work. It does not include discouraged workers, people who have retired, or those on welfare or disability who are no longer looking for work. The 'not in the labor force' group is defined as the total civilian non-institutional population minus the labor force."
Since January 2009, the labor force has grown by 0.54 percent, or 827,000 people (from 154,236,000 to 155,063,000). Those not in the labor force grew by 10.2 percent during the same period (8,208,000 people), from 80,502,000 to 88,710,000. In other words, for every one person added to the labor force of the United States since January 2009, the size of the U.S. population not in the labor force grew by 10 people.
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)