Wednesday, July 26, 2017



Border Patrol: Trump performs ‘miracle’ on immigration

A spokesman for the nation’s Border Patrol agents is telling the mainstream media what they don’t want to hear. The truth.

In an interview with C-SPAN, National Border Patrol Council President Brandon Judd spoke about the 53 percent decrease in the number of arrests for illegal crossings, hailing it as a “miracle” performed by Trump.

“As far as the Trump administration’s efforts on immigration, this is something they campaigned heavily on,” he said. “At six months, where we are on meeting those promises, we are seeing nothing short of miraculous. If you look at the rhetoric that President Trump has given, it has caused a number of illegal border crossings to go down. We have never seen such a drop that we currently have,” said Judd.

Much of the drop is attributable to Trump himself.  Under Obama, illegal crossings surged as women and children swarmed the US border to enter illegally, believing they would likely be given amnesty.  Border Patrol agents, used to illegals seeking to elude officers, found themselves overwhelmed by thousands of illegals who would sneak over the border, then walk to the nearest Patrol station to turn themselves in, believing they would be given amnesty.

That stopped once Trump won.

“(S)ince the fiscal year began in October, arrests are down two-thirds, from 66,712, a six-year record high, to 21,659 a six-year record low,” The Washington Examiner’s Paul Bedard reported July 7.

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"Lost" health insurance

A few weeks ago, MSNBC’s Rachel Maddow was going on and on about a “single insurance provider” that pays for 49 percent of all births, as well as full health care costs of almost 40 percent of all children in the United States. This single “insurer,” Maddow said, was the biggest “health insurance provider in the country by a mile.”

Maddow was talking about Medicaid, which, of course, is not “insurance” but “welfare.”

When we’re allowed to call things whatever we want in order to win an argument, there is a total breakdown in democratic politics, fair commerce and social interaction.

Thus, for example, until we get our terms straight, Americans will be forced to keep paying through the nose whenever they try to buy actual health insurance — because they aren’t buying health insurance; they’re paying for other people’s welfare. Washington will never be able to make it legal to sell real health insurance — because, if they try, the welfare recipients will mob congressional offices claiming that Republicans are murdering them.

There is no truth in any discussion of Obamacare. Currently, the most persistent lie is the claim that — according to scoring by the CBO! — 22 million Americans would “lose” their health insurance under the Senate health care bill. Turn on the TV right now and you’ll hear someone saying this.

“A new (CBO) budget score said 22 million more Americans would lose health coverage under this plan …”

— Poppy Harlow, CNN, June 27, 2017

“A score from the Congressional Budget Office … said the Republican bill to kill Obamacare would kick 22 million Americans off their health insurance.”

— Rachel Maddow, June 27, 2017

“The clock is ticking on the Senate health care bill as the CBO estimates 22 million people will lose their insurance.”

— Chris Hayes, June 26, 2017

HELLO? REPUBLICANS? ANY OF YOU GUYS WANT TO REBUT THAT? IT’S PRETTY EASY TO DO!

The actual CBO report says nothing of the sort. People citing the “22 million” figure didn’t read past the CBO’s headline-grabbing paragraph at the top of the “Summary” page.

In fact, the CBO merely estimates that — in the year 2026 — 22 million Americans who otherwise would have been forced by the Obamacare penalty to buy health insurance will choose not to buy insurance once the penalty is gone. By “people thrown off their health insurance,” liberals mean: “people who voluntarily decide not to have health insurance.” (More accurately, “people who choose not to prove to the government that they have health insurance.”)

To use the word “lose” here is absurd. It would be like saying that Nixon ending the draft meant that 50,000 American men would “lose” their military service. The poor lads would be forced to volunteer.

Last year, I chose to end my New York Times subscription. I wasn’t “thrown off” the Times’ subscriber list. In full possession of the facts, I made an informed decision that I no longer wanted to receive the Times — just as 22 million Americans (the CBO guesses) will make an informed decision in the year 2026 not to have health insurance, if given that option.

Redefining words like “insurance” and “lose” to mean whatever the speaker wants them to mean makes human conversation impossible. We can still grunt, howl and shiver when it’s cold, but we will no longer have the ability to communicate slightly more complex thoughts to one another.

The only solution is for the rest of us to impose a broken windows policy on the truth, demanding it in every walk of life. If liars continually get away with it, their lies will only become more preposterous and more enraging.

Illegal aliens are not “undocumented immigrants.” They’re not “immigrants” at all. Immigrants wait in line and jump through hoops to be here. They are invited, by us, to come. Illegals cut to the head of the line whenever the mood strikes them, without waiting for an invitation.

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The Consumer Financial Protection Bureau:  A bureaucratic monster that shafts the consumer

Imagine you have a dispute with your credit card company. Currently, you can go to an arbitration body, where the card company will almost certainly pay all your expenses, and you may get compensated in full, usually promptly. Now, thanks to a new rule, courtesy of the inaptly named Consumer Financial Protection Bureau (CFPB), the regulatory agency unleashed by the Dodd-Frank Act of 2010, that won’t happen.

Instead, you’ll have to wait for trial lawyers to form a “class” that includes you, wait years while the lawyers do whatever it is they do, probably never see court, and then rejoice in a small refund, while the lawyers pocket millions. It’s what passes for “consumer protection” these days.

That’s the upshot of the CFPB’s new Arbitration Rule, which bans providers of unsecured personal credit from including mandatory arbitration clauses in their contracts. Bureau Director Richard Cordray portrays the rule as a consumer protection measure, but the only beneficiaries will be his wealthy trial lawyer friends.

If consumers need protection, it’s from the CFPB. Thankfully, the Senate can provide consumers — as well as investors and entrepreneurs — needed regulatory relief by passing the Financial CHOICE Act (FCA). Among its many good features, it would repeal the CFPB’s authority to prohibit arbitration.

Such a move would be welcome. Mandatory arbitration cuts costs for everyone. According to the CFPB’s own study, it produces better results for consumers than class action lawsuits. For class action attorneys, however, those consumer savings mean less in fees. Trial lawyers, the same CFPB study found, benefit to the tune of over $1 million in a typical class action, while the average class member receives only $32.

Naturally, lawyers have bridled at mandatory arbitration, which functions as a private, contractual form of dispute resolution, and have lobbied for it to be banned. With the Arbitration Rule, Cordray is poised to grant them their wish. The rule will transfer wealth transfer from low-income consumers to rich lawyers, delay the settlement of grievances, and reduce payouts. So much for consumer protection.

This CFPB move underscores the urgent need to curtail the agency and other abuses wrought by Dodd-Frank. For starters, Congress should repeal the rule by using a resolution of disapproval under the Congressional Review Act, which requires simple majorities in both chambers. The House and Senate have 60 days to vote down the CFPB arbitration rule, so they need to move fast.

Congress made a big mistake when it gave the CFPB so much power under Dodd-Frank — power enhanced by its unusual — and unconstitutional — structure. There are few checks on its power. It is not accountable to Congress’ “power of the purse,” because it gets its funding from the Federal Reserve. Nor is the Bureau subject to any meaningful oversight from the president as head of the Executive Branch. This led a federal Appeals Court last year to rule that the CFPB’s structure is unconstitutional (the ruling was set aside and the case is currently being reheard.

If that sounds like the Bureau can act as it wants, it does — as it did when it finalized its Arbitration Rule. We can expect CFPB regulators to promulgate more arbitrary rules in the future.

Fortunately, the Senate need not wait for the courts to rein in the unaccountable CFPB. It can build on disapproval of the rule by passing the Financial CHOICE Act. The FCA would restructure the Bureau by making its director subject to presidential oversight and its financing dependent on Congress.

The FCA would also address other problems foisted on the American economy by the Dodd-Frank Act. For example, it would provide a better solution to the “Too Big to Fail” problem, which Dodd-Frank has made worse. By designating them as “systemically significant financial institutions,” Dodd-Frank has made big banks more entrenched. It also has subjected non-bank financial institutions to inappropriate regulation that has raised the price of insurance.

The crushing burden of rules from the CFPB and other financial regulators has been a huge drag on the American economy since the financial crisis, contributed to the slow recovery, and hit Main Street banks hard. The rate of closure among small and community banks has doubled since the passage of Dodd-Frank. Around 1 million Americans have been forced out of the banking system by higher fees as banks have struggled to pay the costs of compliance.

Yes, the Senate has a lot on its plate right now, but this is an issue that’s fundamental to American prosperity. A freely functioning financial system is essential to faster economic growth — and the creation of more jobs and economic opportunity. Congress can start by disapproving the CFPB’s new rule, and the Senate can go further by passing the Financial CHOICE Act.

SOURCE

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For more blog postings from me, see  TONGUE-TIED, EDUCATION WATCH INTERNATIONAL, GREENIE WATCH,  POLITICAL CORRECTNESS WATCH, AUSTRALIAN POLITICS, and Paralipomena (Occasionally updated),  a Coral reef compendium and an IQ compendium. (Both updated as news items come in).  GUN WATCH is now mainly put together by Dean Weingarten. I also put up occasional updates on my Personal blog and each day I gather together my most substantial current writings on THE PSYCHOLOGIST.

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1 comment:

Paul Weber said...

It seems many laws are written with the main goal of enriching the lawyers.