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Archive for February, 2008

NOTHING and I mean NOTHING that the government has been a part of in funding HAS EVER facilitated in the lowering of its costs. NOTHING. If the idea that you liberals want to facilitate is one of price controls, and nationalizing all hospitals in the country then there are other countries out there for you.

But more to the point is the ever increasing cost of health care, which will NEVER EVER be lowered through increased government intervention.

EXAMPLE:

The federal government will spend twice as much on health care in 2017 as it did in 2007, as costs keep going up and as Boomers enroll in Medicare. The toll: federal outlays for Medicare and Medicaid will hit $1.5 trillion, up from $750 billion last year, according to an estimate published today in Health Affairs.

The estimates don?t take into account the expanded role the feds would play under the Democratic presidential candidates health care proposals, which would cost about $100 billion a year, the WSJ notes. But once you?re at $1.5 trillion, the leap to $1.6 trillion doesn?t seem so vast.

The nation?s overall spending on health care ? including federal, state and private payers ? will continue its long tradition of growing faster than the overall economy, and health will account for nearly one fifth of the GDP by 2017, according to the estimate, by analysts from the federal Centers for Medicare and Medicaid Services.

Meanwhile, the higher-ups in Washington are fighting over how to slow the growth of Medicare spending. President Bush has proposed freezing reimbursement rates for health care providers such as hospitals, nursing homes and home health centers, the Associated Press points out. Bush also proposed making wealthier seniors pay more for Medicare drug coverage.

The Dems have suggested cutting payments to privately run Medicare plans, which cost the government more than traditional Medicare. That difference will become increasingly costly in the years to come ? the Health Affairs paper estimated that one in four Medicare beneficiaries will be enrolled in private plans by 2017, up from about one in six today.

Government intervention and funding will only INCREASE its costs. Unless of course you want a Nationalized system in which the Hospitals are all controlled by the federal government in which case you WILL SEE a large exodus of Medical Research companies with high paying jobs to other countries. They are already itching to leave this will only increase their incentive.

That supposed 100 Billion is also a very SMALL estimate on what the actual cost will be. Right now as it stands Canada spends over 100 Billion on only 30 million people. The US has 10 times that many people. To assume that the cost overruns and increases in health coverage under this Universal Health plan will be anything near 100 Billion is a fallacy. Try upwards of 1 Trillion or more.

Why we are trying to adopt failed Socialist medicinal practices in the US is beyond my comprehension I guess. Other then the fact that more and more people believe that the government should be their sole provider of everything.

People out there are concerned with Privacy rights on Trains but ignore the massive violation of privacy rights that will come as the Health Department will get more authority to look into your medical records to better facilitate “preventative” measures for you. Which is part of the Obama plan on Health Care. To have more “preventative” health care. Which only means that a government agency will start to recommend to you what YOU should be doing with your health. Not your doctor. Which I guess in this Universal Health care plan would be one in the same. As doctors will wind up being employees of the federal government eventually.

Should be a fun 4 years after November.

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Snow cover over North America and much of Siberia, Mongolia and China is greater than at any time since 1966.

The U.S. National Climatic Data Center (NCDC) reported that many American cities and towns suffered record cold temperatures in January and early February. According to the NCDC, the average temperature in January “was -0.3 F cooler than the 1901-2000 (20th century) average.”

China is surviving its most brutal winter in a century. Temperatures in the normally balmy south were so low for so long that some middle-sized cities went days and even weeks without electricity because once power lines had toppled it was too cold or too icy to repair them.

There have been so many snow and ice storms in Ontario and Quebec in the past two months that the real estate market has felt the pinch as home buyers have stayed home rather than venturing out looking for new houses.

In just the first two weeks of February, Toronto received 70 cm of snow, smashing the record of 66.6 cm for the entire month set back in the pre-SUV, pre-Kyoto, pre-carbon footprint days of 1950.

And remember the Arctic Sea ice? The ice we were told so hysterically last fall had melted to its “lowest levels on record? Never mind that those records only date back as far as 1972 and that there is anthropological and geological evidence of much greater melts in the past.

The ice is back.

Gilles Langis, a senior forecaster with the Canadian Ice Service in Ottawa, says the Arctic winter has been so severe the ice has not only recovered, it is actually 10 to 20 cm thicker in many places than at this time last year.

OK, so one winter does not a climate make. It would be premature to claim an Ice Age is looming just because we have had one of our most brutal winters in decades.

But if environmentalists and environment reporters can run around shrieking about the manmade destruction of the natural order every time a robin shows up on Georgian Bay two weeks early, then it is at least fair game to use this winter’s weather stories to wonder whether the alarmist are being a tad premature.

And it’s not just anecdotal evidence that is piling up against the climate-change dogma.

According to Robert Toggweiler of the Geophysical Fluid Dynamics Laboratory at Princeton University and Joellen Russell, assistant professor of biogeochemical dynamics at the University of Arizona — two prominent climate modellers — the computer models that show polar ice-melt cooling the oceans, stopping the circulation of warm equatorial water to northern latitudes and triggering another Ice Age (a la the movie The Day After Tomorrow) are all wrong.

“We missed what was right in front of our eyes,” says Prof. Russell. It’s not ice melt but rather wind circulation that drives ocean currents northward from the tropics. Climate models until now have not properly accounted for the wind’s effects on ocean circulation, so researchers have compensated by over-emphasizing the role of manmade warming on polar ice melt.

But when Profs. Toggweiler and Russell rejigged their model to include the 40-year cycle of winds away from the equator (then back towards it again), the role of ocean currents bringing warm southern waters to the north was obvious in the current Arctic warming.

Last month, Oleg Sorokhtin, a fellow of the Russian Academy of Natural Sciences, shrugged off manmade climate change as “a drop in the bucket.” Showing that solar activity has entered an inactive phase, Prof. Sorokhtin advised people to “stock up on fur coats.”

He is not alone. Kenneth Tapping of our own National Research Council, who oversees a giant radio telescope focused on the sun, is convinced we are in for a long period of severely cold weather if sunspot activity does not pick up soon.

The last time the sun was this inactive, Earth suffered the Little Ice Age that lasted about five centuries and ended in 1850. Crops failed through killer frosts and drought. Famine, plague and war were widespread. Harbours froze, so did rivers, and trade ceased.

It’s way too early to claim the same is about to happen again, but then it’s way too early for the hysteria of the global warmers, too.

Yeah Global Warming. LOL…
Fucking tards!@

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Now even though this article is about Hillary there are parts here that show how similar the spending was with Obama’s campaign.

People have tried to argue that it was better “money management” by Obama that has given him this lead monetarily which clearly from this article is a flat out wrong assumption. That somehow Obama spent his money more wisely and from what I can tell they spent it the same. The difference is that he received more in donations from a larger pool of people.

Considering if they both spent about the same then they BOTH are HORRIBLE at money management like I had stated in another thread. Leading me to believe that money management with Trillions of dollars won’t be any better. But I am sure there are those that will say otherwise that “attorneys” are all great money managers, that Obama is the great “economic savior” etc etc.

Deny or accept as you wish.

Clinton Donors Worried by Campaign’s Spending
By MICHAEL LUO, JO BECKER and PATRICK HEALY

This article was reported by Michael Luo, Jo Becker and Patrick Healy and was written by Mr. Healy.

Nearly $100,000 went for party platters and groceries before the Iowa caucuses, even though the partying mood evaporated quickly. Rooms at the Bellagio luxury hotel in Las Vegas consumed more than $25,000; the Four Seasons, another $5,000. And top consultants collected about $5 million in January, a month of crucial expenses and tough fund-raising.

Senator Hillary Rodham Clinton’s latest campaign finance report, published Wednesday night, appeared even to her most stalwart supporters and donors to be a road map of her political and management failings. Several of them, echoing political analysts, expressed concerns that Mrs. Clinton’s spending priorities amounted to costly errors in judgment that have hamstrung her competitiveness against Senator Barack Obama of Illinois.

“We didn’t raise all of this money to keep paying consultants who have pursued basically the wrong strategy for a year now,” said a prominent New York donor. “So much about her campaign needs to change — but it may be too late.”

The high-priced senior consultants to Mrs. Clinton, of New York, have emerged as particular targets of complaints, given that they conceived and executed a political strategy that has thus far proved unsuccessful.

The firm that includes Mark Penn, Mrs. Clinton’s chief strategist and pollster, and his team collected $3.8 million for fees and expenses in January; in total, including what the campaign still owes, the firm has billed more than $10 million for consulting, direct mail and other services, an amount other Democratic strategists who are not affiliated with either campaign called stunning.

Howard Wolfson, the communications director and a senior member of the advertising team, earned nearly $267,000 in January. His total, including the campaign’s debt to him, tops $730,000.

The advertising firm owned by Mandy Grunwald, the longtime media strategist for both Mrs. Clinton and Bill Clinton, the former president, has collected $2.3 million in fees and expenses, and is still owed another $240,000.

“Fees and payments are in line with industry standards,” Mr. Wolfson said. “Spending priorities have been consistent with overall strategic goals.”

But some Democrats are now asking if the money spent on a campaign that appears to be sputtering — $106 million so far — was worth it.

“It’s easy to be critical, but had she won Iowa, none of this would have mattered. It wouldn’t have mattered what she spent because money would have come pouring in,” said Hank Sheinkopf, a Democratic political consultant and a veteran of Mr. Clinton’s successful 1996 re-election bid. “But the fact that she did not has made everyone focus on where the dollars went — and where they think the money should’ve gone.”

Mrs. Clinton came into January with a cash advantage over Mr. Obama, with about $19 million available for the primary, compared with about $13 million for him. She wound up spending at roughly the same rate as Mr. Obama, about a million dollars a day, but because she performed dismally compared to him in raising money, she ended the month essentially in the red and was forced to lend her campaign $5 million, while he had $19 million for the coming contests.

Over all, Mrs. Clinton has spent more than $35 million on media, polling and consulting. A comparison with Mr. Obama’s spending is difficult because of the ways the campaigns labeled expenses, but it appears he spent about $40 million in those areas.

In other notable expenditures during the lean month of January, Mrs. Clinton paid $275,000 to Sunrise Communications, a South Carolina firm that was supposed to turn out black voters for her and collected nearly $800,000 in total. She lost that state to Mr. Obama by a wide margin. Even small expenses piled up in January: the campaign spent more than $11,000 on pizza and $1,200 on Dunkin’ Donuts runs.

Mr. Penn, the chief strategist, said in an interview that, since 2001, he no longer owned any of the political consulting firm of Penn, Schoen and Berland Associates. He said the firm’s fees were capped at $20,000 a month and that the “great bulk” of the payments went for direct mail.

Joe Trippi, who was a senior adviser to John Edwards’s presidential campaign, said he believed that the Clinton team had made two fundamental errors.

First, he argued, Mrs. Clinton built a top-down fund-raising operation that relied on a core group of donors to write checks early on for the maximum amount, $4,600 for the primary and the general election, which left few of them to go back to when money became tight. Mr. Obama, by contrast, focused on building a network of small donors whose continued ability to give has been essential to his success this winter.

And second, Mr. Trippi said, the Clinton campaign spent money as though the race were going to be over after a handful of states had voted and was not prepared for a contest that would stretch for months.

“The problem is she ran a campaign like they were staying at the Ritz-Carlton,” Mr. Trippi said. “Everything was the best. The most expensive draping at events. The biggest charter. It was like, ‘We’re going to show you how presidential we are by making our events look presidential.’ ”

For instance, during the week before the Jan. 19 caucuses in Nevada, the Clinton campaign spent more than $25,000 for rooms at the Bellagio in Las Vegas; nearly $5,000 was spent at the Four Seasons in Las Vegas that week. Some staff members also stayed at Planet Hollywood nearby.

From the start of the campaign, some donors had concerns about the Clinton team’s ability to manage money.

Patti Solis Doyle, Mrs. Clinton’s presidential campaign manager until she was replaced on Feb. 10, also ran her Senate re-election bid in 2006. That campaign spent about $30 million even though Mrs. Clinton faced only token Democratic and Republican opposition.

“The Senate race spending in 2006 was an omen for a lot of us inside the campaign, but Hillary assured us that her presidential bid would be the best run in history,” said one major Clinton fund-raiser, who spoke on the condition of anonymity to discuss private conversations within the campaign.

Yet the Clinton campaign at times found itself spending money on items that were not ultimately helpful. As part of their get-out-the-vote effort in Iowa, the campaign came up with a plan to have a local supermarket deliver sandwich platters to pre-caucus parties. It spent more than $95,384 on Jan. 1 at Hy-Vee Inc., a local grocery chain in West Des Moines, Iowa, in addition to buying loads of snow shovels to clear the walks for caucusgoers. Mrs. Clinton came in third in the Jan. 3 caucus. It did not snow.

Mr. Obama’s fund-raising surged after his Iowa victory. In January, he brought in more than $2.50 for every $1 she was given, and from Jan. 5 to Feb. 5, Mr. Obama spent nearly $16 million on political advertisements — more than $4 million more than Mrs. Clinton, according to a survey by the Campaign Media Analysis Group at TNS Media Intelligence. Mr. Obama broadcast 3,000 more advertisements than she did, and he was able to air those ads not only in the states that were immediately up for grabs but also in contests on Feb. 5 and beyond.

For instance, Mr. Obama spent nearly $480,000 on 1,331 spots in Missouri; he won the state’s primary, a closely fought contest and a national political bellwether, by one percentage point.

Mr. Obama’s campaign is not without highly paid consultants. His top media strategist is David Axelrod, whose firm received $175,000 in January and has collected $1.2 million over all. Mr. Obama’s polling is spread among four firms that have received $2.8 million collectively.

“Obviously, some campaigns are more careful and wise with their money than others,” Jim Jordan, a Democratic consultant who ran John Kerry’s presidential campaign until November 2003. “But these budgetary post-mortems tend to follow a familiar pattern; winners are by definition smart, and losers are dumb and wasteful. In truth, campaign budgeting is hard and complicated and three-dimensional and just impossible to understand without the full time-and-place context of the whole race.”

If they are both this bad at money management with a couple Million then wait till the endless pool of tax dollars is under their control and how quickly that money will be wasted on all sorts of social programs.

If Obama wins, which is what I suspect and he begins to implement these Socialist ideals that were posted before. He will destroy this economy. The worst thing you can do during an economic slow down is increase taxes. Something which I am sure Obama will be doing as he said in his speech within the first year!

Can’t wait.

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I heard this in the morning on NPR and found it rather interesting. Thought I would share.

On October 3, 1955, the Mickey Mouse Club debuted on television. As we all now know, the show quickly became a cultural icon, one of those phenomena that helped define an era.

What is less remembered but equally, if not more, important, is that another transformative cultural event happened that day: The Mattel toy company began advertising a gun called the “Thunder Burp.”

I know — who’s ever heard of the Thunder Burp?

Well, no one.

The reason the advertisement is significant is because it marked the first time that any toy company had attempted to peddle merchandise on television outside of the Christmas season. Until 1955, ad budgets at toy companies were minuscule, so the only time they could afford to hawk their wares on TV was during Christmas. But then came Mattel and the Thunder Burp, which, according to Howard Chudacoff, a cultural historian at Brown University, was a kind of historical watershed. Almost overnight, children’s play became focused, as never before, on things — the toys themselves.

“It’s interesting to me that when we talk about play today, the first thing that comes to mind are toys,” says Chudacoff. “Whereas when I would think of play in the 19th century, I would think of activity rather than an object.”

Chudacoff’s recently published history of child’s play argues that for most of human history what children did when they played was roam in packs large or small, more or less unsupervised, and engage in freewheeling imaginative play. They were pirates and princesses, aristocrats and action heroes. Basically, says Chudacoff, they spent most of their time doing what looked like nothing much at all.

“They improvised play, whether it was in the outdoors… or whether it was on a street corner or somebody’s back yard,” Chudacoff says. “They improvised their own play; they regulated their play; they made up their own rules.”

But during the second half of the 20th century, Chudacoff argues, play changed radically. Instead of spending their time in autonomous shifting make-believe, children were supplied with ever more specific toys for play and predetermined scripts. Essentially, instead of playing pirate with a tree branch they played Star Wars with a toy light saber. Chudacoff calls this the commercialization and co-optation of child’s play — a trend which begins to shrink the size of children’s imaginative space.

But commercialization isn’t the only reason imagination comes under siege. In the second half of the 20th century, Chudacoff says, parents became increasingly concerned about safety, and were driven to create play environments that were secure and could not be penetrated by threats of the outside world. Karate classes, gymnastics, summer camps — these create safe environments for children, Chudacoff says. And they also do something more: for middle-class parents increasingly worried about achievement, they offer to enrich a child’s mind.

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What has been the best thing G.W. has ever done?
Appoint Supreme Court Chief Justice John Roberts and Justice Samuel Alito! That’s what!

Court Rejects ACLU Challenge to Wiretaps

WASHINGTON (AP) – The SupremeCourt dealt a setback Tuesday to civil rights and privacy advocates who oppose the Bush administration’s warrantless wiretapping program. The justices, without comment, turned down an appeal from the American Civil Liberties Union to let it pursue a lawsuit against the program that began shortly after the Sept. 11 terror attacks.

Awesome!

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Bad Moon Rising

Wednesday night, February 29, 2008 the Western Hemisphere will experience a total Lunar Eclipse. That is, the Moon will be completely covered by Earth’s umbra, or shadow. The Earth will briefly be directly in between the Sun and Moon. The Moon will still be visible to us Earthlings because of the refraction of light rays escaping the atmosphere. Because of the atmosphere acting like a filter, the only rays that will be able to escape is of the red spectrum. The Moon will appear blood red or brownish in color. Here is what is interesting about this: many religions associate the Moon turning blood red as a bad omen; even the bible. Read it here and here.

Interestingly, Cristopher Columbus used the Lunar Eclipse to his advantage.

Rewind to 504 years ago!

The story goes in 1504, Columbus was stranded and badly needing supplies in Jamaica. The locals were fed up and warring (perhaps mad as hell they were on their land, but that is another hisotry lesson) with these foreigners from Europe. They refused to give Columbus and crew anything.

Columbus looked to his almanac and discovered a mathematicians lunar prediction. Ding, goes off in the bold explorer’s head!

He goes to the tribesman and tells them if they do not give him what he requires he will hide the moon!

Okay, I bet the tribesman were telling Colombus to get his white Euro-trash ass back on his dingy and fuck-off right? Yep! So Colombus says beware! (Disclaimer! These words are not actual conversation!)

That night I’m sure Colombus prayed his ass off that this pencil-necked mathematician from Berlin, or wherever, better had his numbers right!

Low and behold Colombus’ bet paid off and the locals begged for him to return the moon!!!

Of course Colombus did so, but not before getting what supplies he and his crew needed!

Now that is genius!

Now what I’m getting at here is, how many times have you seen this happen today? Today as in our present time.

Me? I see it every freakin’ day when Senators Obama and Clinton take the stage and make their threats to tax the evil rich and empty promises to the ignorant, uneducated, and emotional (make me faint when I hear Obama speak) liberals.

P.S. Thanks Breibart for a bit of the actual historical reference on Columbus’ story. Read it here if you like.

P.S.S. Uhhh, let us also hope that Wed. night’s shootdown of some supposedly bazzilion dollar satellite goes well and doesn’t shootdown the Moon!

P.S.S.S. Just kidding NAVY!!! LOL

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Sen. Barack Obama is very gloomy about America, and he’s aligning himself with the liberal wing of the Democratic party in hopes of coming to the nation’s rescue. His proposal? Big-government planning, spending, and taxing — exactly what the nation and the stock market do not want to hear.

Obama unveiled much of his economic strategy in Wisconsin this week: He wants to spend $150 billion on a green-energy plan. He wants to establish an infrastructure investment bank to the tune of $60 billion. He wants to expand health insurance by roughly $65 billion. He wants to “reopen” trade deals, which is another way of saying he wants to raise the barriers to free trade. He intends to regulate the profits for drug companies, health insurers, and energy firms. He wants to establish a mortgage-interest tax credit. He wants to double the number of workers receiving the earned-income tax credit and triple this benefit for minimum-wage workers.

The Obama spend-o-meter is now up around $800 billion. And tax hikes on the rich won’t pay for it. It’s the middle class that will ultimately shoulder this fiscal burden in terms of higher taxes and lower growth.

This isn’t free enterprise. It’s old-fashioned-liberal tax, spend, and regulate. It’s plain ol’ big government. The only people who will benefit are the central planners in Washington.

Obama would like voters to believe that he’s the second coming of JFK. But with his unbelievable spending and new-government-agency proposals he’s looking more and more like Jimmy Carter. His is a “Grow the Government Bureaucracy Plan,” and it’s totally at odds with investment and business.

Obama says he wants U.S. corporations to stop “shipping jobs overseas” and bring their cash back home. But if he really wanted U.S. companies to keep more of their profits in the states he’d be calling for a reduction in the corporate tax rate. Why isn’t he demanding an end to the double-taxation of corporate earnings? It’s simple: He wants higher taxes, too.

The Wall Street Journal’s Steve Moore has done the math on Obama’s tax plan. He says it will add up to a 39.6 percent personal income tax, a 52.2 percent combined income and payroll tax, a 28 percent capital-gains tax, a 39.6 percent dividends tax, and a 55 percent estate tax.

Not only is Obama the big-spending candidate, he’s also the very-high-tax candidate. And what he wants to tax is capital.

Doesn’t Obama understand the vital role of capital formation in creating businesses and jobs? Doesn’t he understand that without capital, businesses can’t expand their operations and hire more workers?

Dan Henninger, writing in Thursday’s Wall Street Journal, notes that Obama’s is a profoundly pessimistic message. “Strip away the new coat of paint from the Obama message and what you find is not only familiar,” writes Henninger. “It’s a downer.”

Obama wants you to believe that America is in trouble, and that it can only be cured with a big lurch to the left. Take from the rich and give to the non-rich. Redistribute income and wealth. It’s an age-old recipe for economic disaster. It completely ignores incentives for entrepreneurs, small family-owned businesses, and investors. You can’t have capitalism without capital. But Obama would penalize capital, be it capital from corporations or investors. This will only harm, and not advance, opportunities for middle-class workers.

Obama believes he can use government, and not free markets, to drive the economy. But on taxes, trade, and regulation, Obama’s program is anti-growth. A President Obama would steer us in the social-market direction of Western Europe, which has produced only stagnant economies down through the years. It would be quite an irony. While newly emerging nations in Eastern Europe and Asia are lowering the tax penalties on capital — and reaping the economic rewards — Obama would raise them. Low-rate flat-tax plans are proliferating around the world. Yet Obama completely ignores this. American competitiveness would suffer enormously under Obama, as would job opportunities, productivity, and real wages.

Imitate the failures of Germany, Norway, and Sweden? That’s no way to run economic policy.

I have so far been soft on Obama this election season. In many respects he is a breath of fresh air. He’s an attractive candidate with an appealing approach to politics. Obama is likeable, and sometimes he gets it — such as when he opposed Hillary Clinton’s five-year rate-freeze on mortgages.

But his message is pessimism, not hope. And behind the charm and charisma is a big-government bureaucrat who would take us down the wrong economic road.

Its going to be an interesting 4 years after he wins.

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