Monday, December 16, 2013

Monday's News

Worth Reading: A Small Step in the Right Direction: The Ryan-Murray budget deal is far from perfect, but perfection is too much to expect from a budget. By Peggy Noonan
Excerpt: The Democrats meanwhile spent the past five years on a toot, passing multi-thousand-page bills they didn't read whose consequences they didn't even bother to guess at. Now, to the consternation of the American people, they have blown up the American health-care system. That system was a road with a lot of potholes and not enough lanes. It needed repair and strengthening. Instead Democrats attacked it like the Bridge on the River Kwai and are now standing there scratching their heads like Alec Guinness, asking: "What have I done?"

Health care law seen as eroding medical insurance coverage, AP-GfK poll finds
Excerpt: Americans who already have health insurance are blaming President Barack Obama's health care overhaul for their rising premiums and deductibles, and overall 3 in 4 say the rollout of coverage for the uninsured has gone poorly.

Half of Uninsured Say Health Law Is Bad Idea
Excerpt: Uninsured Americans have soured on the Affordable Care Act in the past three months – and that bodes ill for the law’s popularity and financial underpinnings. Less than a quarter—24%—of uninsured Americans think the health care law is a good idea, and half think it’s a bad idea, according to a Wall Street Journal/NBC News poll released Wednesday.

Enrollment Errors Cut, Officials Say; Fixes Are Overstated, Insurers Report
Excerpt: The Obama administration said Saturday that it had reduced the error rate in enrollment data sent to insurance companies under the new health care law, even as insurers said that files they received from the government in the last few days were riddled with mistakes. ... Federal officials, insurers and health care providers said they were concerned about confusion and possible chaos in the early days of January, when people try to use the new insurance coverage they believe they have. (Hear that? "Chaos." We've got good seats with an unobstructed view of America's Medical Armageddon. -- Jim Geraghty, Morning Jolt

Scary: The Looming ObamaCare Market Crash. By David Forsmark 
Excerpt: What no one is yet talking about is the fact that the insurance industry is a major player in the capitalization markets in the United States; and ObamaCare significantly changes the way health care is insured in this country. What happens if trillions of dollars of private investment capital suddenly disappears from banks, lending institutions and investment markets in this already fragile economy?

New Report Says Obamacare Navigator Program Marred by Mismanagement, Confusion. By Guy Benson
Excerpt: A new report produced by Rep. Darrell Issa's House Committee on Oversight and Government Reform reveals that Obamacare's controversial "Navigator and Assister" program has suffered from chronic poor management, resulting in widespread disarray, since the law's October 1 launch date. An advanced copy of the document obtained by Townhall raises a number of competency and security concerns. 

Healthcare.Gov Contractor Rejects Illegal Obama HHS Request To Withhold Subpoenaed Documents From Congress
Excerpt: contractor Creative Computing Solutions, Inc. (CCSi) has rejected an unlawful request from the Department of Health and Human Services to withhold documents subpoenaed by the Oversight Committee.

Excerpt: If you think the Earth is hot now, try wearing plate armor in the Middle Ages. A Swedish study found that the planet was warmer in ancient Roman times and the Middle Ages than today, challenging the mainstream idea that man-made greenhouse gas emissions are the main drivers of global warming. (Damn Caesar and his SUVs. ~Bob)

The Newest Left-wing Lie: Megyn Kelly Is a Racist Who Believes In Santa. By Matthew Sheffield
Excerpt: Liberals often love to say that conservatives cannot take a joke but the truth is that both left and right sometimes are lacking in the humor department. That’s especially true of the cottage industry that’s sprung up devoted to finding any tiny little thing to bash Fox News, one of the handful of national media outlets that don’t lean left. (Assuming she was joking, she was foolish to get sucked into a joke they could twist against her. Funny, though, people who mostly don't believe in God getting upset about someone's supposed belief in the race of the spirit of Christmas. ~Bob)

USA Today Poll: Youth Souring on Obama
Excerpt: The poll showed 45 percent of the millennials approve of how Obama is handling his job, but 46 percent disapprove. But less than a year ago, the president was enjoying a 67 percent approval rating among young adults. Now that approval rating mirrors the general population's.

Once we stopped colonizing the Third World, it began colonizing us.

‘Stand down’: CIA Benghazi team clash led to controversial order
Excerpt: CIA officers revealed a clash over how quickly they should go help the besieged U.S. ambassador during the 2012 attack on an outpost in Libya, and a standing order for them to avoid violent encounters, according to a congressman and others who heard their private congressional testimony or were briefed on it. (It still boils down to someone somewhere tell the only people with weapons and knoweldge to use them who were close enough to the attack to get there quickly, to stand down. Hang on and wait until someone says it's safe. Don't call for air support because we know we can't get it. All kinds of reasons to not do anything while you can hear the gunfire of the attack on the safe house. Maybe taking action would still not have saved the ambassador and the other man who died from smoke, but they had no way of knowing that for sure. And if others had moved to do something helpful the two men who died on the roof from accurate mortar fire might not have died. Not doing anything is sure one way to not save anybody from anything. --Del)

Excerpt: When Obama has your PIN, it’s Christmas all year round. For him.

NJ cop shoots for big disability pension, scores $2M or more
Excerpt: Christopher Onesti collects a police disability pension for life because he stapled the ring finger of his non-shooting hand. State authorities ruled he is “totally and permanently disabled,” no longer able to handle a gun or perform duties as a New Jersey Transit cop.

Kerry Awards Vietnam With $17 Million to Fight Global Warming
Excerpt: Kerry pledged $17 million to a program that will help the region's rice producers, shrimp and crab farmers and fisherman adapt to potential changes caused by higher sea levels that bring salt water into the delicate ecosystem.

Creepiest Obama Story Yet
Excerpt: Our beloved leader is so humble. He doesn’t want a typical Presidential portrait with the American Flag next to him. He’ll settle for his face large and in charge as the Dictator who is transforming America into his socialist utopia on the way to communism. (Okay with me if he doesn't have our flag in his picture. ~Bob)

How many days old are you?
24,717--I'm just getting started! ~Bob

28-year sentence in Ohio in $100M charity scam
Excerpt: A judge handed down a 28-year prison sentence Monday to a man convicted of masterminding a $100 million, cross-country Navy veterans charity fraud. (The investigation into the phony Navy Veterans charity started almost 2 years ago, as best I can remember from seeing the early articles about it. It took authorities a long time to get really serious about finding who was really running things, and then the guy took off and became very hard to find for a long time. But I see they finally nabbed him, and brought the SOB to court. He's now going to play the mental defense (as in, he's not really all there), but 99% sure that is just more of his game. They'll never recover much of the money, aside from the nearly $1 million he was carrying around. (Wow... talk about pocket change) And at his age he'll just die in prison, unless they let him out early for humanitarian reasons when he gets old and sick enough. I don't have a lot of sympathy for him. --Del)

Excerpt: Why don’t we make the bad guys bleed money for a change? That’s the strategic insight that helped us win the Cold War, and it seems especially timely today as the nation wobbles back – we hope – from the brink of yet another budget crisis. (Maybe a good idea. --Del)

Excerpt: Earlier this year when the Milwaukee Journal Sentinel exposed a botched ATF sting in Milwaukee — that included agents hiring a brain-damaged man to promote an undercover storefront and then arresting him forhis work — ATF officials told Congress the failed Milwaukee operation was an isolated case of inadequate supervision.
It wasn't.

Remembering Mandela, without Rose-Colored Glasses
Excerpt: Mandela had been out of prison for about two years in September 1992 when, fist clenched in the "black power" salute, he was filmed singing the anthem with a number of his comrades. Interestingly, but not ironically, as Mandela and others repeated the refrain about killing Boer farmers, it was a white man who stood next to him, similarly clench-fisted and singing. The man's name is Ronnie Kasrils. A Soviet-trained terrorist who helped Mandela found the MK, Kasrils was a member of the Central Committee of the South African Communist Party.

The Redistribution of Freedom. By Daniel Greenfield
Excerpt: Supreme Court Justice Louis Brandeis called the right to be left alone the "most comprehensive of rights and the right most valued by a free people." It would even be fair to say that without the right to be left alone no other rights exist. Amendments one through ten of the Bill of Rights are essentially an enumeration of the ways that government is obligated to leave people alone.

Excerpt: You might be asking the same question the Obama administration did when they saw the tapestry: Why is it so small? The real kicker is when the view is pulled back to see the placement of the tapestry:

Excerpt: We are told that ObamaCare needs a mandate in order to prevent people from gaming the system. Without the mandate, people who are healthy would remain uninsured until they had a health problem. Then they would enroll and get their medical bills paid. But if that were possible, only the sick would insure ― making premiums inordinately high and possibly leading to a “death spiral.” Yet employers don’t require employees to enroll in their health insurance plans. So why don’t they experience death spirals? Potentially, they could face something similar. The reason: employers have exactly the same problems that the individual market has. Here is how they solve it.

Kitten Plays Computer - The Tonight Show with Jay Leno
You have to watch this video to believe it. Truly a mind-blowing achievement by a little kitten. --Del. Too funny. ~Bob

Teacher’s Union Fights to Get Severance Pay for Child Molester
Excerpt: The Michigan Education Association (MEA) is trying its hardest to force the West Branch-Rose City school district to pay severance to a teacher who was convicted of molesting one of his students. The union wants the school district to pay out a $10K severance package to Neal Erickson, a former math teacher at Rose City Middle School, because he apparently accepted a district wide severance offer before he was officially terminated.

Israel army shoots 2 Lebanese after soldier killed
Excerpt: Israeli troops shot two Lebanese soldiers early on Monday, hours after a Lebanese army sniper killed an Israeli soldier as he drove along the volatile border late at night, the Israeli military said.

Obama’s China Bluff. By Daniel Greenfield 
Excerpt: North Korea’s dictator is executing family members and ex-girlfriends at a speed that would give even Stalin pause. Meanwhile the People’s Republic of China has decided to follow in the footsteps of the Empire of Japan while the pacifistic modern Japan and an uncertain South Korea look to America for aid. Obama’s amazing Asian pivot has now run smack dab into China’s infinitely expanding territorial claims.

The Alarming Rise of Campus Anti-Semitism. By Joseph Klein 
Excerpt: Anti-Semitism on U.S. college campuses is growing at an alarming rate. It has escalated to the point that Jewish students on campuses have been physically attacked or threatened for peacefully demonstrating their support of Israel. Events demonizing Jews and even glorifying the murderers of Jews, in the guise of anti-Israel rhetoric, are tolerated by campus administrators despite the hostile environment such events create for Jewish students who are open about their beliefs in support of the Jewish state.

Three American Teachers Slaughtered for Christian Faith. By Raymond Ibrahim 
Excerpt: Most Western media and analysts dismiss the killing as a random act of violence incited by a recent al-Qaeda video. However, by connecting the dots and looking at precedence, it appears that Smith’s Christianity, specifically his talking about it among Muslims, was the motive behind the slaying.

True, this: Why Government Institutions Fail to Deliver on Their Promises
Excerpt: Public choice theory shows that government solutions not only fail to solve most problems but often make problems worse, says Veronique de Rugy of Mercatus Center in testimony before the House Oversight and Government Reform Committee. Public choice theory applies economic analysis to politics. Economists operate under the assumption that individuals act according to self-interest. So, public choice theory applies that same assumption to government actors. Similarly, individuals are driven to act prudently when buying, investing and saving in the marketplace. But those same incentives do not exist within government management. Because government decision makers are using other people's money rather than their own, they do not face the same type of risk that an individual faces when making a decision. Moreover, there is little, if any, reward for acting wisely, effectively or efficiently.

UK: Major hospital blunders including 40 patients given surgery on wrong limb, revealed by official statistics. Almost 150 patients suffered from major errors which are so simple and serious that they are categorised as "never events"
Excerpt: Almost 150 NHS patients have been harmed by incidents that should never happen, according to new figures - including the wrong patient receiving heart surgery, patients given overdoses and a woman who had her fallopian tube removed instead of her appendix. (The joys of Progressive single Payer Systems. ~Bob)

Two more letters. Two more victims. By Colin Flaherty
Excerpt: Want to call it Knockout? Go ahead. Call it anything you want. But less than one hour after listening to the NPR report on Knockout, i received these two emails:

Machiavelli with malaprops: A quarter-century of covering Harry Reid. By Jon Ralston 
Excerpt: The former boxer’s ability to absorb blows and, even more importantly, to counterpunch, perhaps with an occasional hit below the belt, are the secrets of his longevity—and no doubt he will deploy them once again as the Senate fights this week over the budget deal. Unlike most of the preening Club of 100, Reid expends little effort tending to his public image. (Machiavelli should sue. ~Bob)

Bipartisan push imperils ethanol mandate. By Ben Goad
Excerpt: Introduced by Sens. Dianne Feinstein (D-Calif.) and Tom Coburn (R-Okla.), the Corn Ethanol Mandate Elimination Act of 2013 would effectively repeal requirements for the amount of ethanol that is blended into gasoline. “The time to end the corn ethanol mandate has arrived,” Coburn said in a written statement. “This misguided policy has cost taxpayers billions of dollars, increased fuel prices and made our food more expensive.”

Photoshop Bombing
Excerpt: The White House Thursday tweeted a photo of Barack Obama holding a sign with the message, “#GetCovered because nobody should go broke just because they get sick.” In response, pundits had some fun photoshop bombing the image.

Money won't buy happiness, but it will pay the salaries of a huge research staff to study the problem. --Bill Vaughan

Satan’s Little Imps. By Burt Prelutsky
Excerpt: Generally, when a boss – be it of a company or a country – is constantly whining that he was unaware of a problem, be it harassment in the work place or, say, the IRS targeting millions of law-abiding Americans, unsafe working conditions in Benghazi or a catastrophic health care plan, he is either, one, lying or, two, surrounded by flunkies, whose main responsibility is to keep him out of the loop. But in Obama’s case, it’s never a case of either one or two; it’s always both.

Excerpt: The Defense Department announced the transfer of two Guantanamo detainees to Saudi Arabia today. Saad Muhammad Husayn Qahtani and Hamood Abdulla Hamood were both previously approved for transfer from the detention facility by President Obama's Guantanamo Review Task Force. (Coming soon to an airport near you. ~Bob)

Gunmen kill TV presenter Nawras al-Nuaimi at her home in Iraq
Excerpt: Nawras al-Nuaimi was shot near her home in Mosul, Al-Mosuliyah TV said, and was the fifth journalist killed in the northern city in the same period.
Mostly Sunni Arab Mosul is one of the most dangerous cities in Iraq, with militants frequently carrying out attacks and reportedly extorting money from shopkeepers.

Afraid of 'bridenapping,' Kyrgyzstan woman seeks asylum
Excerpt: IF ALBINA Kurmanbekova returns home, she has many prospects for marriage. Not marriage as we understand it, however. More than a dozen Muslim men have threatened her with "bridenapping," forcible marriage that is indistinguishable from kidnapping, rape and slavery. Welcome to Kyrgyzstan, where "bridenapping," a gross violation of human rights, is the national sport played by men and endured by women.

Hizballah Leader Bashes Saudi Arabia Over Syria
Muslims just can't get alone. ~Bob

A Safe Christmas for Christians in the Holy Land. By Taki Theodoracopulos
Excerpt: This Christmas our thoughts need to be with our fellow Christians who are being threatened in the biblical lands. No ifs or buts about it, they are being told to either join the Sunni-led opposition to Assad and renounce Christianity or die. After decades of protection by a secular-leaning dictatorship, the Saudi-financed jihadists are giving ultimatums for a very dark future for Christians.

Good Tidings and Bad Art. By Taki Theodoracopulos
Excerpt: There is a game being played only by blacks and Hispanics in the great City of New York that’s called “polar bear hunting.” (Whites are the polar bears, get it?) It’s fueled by social media, with thugs boasting of their attacks online and posting Internet videos of the sucker punch. It involves approaching vulnerable-looking individuals and walloping them with the goal of rendering them unconscious with one punch. They don’t rob them or do further damage if the victim goes down. The latest victim was a Jewish granny, and the “game” has caught on throughout many American cities.

South Africa's Dubious Liberation. By Theordore Dalrymple 
Excerpt: This is not to say that Mandela was without importance or that he merited no praise. His greatest achievement by far, and an important one, was the avoidance of the interracial violence that had long been predicted as “inevitable” in South Africa and the only way things would ever change there. He did this by his dignity and lack of rancor after his release from prison and during his presidency, the first presidency post-apartheid. 

MAPS: Lots of atheists, more Muslims, fewer Christians and Jews: this is the new America. By Damian Thompson
Excerpt: Did you know there are – possibly – now more religious Muslims than religious Jews in Florida? I know, it seems incredible. Miami Beach has had 15 Jewish mayors, there are getting on for 200 synagogues in South Florida – and, of course, it was the hunting ground of the despicable Bernie Madoff. But here's a section from the map of Eastern states, grouped by region:

The Fall of the House of Tsarnaev. The Boston Globe.
Excerpt: Tamerlan Tsarnaev first heard the voice when he was a young man.

It came to him at unexpected times, an internal rambling that he alone could hear. Alarmed, he confided to his mother that the voice “felt like two people inside of me.”

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