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House unveils new health care bill

October 29, 2009

Read it here

The short title for it is: Affordable Health Care for America Act. That’s House bill number HR 3962, though it’s not listed on Thomas yet. Apparently the plan is to debate the bill for a few weeks, and then vote on it Thursday or Friday.

That means we have a week to read it, and tell the world the parts we like and don’t like.  Hey- it’s only 1,990 pages.

House Speaker Nancy Pelosi proudly proclaimed that this bill will lower the deficit. By spending $980 billion dollars. That’s a neat trick, isn’t it? I’m going shopping now, so I can save some money. Be back later!


The cost of Obama’s delay

October 28, 2009

In Jacksonville this week, President Barack Obama spoke to members of our military, mostly naval aviators. While there, he repeated what he’s been saying for weeks:

 I will never rush the solemn decision of sending you into harm’s way

As the same article points out, his words came 1 day after 14 Americans were left dead in 2 helicopter crashes. Overall, 55 Americans have died so far this October in Afghanistan. 2009 promises to be the bloodiest year so far of the campaign in that country. Last year saw 111 American deaths. In July through October, we’re over 270.  It would seem that Americans are ALREADY in harm’s way.

I don’t know why Obama hasn’t made a decision yet. It’s possible that he has no capacity for decision-making. That’s an executive skill; his history as a legislator would indicate a talent more along the lines of compromising.  But leaders shouldn’t comprimise lightly. Not when our life and safety are at stake.

Perhaps Obama wishes to avoid the mistakes that he believes lead Bush into Iraq. But Bush got UN resolutions against Iraq. Congress debated the issue. Colin Powell presented evidence.  Saddam had a history of defiance. But those points aside, there is a huge difference in the two situations. Bush had the options of fight or no fight. Obama is already in a fight- at which point the options become: WIN, or LOSE.

The delay can’t be a lack of input. McChrystal made his recommendation weeks ago. Dick Cheyney says the Bush administration assembled data and presented it to Obama in 2008. Obama announced a strategy early in 2009, and it closely resembled the reccomendations that McChrystal is now making. Joe Biden gives his own advice.

Obama would have us believe that compassion and a desire to protect human life are causing him to take extra time. Important decisions must not be rushed, he says. Well, sometimes you don’t have the luxury of time. Simple decisions become complicated when you delay. Don’t believe me? Try driving down the road and delaying the decision to turn the steering wheel. Or ponder the possible consequences of hitting the brakes as you approach the light, and motor right through oncoming traffic.

In Afghanistan, Obama’s delays result in the death of U.S. soldiers and Afghani civilians. These deaths directly influence events in Afghanistan, in the Taliban’s favor. Our troops lose morale, and Afghans become more bitter. Without the resources, our troops are caught between strategies. That’s a road to destruction and defeat.

As Obama considers options, the Taliban is taking action. They have stepped up attacks in Afghanistan. Is Obama going to cave in to their violence? In the short run, it doesn’t matter. Just the DELAY is killing people.

Obama has been criticizing Bush, and criticizing doctors, and criticizing bank executives, and criticizing the heads of the Big 3. But he does so from the luxury of an insulated world. He says deadlines are important, but the health care bill has missed numerous deadlines. He sets goals for the stimulus plan, and then claims success when falling short of those goals. What executive can succeed this way? What leadership is this?

Any leader knows that you can’t wait for perfect information. At some point, any decision yields a better result than delay. I want Obama to send more troops. But if he wants to pull troops out, then let’s get started. He may think that he’s on a treadmill, but his troops are in a war zone.

The Spanish philospher Maimonides said: 

“The risk of a wrong decision is preferable to the terror of indecision.”

This very terror is growing in the guts of our soldiers. And it fuels the resolve of our enemies. We must act, or fail.

Conservatives win, again, in Europe

September 29, 2009

Angela Merkel won a 2nd term as chancellor in Germany. She got enough support from center-right portions of the government that she be able to get legislation passed with less trouble from the left-leaning Social Democrats.

Once again, Europe shows the lie of the American fable of “the rest of the world is loves liberals”. True, European conservatives are generally more liberal than their American counterparts, but on economic issues, Germans effectively voted for prudence in favor of patronage.

By their works, ye shall know them

September 14, 2009

Some progressives may believe that their policies are good. But the fruit of liberal policies is a stain on our schools, a blot on our inner cities, and a nest of fraud and waste in our health care system.

Your average Democrat believes that government spending will help people. It’s time to show them the error in their beliefs. If spending more on schools makes them better, why are we spending ever more, with worse results? It’s easy to fix schools. Longer school year – more discipline = better grades. It works whenever it’s tried. Its the same on every issue that progressives love. Money is not the answer.

Once people realize that money is not the answer, we should ask “why, if the solutions are simple, do our leaders choose to ignore the solutions?” The answer is obvious – the powerful want to control more spending, because it gives them even more power. I believe that when Democrats realize this, they too will be filled with a desire to clean out the nest of corrupt politicians in Washington.

Obama discovers Death

September 10, 2009

In an emergency prime-time address to a joint session of Congress, President Barack Obama revealed the following startling consequence of opposing his health care plan.

“More Americans will lose their coverage when they are sick and need it most and more will die as a result.”

I was not aware that employers had a new tool to determine when their staff was sick and truly needed health care. Or that insurance companies have improved their actuarial tables to the point that they can now accurately determine the critical point at which to drop coverage.

But maybe I missed the President’s point. Maybe he’s really earnest about this health care thing because he’s finally found out that he’s not invincible. People don’t live forever. He went to law school, not medical school, so he can be forgiven for not knowing this previously. Clearly his top-flight team of advisors has shown him the awful statistics: 100% of humans who survive childbirth eventually die!

 Obama’s efforts to stop this epidemic of deaths are welcome. Surely a bipartisan effort can be made to stop this needless cycle of birth and death. Sources in the GOP have said that they, too, want to stop death, and are in fact calling for a “humans bill of rights to life”.  But a misunderstanding with their Democrat colleagues forced them to change the language to “right to remain alive after a successful planned birth”.

Van Jones resigns… so what?

September 7, 2009

Big news to Glenn Beck fans, a puzzlement to New York Times readers. Green Jobs Czar, I mean “special advisor to the President’ Van Jones resigned today.  The White House had been pulling back from support of Jones as new announcements of his past statements came to light. He called Republicans “assholes”, and signed a petition indicating a belief that the U.S. government had been aware of the 9/11 plot.

Conservatives, of course, had many more problems with Jones. Like his claim to be a socialist. Or his role in the radical group STORM. Or his statements about “white people spreading poison in our inner cities. But now they should be dancing in the streets over his resignation, right?

In a word, no. Van Jones was a special advisor to the President. Valerie Jarrett made a big deal of bringing him into the White House, because he was the sort of visionary they were looking for. Does Obama’s core belief system change because Van Jones left? Does Jones no longer have the President’s ear? Nothing has changed on those fronts. The only difference is that now Jones can’t give speeches to students on the American taxpayer’s dime. But he’ll get all the funding he needs from left-wing groups who will portay him as a victim of the Republican smear machine.

The real issue is – will the White House change direction now that Jones has resigned? No chance.

What is a right? Not health care.

September 1, 2009

Health care is not a right.

The topic came up again last night on Hannity. Hannity had a very interesting Great American Panel last night. Bob Beckel, Redstate’s own Erick Erickson, and singer/Playboy model Aubrey O’Day were the guests. After discussing a program that U.S. tax dollars are funding in Africa that provides sex education to 5-year olds, the talked turned to health care. O’Day maintained that health care is a right, even calling it a “basic civil right”. She also declared that people have a civil right to affordable housing, food, and medication (which I think included contraception). It’s not the first time liberals have made that claim. Obama said health care is a right, too. The Nation makes the same argument.

Let me repeat. Health care is not a right. Maybe it will help to look at the definition of a civl right:

Webster’s says: : the nonpolitical rights of a citizen; especially : the rights of personal liberty guaranteed to United States citizens by the 13th and 14th amendments to the Constitution and by acts of Congress

Got that? Rights are the product of personal liberty. They are not guarantees of a lifestyle. Rights derive from natural rights, which are universal in nature. Universal means they’re not limited by time, place, or culture. Slavery provides a compelling example of the meaning of universal rights. Even though American culture and custom accepted the idea of enslaving certain people, blacks had the right to be free, just as all people everywhere have that right.

Now, let’s apply that standard to health care. Does everyone have a right to an MRI? Clearly, the Greeks did not have that right. In a state of nature, nobody had that right. People have a right to pursue healthiness. But not a right to the services of a doctor. If health care is a right, then doctors are breaking your rights any time they don’t provide service to someone who needs it.

Let’s look at the “right to affordable housing”. Does everyone have a right to a house? Many cultures don’t use permanent housing, and in fact housing would destroy their culture. Further, the very term “affordable housing” is a misnomer. If it’s affordable, then you can purchase it. We should use the term “welfare housing” because it more accurately describes the service of government giving people property.

Any time property is redistributed, someone’s rights are being violated. The Revolutionary War was fought over the right to own property, and the Constitution liimited the ability of government to seize private property. On a fundamental level, any time the government gives property to an individual for private use, another citizen’s rights are being violated. Here’s why. If you take a dollar from me and give it to my neighbor, you prevent me from spending it on myself. You have deprived me of the ability to use property that I created by my own labors. Further, the idea that people have rights to a certain set of goods ignores reality. There are often fewer goods than there are people. How can everyone have a right to something, if there is a limited supply of that thing? This is the difference between the right to bear arms and the right to a Government-supplied Colt .45.

Conservatives lose the argument whenever they concede the point about the right to health care. Health care is no more a right than Xboxes are right, or Corvettes are a right, or microwaves People have the right to amass their OWN property, and use it as they see fit. But people have no right to have property GIVEN to them by the government.

Michael Steele needs to learn this lesson. He’s currently calling for a “Seniors’ Health Care Bill of Rights.” Seniors have no right to health care, any more than anyone else does. It’s easy to see why there is confusion, as seniors have paid into government programs for decades. But welfare programs are not savings accounts, and seniors don’t check the balance before they spend money from Medicare