Saturday, November 30, 2013

Halperin says Palin was right about Obamacare

Senior political analyst Mark Halperin this week found "death panels" in Obamacare. Ex-Governor Sarah Palin showed him the way.

The mainstream media erupted when Gov. Sarah Palin said Obamacare contained committees that decide who gets resources for their health care. On Facebook [don't have a link] she said:

[G]overnment health care will not reduce the cost; it will simply refuse to pay the cost. And who will suffer the most when they ration care? The sick, the elderly, and the disabled, of course. The America I know and love is not one in which my parents or my baby with Down Syndrome will have to stand in front of Obama’s “death panel” so his bureaucrats can decide, based on a subjective judgment of their “level of productivity in society,” whether they are worthy of health care. Such a system is downright evil.  

Monday Halperin on the Steve Malzburg show said death panels are there. There were built in. Newsmax

The Affordable Care Act contains provisions for "death panels," which decide which critically ill patients receive care and which don't, says Mark Halperin, senior political analyst for Time magazine.

"It's built into the plan. It's not like a guess or like a judgment. That's going to be part of how costs are controlled," Halperin told "The Steve Malzberg Show" on Newsmax TV

And he is not negative about them at all.

"We do need to do some of that in this country, because we can't afford to spend so much on end-of-life care. A very high percentage of our healthcare spending is for a very small number of people at the last stages of their life," he said Monday.

"I'm not saying the system shouldn't allow that, but there's too much cost. There're judgments have to be made."

Halperin, coauthor of the bestselling book "Double Down: Game Change 2012," said the U.S. media was not effective in reporting about the effects of the Affordable Care Act on Americans.

Hat tip: Kristin Tate

Thursday, November 28, 2013

Killing the Thanksgiving Day holiday

I won't do Christmas shopping at any store/chain that opens on Thanksgiving Day. Here are the retailers present in the NW that I know of so far:


J C Penney

Target Corp

Best Buy Co Inc

Toys R Us



Source: Reuters

The good guys known so far

Home Depot - I saw a lot of good stocking stuffers there.





Quote of the day

I will get serious about Thanksgiving later. But first words from George Will yesterday in the Washington Post:

Human remains found beneath a Leicester parking lot were confirmed to be those of Richard III, missing for most of the 528 years since he lost the Battle of Bosworth. He remains buried beneath the bad reputation acquired at the hands of the Tudors’ talented PR specialist, William Shakespeare.

He has some interesting examples of the public display of stupidity in the same column:
A CNN anchor wondered if an asteroid that passed by Earth on Feb. 15 was “an effect of, perhaps, global warming.”

The Bank of England is putting Jane Austen on a new 10-pound note because without a woman on some notes, British currency would “not command respect and legitimacy.” Queen Elizabeth II is on all notes.

Tuesday, November 26, 2013

Oregon Obamacare portal not live until March 31

Oregon's Obamacare portal will not go live until March 31. March 31! Six months late!

Cover Oregon will process applications manually until that date. Now its defenders might say: But people will be able to apply online. That might be; I can't tell from this article. But that is just the initial data collection. The process will be carried out manually until then.

And, as of Nov. 21, Oregon remains the only state that has not enrolled one person. Not one!

Oregon Live

Busy airports of the future

Gizmodo shows six airports that will be among the world's largest in the future. The first three are new airports, what we call "from greenfields."

  • Al Maktoum airport in Dubai one of the United Arab Emirates

  • Beijing Daxing - Beijing's third airport

  • Hamad Airport in Doha, Qatar

  • Abu Dhabi airport's Midfield Terminal. A new terminal, not a new airport, but it is planned to handle 20 to 40 million passengers per year.

  • Bao'an airport's International Terminal 3 - This Pearl River airport serves Hong Kong and Shenzhen

  • Incheon, Korea - not new. This is really a list of five, not six.

Photo: Bao'an Terminal 3. Click to enlarge.

Saturday, November 23, 2013

This week's Blame-the-Republicans award for creativity

Why did the press not report that the development of Obamacare was in trouble for the whole three and a half years from bill passage until October 1, 2013? There were signs all over that there were problems. But the press did little. The Republicans were complaining about it. And the press's called that obstructionism by poor losers. Not that they might be right.

Enter Times Magazine editor-at-large Mark Halperin. He admits the press didn't do their job, but blames Mitt Romney. Mitt Romney? Breitbart

To his credit, Halperin didn’t dodge the fact that the media failed to do its job. He did, though, rather bizarrely blame Mitt Romney and Republicans for it. [quoting him talking to Laura Ingraham]

Laura, there is no doubt that the press failed to scrutinize this program at the time of passage and during the context of the president’s re-election. Any reporter who would argue otherwise would be putting their head in the sand. As we write in “Double Down,” the problem for the Republicans in the re-election context was you nominated, Republicans nominated Mitt Romney, a guy who was not very well positioned, to say the least, to make the case against Obamacare because he passed the healthcare plan in Massachusetts. …

Barack Obama knew he wasn’t going to run for re-election defending the program. Part of the flaws of the way the media works. If the candidates aren’t talking about it gets less coverage. No doubt a disservice was done to the country and to liberals. It didn’t get scrutiny on passage and then again when the president was running for re-election. Our cover story in the magazine lays all this out just how deep the president’s predicament is now politically and substantively.

One wonders how many moons Halperin can see from his planet.

Romney did hit on ObamaCare, once during the most high-profile of all presidential election events -- a presidential debate. But he was immediately pummeled by elite media fact-checkers.

In fact, the media played whack-a-mole with Romney, repeatedly hitting him again and again and again whenever he dared criticize ObamaCare. By loudly screaming liar! every time he brought it up, the media intentionally turned ObamaCare into a liability for Romney to run on. And you can bet that was the plan.

According to Halperin, just how many times did Romney have to bring up ObamaCare in order for the media to do its job? Was he just one mention away? Two? Four?

Regardless, the biggest election of the last three years without Romney's name on the ticket was Republican Scott Brown's January 2010 Senate win in Massachusetts; a startling upset caused almost completely by the public's growing concern over ObamaCare.

Still, the media did not scrutinize.

It is also nonsense that Republicans as a whole didn't make an election issue of ObamaCare. Dozens of Republican lawmakers ran on ObamaCare in 2010. Their victories were historic.

Still, the media chose not to scrutinize.

But there is just no excuse -- other than bias -- for the media not scrutinizing ObamaCare as it was being proposed, written, and passed. Still, throughout all of that, including a grueling legislative process, the media refused to investigate the legislation or to take New Media's reporting seriously.

In many cases, over the last few years, the media pushed back against ObamaCare critics as motivated by race...

If the press can't blame the Republicans they might have to do some investigative reporting and … that's work. So their assignment is to find a way, any way, to blame the Republicans for every shortcoming of President Obama and his well paid, underperforming government minions.

I thought Mark Halperin (confused with highly accomplished novelist Mark Helprin*) was one of the more reliable mainstream journalists. But everyone has to suspect every word he writes after they read this creative fiction.

* Mark Helprin is an ivy-league educated American who has served in the Israel military. His novels, Winter's Tale, A Soldier of the Great War and others are very highly regarded.

Friday, November 22, 2013

Obama changes the dictionary

Words can't mean the same when applied to Obamacare. You didn't hear what you thought you heard. "Who are you going to believe - me or your own ears?"

Victor Davis Hanson at National Review

The Obama administration once gave us “man-caused disasters” for acts of terrorism and “workplace violence” for the Fort Hood shootings. Now it has trumped those past linguistic contortions by changing words to mask the Obamacare disaster.

The president and his advisers apparently knew long ago that millions of the insured would face cancellations or premium hikes once Obamacare was fully implemented. Yet to get the 906-page bill passed, they had to convince the public of the very opposite scenario. So they repeated ironclad guarantees that no one would lose their coverage or doctors — “period!”

Now the administration explains the deception by going after both the ethics of the insurers and the intelligence of the previously insured. That task required language to be altered. The newly canceled health plans are suddenly rebranded by the administration as “subpar.” Only in autumn 2013 is the supposedly unaware public told that, years ago, “bad apple” insurance companies sold them “substandard” plans.

According to Obama, millions of Americans were once ignorant or uninformed, and thus will soon be pleased about their cancellations: “So the majority of folks will end up being better off. Of course, because the website’s not working right, they don’t necessarily know it.”

Congressional aids complain loudly about Obamacare

Congressional aids are complaining loudly about Obamacare. But… This is different… It's one thing to mess up everyone else. But this is going to cost ME, a well paid senior staff member. Hypocrites!

Not all Congressional staff was put under Obamacare - slimy people - but some were. And though it levels most people. But older people do spend more on health care and Obamacare does allow charging more - up to 3 times more.


… older congressional staffs may leave their jobs because of the change to their health insurance.

Under the Affordable Care Act, and federal regulations, many congressional staffers — designated as “official” aides — were forced to move out of the old heavily subsidized Federal Employees Health Benefits program and into the District of Columbia’s health insurance marketplace exchange. Others designated as “unofficial” were allowed to stay in the FEHB program. Managers had to choose whether aides were “official” or “unofficial” by Oct. 31, and Ta said that wasn’t enough time to make an informed decision about who would benefit and who would lose out by going into the new system.

Wednesday, November 20, 2013

Obama says he is not stupid

No one else suggested he was. But he did. Notice he is not saying he is not stupid, but just his degree of it.

Hyperliberal Mediaite

“You know, I’m accused of a lot of things but I don’t think I’m stupid enough to go around saying this is going to be like shopping on Amazon or Travelocity a week before the website opens if I thought that it wasn’t going to work,” the president continued.

As they dig deeper he looks worse. Not him, you say, but the people who he appointed to represent him.

While the president may have been telling the truth – that he was not “informed directly” that the ACA exchanges web portal would not function on its October 1 launch date – recently uncovered details of the ACA website’s design and construction phase indicate that members of his cabinet were.

A report which surfaced in the Washington Post as a result of the work done by congressional investigators shows officials with the Centers for Medicare & Medicaid Services and Department of Health and Human Services, including Sec. Kathleen Sebelius, were informed of the scale of the problems plaguing the website’s construction as early as April.

The president’s credibility has already been gravely, possibly irreparably, damaged by the unraveling of his oft-repeated promise that anyone with health insurance would be able to keep those plans if they liked them. It has already been shown that the president was informed as early as February of 2010 that the law would, indeed, force people off their current plans. But a report which surfaced on Monday night indicated that the president’s own Justice Department authored a brief in October showed that most of the country’s insured will have to seek new plans.

They knew his promise was not a promise, but a non truth.

Tuesday, November 19, 2013

Obama Labor Department falsified unemployment data before 2012 election

President Obama's Labor Department falsified unemployment data before 2012 election. And they knew it. An employee was caught entering false data, then management continued the practice.

So a false improvement of unemployment was publicized at a very convenient time for President Obama.

New York Post

Just two years before the presidential election, the Census Bureau had caught an employee fabricating data that went into the unemployment report, which is one of the most closely watched measures of the economy.

And a knowledgeable source says the deception went beyond that one employee — that it escalated at the time President Obama was seeking reelection in 2012 and continues today.

“He’s not the only one,” said the source, who asked to remain anonymous for now but is willing to talk with the Labor Department and Congress if asked.

The Census employee caught faking the results is Julius Buckmon, according to confidential Census documents obtained by The Post. Buckmon told me in an interview this past weekend that he was told to make up information by higher-ups at Census.

Congressman Darrel Issa (R, CA) is asking questions of the director of Census Bureau. He is asking about the person reported to have begun the fudging. And who he worked for and what they did. Good.

Sunday, November 17, 2013

Green policy trap

Bjorn Lomborg of Copenhagen is still evaluating green policies - their benefits and their costs. He doesn't oppose reducing CO2. He just asks "what will you get per dollar spent?" And often the answer is very little. Like 10 cents on the dollar.

Project Syndicate
… Consider the European Union’s 20-20 policy, which targets a 20% reduction in CO2 emissions below 1990 levels by 2020. It is important to examine this approach, not only because the EU is pursuing the world’s largest and most ambitious climate policy, but also because other climate policies suffer from similar shortcomings.
The most cost-efficient way to achieve the 20% target would be to operate a single, EU-wide carbon-market, which would cost the EU about $96 billion annually by 2020. But the benefits to the entire world would be much lower. Indeed, the only peer-reviewed overview of EU climate policy estimates that it can avoid climate-related damage of about $10 billion per year. So, for every dollar spent, the EU stands to avoid about ten cents of damage.
Who wants a payoff of 1 for 10 invested? Actually when he rounds up more costs the payoff is 0.5 for 10 invested. He is encouraging everyone to take a hard look and find more cost-effective ways.

Graphic from 

Friday, November 15, 2013

Ethanol mandate causing environmental damage

I haven't been hearing the greenies talking about the damage caused by the huge increase in acreage of corn, due to the mandated use of ethanol.

Daily Caller quoting AP

… Yet the federal government’s biofuel mandate, the Renewable Fuel Standard, has raised corn prices and incentivized farmers to grow corn on environmentally fragile land once set aside for conservation. The AP reports that 5 million acres of conservation land has been put into service since President Obama took office.

Furthermore, the AP identified more than 1.2 million acres of valuable “virgin land” in Nebraska and the Dakotas alone that has been plowed into corn and soybean fields since 2006 — the year after the RFS was first signed into law.

More corn means more nitrogen fertilizer. This type of fertilizer is toxic when it seeps into drinking water and has been known to cause “blue baby” syndrome in children. Communities across the Midwest are feeling the effects of increased fertilizer use.

Nitrogen fertilizer use shot up by one billion pounds between 2005 and 2010, and the AP estimates that another billion pounds of fertilizer have been used for corn production since then. Nitrates travel down rivers and into the Gulf of Mexico where they boost algae growth, which consume huge amounts of oxygen when they die, making the sea zone unlivable for other creatures.

“On the one hand, the government is mandating ethanol use,” said Larry McKinney, the executive director of the Harte Institute at Texas A&M University-Corpus Christi, “and it is unfortunately coming at the expense of the Gulf of Mexico.”

The Des Moines Water Works supplies drinking water to 500,000 people and is used to high nitrate levels in their water. DMWW gets its drinking water from one of two rivers — when nitrate levels are too high in one, they pull from the other. However, this year nitrate levels were high in both rivers, and workers with massive machinery had to work around the clock for three months over the summer to clean the water. ...

McDermott says Republican bill is socialism

My Congressman Jim McDermott is on the front line in Congress today. During the floor vote on Rep. Upton's You Can Keep Your Healthcare Act H.R. 3350, McDermott spotted socialism at work and stood up to call it out.


"… I can't believe what I'm hearing."

"I thought the Republicans believed in the free enterprise system," he continued. "This is socialism. This is government saying to insurance companies, you must sell a policy to somebody next year that you sold to them this year. When did we shift on the Republican side to the Congress telling an insurance company who they have to sell a policy to or what's in the policy?"

Did big Jim read the bill? Liberal Talking Points Memo says the bill allows, but does not require, insurance companies to continue offering policies that do not meet ObamaCare's new restrictions. How is that forcing the companies? See H.R. 3350.

And McDermott praised Gov. Inslee and Washington Insurance Commissioner Mike Kreidler for denying the people of Washington the choice that President Obama promised over and over: “if you like your health-care plan, you will be able to keep your health-care plan, period.” And it looks to me they will be able to stick us with higher-cost Obama insurance because H.R. 3350 allows, but does not require, companies to continue the policies and state insurance commissioners are involved in what insurance is offered in their state. Daily Caller Sound Politics

Mayor forces unions on preschools

Mayor McGinn is forcing preschool operators - not to unionize - but to sign an agreement with the unions. He says he is not forcing them to have contract negotiations with the unions which do not represent their employees. But just sign a "teacher stabilization agreement." A what?

The unions will certainly arrive at the talks energized by the strength of their position with the mayor behind them. What if the preschool doesn't agree with the union's prewritten agreement? Well, they have to sign.

The stabilization agreement will be one that "lays out the framework for organizing the workplace and ensures that day-care centers stay open in the event of a strike or other labor action."

Forced unionization. On what basis? The contract under which they serve the City? Not the old one, but with the new one - yes.

If having a union were good for the employees they would ask for it. The whole process: Union gets employees to sign request cards. Have an election. Did the unions and employees do this? No.

This is a power play by the lame duck. "A spokesman for Mayor McGinn said there wasn't any political motivation." They claim to be only interested in quality teachers and stability. Sure.

There is one ray of hope. Councilman Tim Burgess is asking if it's legal. Assuming nonpolitical Mayor McGinn is constrained by the law.

Seattle Times

Tuesday, November 12, 2013

Kerry's lousy Iran deal in one slide

Sec. of State John F Kerry is bragging about how he got Iran to make an agreement with ut. But some people say it's not much of a deal.

Senator Kirk of Illinois put it together. Iran gets to continue developing nuclear weapons. The rest of the world gets nothing except a piece of paper with a signature that John F Kerry can wave around.

Via Breitbart. See Senator Kirk.

The graphic - from Senator Kirk. Click to enlarge.

Apparent fraud by ObamaCare Navigators

Obama hires people to help the public sign up for ObamaCare. Would he imagine being nonpolitical in hiring? Obama political?

What is happening - The Navigators are telling people to lie on their applications. And they are acting like employees of the Democrat Party. Indeed, some say they are working for Democrats. How do we know? Video!

Video by James O'Keefe. He sends actors with hidden video cameras to ask for help. They admit to wrong-doing. What do the helpers do? Tell them to lie.

John Fund reports at National Review with video.

… The events of O’Keefe’s video of a Texas navigator site run by the National Urban League are a familiar sight to viewers of his past efforts exposing Medicaid and voter fraud. Government-paid workers supposedly trained to uphold the law advise clients on how to lie on government forms, evade legal requirements, and ignore proper procedures.

“You lie because your premiums will be higher,” one navigator advises an investigator for O’Keefe’s Project Veritas, who tells the worker he sometimes smokes. “Don’t tell them that. Don’t tell ’em.

O'Keefe's Project Veritas

Thursday, November 07, 2013


I haven't studied the new "federal but not centralized" Common Core standards for K-12 - no pre-K to 12 - education, but it doesn't seem aligned to my values.

I have an idea how to push its defenders like Jeb Bush back. Label it ObamaCommonCore, no make it ObamaCore.

UK NHS failed central computer system

Glitches in a web site? The history of governments building computer systems to take care of everything is littered with failures. The failures not only cost a lot, but also take the time of key people, disrupt normal operations and delay the start of the less ambitious replacement that succeeds.

King County Washington has suffered a few, as I recall.

In the UK the National Health System decided to simplify work life by centralizing much patient information. After years of effort and $1 billion spent they decided to DEcentralize records.

Independent UK

Farm cash for billionaires

Why give cash to billionaire Paul Allen? You thought checks for farmers were to help struggling families to keep their farms. Paul Allen, Charles Schwab and other billionaires are supported by you and me.

Seattle Times
The federal government paid $11.3 million in taxpayer-funded farm subsidies from 1995 to 2012 to 50 billionaires or businesses in which they have some form of ownership, according to a report released Thursday by the Environmental Working Group, a Washington-based research organization.

The billionaires who received the subsidies or owned companies that did include Microsoft co-founder Paul Allen; investment titan Charles Schwab; and S. Truett Cathy, owner of Chick-fil-A. The billionaires who got the subsidies have a collective net worth of $316 billion, according to Forbes magazine.

Tuesday, November 05, 2013

Four pinocchios for Obama insurance promise

“That means that no matter how we reform health care, we will keep this promise to the American people: If you like your doctor, you will be able to keep your doctor, period. If you like your health-care plan, you’ll be able to keep your health-care plan, period. No one will take it away, no matter what.”

– President Obama, speech to the American Medical Association, June 15, 2009 (as the health-care law was being written.)

“And if you like your insurance plan, you will keep it. No one will be able to take that away from you. It hasn’t happened yet. It won’t happen in the future.”

– Obama, remarks in Portland, April 1, 2010, after the health-care law was signed into law.

Now they are saying he said something different. But we see here what he said. Many times. Both before and after the law was passed in March, 2010, as we see above.

Four pinocchios - Washington Post's Glenn Kessler digs in and gives Obama his most damaging rating. Washington Post Obama would not have gotten such a bad rating if he had said it only before the law was passed. But he continued after it was passed and the regulations were going into place that would force massive cancellations.

Sunday, November 03, 2013

Preparing Kathleen Sibelius for the job she already has

Tennessee state senator Brian Kelsey (R) presented the invaluable book "Websites for Dummies" to HHS Secretary Kathleen Sibelius. She needed it in 2010. Better get started.

Photo found at  American Thinker.

People ran from their cars on storm-pounded 520 bridge

The wind storm in Western Washington was so strong that people ran from their cars on the 520 bridge, Watch the video. Being taken from a video cam mounted on the windshield it doesn't give the big picture. But it does show people out of their cars on the bridge, some walking and some running!


Godlike Productions also has raw video from a WS DOT camera showing why people would not/could not drive across. Fuzzy, but stunning. GodlikeProductions

In Lake Forest Park our power went out at 10 am and back on a 10 pm. Our home is near very busy Highway 522. Fortunately the state provided the traffic light nearest us with emergency power, so traffic was able to flow. But seeing our neighborhood shopping mall completely black was stunning.

Seattle City Light has a real-time map showing the areas of outage. Seattle Light. Sunday morning there are "only" 2099 homes and businesses without power. Too bad it doesn't have a historical archive. Yesterday there were huge areas of red.

Obamacare - Disdain for the peasants

Obamacare roll out:

1. Incompetent website
2. We remember Pres. Obama promised "If you like your health insurance you will able to keep it. Period." As we see hundreds of thousands cancelled. If he was telling the truth then why isn't he working now to fulfill it?
3. What are they trying to hide? It's ugly. Read Manhattan Comtrarian

Especially the list of ten required services in EVERY plan. See the original at

Yes. You have to be insured for pediatric oral care - that's dental care for children - even if you have none or your sons/daughters are grown.