Contributed by: filbert Thursday, May 27 2010 @ 03:41 AM CST
“There’s a Costco in Juneau, if you know what I mean,” Palin wrote. “And my family is quite capable of setting out food and cleaning up afterwards.”
Hey, AP! I can see your bias from my back yard! Damn, this was a stupid story. I’m dumber for having read it. It’s two minutes of my life I will never have back.
Parasitic Threat to Animals and the Environment Revealed [*6] — “Researchers at Queen’s University Belfast have discovered animal populations may often be under a much larger threat from parasites than previously recognised.” The study findings are expected to have applications in fields as diverse as economics and politics . . .
Never enough [*14]
Why are welfare state liberals like our president and his congressional allies perpetually seeking to appropriate the income and manage the lives of productive citizens? Why can’t they tell us when they will have taken all that it is right to take, so we can relax, secure in the enjoyment of our property?
A thug too far, part 4 [*15]
Obama Holds San Fran Fundraiser with Barbara “Ma’am” Boxer… Tea Party Breaks Out [*16] — Nero fiddled while Rome burned. Obama raised money while Louisiana strangled under an oil slick.
The luckiest people in history [*17] — But then, “chance favors the prepared mind” . . .
ACTION ITEM: Republicans should push to replace Andrew Jackson with Martin Luther King Jr. on the $20 bill [*18] — Subversive. I like it.
Sometimes it is the small story that illuminates the overall narrative. Let’s dispense with all the semantics and timelines and legalese. Last week, 500 union thugs descended on a private home and terrorized a teenage boy. They violated someone’s most personal space, their home. And they attacked their most precious gift, their child. The police in two jurisdictions knew about this. They did nothing.
The most important economic consequence of the existence of the employer-provided health insurance is that consumers are much less likely to discriminate on cost. Beyond the deductible, the employer pays the cost of medical procedures through an insurance company. As anyone who has gone on a business trip knows, if the company is paying, then the employee is likely to purchase a more expensive ticket and accommodation. Where an economy ticket may have sufficed for a personal budget, a business-class ticket becomes far more attractive.
Not only are consumers less likely to discriminate on cost, but providers of healthcare services have greater incentive to provide medical treatments that are only marginally more effective at much higher cost. This is the opposite of how the price mechanism works in a free market, where consumers (who are paying out of their own pocket) search for the cheapest prices and providers work hard to provide services that are equally efficacious but less costly.
While employer-provided health insurance undermined price sensitivity among consumers, it did not completely destroy it. Businesses, being profit-maximizing organizations, have an incentive to push back when costs increase. However, because of privacy concerns, businesses are less able to push back against rising healthcare than they are for plane tickets. An employer is less likely to pry into the cost effectiveness of a particular surgical procedure undertaken by an employee than they would be to pry into the purchase of a substantially more expensive first-class plane ticket.
In 1965, Medicare was passed as part of the Social Security Act, essentially supplying employer-provided health insurance to all citizens above the age of 65. However, the “employer” in this case was the US government, which does not have the same economic incentives as a business, but rather has political incentives. Elected officials have a strong incentive to promise their elderly constituents an expansion in the range of treatments covered by Medicare, as well as to lower the deductible that Medicare consumers pay out of their own pocket. Both these factors further undermine a consumer’s desire to discriminate on cost when seeking medical treatments.
The Washington Pattern Obama is Not Trying to Break [*26] — My first guess would be Corruption. But pass-the-buckism is right up there, too.
When something becomes illegal, consumer demand does not vanish. Instead, consumers seek alternative, more costly and risky, means of satisfying their wants. Prices are higher than they would be otherwise, and product diversity, quality, and quantity demanded are lower. In view of suppressed demand and the potential to earn large profits, individuals with a knack for averting authorities direct their energy and resources to satisfy this demand. The illegality of the activity enables the intermediaries to ask higher prices of consumers and to bid down prices paid to growers of hemp, coca, and opium poppies. It gives rise to drug cartels, prostitution rings, and violence associated with the protection of “their” territories.
This seems so obvious that it shouldn’t need to be said. But then, you have people who still think the “war on drugs” is a good idea. It isn’t. Legalize and regulate will cause less harm to our society than the current SWAT-testosterone-loaded war on citizens, at the same time lining the pockets of drug lords and terrorist organizations throughout the world. That seems like a very, very bad deal to me, compared with having our law enforcement agencies concentrate on dealing with impaired people the way we do with drunks–hell, maybe even a bit more aggressively than that. But this New Prohibition is destroying our liberty AND AT THE SAME TIME funding the worldwide enemies of liberty, and that’s got to stop.
Republican Jo Ann Emerson Sponsoring Union Bailout Bill! [*30] — I think that should be “Former Republican” personally . . .
The sloppy craftsmanship and outrageous over-reach of ObamaCare make it a “magic eye” portrait of an incompetent president and party. As you stare at the countless little fraudulent cost estimates, unplanned side effects, and economy-killing mandates, a 3-D image of an upraised middle finger materializes. This is a deadly narrative for a Democrat Party that claims its handful of legislators and bureaucrats can run our massive economy better than millions of private citizens. Americans are understandably angry at a Democrat Congress which rammed through a trillion-dollar health-care takeover, but can’t produce a coherent annual budget.
Ominous Number: US Debt at $13 Trillion [*37] — Your share: $6,165, and going up.
Echoes of the reconquest near Ground Zero [*39] — This will not end well . . . for anyone . . .
DoJ “weighing challenge” to AZ immigration enforcement law [*42] — This will not end well for the Obama Administration . . . I have the feeling that the State of Arizona will eat them alive in Federal Court, on the transparently obvious point that the Federal Government has not guaranteed to Arizona the security of its borders, and so the State is well within its Constitutional powers to do so itself in the absence of meaningful Federal action. This could be fun . . .
(VIDEO) Chicagoans React To Recent SEIU-NPA Mob Actions [*44] — With bonus at the end of the clip explaining exactly why Europe is NOT an appropriate role model for a civil society:
Obama’s Slide Continues [*45]
John Mulaney – Law and Order and Mr. Jerry Orbach [*48] — A YouTube audio diversion on the cliches in L&O, Snookums’ favorite TV show (which I abhor, of course) . . . eight minutes of funny . . .
Why Make 1 Bad Movie When You Can Make 4 Bad Movies… [*50] — “The Loch Ness Monster of libertarianism — the “Atlas Shrugged” movie — has apparently been sighted again, reports Mike Fleming of Deadline New York” . . .
The Latest on the Supposed Atlas Shrugged Film: Plucky Entrepreneurs Make End Run Around Entrenched Elites [*52] — Here’s how it breaks down: Chances of an Atlas Shrugged film truly, deeply sucking the big one: 94.6% (higher if done by a major Hollywood studio, or starring any name Hollywood actor); Film being the proverbial “swing and a miss, he strikes out!”: 4.7%; Film being the greatest cinematic event in the history of mankind or in fact of all the civiilizations in the entire Milky Way Galaxy including both Magellenic Clouds: 0.7%.
Ohmygod: Teabagging Racist Traitor James O’Keefe Somehow Gets Off By Pleading Out to a Rinky-Dink Misdemeanor. . .Update: Corrected — the MFM Lied to Me [*53] — As Ace says: “Why not? Why not just make stuff up?”
Awesome! Check Out Obama’s New Nominee to the Second Circuit Court of Appeals [*58] — And when Ace says “awesome” what he means is “oh, geez, pass the Valu-Rite vodka!”
Louisiana Rep. Scalise Screams at Obama: “We’re Tired of the Excuses” (Video) [*60] — Yeah, Rep. Scalise. We are.