Changing the Subject

Planned Parenthood and President Barack Obama are partners in this misbehavior.

Recall the hoo-raw over the videos published by Center for Medical Progress showing Planned Parenthood doctors discussing the best way to harvest valuable (monetarily) body parts from freshly aborted babies. Planned Parenthood President Cecile Richards spent her time decrying the videos as “edited” and insisting that Planned Parenthood behavior was both legal and ethical.

Obama’s only comment on the matter came through his Press Secretary Josh Earnest, and it was centered on the editing and a repeat of Richards’ claim of “ethical behavior.”

Projecting Again

Recall the union violence threatened and inflicted in Wisconsin when Governor Scott Walker (R) was working to break union strangleholds on the state government and local school districts.

Now, in nearby Illinois, we get this.

The American Federation of State, County and Municipal Employees union sent a memo to its members expressing fear that in the face of union intransigence in negotiations with the State’s government, Governor Bruce Rauner (R) might use the National Guard and retired state workers to keep the government open should the AFSCME decide to strike.

Medicare Funding

The fund Medicare uses to pay hospitals will run out in the next 15 years, and experts say there are no easy answers to solve it.

Certainly not politically easy answers, and that does matter. However, the practical answer is quite simple, if expensive in the transition.

Keep everyone 55 and older in the current Medicare system, with the individual option to leave that system in favor of the one I’ve proposed many times and summarize here. It’s important to note also that the “experts” are referring only to Medicare Part A, the hospitalization part. My reform is broader and applies to Medicare Parts B, payments to physicians, and D, drug coverage.

The PRC’s Markets

Beijing thought they could “rescue” the PRC’s stock market. Recall that those markets had tanked collapsed last month, with no bottom in sight. Then the government stepped in:

There is the buying program financed by the central bank. A state pension fund has gone into equities for the first time. Beijing mandated that anyone holding 5% of a company can’t sell for six months. And brokerage firms, directed by regulators, are sitting on a boatload of shares as inventory, notes Erwin Sanft of Macquarie.

Democrats and Unions

Illinois’ Democrat-controlled legislature—both houses—passed a budget earlier this year that spent $4 billion more than it intended to collect in revenue: a $36 billion spending bill against a $32 billion revenue bill. Never mind the rank dishonesty of this—bankrupt Illinois has no hope of raising those $4 billion except by borrowing, and these Democrat legislaturists know that. They have no intention, then, of repaying the borrowing, and that’s the dishonesty.

But leave that aside for a moment, and consider the following.

Democrats and Regulation

Uber is successful in competing with the established taxi industry, and New York City Mayer Bill de Blasio (D) is all upset about it. He wants to freeze Uber’s (and other ad hoc rides-for-hire companies’) growth until he can figure out how to regulate them:

[W]e support a short pause in the rapid increase of for-hire vehicles to make sure that the future growth of this industry lives up to the policies and principles we set out as a city.

“Short pause.” Sure. He supported his argument in that piece by citing other jurisdictions where Uber had resisted…being over-regulated.

An Excess Profits Tax

In 1917, Progressive icon Woodrow Wilson instigated an excess profits tax running from 20%-60% because, of course, the Progressive knew better how American business owners should spend their money than did the Americans who’d actually earned it through their businesses.

During the Great Depression, Democrat (and Progressive) icon Franklin Roosevelt instigated two excess profits taxes while openly slandering American businessmen as being on a capital strike: Roosevelt actually accused businesses of refusing to spend—at rates satisfactory to the Democrat (and Progressive)—the profits they’d earned.

Now we get the proud early 20th Century Progressive, Hillary Clinton, with her proposal for a “tax credit…to encourage more businesses to offer profit-sharing to their workers.”

There’s Science

…and there’s…science.

The Environmental Protection Agency for years has issued costly clean air rules based, in part, on two ’90s-era studies linking air pollution with death.

But, critics say, the same agency has stymied efforts to access the data behind them.

EPA Administrator Gina McCarthy thinks that suppression is entirely jake [emphasis added in the summary of her position].

For its part, the EPA has argued that releasing the data could compromise confidential personal information, and that it didn’t have access to all the research anyway, among other issues. The agency made an effort to contact the original institutions behind the studies in 2013, but Republicans say they again would not hand over everything.

Artificial Demand

Nearly two weeks ago, with Chinese stocks tumbling, Beijing let loose its strongest effort yet to boost the market, including extracting a pledge from 21 brokers to buy shares as long as the Shanghai Composite Index was below 4500.

With its push, the government halted the plunge and engineered a modest rebound.

What happens when that artificial demand goes away? Or its effects peter out?

Hmm….

More Government Interference

The Federal Energy Regulatory Commission is suing BP (of Gulf oil spill fame) for allegedly manipulating Texas energy markets seven years ago. There are two rationales for the case: one is the $48 million fine FERC hopes to collect on trades that produced the magnificent profit of $250 thousand—because, hey we want the money.

The other reason is the government’s use of the Panic of 2008 that began shortly thereafter as a handy excuse for increasing government regulation, ostensibly for “transparency” [emphasis added]