A National Parental Leave Policy

AEI has a piece on this; unfortunately, their piece proceeds from some false premises.

Developing a National Paid Parental Leave Policy

It’s interesting that folks of a bent proceed from such claims. They always decline to establish, for instance, that we need a national policy for parental leave. It’s such a widespread failure that I have to conclude it’s deliberately Alinsky-esque in its attempt to control the discussion.

The United States is one of two countries without a national policy providing new mothers with rights to paid leave following the birth of a child.

The Noise of Freedom

European Central Bank President Mario Draghi is worried.  The European is afraid of any relaxation of banking regulations in the US; it might cause some instability.  Never mind that instability is a Critical Item for innovation and growth, whether economic, political, technological, or anywhere else.  As he testified before the European Parliament Committee on Economic Affairs,

The last thing we need at this point in time is the relaxation of regulation….

The fact that we are not seeing the development of significant financial stability risk is the reward of the action that legislators and regulators and supervisors have been undertaking since the crisis erupted[.]

Transparency or Government Snooping?

Senator Ben Cardin (D, MD) had a letter to The Wall Street Journal‘s editor over the weekend.  He’s objecting to Congress’ removal of his (and Senator Richard Lugar’s (R, IN) Cardin-Lugar piece of Dodd-Frank that required public companies to disclose their payments to foreign governments.  Ostensibly, this was to track bribery actions, but like the rest of Dodd-Frank, it overstepped.

There’s nothing like a Democrat desperate to protect his legacy (Lugar was not silent on the matter; he voted for its repeal).

There is no unreasonable burden to businesses in asking them to track operating payments that should be part of the normal course of legitimate business.

What Should a Health Plan Cover?

Anna Wilde Mathews wondered about that in her piece in The Wall Street Journal.  First, a couple of asides.  Notice the tacit acknowledgment that we have no health insurance plans available.  That industry was eliminated in toto by Obamacare, which replaced the industry with a Federally mandated, publicly/privately funded health coverage welfare program.  Next, notice the tacit assumption in the piece’s subhead: that the law should mandate business decisions.

To the piece itself:

The 2010 health law created a new set of federal requirements for plans sold to individuals and small businesses, including a list of 10 benefits, among them prescription drugs, mental-health services and laboratory tests. It also mandated that plans cover preventive services such as vaccinations at no cost to enrollees.

Free Markets and Medical Care

Under Obamacare we have no free market in medical insurance or in medical care itself.  In fact, before Obamacare we had no free markets in those two industries, either: individual States controlled the premiums they would permit (within bands, but it was the States’ bands) and the measures required to be covered within each premium band.  Medical care was subject to what doctors and hospitals would be reimbursed by the insurance companies.  And insurance policies could not be sold across State borders, for all that insurers like Blue Cross\Blue Shield could sell substantially similar policies in various States: if someone moved, they could not take their original policy with them—even if they’d gotten it through their employer and in the new State they worked for that same employer—they had to buy the new policy.

Evil Tax Deduction for Trump Businesses

The Wall Street Journal has decided to put its collected knickers in a twist over a Trump tax-overhaul proposal that would preserve millions of dollars in savings for companies controlled by his family.  True.  His proposal would preserve the ability of companies to take a tax deduction for interest payments on company debt.

Companies that are part of the Trump Organization pay more than $20 million a year in interest on their debts, according to a Wall Street Journal analysis of financial disclosures and other public information about the companies’ outstanding loans and their interest rates.

The Journal‘s estimate of $20 million is conservative, meaning Mr Trump’s or his companies’ tax savings from being able to deduct interest payments from taxable income might be higher.

Regulators Against Market Competition

Their obstruction sometimes has lethal consequences, and sometimes those consequences kill the least of the least among us: babies.

A little bit ago, in Salem, VA, a 24-weeks pregnant woman was taken to the ER suffering what turned out to be a placental abruption, a condition in which the placenta has detached from the uterus.  It’s often deadly for both the mother and the baby.  This hospital was not equipped to handle this sort of emergency, but six miles away, there was a hospital, Carilion Medical Center, that was so equipped, including an ambulance with incubators that could sustain the necessarily untimely ripped baby during transport to the other hospital.

The New York Times Misunderstands

Again.  This time the paper is hyperventilating over the coming end of the world order as we know it because the UK and the US are reaffirming our special relationship through the mechanism, as the NYT‘s headline has it, of British Alignment With Trump….

Great Britain’s relationship with the US spells doom because, as seen through the lens of the NYT‘s TDS, Great Britain’s dependency on Europe will be upset, and the European Union is key to world stability.  For instance:

“Stock Market Gained $2T in Wealth Since Trump Elected”

That’s the headline on a Fox News insider report of Club For Growth founder Stephen Moore’s claim about one outcome of President Donald Trump’s election.  It’s certainly true that the market has run up hard since the election (although it’s had other periods of sharp gains, too, that are unrelated to elections).  Moore also was quoted as saying,

This could be the start of a big bull market rally[.]

There are a couple of things about this, one bigger than the other.  The lesser thing is that the stock market has been in a bull run for most of the year.

Funding Sanctuary Cities

White House Chief of Staff Reince Priebus on Federal funds—your tax money—for “sanctuary” cities:

[I]f you defy the laws of this country, you shouldn’t receive federal tax payer dollars from the people of this country…in some cases, you have folks that have committed crimes…and in every other jurisdiction, they say “OK, you’ve committed a crime. You now have to leave the country.”

What the man said.