Because, Veterans

President Obama’s 2016 budget blueprint proposes rolling back a program that gives veterans the right to receive faster care outside of the long waitlists at the troubled Veterans Affairs medical system.

Obama signed the Veterans Choice Program into law in August following months of partisan wrangling on Capitol Hill….

His 2016 budget “proposal” doesn’t zero out the program; instead, it achieves elimination of the funding by allowing the VA to reallocate that part of its budget to other purposes

to support essential investments in VA system priorities in a fiscally responsible, budget-neutral manner.

The Party of No

Democratic Party obstructionism continues in the Senate. Recall that the Democrats refused to allow over 300 House-passed jobs-related bills even to come up for debate in the last session and how they shut down the Federal government over a House-passed spending bill that fully funded the government but that didn’t have an additional 2% of what the Democrats demanded.

They’re at it again. The House has passed a bill that fully funds the Department of Homeland Security for the year, which under the last session’s compromise passed in December, had only been funded through the end of this month. The bill also rolls back a number of President Barack Obama’s unconstitutional immigration “executive actions.” Obama’s minions in the Senate are vowing to block the bill, to filibuster it.

Middle Class

While we’re on the subject of President Barack Obama’s alleged concern for the middle class of Americans (OK, only Obama makes the allegation with any seriousness, but work with me here), Investor’s Business Daily has another take on the Obama Recovery.

The graph below is a good summary of that take:ObamaEconomicChallenge

The Obama recovery is worse than four years behind Obama’s promised schedule. It hasn’t caught up. It hasn’t caught up with the Reagan Recovery, with his “failed” Reaganomics. It hasn’t even caught up with the average of the recession recoveries we’ve been through since WWII, a period of some 70 years, 3+ generations of Americans.

Here Comes the Extortion

Nice business you got there. Be too bad if it got shut down for some reason.

The United Steelworkers union told its workers at nine US refineries and chemical plants to strike early Sunday morning….

And they’ve gone ahead and walked out, trying to shut down nine refineries from Houston to LA. For demurring on paying the union vig. USW’s threat to the viability of these refineries ultimately could affect

30,000 workers at 230 refineries, oil terminals, pipelines, and petrochemical plants[.]

Death Taxes

Or, as President Barack Obama likes to call them, “trust fund taxes.” Either way, it’s another Progressive attempt to steal the gains of one family—now with its parent safely dead—to transfer them to another group of “families” of whom Obama approves.

As the graph below demonstrates, this latest wealth “redistribution” grab by Obama would represent, if it’s passed, a 36% increase to a world-beating 68% of a family’s hard-earned accumulated prosperity.InternationalDeathTaxRates

Not even the famously social-tax heaven of the UK confiscates that much of a family’s wealth on the death, nor do the social democracy nations of France, Belgium, Spain, Finland, Norway, etc. Russia and the People’s Republic of China have no death taxes at all.

Austerity

President Obama called for an end to “mindless austerity” on Thursday as he announced his desire to end “sequester” spending cuts in his budget for 2015.

No, Obama wants to perpetuate—even expand—the deliberate austerity of excessive government spending and ever-rising taxes. His “budget” calls for a 7% increase in Federal spending to be paid for with increased taxes, including increases in the death tax on inheritances (which Obama is attempting to disguise by calling it a “trust fund” tax). Indeed, Obama’s “thinking” on taxing was exposed by his attempt to tax Americans’ savings for our children’s college, our 529s.

Unemployment and Unemployment “Benefits”

From the Abstract of the Naitonal Bureau of Economic Research’s just-released paper, The Impact of Unemployment Benefit Extensions on Employment: The 2014 Employment Miracle? by Marcus Hagedorn, Iourii Manovskii, and Kurt Mitman [emphasis added]:

Obama and “Energy”

President Obama announced Sunday that he’ll use his executive authority to designate 12 million acres in Alaska’s Arctic National Wildlife Refuge (ANWR) as wilderness, walling it off from resource development. This abrogates a 1980 deal in which Congress specifically set aside some of this acreage for future oil and gas exploration.

He also did this without so much as a faretheewell to any of Alaska’s leadership, including, explicitly its Republican delegation in Congress. Not a what do you think. Not a heads up. Nada.

Here’s his cynical divide-and-conquer bribery attempt:

The Left’s War on the Poor

It’s exemplified by California’s egg-laying chicken cage requirement. In 2008, California voters

required the state’s poultry farmers to house their hens in significantly larger cages. The state legislature realized this would put home-state farmers at a disadvantage, so in 2010 it compounded the problem by requiring that eggs imported from other states come from farms meeting the same cage standards, effective Jan 1, 2015.

That’s an expensive requirement: $40 per egg layer.

The number of egg-layers in California has fallen by nearly a quarter in the last two years, and quite a number of egg producers outside California have declined to meet the California standard and so to stop selling their eggs in that state.

An Implication of the Greek Elections

Greece is nearly bankrupt, it has defaulted on one round of national debt since the global Panic of 2008, it has received two bailouts from the rest of the European Union and from the IMF in partnership with various EU institutions (one of which included that default), and it’s demanding another round of…debt relief…against which the current troika of the IMF, the European Central Bank, and the European Commission are refusing to certify that Greece is ready and able to handle another loan. This current crisis reached its fullness last fall, and the then Greek government collapsed, necessitating Sunday’s snap elections.