And to Reduce Development of New Drugs

The Wall Street Journal headline reads Democrats Vote to Raise Drug Prices. That’s in response to the Senate Progressive-Democratic Party’s unilateral vote to pass President Joe Biden’s (D) Build Reduced Back Act last Sunday. Included in that bill is a capability for Medicare to “negotiate” the prices on a select list of drugs. Negotiate: accept Medicare’s offer or pay a 95% tax on revenues. Nice drug you got there….

This is one inevitable result:

If drug makers must give Medicare steep discounts on certain drugs, they will compensate by increasing prices in the commercial market.

Food or Fuel?

That’s the choice being forced on Americans by the push for “clean” fuel for our cars, even as the Left and the Progressive-Democratic Party push for elimination of gasoline-burning cars. Dave Loos, Illinois Corn Growers Association’s Director of Biofuels and Research, actually is proud of that diversion of food to fuel.

Illinois has 13 ethanol plants that can produce 1.6 to 1.7 billion gallons of ethanol annually.

A bushel of corn produces 2.8 gallons of ethanol. That’s roughly 590 million bushels of corn diverted from food in Illinois alone. Illinois corn farmers produced 2.13 billion bushels of corn in 2019. The equivalent (because it’s not only Illinois corn in those plants) of more than 27% of Illinois’ corn production is diverted away from food production in Illinois’ plants.

Sue, Settle, and Biden’s Demand for Producers to Produce

There was a time when a million acres of land were available in California for oil and gas leasing and hydraulic fracturing (fracking).

Then California’s Attorney General, Governor, and “other state agencies” sued, claiming that the Bureau of Land Management’s environmental impact analysis was inadequate. BLM then settled. Under the terms of BLM’s sue-and-settle agreement,

until the Bureau conducts a supplemental environmental review of the project, new oil and gas leases will not be granted in central California….

Three guesses when that review will be begun, and you get a pass on the first two.

Part of the Agreement

…on Reduced-Build Back that Senators Joe Manchin (D, WV) and Chuck Schumer (D, NY) settled on last week is this Progressive-Democratic Party gem, and which illustrates in no small part the depth of the betrayal that is Manchin’s agreement.

The Senate drug agreement would require the Health and Human Services Secretary to “negotiate” prices for 10 of the top-spending drugs in Medicare starting next year and 20 by the end of the decade. If drug makers don’t accept the government’s offered price, they would get slapped with a 95% excise tax on their sales. Take his offer or else.

Some Lipstick for the Pig

Here’s some of what’s in the Build Back Reduced bill—formally styled Inflation Reduction Act—that Senator Joe Manchin (D, WV) and Senate Majority Leader Chuck Schumer (D, NY) agreed, which Manchin euphemizes as an all-in energy policy:

[T]he Interior Department would be required to offer up at least two million acres of federal land and 60 million acres of offshore acreage to oil and gas producers every year for the next decade. If Interior officials fall short, they wouldn’t be able to advance some permitting aspects of the wind and solar projects on federal land.

Hostage Taking

Recall that the President Joe Biden (D) administration, some months ago, said it would

withhold food assistance funding from schools unless they comply with the administration’s guidance on a range of LGBT issues.

After these months of trying to get the administration to retract that threat—after all, in Dole v South Dakota, the Supreme Court said the Federal government could use funding to influence, but not to coerce, State compliance—22 Republican AGs have filed suit to try to force the administration to retract its threat. Notice, too, that no Progressive-Democratic Party AGs are party to the suit.

More Gun Control Distortion

Delaware, President Joe Biden’s (D) adopted home State, has a new gun law [emphasis added].

Under the bill, known as the Delaware Lethal Firearms Safety Act of 2022, the manufacturing, sales, offer to sell, transfer, purchase, receipt, possession, and transport of assault weapons, aside from those lawfully possessed or purchased before the bill became law, is prohibited.
The law classifies weapons that feature a high rate of fire and capacity for firepower used in a sports, or recreational, form is outweighed by “the danger that is can be used to kill and injure human beings” and are restricted on the possession and use of those weapons. However, the bill states that it is not the intent of the Legislature to place restrictions on those weapons designed for hunting, target practice, or other legitimate sports or recreational activity.

Lawlessness

Michigan Governor Gretchen Whitmer is busily mandating prevailing-wage requirements for contracts let by the State’s government. Never mind that she’s defying the will of the legislature—and in the present case, the will of the citizens of Michigan—in doing so.

…a citizen initiative under the Michigan Constitution. We collected tens of thousands of signatures, sending the issue straight to the Legislature. Lawmakers overwhelmingly stood with taxpayers, bypassing the governor [then-Governor Rick Snyder (R)] and ending prevailing wage for the whole state.

It hardly matters, though, since Progressive-Democratic Party politicians like Whitmer think petty laws don’t apply to their august selves.

Another CFPB Overreach

Now it’s preparing to force banks to make whole those their customers who are conned by money-transfer service scams, regardless of whether the bank had anything to do with the scam.

Bank customers no longer should be responsible for their own decisions, even their foolish ones. We average Americans, holds the CFPB and its MFWIC, Rohit Chopra, are just too grindingly stupid to be responsible for ourselves.

“Misquote”

US District Judge Charles Atchley, Jr, issued a preliminary injunction barring the Federal government from enforcing President Joe Biden’s (D) Executive Order and his Department of Education’s “guidance” equating sex and gender identity that

unilaterally redefin[ed] federal law to not only prohibit male-female distinctions in school sports, restrooms, and locker rooms, but also compel employers to use employees’ preferred pronouns

The Biden administration, further, is threatening to withhold “substantial federal funding” if institutions did not comply.

In his ruling, Atchley