Progressive-Democrats Politicizing Banking?

Who would have thought such a thing?

House Financial Services Committee Chairwoman Maxine Waters (D, CA) has decided to use her committee to go after the hated banking industry.  Congresswoman and Committee member Alexandria Ocasio-Cortez (D, NY) has announced

We’re going to hold oversight hearings to make these banks accountable for investing in and making money off of the detention of immigrants[.]

Dangerously, and sadly, the overt intimidation seems to be working.

On February 5 JPMorgan Chase announced it will no longer do business with private prisons. In January Wells Fargo said it would no longer market to private prison companies, aiming to achieve the same objective by attrition.

Alphabet Objects

Alphabet, through its Google subordinate, objects to the White House’s and JCS’ characterization of it as aiding our enemy, the People’s Republic of China.

An anonymous (perhaps because he’s speaking without Google management’s permission, perhaps because he, or that management, is embarrassed by his claims) Google spokesperson said

We are not working with the Chinese military. We are working with the US government, including the Department of Defense, in many areas including cybersecurity, recruiting and healthcare.

Yet Alphabet has withdrawn Google from working with our defense establishment on drone or artificial intelligence technologies that could be used for active defense of our nation.

A No-Deal Brexit

The Wall Street Journal opined earlier this week that, in the words of the piece’s subheadline,

A no-deal crash out of the EU may be the best outcome now.

The rest of the thing was a string of rationalizations of why this is true, but the heart of the matter is that subhead.

In fact, though, a no-deal departure always has been the best outcome.

A priori because that’s what the Brits voted for in their referendum—they wanted their sovereignty and control of their own borders back. Full stop.

Medical Services Price Transparency

Hospital and insurers want to keep their pricing agreements hidden from those who must pay those prices, especially those who must pay under the duress of huge costs and the immediacy of the need for medical services.

Hospitals and insurers are gearing up to battle a Trump administration plan that could require the public disclosure of negotiated prices for medical services, part of an effort to lower US health-care costs.

Because price transparency facilitates competition, which in a capitalist, free-market economy helps drive costs down.  But hospitals and insurers insist

EU Should Make Concessions?

That’s British Minister Theresa May’s plea to Brussels.

…the decisions that the European Union makes over the next few days will have a big impact on the outcome of the [parliamentary] vote. …  [L]et’s not hold back. Let’s do what is necessary for MPs to back the deal on Tuesday.

The EU functionaries have been playing you for a fool for a year and a half. This is confirmed by the EU’s chief Brexit negotiator, Michel Barnier:

EU commits to give UK the option to exit the Single Customs Territory unilaterally….

An Experiment in Progressivism

This one has the advantage of being live and current. The Progressive-Democratic Party has extended its control over the State of California.  The results accumulating from the several years of Progressive-Democratic dominance (now outright control) are these.  California has

  • the highest welfare numbers (a third of all Americans on welfare live in California)
  • the largest contingent of illegal immigrants
  • a burgeoning homeless population
  • onerous regulations on business and private property
  • mediocre public schools
  • high income taxes (the highest marginal rate is 13.3%) and sales taxes
  • a yawning gap between rich and poor

French Tax, Tax, Tax

Now the French have decided to add another tax on American multinationals—a 3% “digital-services” tax on companies that do “targeted advertising or run[] a digital marketplace,” a tax aimed in particularly at Alphabet’s Google and Amazon.com.

Finance Minister Bruno Le Maire:

These giants use your personal data and make a significant profit from it, without paying their fair share of tax[.]

Tax, Tax, Tax

The Progressive-Democrats want more.  It’s almost like an OPM addiction.

Now they’ve proposed the Wall Street Tax Act of 2019, which is intended to charge traders and investors a price for the privilege (apparently) of investing in economic products.  Their bill would

impose a tax on the purchase of most securities—including stocks and bonds—and on transactions involving derivatives. The tax would be about 0.1% of the value of the security or 0.1% of all payments made under the terms of a derivative contract.

Because Progressive-Democrats just can’t get enough of our money.

Alphabet Strikes Again

Recall Alphabet’s decision to use its Google arm to help the government and defense establishment of our enemy, the People’s Republic of China, while simultaneously refusing to help our own develop the tools needed to defend our nation.

Now Alphabet has chosen to use its Google facility to actively aid the government of Saudi Arabia in keeping Saudi women down on the Arab farm.  The Saudi government has put an app into Alphabet’s Google Play store that allows Saudi male citizens to track “their” Saudi women and control where they travel.

Alphabet says that’s jake and refuses to block the app.

Guild Monopolies

They live on in France, especially in the medical profession.

It seems that Thomas Mesnier, a La République En Marche! National Assemblyman, has committed the unpardonable sin of proposing that pharmacies(!—not even establishments like grocery stores) be allowed to sell over-the-counter medicines without the buyer first consulting a doctor and getting a prescription.  The medications Mesnier has proposed be salable without prescription include such dangerous drugs as paracetamol (the French version of acetaminophen), ibuprofen, non-codeine-containing cough medicines, cold medicines, allergy medicines, and the like.

The horror.

Here’s Guild Master National Order of Physicians President, Patrick Bouet: