How Terrible Is That?

Jeremy Corbyn, British Labour Party’s MFWIC, has “accused” British PM Boris Johnson of pushing for US-style deregulation of health care.  The horror.

As the UK election campaigns got underway, Corbyn said his rival wanted to “unleash Thatcherism on steroids” once the country was no longer bound by EU trading treaties and regulations.

Channeling our own Progressive-Democratic Party Presidential candidate and Senator Bernie Sanders (I, VT), Corbyn thinks “capitalism” is a dirty word.

He went further:

Corbyn also said…that Johnson wants to strike a trade deal with US President Donald Trump to sell off parts of the UK’s National Health Service, or make it easier for US pharmaceutical firms and medical companies to sell into the UK healthcare market.

Boeing and Foolish Questions

In a Wall Street Journal article on the tortuous path to criminal prosecution that prosecutors would have in bringing Boeing to criminal trial over its 737 MAX crashes, Andrew Tangel, Jacob Gershman, and Andy Pasztor asked what seems to me to be a very narrow, short-sighted question.

Should prosecutors weigh Boeing’s importance to the economy and national security when deciding how to proceed with a criminal case over the 737 MAX crashes?

Of course prosecutors should—must—not. What’s truly important is the concept of weighing the risks to liberty and to national security of criminals being too big to be punished. We can never allow such a thing to enter even the run-up to criminal prosecutions.

Tariffs

The Wall Street Journal led off one of its Wednesday editorials with this gem.

The great counterfactual of the Trump Presidency is how much faster the economy would be growing without the damage of his trade protectionism.

Never mind that the great counterfactual of the FDR and Wilson Presidencies (among others) is how much better off the nation would be without the damage of their warfighting.

Once again, WSJ Editors choose to misconstrue the nature of tariffs as tools of international diplomacy and conflict with the nature of tariffs as protectionism. International conflict unavoidably involves domestic damage.

PRC Personal Savings Rate

James Areddy had an extensive article on this in a recent Wall Street Journal.  It seems that the personal savings rate of People’s Republic of China’s citizens peaked around 2010 and has been trailing off ever since.  Areddy posited a number of reasons for this, and why it’s likely to continue.  Chief among them is the usual suspect of an increasingly less poor, if not increasingly prosperous, population wishing to live better rather than save more.  Another major reason seems to be the PRC’s one-child policy, lately relaxed legally, but not socially.  With fewer kids in the family, there’s less reason for parents to save against those kids’ future.

Fiscally Sound Socialism

Richard Rubin posited, in his Wall Street Journal article, some hypotheticals for how Progressive-Democratic Party Presidential candidate and Senator Elizabeth Warren (D, MA) might pay for her Medicare-for-All plan. He suggested that one of the ways toward this goal of Medicare-for-All that all the Progressive-Democrats running for President need to do was to

find[] ways to reduce health-care costs

Were Progressive-Democrat candidates serious about this, though, they’d stop conflating health care costs with health care coverage costs, get government out of the way of both industries, and put them both (back) into competitive, free market environments.

“Clean” Cars

That’s what Senate Minority Leader Chuck Schumer (D, NY) wants Government to subsidize.  He’s proposing Government spend $462 billion to pay Americans trading in our gasoline-powered cars for electric ones.  He wants to drop $17 billion on subsidies for auto manufacturers to “help” them build more electric cars along with batteries and associated parts, and $45 billion on charging stations and associated “infrastructure.”

In addition to ignoring where this money is supposed to come from, he’s also misleading on the “clean” electric car bit.  He knows, after all, where the electricity must come from to charge those batteries, whether at home or at his charging stations.

Winning

My new mystery novel, and my first foray into fiction is out and available here in Kindle format.

Peter Hunt says he’s the best Private Investigator in the area. He is one of the most financially secure PIs in the area—his manager, Rachel Wellington-Smythe—Rick—has seen to that.

Then Sally Dickerson walked into his business, and his life, one morning. She was a senior executive at Watermark, Inc, which her father owned and was the President of.  Now he was laid up in the hospital, the victim of a hit-and-run accident. Only Sally didn’t think it was an accident, she didn’t think the police were investigating with enough enthusiasm to suit her, and she wanted Hunt to get on the matter. Now.

Gasoline Prices and California

California has the highest pump-price of gasoline in the nation now.  That raises some related questions in my pea brain:

What’s the per centage of all-electric vehicles in California’s government car and truck fleet (no one is producing serious electric/hybrid heavy equipment)?

What’s the per centage of hybrid vehicles in their fleet?

I suspect there are more than zero in each category: what’s the carbon footprint of the energy used to charge those vehicles’ batteries?

Obamacare Premiums

Stephanie Armour noted that Obamacare premiums are expected to be lower in 2020 than they are this year, and she wondered whether that means Obamacare is working, or if there remain problems to be fixed.

The drop doesn’t address the core problem with Obamacare: it’s a government welfare program that mandates coverages at prices independent of the risk being transferred.

Falling premiums? They’re still much too high, as are deductibles (which Armour completely omitted from her article), especially when compared to what would be the case in a free market, and they’re for coverages that aren’t, generally, needed, to boot.

Warren’s Assault on Hydrocarbons

Progressive-Democratic Party Presidential candidate and Senator Elizabeth Warren (D, MA) want so ban new leases for oil and gas drilling offshore and on Federal lands, and she wants to ban fracking altogether. This assault on our national energy underpinnings would have far-reaching negative outcomes.

  • domestic natural-gas prices would jump to somewhere between $9 and $15 per million BTUs from last Friday’s $2.32
  • oil would rise to the $80-to-$85 range and could run to $150 during market shocks from last Friday’s $53.78
  • entire oil-field service companies would become obsolete
  • pipeline owners would suffer without replenishment, as existing wells peter out