State Governments and Socialism

A current government move to control the means of production—classic socialism when the controls are widespread—is this, involving what’s left of our nation’s insurance industry, at the State level.

In at least three states, lawmakers have proposed legislation to force insurers to pay billions of dollars for business losses tied to government-ordered shutdowns.

Never mind what already agreed policies say. To Hell with signed contracts. Government men Know Better, and being above petty commitments themselves, can’t conceive the idea that commitments actually matter in a free society, in a free market economy.

Some regulators have declared moratoriums on cancellations and nonrenewals of policies.

Progressive-Democrats and the Law

And contracts.  Since the SARS epidemic of some years ago, insurers have declined to cover losses related to virus or bacteria damage, and they wrote their policies to that effect. State regulators—who controlled and still control the structure of insurance policies and the premiums allowed to be charged for those policies outside Obamacare—agreed.

However.

New Jersey Assemblyman Roy Freiman, a Democrat, introduced a bill that would retroactively rewrite interruption coverage contracts and force insurers to foot some losses for any policyholder with fewer than 100 full-time employees.

Contracts be damned. They don’t fit the Progressive-Democrat agenda, so by Progressive-Democrat-run Government fiat, they must be tossed.

It Depends

The Wall Street Journal‘s editors are stewing about the Wuhan Virus relief bill that just passed the Senate. To an extent, the WSJ is justified in its concern; $2 trillion isn’t chump change (the editorial was written before the Senate voted the bill up, so details at the link might differ from Senate-passed reality). Couple things about the paper’s concern, though.

The bill includes $250 billion for $1,200 payments to Americans whether or not they’re affected by the virus. The cash will do little or nothing to help an economy closed by government fiat.

Strings on Airline Emergency Support

As we contemplate (what should be) a one-time support/subsidy for airlines in the midst of the present Wuhan Virus situation, a letter writer to The Wall Street Journal‘s Letters facility had a suggestion.

[I]f we the people are going to bail out the airlines then a caveat should be that senior executives take a pay cut and don’t receive their usual massive bonuses.

Agreed, but they’re not the only ones. The management teams of the various airline industry unions—national and Local—also should be required to take substantial pay cuts and forego their benefits, however the unions might couch the labels on those benefits.

YGTBSM

And now the Greens, the climatistas, have shown their true colors. Valentin Dupouey, Head of the Communications Unit at European Green Party, say this, as paraphrased by Eric Worrall, writing for Watts Up With That?:

[A] major overhaul of Democracy is required to force acceptance of the economic de-growth required to address the climate crisis.

Because we’re just too screamingly stupid to know what’s good for us, so to hell with us—the Greens will do democracy for us.

And this, a direct quote from the Right Reverend Dupouey [emphasis Dupouey’s]:

Progressive-Democrats and their…Preferences

House Speaker Nancy Pelosi has buried another item in her 1,400+ page demand list of “relief” supports that she is requiring in quid pro quo for her support for the Senate Wuhan Virus relief bill that her minions in the Senate are actively blocking: $35 million for operations and maintenance for New York’s JFK Center for the Performing Arts. Pelosi’s bill would provide funding for

…employee compensation and benefits, grants, contracts, payments for rent or utilities, fees for artists or performers….

Government Ownership of Private Companies

There is a move afloat that, as part of a (supposedly) temporary support measure during the current Wuhan Virus situation, the Federal government should inject money into troubled businesses by taking equity stakes—buying shares of stocks—in them.

As The Wall Street Journal pointed out, that’s a bad idea, and it illustrated the dangers by describing the failure of Japan’s moves in this regard.

As it happens, we have a domestic example of the dangers of governments buying private company stocks: CALPERS. That huge (State) government pension fund has, for all the best reasons, invested in a broad range of American companies, and it has invested in some of them heavily.

Progressive-Democrats and Crises

We’re seeing their execution of Rahm Emanuel’s theory in spades these days.  The Republican-majority Senate has a proposal in the Senate, agreed in bipartisan fashion with Progressive-Democrat Senators that would aid average Americans and the small, medium, and large businesses—including our farmers and ranchers—weather the government-mandated shutdown of our economy in response to the present Wuhan Virus situation.

The bill would provide loans to businesses to help tide them over the current loss of revenue—many of the loans converted to grants if the businesses retain their employees on the payrolls.

More Obstructionism

Senate Republicans have a bill in the works that would provide aid to businesses and their employees who are at risk as a result of government-mandated business reduction to minimum production or to outright closure.  That plan would provide for

taxpayers to receive up to $1,200, with married couples eligible to receive as much as $2,400 with an additional $500 for every child. Those payments will scale down for individuals who make more than $75,000 and couples that make more than $150,000. Individuals who make more than $99,000 and households that earn more than $198,000 won’t be eligible for direct assistance.

A Start

But we need to go further.  Recall that an official of the Communist Party of China threatened to cut off US access to life-savings medicines that are manufactured in the People’s Republic of China [Bing Translate translation from the Xinhua publication].

If China retaliates against the United States at this time, in addition to announcing the travel ban on the United States, it also announced the strategic control of medical products and the ban on exports to the United States, then the United States will fall into the ocean of new crown [corona] viruses.