Sunday, February 07, 2016

The illegal implementation of Obamacare
...Note that by “administrative delays” Bagley is actually referring to multiple decisions made over many months, including the multiple delays of the employer mandate and the so-called “if you like it you can keep it” fix. Characterizing all of these delays as a single episode — one of the eight he examines — seems to stack the deck a little bit. Nonetheless, Bagley’s candor about the paltry legal justification for these actions is refreshing, even if he insists on stressing that there are still lots of legal rules the administration hasn’t violated. (As Mike Stern quipped, “Think of all the buildings Nixon didn’t break into.”)

Where Bagley finds admirable restraint, I suspect calculation. It seems to me the administration has strayed from the ACA’s text law when and where it thinks it’s difficult for critics to obtain judicial review, though other explanations are possible, too. In any event, the paper helps further a discussion about the appropriateness of what some consider administrative “self-help.” This is not the first administration to take liberties with a statute when Congress refused to cooperate (see, e.g., what the Bush administration did with the Clean Air Act), and it won’t be the last.

A real question is whether the Obama administration’s actions with regard to the ACA are an augur of what is to come in the future. I hope not, but there are reasons for concern. As Bagley notes in the paper, it is increasingly rare for legal commentators to flag the legal violations of those on their own “side,” and that’s a problem....

Aetna CEO Has `Serious Concerns' About Obamacare Sustainability
The head of the third-biggest U.S. health insurer said he has “serious concerns” about whether or not Obamacare’s new markets are sustainable, echoing criticism from other top for-profit insurers. “We continue to have serious concerns about the sustainability of the public exchanges,” Aetna Inc. Chief Executive Officer Mark Bertolini said on a call Monday while discussing the company’s fourth-quarter results. “We remain concerned about the overall stability of the risk pool.”...
Researcher Says Women's Initiation of Domestic Violence Predicts Risk to Women
How can we prevent Intimate Partner Violence and injury to women? IPV researcher Deborah Capaldi, Ph.D., a social scientist at the Oregon Social Learning Center, finds that the best way for women to be safe is to not initiate violence against their male partners. According to Dr. Capaldi, "The question of initiation of violence is a crucial one... much IPV is mutual, and initiations -- even that seem minor -- may lead to escalation."...

...Dr. Capaldi's research examined the different relationship violence scenarios -- violence by him only, violence by her only, violence by both with him initiating, and violence by both with her initiating. Of these, the most likely to result in future injury to women is when she initiates violence against him and he responds, although both mutually aggressive groups were close in danger levels.

Dr. Capaldi notes that in a study of women who were in a battered women's shelter, "67% of the women reported severe violence toward their partner in the past year." ...

...The study found that a young woman's IPV was just as predictive of her male partner's future IPV as the man's own past IPV. In other words, whereas we often think of men as the only abusers and also as serial abusers, the OYS found that a woman's violence against her man was as predictive of his violence to her as his own history of violence....
Guvmint Is Not Done Screwing Over Flint Water Victims Yet
...The main reason why Flint residents won't get more is that, unlike private companies, they can't sue the government, thanks to the doctrine of sovereign immunity, which protects government from tort lawsuits. In fact, prestigious law firms that are representing victims of the recent California gas leak in a class action lawsuit against Southern California Gas Co., owned by the non-governmental Sempra Energy, are so far declining to help Flint victims because the odds that they will succeed against the government are low to zero....

The Flint Water Crisis Is the Result of a Stimulus Project Gone Wrong
...Snyder's office did not return my call, but sources close to the situation at the time tell me that it was essentially because Genesee County and Flint authorities saw the new water treatment as a public infrastructure project to create jobs in an area that has never recovered after Michigan's auto industry fled to sunnier business climes elsewhere. And neither Snyder nor his Emergency Manager Ed Kurtz nor the state treasurer Andy Dillon had the heart to say "no," especially since to hand Flint to DWSD would have made the whole project less viable. What's more, they felt that just as Detroit was receiving an infrastructure boost post-bankruptcy (with the state-backed $650 million ice-hockey-arena-cum-entertainment center that I wrote about here) it was only fair that Flint get one too.

All of this shows two things:

One, the Flint water crisis is the result of a Keynesian stimulus project gone wrong....

Liberals Still Say Austerity Poisoned the Water in Flint, Damn the Evidence
...As Reason’s Shikha Dalmia reported on Monday, sources told her that the state-appointed emergency manager went along with the plan because “Genesee County and Flint authorities saw the new water treatment as a public infrastructure project to create jobs in an area that has never recovered after Michigan's auto industry fled to sunnier business climes elsewhere.”...

...But Flint’s principal problem—one that pre-dates the water crisis by decades—is that its economically-underprivileged taxpayers can’t afford to pay the pensions of retired city workers. Excess government spending landed Flint in its current, sorry state, not austerity. Likewise, the disastrous decision to go with a more expensive water option was not austerity, but government-sponsored stimulus gone (predictably) wrong....

Walmart, Other Corporations Are Donating Water Bottles to Flint: Guess Who Can’t Stand That
...Let me get this straight: when corporations put profits first, they are accused of undermining social institutions with their greed—when they unquestionable put people first… they are also accused of undermining social institutions!

In any case, it’s worth asking whether the private sector supplanting government functions is actually a bad thing. Despite what liberals like Dana Milbank and Katrina vanden Heuvel think, privatization and austerity are not the causes of the Flint water crisis: government mismanagement, regulatory failure, and Keynesian fiscal stimulus are. If the private sector can deliver affordable, clean water to Flint, why shouldn’t people prefer it? Is government-managed delivery of public goods really an absolute moral necessity, even if the government is bad at delivering said public goods?

Michael Moore: Don't Send Bottled Water to Flint
...Amen! If you want to help, he says, be a part of the “revolt” that will help overhaul a broken water system, and hold the people who did this accountable.

Moore outlines a detailed plan that includes a call to arrest Governor Rick Snyder and put the federal government in charge, echoing support for the NRDC lawsuit filed today which requested that a federal court force Flint to replace all lead service lines immediately....

Stop Drinking Bottled Water
...Drinking municipal tap water means connecting yourself to your local water system, where the goals are to think holistically about the conservation of natural resources, replenish local aquifers, and build a resilient infrastructure to distribute water to the public.

Drinking bottled water means colluding with a corporation which is not required to release any public information about how it plans to cut costs, exploit workers, dig wells, or employ a fossil-fueled supply chain in its quest to get a bottle of overpriced water into your hands....
Feds Cover Up Numbers On Fake Science
...The National Science Foundation (NSF) awards about $7 billion for research annually, but an agency report on the foundation’s merit review process doesn’t mention “plagiarism” or “misconduct” – problems that have increased tenfold since 2004, according to NSF’s inspector general.

“NSF declines approximately 37,000 – 40,000 proposals per year,” according the report.

“You will need to submit a FOIA request for more specific information than what’s contained there,” NSF spokeswoman Jessica Arriens told The Daily Caller News Foundation.

Such information is critical since NSF’s watchdog estimates that 1,200 proposals contain plagiarism and another 800 proposals or results include “falsified or fabricated data,” according to the IG’s semiannual report.

NSF grants account “for about one-fourth of federal support to academic institutions for basic research,” Arriens previously told TheDCNF. The foundation awards 11,000 grants to 2,000 research institutions, according to the IG....

Scientist Ruthlessly Debunks One Of NOAA’s Central Climate Claims
...Christy recently co-authored a study with veteran meteorologist Anthony Watts that found the National Oceanic and Atmospheric Administration (NOAA) was basing its temperature adjustments on “compromised” temperature data.

The study found most of NOAA’s 1,218 thermometers were sited near artificial surfaces and heat sources like concrete, asphalt, and air conditioner exhausts that were causing more warming to show in the U.S. temperature record than was present at weather stations that were well-sited.

Christy and Watts surmised NOAA was basing its temperature adjustments (efforts made to get “biases” out of the temperature record) on bad data....

EMT 2/5/16 The First World edition.
...Forty-five years. It has been forty since the last time a human being (Harrison Schmitt) has set foot on any rock other than Earth.

Forty years in the past, the first world was the place where miracles of science coupled with indomitable spirit to do the impossible lifted the hopes and dreams of the human race.

Forty years ago, the apolitical scientific method for empirical studies of chemistry, physics & math based on actual data still trumped the politicized sciency-tific madness of psychology & climatology & math based on fabricated data.

Now we spend our resources chasing rainbows and unicorns, and man's sole mission to escape this rock Earth that will otherwise ultimately be our tombstone has been sacrificed to the gods of progressivism.

Because the First World is no longer interested in science, or the survival of the survival of its long-distant progeny....
Germany Considers $5,450 Limit on Cash Transactions
BERLIN — The German government is considering introducing a limit of 5,000 euros ($5,450) on cash transactions in an effort to combat money laundering and financing of terrorism....
Five migrants among seven young men who 'laughed, danced and sang in Arabic as they gang raped unconscious girl of 17'
HORRIFIC footage has emerged of a group of young men, including five migrants, laughing, dancing and singing in Arabic as they gang rape an unconscious 17-year-old girl.

It is believed the attack happened after the girl passed out after drinking at a party.

One of the rapists later told police: "She can't complain. Women must obey men."...

Iraqi migrant rapes a 10-year-old boy at a swimming pool in Vienna and tells police it was a 'sexual emergency' because he hadn't had sex in months
Migrant, 20, arrived in Austria via Balkans in September and was taxi driver
Raped boy in cubicle of Resienbad pool - then had fun on the diving board
Told police he knew it was wrong - but he had not had sex for four months
Said that he was not 'always sick' as he has a wife and a child back in Iraq

German feminist welcomes refugees: ‘Better rapists than racists’
A Facebook page for the radical left in Germany had a message for young women: “diversity is more important than your security.”

Rote Antifa posted a picture of young feminist on Thursday, holding a sign that stated she preferred rapists from Syria and North Africa over nationalists in Germany who have demanded Chancellor Angela Merkel stop taking in more refugees.

“Prefer sexually active fugitive as German racists,” was featured as the pictures caption....

Former German Broadcaster Admits State-Operated News Organization ZDF Takes Marching Orders from the Government
I guess this is sort of a no-brainer, but it's useful to know for certain.

Here's a story I assume ZDF won't be publishing. At a town hall in a town called Bad Schlema, some citizens complained of "harassment" of young schoolgirls by migrants, as those girls passed the hostels and buildings the migrants were housed in.

He asked, what will happen in the summer, when the girls wear less clothing?

The mayor said, "That is simple to solve, just don't walk by those places."...

6′ tall “unaccompanied minor” refugee in Sweden raises questions
...Just how old do you think these migrant ‘children’ are? Alarming pictures of refugees – including ‘the fastest 14-year-old in Sweden’ – that shed light on a growing scandal amid Europe’s asylum crisis.

Ahmad [Farid] appears to have hair on his chin, and his powerful physique can be seen under his shirt.

The second is of Saad Alsaud, reported to have been the fastest 14-year-old in Sweden, dwarfing schoolboys and girls as they join him for a run.

He looks old enough to be the father of the children he is jogging with.

The other shows a Somalian named Youssaf Khaliif Nuur who claims he is 15 though he is 6ft tall and, according to one unconfirmed source, shaves his beard and moustache....
Serfs up with California's new feudalism
...Rather than a land of opportunity, our “new” California increasingly resembles a class-bound medieval society. The proportion of aggregate income taken by the top 1 percent is greatest in a couple of Californian metros, San Francisco and San Jose, as well as New York. California is the most unequal state when it comes to well-being, according to the report by Measure of America, which is a project of the Social Science Research Council....

...This inequality is being justified – and made worse – by attempts to turn California into a mecca for the most extreme measures to reduce greenhouse gases. Like a good medievalist, Brown blames this one phenomenon for virtually everything, from wildfires to the drought and mass migrations. Like a medieval cleric railing against sin, Brown seems somewhat unconcerned that his beloved “coercive power of the state” is also largely responsible for California’s high electricity prices, regulation-driven spikes in home values and the highest oil prices in the continental United States....

Friday, January 29, 2016

Do 'experts' believe their own predictions?
...So to probe the seriousness of these economic experts' stated beliefs about the impending consequences of climate change, it's fair to ask if they personally put their own money where their mouths are. How many of these economists are, for example:

• Buying land in the upper Midwest and inland Canada (the price of which will rise significantly if global temperatures make much of the South, as well as coastal areas, quite unpleasant places to live)?

• Investing in pharmaceutical companies that own patents that extend beyond 2025 on medicines to treat illnesses that are especially prevalent in the tropics and subtropics?

• Shorting shares of companies that specialize in attracting tourists to subtropical and tropical destinations, especially those on or near seacoasts?...

If ocean’s rising, why is Al Gore in Montecito?
...If the ocean’s rising, why is Al Gore in Montecito?

In response to the recent fanatical post by a global warming drone who fears that the rising tides will drown mankind, let him take solace in the fact that his climate guru, Al Gore, recently bought a $9 million beach front home in Montecito. Guess Al is not really afraid of sinking into the sea....

2006: Al Gore Does Sundance, January 26, 2006
...And politicians and corporations have been ignoring the issue for decades, to the point that unless drastic measures to reduce greenhouse gases are taken within the next 10 years, the world will reach a point of no return, Gore said....

Fraud Detected In Science Research That Suggested GMO Crops Were Harmful
...Three science papers that had suggested that genetically modified crops were harmful to animals and have been used by activist groups to argue for their ban have been found to contain manipulated and possibly falsified data. Nature reports: "Papers that describe harmful effects to animals fed genetically modified (GM) crops are under scrutiny for alleged data manipulation. The leaked findings of an ongoing investigation at the University of Naples in Italy suggest that images in the papers may have been intentionally altered. The leader of the lab that carried out the work there says that there is no substance to this claim. The papers' findings run counter to those of numerous safety tests carried out by food and drug agencies around the world, which indicate that there are no dangers associated with eating GM food. But the work has been widely cited on anti-GM websites — and results of the experiments that the papers describe were referenced in an Italian Senate hearing last July on whether the country should allow cultivation of safety-approved GM crops. 'The case is very important also because these papers have been used politically in the debate on GM crops,' says Italian senator Elena Cattaneo, a neuroscientist at the University of Milan whose concerns about the work triggered the investigation....

Stunning Rejection of Scientific Values of Transparency and Skepticism at New England Journal of Medicine
The headline is taken from a dismayed tweet from prominent open science advocate Brian Nosek. University of Virginia psychologist Nosek is the co-founder of the Center for Open Science. He was also the team leader for the massive project that sought to replicate 100 psychological studies taken from leading journals. The researchers reported in Science that only about one-third of the results from the selected studies could be reproduced....

...Evidently, Drazen hasn't changed his mind even as evidence has continued to pile up over the past 10 years that researchers are massively producing and publishing false positives.

If NEJM's editors are afraid that other researchers won't understand the choices, procedures, and parameters made by the original researchers, Nosek's Center for Open Science has a solution—use its Open Science Framework.

The Open Science Framework is organized around a free, open-source Web platform that supports research project management, collaboration, and the permanent archiving of scientific workflow and output. The OSF makes it easier to replicate studies because outside researchers can see and retrace the steps taken by the original scientific team.

It should go without saying that "research parasitism" is wrong. Researchers who use the results produced by other investigators should fully acknowledge that fact and give them credit when they publish their additional findings. But the lack of replication and the proliferation of false results in the scientific literature is a far bigger problem than "research parasitism."...

Are the Global Warmistas Simply Juicing Up the Latest Years' Temperatures With "Adjustments" While Reducing the Temperatures of Previous Years, To Always Make the Current Year "The Hottest"?
...But now they may have gone too far -- in order to declare 2015 the "hottest on record," they apparently had to revise and "adjust" the previously declared all-time "hottest on record," 1997.

Because 1997 was more than three and half degrees warmer than 2015 -- going by NOAA's published data.

If they've now adjusted 1997's temperature down by three and a half degrees or more -- thus making the former All Time Hottest Year On Record not particularly hot -- this should be the lead, no?...

Feds Give Billions To Research Based On ‘Falsified Or Fabricated Data’
National Science Foundation officials award $7 billion in grants annually based on funding proposals the agency’s watchdog estimates have hundreds of examples of plagiarism and “falsified or fabricated data.”

The federal science research agency awards 11,000 grants to 2,000 research institutions annually, but Allison Lerner, the agency’s inspector general, only oversees about 1 percent of those recipients.

Researcher misconduct has drastically increased over the past decade, meaning millions of tax dollars go to fraudsters, according to Lerner.

The watchdog estimated that around 1,200 proposals for funding could contain plagiarism and another 800 proposals or results include “falsified or fabricated data,” according the IG’s semiannual report....
Muslim migrants not as stupid and simple as politically-correct Europeans seem to believe
...It strikes me that the really stupid, naive, unsophisticated people here are the Europeans who actually believe that this anti-social Muslim behavior comes about because Muslims are primitive people who are, for the first time, confronting an advanced society. To hold this position, Europeans must be willfully blind. Didn’t any of them notice the number of migrants who showed up with smart phones intact?...

...Here’s what I think is going on: The refugees are acting as they are, not because they see themselves as charity cases, but because they see themselves as conquerors. They know perfectly well that one doesn’t defecate in a pool in which people (especially children) are swimming. They’re doing it because they are performing the literal equivalent of the expression “I don’t give a shit about you.” They know you’re not supposed to rape women . . . that is, unless those women are the products of conquest, in which case raping them is one of Mohamed’s commandments....

Muslims are not like us, race equality chief says
Muslim communities are unlike others in Britain and the country should accept that they will not integrate in the same way, the former head of the equalities watchdog has said.

Trevor Phillips said that it was disrespectful to suppose that Muslim communities would change, claiming that we should accept that they “see the world differently from the rest of us”.

“Continuously pretending that a group is somehow eventually going to become like the rest of us is perhaps the deepest form of disrespect,” he told a meeting at the Policy Exchange think tank on Monday night. ...

'Who knows what horrors he has been through?' Swedish police chief sparks anger by SYMPATHISING with Somali boy, 15, charged with social worker's murder
The head of the Swedish police has sparked outrage by expressing sympathy with the teenage asylum seeker accused of murdering social worker Alexander Mezher.

National Police Commissioner Dan Eliasson, who has already admitted police cannot cope with the wave of migrant crime, said he has concerns about the ‘horrors’ and trauma the accused murderer may have witnessed.

He said he was ‘distraught’ on behalf of Miss Mezher’s family but also for the killer, saying: ‘What has that person been through? Under what circumstances has he grown up? What is the trauma he carries?’...

Saturday, January 09, 2016

Cologne New Year gang assaults: Mayor says women should have code of conduct to prevent future assault
...Mayor Henriette Reker attended an emergency meeting with Chief of Police Wolfgang Albers and Wolfgang Wurm to discuss how to deal with the attack, where dozens of women were repeatedly touched and groped, with one case of alleged rape in the center of town.

“It is important to prevent such incidents from ever happening again,” said Mayor Reker, as reported in German by RP Online. “We have heard by now that they [the attacks] have occurred in other cities. This of course is not comforting to us.” ...

...The attackers were described as North African and Arab appearance by the police. The Mayor has said that not all of the attackers were newly-arrived refugees and had already been known to the police, as reported by The Local....

Incendiary Correctness
...The most shocking element of the stories is not their content but the fact that they were not made public until several days after the assaults. The Cologne police appear to have lied to downplay incidents they knew would be politically explosive, reporting on New Year's morning that the celebrations had been "largely peaceful." But the newsweekly Die Zeit reported on January 7 that the police had detained 70 men that night, many of whom could speak no German at all, and let them go. One can accept the Cologne police chief's account of his men's thinking: Where officers are overwhelmed by the size of a crowd — a thousand or so versus a couple dozen — the wise tactic is to clear the area rather than try to make arrests. But one cannot understand how the police expected their account to stand up when iPhone videos proving the contrary were lighting up German social media sites and getting hundreds of thousands of views on YouTube.

A scandalous political correctness has descended on Germany. Cologne's mayor Henriette Reker, who became an object of national sympathy when she was stabbed during the mayoral campaign last year, has in recent days been ridiculed for saying that any woman who wants can keep an importunate man at "arm's length." Thomas de Maizière, Chancellor Angela Merkel's interior minister, has criticized those who leap to the conclusion that the attackers had an Arab background. Such rumors can indeed spark baseless hatred, and are not to be indulged uncritically. But in the age of the Internet, it doesn't require a months-long investigation to figure out the truth. Go to YouTube, tap in "Köln" and "Silvester" (German for New Year's Eve), and you will discover a great big crowd of men of Mediterranean background milling about the Domplatz....

...No doubt there is a danger of incendiary reactions when people hear of mobs of Muslim foreigners groping young women in front of the country's most recognizable Christian landmark. But any government attempt to minimize or ignore such events would be a terrible mistake. It would be more likely to whip tempers up than to calm them down.

Police in Germany are covering up the extent of crime committed by migrants, claim Bild... as country is revealed to have taken in 1.1 MILLION people during 2015
Asylum seekers are being recruited as cheap drug dealers and traffickers as well as petty thieves, Bild newspaper claims
But police have apparently been ordered to cover up extent of crimes so as not to fuel 'right wing extremist debate'
Shocking claim comes as Germany registered over one million migrants in 2015 - five times last year's total
Germany has taken more refugees from the Middle East and Africa than any other EU state
The country is a magnet for migrants partly because of its generous social benefits

Two More Major German Cities Report New Year’s Sexual Assaults By ‘North African Groups’
...The news of the mass sexual assaults by “North African groups” of around 1,000 people didn’t break until Monday afternoon when Cologne’s police chief Wolfgang Albers called it a “completely new dimension of crime.” The number of total assaults has since grown from 60 to more than 100, spanning over three cities.

Similar incidents as the ones in Cologne took place in Stuttgart and Hamburg, with two and nine incidents, respectively. All three cities report the same profile of large groups groping women to distract them in order to steal their purses, but police say there are no indications of the events being related....

Cover-up claim over NYE mass sexual assaults
...Many people accused the national media of engaging in a cover-up due to the ethnic background of the criminals, with many pointing to the fact that it took days before the details of the story reached national attention.

One commentator wrote sarcastically that “it is fascinating that the event in Cologne on New Year made it through the media censorship.”..

...Writing for the Huffington Post Deutschland, Anabel Schunke accused the police of covering up details about the suspected criminals in order to protect public order.

Questioning why no details were given on the appearance of the suspects when police called for witnesses, despite plentiful CCTV footage, Schunke suggested that police chose to leave important details out so that the public would not make a connection between the crime and refugees....

Overwhelmed by 'Migrants,' Sweden Throws in the Towel as Europe Faces 'General, Permanent Terror Threat'
...But Sweden’s abrupt reversal is potentially far more consequential. Across Europe this year, two countries have stood out for their uncommonly generous reception policies: Sweden and Germany.

Now, Sweden is actively trying to keep people out, while German Chancellor Angela Merkel is under pressure from critics within her own center-right coalition to do the same after the country welcomed a record 1 million asylum seekers this year. During her Christian Democratic Party conference in December, she bowed to those critics, at least in part, saying that Germany needed to “palpably reduce” its refugee numbers....

Man charged with setting Houston mosque fire was a devout attendee
...According to a charging instrument released by the Harris County District Clerk, Moore told investigators at the scene that he has attended the mosque for five years, coming five times per day to pray seven days per week.

Moore told investigators he had been at the mosque earlier on Dec. 25 to pray, and had left at about 2 p.m. to go home. Moore told investigators he was the last person to leave the mosque and saw no smoke or other signs of fire when he left. He had returned to the scene after hearing about the fire from a friend....

Teenage wife of Bataclan killer brags about her 'great life' in Iraq and how 'proud and happy' she is he helped murder 90 people
Wife of Samy Amimour wrote an email to a friend in days after Paris attacks
She boasted of how proud and happy that her husband killed 90 people
Bragged about how life in the ISIS stronghold of Mosul, Iraq was great
Amimour was one of 3 killers who gunned down music fans at the Bataclan music hall

Mother was mutilated and murdered by ISIS for breastfeeding her baby in public after another woman spotted the child under her burkha in Syria
Mother caught breastfeeding in Raqqa by ISIS's all-female police
Despite holding son under her burqa, al-Khansaa Brigade objected
Woman was mutilated before she was killed by al-Khansaa 'officers'
ISIS-linked social media sites said she had 'violated public decency'

A group of asylum-seekers and refugees staying at Hope Farm in South Africa threatened owners Andrew and Rae Wartnaby.
...In July, the headline read “Meet the angels who opened their hearts and home to 143 lost strangers,” and the left was drooling over the couple who followed their socialist values to the letter. Andrew and Rae Wartnaby opened up their 50-acre farmland to over 100 Muslim refugees who were reportedly displaced during “xenophobic attacks,” according to News 24.

After escaping Islamic brutality in the Central African Republic, the Muslim migrants traveled to South Africa, where they were again set upon by South African natives in black-on-black attacks. So, the good-natured yet naive white couple welcomed the refugee families to their land, which included Obama’s favored “widows and orphans.”

However, after only a few months of graciously allowing the Muslim migrants to live for free on their property, the loving couple soon found that they would actually be the refugees. The Wartnabys were threatened with slaughter by the same people they were helping escape brutality....

A Failure by Germany’s Elite
...The police failed to protect its citizens, the press dawdled in holding anyone to account (and see, too, those unanswered questions just above), and at least one politician even now seems to struggle to address the issue without suggesting that young women must somehow accommodate the possibility of assaults and “confusion.”

This all carries echoes of the Rotherham scandal, in which British authorities had for years turned a blind eye to a child abuse ring among Pakistani men in the north of England, seemingly at least in part for fear of looking racist. By the time anyone put a stop to it, an estimated 1,400 kids had been abused, often horrifically. Like the German police and politicians in this case—albeit on a much longer and larger scale—the British authorities may have put the need to appear sensitive over the need to enforce core values and basic human rights....

Suspects in Cologne sex attacks 'claimed to be Syrian refugees'
...But the leaked police report, published in Bild newspaper and Spiegel, a news magazine, claims that one of those involved told officers: “I am Syrian. You have to treat me kindly. Mrs Merkel invited me.”

Another tore up his residence permit before the eyes of police, and told them: “You can’t do anything to me, I can get a new one tomorrow.”...

Sunday, December 27, 2015

Communism Killed 94M in 20th Century, Feels Need to Kill Again
According to a disturbingly pleasant graphic from Information is Beautiful entitled simply 20th Century Death, communism was the leading ideological cause of death between 1900 and 2000. The 94 million that perished in China, the Soviet Union, North Korea, Afghanistan, and Eastern Europe easily (and tragically) trump the 28 million that died under fascist regimes during the same period.

During the century measured, more people died as a result of communism than from homicide (58 million) and genocide (30 million) put together. The combined death tolls of WWI (37 million) and WWII (66 million) exceed communism’s total by only 9 million....
Venezuela announces new 'people's parliament' as the country's elite face mounting drug charges
Venezuela’s government has found an ingenious way to cling on to power in their rapidly-unravelling state: announcing the creation of a new, parallel parliament which will run as a “people’s assembly,” beside the National Assembly they no longer control....

...Reports in America in the early hours of Wednesday suggested that a New York prosecutor was preparing to charge the head of the country’s border agency with drug trafficking – a highly significant move, which would be the first time a sitting official has been charged on narcotics offences. Nestor Reverol, a high-ranking ally of the late president Hugo Chavez and head of the National Guard, has used his social media account to champion his team’s work in detecting drug shipments from Colombia. But he and his deputy are likely to face charges later this month of collusion with cartels....
NOAA Fiddles With Climate Data To Erase The 15-Year Global Warming ‘Hiatus’
National Oceanic and Atmospheric Administration scientists have found a solution to the 15-year “pause” in global warming: They “adjusted” the hiatus in warming out of the temperature record.

New climate data by NOAA scientists doubles the warming trend since the late 1990s by adjusting pre-hiatus temperatures downward and inflating temperatures in more recent years.

“Newly corrected and updated global surface temperature data from NOAA’s [National Centers for Environmental Information] do not support the notion of a global warming ‘hiatus,'” wrote NOAA scientists in their study presenting newly adjusted climate data....

...To increase the rate in warming, NOAA scientists put more weight on certain ocean buoy arrays, adjusted ship-based temperature readings upward, and slightly raised land-based temperatures as well....
NBC News: Obama administration knew millions could not keep their health insurance
President Obama repeatedly assured Americans that after the Affordable Care Act became law, people who liked their health insurance would be able to keep it. But millions of Americans are getting or are about to get cancellation letters for their health insurance under Obamacare, say experts, and the Obama administration has known that for at least three years. [This article was written in 2013]

Four sources deeply involved in the Affordable Care Act tell NBC News that 50 to 75 percent of the 14 million consumers who buy their insurance individually can expect to receive a “cancellation” letter or the equivalent over the next year because their existing policies don’t meet the standards mandated by the new health care law. One expert predicts that number could reach as high as 80 percent. And all say that many of those forced to buy pricier new policies will experience “sticker shock.”

None of this should come as a shock to the Obama administration. The law states that policies in effect as of March 23, 2010 will be “grandfathered,” meaning consumers can keep those policies even though they don’t meet requirements of the new health care law. But the Department of Health and Human Services then wrote regulations that narrowed that provision, by saying that if any part of a policy was significantly changed since that date -- the deductible, co-pay, or benefits, for example -- the policy would not be grandfathered....
The Democrats’ Theme for 2016 Is Totalitarianism
The Democrats’ Theme for 2016 Is Totalitarianism Hillary Clinton and John Kerry share a laugh in September 2014. (Chip Somodevilla/Getty) SHARE ARTICLE ON FACEBOOKSHARE TWEET ARTICLETWEET PLUS ONE ARTICLE ON GOOGLE PLUS+1At the beginning of December, Rolling Stone writer Jeff Goodell asked Secretary of State John Kerry whether Charles and David Koch, two libertarian political activists, should be considered — his remarkable words — “an enemy of the state.” He posed the same question about Exxon, and John Kerry, who could have been president of these United States, said that he looked forward to the seizure of Exxon’s assets for the crime of “proselytizing” impermissibly about the question of global warming.

An enemy of the state? That’s the Democrats’ theme for the New Year: totalitarianism.

Donald Trump may talk like a brownshirt, but the Democrats mean business. For those of you keeping track, the Democrats and their allies on the left have now: voted in the Senate to repeal the First Amendment, proposed imprisoning people for holding the wrong views on global warming, sought to prohibit the showing of a film critical of Hillary Rodham Clinton, proposed banning politically unpopular academic research, demanded that funding politically unpopular organizations and causes be made a crime and that the RICO organized-crime statute be used as a weapon against targeted political groups. They have filed felony charges against a Republican governor for vetoing a piece of legislation, engaged in naked political persecutions of members of Congress, and used the IRS and the ATF as weapons against political critics....

Jerry Brown Touts 'Coercive Power of the State' on Climate Change
California Gov. Jerry Brown (D) raised some eyebrows while attending the United Nations Climate Summit in Paris, proclaiming the "coercive power of the central state" is needed to promote good public policy, specifically when it comes to a cleaner environment.

Taking part in an onstage presentation with billionaire and climate activist Tom Steyer, Brown said government regulations force companies to adopt clean technologies.

After Steyer mentioned business frameworks, Brown said, "Tom, you used the phrase 'policy.' Good policy. But I want to unpack that term a little bit. Inside the policy, you need a law. You need a rule. You need the coercive power of government to say, 'Do this.' ...
Denmark defends plans to strip migrants of their jewellery and valuables after comparisons to Nazi Germany, saying: 'You must pay for yourself before you get benefits'
New policies to search newly arrived refugees for valuables criticised
International outrage saw Denmark compared to Nazi Germany
Government defends policy, saying it's same rules for refugees and Danes
Unemployed Danes must sell valuables above £976 to get social benefits

Fights, fury and the Ku Klux Klan: Finland faces wave of vigilante mobs targeting migrants as arrest of an Afghan asylum seeker for rape of 14-year-old schoolgirl pushes one town to the brink
...In Kempele, the rape of the schoolgirl, just a fortnight after the centre for young migrants opened, sent shockwaves through the community.

Rumours quickly spread around the town that two asylum seekers from Afghanistan had been arrested over the assault.

It has since emerged that police have arrested a 17-year-old boy at the centre, who is in custody awaiting trial.

It was the spark needed for those who had opposed the centre in the first place to take to the streets - as hundreds turned out for a protest march demanding it be closed immediately.

'Finland for the Finns! Close down the centre!’ they chanted....

...The day after the schoolgirl sex attack in Kempele, another 14-year-old girl was attacked in the southern town of Raisio. This time, the man arrested was a 19-year-old asylum seeker.

Two days later, Afghan Ramin Azimi was jailed for life for raping a 17-year-old Finnish girl from Pori and burning her alive....

'I was gang-raped by ISIS thugs until I blacked out': Yazidi woman held as sex slave for three months breaks down during speech at UN as she begs world leaders to wipe out the Islamist group
21-year-old Yazidi woman described three months of torture as ISIS victim
She was abducted from her home in Iraq by ISIS militants last August
She described being held in a fighter's home, being raped until she fainted
ISIS trades women and children from minority Yazidi people as 'war booty'
UN described ISIS's treatment of the Yazidi people as a possible genocide

Norway now offering formal instruction to refugees that rape is wrong
...A course manual sets out a simple rule that all asylum seekers need to learn and follow: “To force someone into sex is not permitted in Norway, even when you are married to that person.”…

The first such program to teach immigrants about local norms and how to avoid misreading social signals was initiated in Stavanger, the center of Norway’s oil industry and a magnet for migrants, after a series of rapes from 2009 to 2011.

Henry Ove Berg, who was Stavanger’s police chief during the spike in rape cases, said he supported providing migrants sex education because “people from some parts of the world have never seen a girl in a miniskirt, only in a burqa.” When they get to Norway, he added, “something happens in their heads.”…

“Men have weaknesses and when they see someone smiling it is difficult to control,” [Muslim refugee Abdu Osman] Kelifa said, explaining that in his own country, Eritrea, “if someone wants a lady he can just take her and he will not be punished,” at least not by the police....

Riot police fire warning shots as THOUSANDS of protesters storm the site of a planned asylum centre for 1,500 migrants in Holland
Demonstrators went on the rampage in town of Geldermalsen last night
They smashed through fence surrounding asylum camp, attacked police
The angry crowd yelled 'No n****** here!' and 'foreign scum keep away'
Town hall left looking like a 'battlefield' and councillors were forced to flee
At least 14 people were arrested, several policemen were injured in melee


...A planned discussion about the imminent arrival of the migrants, staged by the town council, was abandoned in the chaos as the mob outside tried to storm the building. Councillors were forced to flee out of rear exits into police vans....

Rotherham Witness Says Police Covered Up Child Abuse By Muslim Men
...In February, the then Communities Secretary Eric Pickles sent a team of five commissioners to take over the executive functions of Rotherham Borough Council, saying it was suffering from “institutionalised political correctness”.

In August last year, the Jay Report found that 1,400 children had been groomed, trafficked and raped by Asian men in the town but police had failed to intervene due to fears of appearing racist....

...A member of staff gave Mr Hussain permission to take the girls away in his car as long as they were back by 11pm. He took them to a restaurant and then on the drive back pulled over and made her “perform a sex act” on him and his friends....

...She said she first met the men when she was living at a children’s home and had informed staff of their behaviour but, as with the first woman, “they just didn’t seem to want to know.”...

Sunday, December 13, 2015

Via Twitter


When liberals say #refugeeswelcome show them this
Hillary Clinton Knew All Along Benghazi Attack Had "Nothing To Do With The Film," Documents Reveal
According to documents revealed as part of the ongoing Congressional hearings on Benghazi, then-U.S. Secretary of State Hillary Clinton told then-Egyptian Prime Minister Hisham Kandil in a phone call the day after the attack on the U.S. consulate, "We know that the attack in Libya had nothing to do with the film. It was a planned attack—not a protest."

The film Clinton refers to is the 10 minute Youtube trailer for the ultra-low budget anti-Islam movie "Innocence of Muslims," which she and other senior Obama administration officials, including President Obama himself, almost immediately began casting as a scapegoat for the attacks. Those attacks, however, were already understood by senior administration officials to be a planned and coordinated attack, and very much not what then-ambassador to the United Nations Susan Rice called a "a spontaneous reaction to a video."

Clinton also reportedly emailed her daughter Chelsea, who used the pseudonym Diane Reynolds when communicating with her mother via her private email account, on the night of the attacks, telling her that the consulate had been attacked by an "Al Queda-like group." (sic)...
The Certainty of Uncertainty
"A Disgrace to the Profession": The World's Scientists on Michael E Mann, his Hockey Stick and their Damage to Science

Nine years ago self-proclaimed "climate hawk" David Roberts was contemplating Nuremberg trials for deniers:

When we've finally gotten serious about global warming, when the impacts are really hitting us and we're in a full worldwide scramble to minimize the damage, we should have war crimes trials for these bastards — some sort of climate Nuremberg.

But in his latest piece, at Vox.com, he's singing a rather different tune:

Basically, it's difficult to predict anything, especially regarding sprawling systems like the global economy and atmosphere, because everything depends on everything else. There's no fixed point of reference....
EXCLUSIVE: Authorities Ignored Woman’s Rape Allegations Against Illegal Immigrant Who Later Raped Her Again
Authorities didn’t act on a woman’s rape allegations against a Honduran man in the U.S. illegally until after he came back months later to kidnap and rape her again in front of their 2-year-old child.

Jose Amaya-Vasquez, a Honduran man that has entered the U.S. three times illegally, was scheduled to appear in court Monday after allegedly kidnapping and raping his ex-girlfriend during a four-day drive in May from Kansas City, Mo., to Camden, N.J....
The Big Three Villains — Laziness, Stupidity, Corruption — and the Gun-Control Debate
...The Democratic party’s dramatic slide into naked authoritarianism — voting in the Senate to repeal the First Amendment, trying to lock up governors for vetoing legislation, and seeking to jail political opponents for holding unpopular views on global warming, etc. — has been both worrisome and dramatic. The Democrats even have a new position on the ancient civil-rights issue of due process, and that position is: “F— you.”...

The purpose of a list is, lest we forget, to be cleared. If Jim Bob is on your list of terrorist suspects, what do you do? Just sit on the list forever and think up new things that Jim Bob should not be allowed to do. (Exercise his First Amendment rights? Protest? Write a letter to the editor? Go to church?) No. You can: 1) Investigate until you have evidence of a crime and hand down an indictment; 2) clear him from the list after investigation; 3) come up with a specific rationale for continued surveillance. But that’s not what we’re doing. We’re just making eternal lists, which the Democrats intend to use for eternal harassment of their political rivals. It hasn’t occurred to them to wonder what a President Cruz or, God save the Republic, a President Trump might do with the sort of executive power they contemplate....

...Conservatives are naturally inclined to indulge the police, but the fact is that the run of them are specimens of what you get when you take the same lazy unionized public-teat-suckling lumps over at the DMV and put guns on their hips and tell them that they are “at war” with the people they serve. Our intelligence guys aren’t in the main Blackford Oakes or James Bond: They’re drones compiling Excel reports until their pensions kick in. That cow-eyed young TSA gate agent with the “GANGSTER” neck tattoo grabbing your nozzle at the airport isn’t the best and brightest, and the guy he works for only has to be one step up. The distance between the guy staring dumbly into your traveler-sized tube of shaving cream and the guy making policy about staring dumbly into traveler-sized tubes of shaving cream is about 300 points on the SAT....

...It is time for Americans to grow up and to sober up. It may push your soy-latte buttons every time Bubba down in Muleshoe, Texas, buys a scary-looking black gun and declares war upon a row of defenseless Budweiser cans, but inconveniencing Bubba isn’t going to get the job done. Laziness, stupidity, corruption: The U.S. government exists for the sole purpose of protecting the rights of U.S. citizens, but somehow the fine minds at the New York Times conclude that the federal government should do more to burden the citizens to whom it owes every duty than, say, so-called refugees from Syria to whom the U.S. government has no duty whatsoever. Why? Because the alternative is expecting the employees of our federal, state, and local governments to do their duties, and that is just too much work.
The Bipartisan Push Back Against Obama’s Retirement Attack
...The coalition is being led by the Competitive Enterprise Institute (CEI). The goal is to stop what is known as the fiduciary rule implemented by the Obama administration. The rule restricts investment choices for retirement and savings plans. The Department of Labor (DOL) says most Americans are just not knowledgeable enough to make good investments. Arguing it hurts retirement planning and liberty, the coalition letter is urging Congress to defund the rule.

“Under the fiduciary rule, the DOL claims authority never granted by Congress to greatly restrict investment choices for 401(k)s, individual retirement accounts (IRAs) and other saving vehicles,” the letter states. “The DOL doesn’t even bother to hide its contempt for the intelligence of American savers.”...
Meet The Mizzou Media Professor Who’s Trying To Ban Media Coverage
...“You need to get out, you need to get out,” Melissa Click demanded of the person filming the protest. “You need to get out,” she continued before trying to grab the camera out of the videographer’s hands.

“I actually don’t,” the journalist told Click.

“Hey, who wants to help me get this reporter out of here,” the media professor then hysterically exclaimed to the assembled mob. “I need some muscle over here!”...

Unsafe space: Fascist Missouri protesters physically remove reporter from public demonstrations
The woman who tells cameraman he can’t be there & asks for “muscle” to remove him is Mizzou Assistant Professor of Mass Media @melissaclick

— Dylan Byers (@DylanByers) November 10, 2015

Meet The Sick Mizzou Media Professor Who Threatened A Reporter With MOB VIOLENCE
...Her current research includes studying readers of the tour de smut “50 [sic] Shades of Grey.” She also studies Lady Gaga, “class and food in reality television programming” and “messages about work in children’s television programs.”

Critics of Click have taken to Rate My Professors today to portray as “an insufferable human being” and in other negative ways.

The last time Click was published in any serious academic publication was in 2013. The topic was Lady Gaga....
New report: In tough times, police start seizing a lot more stuff from people
In tough times, police start seizing a lot more stuff from people

One possible explanation for the recent rise is that "the years 2008 to 2014 were some lean economic years," said report co-author Dick Carpenter in an interview. "Forfeiture is an attractive way to keep revenue streams flowing when budgets are tight."

Law enforcement officers generally acknowledged this factor, according a Washington Post investigation last year: "All of our home towns are sitting on a tax-liberating gold mine,” Deputy Ron Hain of Kane County, Ill., wrote in a self-published book in 2011.

Critics of the system also say that the increase in forfeiture activity is due largely to the profit motive created by laws which allow police to keep some or all of the assets they seize.
New ObamaCare angst as top insurer threatens to bail
A threat by the nation’s largest health insurer to pull out of ObamaCare is a sign of the industry’s growing angst about the viability of the federal exchanges, sources close to the industry say.

UnitedHealthcare’s warning sent new shockwaves across the healthcare sector after weeks of mounting anxiety among private insurers, whose participation in the exchanges is critical to the viability of the president’s signature law.

In the last month alone, insurers have learned that the Obama administration has significantly lowered its expectations for new customers and will have far fewer federal dollars to help cushion insurer losses....

ObamaCare’s imploding even without repeal
It’s looking like ObamaCare won’t survive even if Congress can’t manage to repeal it.

The nation’s largest health insurer, UnitedHealth Group, said last week that it’s losing too much — $425 million — from policies sold on the health exchanges, and may have to pull out by 2017.

The company admits it’s “a potentially huge blow” to the new system: “If a major publicly traded insurer bows out, others may follow and destabilize the entire individual market.”

Game over for ObamaCare?

UnitedHealth CEO Stephen Hemsley seems to imply just that: “We can’t really subsidize a marketplace that doesn’t appear at the moment to be sustaining itself.”

Mind you, UnitedHealth was a huge backer of the 2009 law. One of its top execs, Andrew Slavitt, then joined the administration to run the health exchanges.

What’s going on here? Basically, the long-feared “death spiral”: Not enough young, healthy folks are signing up for these plans, so insurers are losing money despite the hefty federal subsidies for the coverage. They’re raising premiums to even things out — but that drives even more folks away, so that only older, less-healthy customers remain, driving new losses . . ....

NYT: High Obamacare deductibles make mandated insurance practically useless
...Deductibles in the thousands of dollars are not uncommon. In fact, “in many states, more than half the plans offered for sale through HealthCare.gov, the federal online marketplace, have a deductible of $3,000 or more.” Once you add in several hundred dollars per month for your plan premium, a rate that may or may not be lower than it used to be and add in a $3,000 or more deductible, the average individual could be paying over $5,000 out of pocket in a year before their “affordable” insurance kicks in. This is true for employer sponsored plans as well....

Many Obamacare Co-Ops Are Leaving Patients, Doctors In The Cold
...For the moment, New York customers are simply trying to find replacement coverage. But most don’t realize that without guaranty protection, there may be no money to cover their past medical bills.

Patients and medical providers will get “pennies on the dollar,” John Maldonado, president of the Medical Society of New York, told TheDCNF. “What you now have is an absolute fiasco.”

He said many doctors caring for Health Republic patients are not being paid for past medical services, and some have found the co-op’s checks are bouncing.

“As of two weeks ago, I know that two practices that had (Health Republic) checks that bounced,” Maldonado told TheDCNF....
Here’s An Inside Look At China’s Frightening New Move To Control Social Behavior
...As the name implies, the system holds a score on every citizen and business based on their social behavior. The things you buy and people you socialize with are subject for review. Every word typed and posted on the Internet will decide whether a person is “raising the honest mentality and credit levels of the entire society.”...
Gawker: Ban Cars

'New Republic': BAN ALL GUNS!

Far-Left 'Nation' and 'Rolling Stone' Columnist: 'Get Rid of Private Housing'

The women who haven't had sex for more than a decade: What it's like to be celibate and why it's all men's fault
...This was certainly true for thrice-divorced Shirley Yanez, 59, who has been celibate for 15 years....

HuffPo: 'I Left My Husband For Him, But He Didn't Return The Favor'
...A year ago, I was THAT mom -- the one who seemed to have it all together, who had it all in some ways: two beautiful boys, a nice home, a good man and father to our kids. I cooked the meals and coordinated professional family photos, planned vacations, sent out Christmas cards, etc. I had a rigid schedule but made time to run and managed to be in decent physical shape.

But something was missing. In my marriage, I felt alone. Why wasn't I happy?...

...He thought my tattoos were cool when my husband did not, we shared an appreciation for swear words, his sweet tooth was just as terrible as mine and we shared a Starbucks addiction. One day, I looked at him in a different light and realized that I loved him as more than a friend. He knew more about me than anyone, made me feel beautiful, embraced my quirkiness... I knew at that moment he was the love of my life and my heart belonged to him. There was a problem: He was married and so was I....
Scalia: Supreme Court Is ‘Liberal,’ Destroying ‘Our Democratic System’
...According to SFGate.com, the conservative judge took particular issue with how some of his fellow justices imagine the country is guided by a “living Constitution.” In Scalia’s opinion, this translates to: “the meaning of this document shall be whatever a majority of the Supreme Court says it is.”...
Scientists cheering for NOAA chief to not be “bullied” into showing their work on climate data
...But on a far more basic level, we’re talking about the scientific process here. Since when is the process for critically examining data and arriving at substantive conclusions some sort of clandestine, secret process? We’re not talking about an agency that’s guarding sensitive national security secrets. This is allegedly science. The entire concept of solid research involves extensive peer reviews where other experts can put your theories and conclusions to the test and see if they can either replicate or repudiate your results. What do these scientists have to hide from the public even if they weren’t being funded on the taxpayer’s dime?...

Sunday, November 08, 2015

NOAA withholds climate documents from Congress
...“Because the confidentiality of these communications among scientists is essential to frank discourse among scientists, those documents were not provided to the Committee,” the agency told Nature. “It is a long-standing practice in the scientific community to protect the confidentiality of deliberative scientific discussions.”...

Global Warming Activists Don’t Like When Someone Follows The Money
...In the case of Al Gore, prominently featured in the video, the former vice president has levied his global warming activism from a net worth of $700,000 in 2000 into an estimated net worth of $172.5 million by 2015. He’s not alone in his financial endeavor....

...Studies that receive financial support from the public sector don’t have to disclose it as a conflict of interest, even when that support is in the millions of dollars. Recent studies that the Environmental Protection Agency is using to support the scientific case for its Clean Power Plan saw the EPA itself give $31.2 million, $9.5 million, and $3.65 million in public funds to lead authors according to EPA public disclosures.

The author who received $3.65 million, Charles Driscoll, even admitted to the Pittsburgh Post-Gazette that the result of his study was predetermined, saying “in doing this study we wanted to bring attention to the additional benefits from carbon controls.”

Universities typically received about 50 percent of the money that their researchers get in public funds if their research finds positive results, making them deeply dependent upon federal funding and likely to encourage studies which will come to conclusions that the government wants.

Even counting only private money, environmental groups massively outspend their opposition. Opposition to global warming activism only raises $46 million annually across 91 conservative think tanks according to analysis by Forbes. That’s almost 6 times less than Greenpeace’s 2011 budget of $260 million, and Greenpeace is only one of many environmental groups. The undeniable truth is that global warming activists raise and spend far more money than their opponents....
Obamacare Premiums To Soar 3 Times Faster Than Feds Claim
Obamacare premium costs will soar 20.3 percent on average in 2016 instead of the 7.5 percent increase claimed by federal officials, according to an analysis by The Daily Caller News Foundation....

Did New York’s Obamacare Co-op Deliberately Mislead Regulators?
Insurance regulators said Friday the financial condition of Health Republic of New York, the largest of 23 health insurance co-ops established by a $2.4 billion Obamacare program, is “substantially worse than the company previously reported in its filings.”...

The Maggie Simpson delusion: the NHS is not ‘ours’
...Dear NHS worshippers, sorry to be a killjoy, but look, the NHS is not ‘yours’, and never has been. You have no control over it. You feel like you are in control when you spin your little toy wheel, but try steering the car in any direction other than the one where it is already heading, and see what happens. The ones who really drive the car are the political class and the medical establishment. ‘Democratic accountability’ is a mirage. All it really means is that healthcare managers answer to bureaucrats, who answer to other bureaucrats, who also answer to other bureaucrats, who, after some more detours, answer to some politician. That’s democratic accountability. Feel powerful now?

Accountability through the political system is about the weakest form of accountability one could imagine, and in healthcare it is even weaker than in other areas. We can go to the ballot box every five years or so, but we do not vote specifically on healthcare policies, we vote for jumbo policy packages of which healthcare is but a small part. More importantly, even if healthcare was the decisive issue for an election outcome, it would still only give us control over macro variables. We can vote for a party that credibly promises to deliver the kind of healthcare policy we support, but there is only so much of a connection between those system-level decisions and our actual experience of healthcare delivery on the ground....

ObamaCare premiums soar 60% in Mississippi
...The state already is near the bottom when it comes to the percentage of the subsidy-eligible individuals who are enrolled via HealthCare.gov — just 38%. Now Mississippi’s subsidized premiums are about to jump far more than any of the 36 other states using HealthCare.gov.

For 30-year-olds in Yazoo City earning about $25,000 (214% of the poverty level), the after-subsidy cost of the cheapest bronze plan will spike by $554, or 60%, in 2016....

Feds Hide Secret List Of 11 Staggering Obamacare Insurers
Federal officials have a secret list of 11 Obamacare health insurance co-ops they fear are on the verge of failure, but they refuse to disclose them to the public or to Congress, a Daily Caller News Foundation investigation has learned.

Just in the last three weeks, five of the original 24 Obamacare co-ops announced plans to close, bringing the total of failures to eight barely two years after their launch with $2 billion in start-up capital from the taxpayers under the Affordable Care Act.

All 24 received 15-year loans in varying amounts to offer health insurance to poor and low income customers and provide publicly funded competition to private, for-profit insurers. The eight co-ops to announce closings served populations in ten states: Iowa, Nebraska, Kentucky, West Virginia, Louisiana, Nevada, Tennessee, Vermont, New York and Colorado.

Nearly half a million failing co-op customers will have to find new coverage in 2016. More than $900 million of the original $2 billion in loans has been lost....

ObamaCare is entering its dreaded 'death spiral'
The Obama administration is having trouble selling insurance plans to healthy people. That’s a big problem: When the young and healthy don’t enroll, premiums have to be hiked to cover the costs of older, sicker people, discouraging even more young people from signing up.

Last Thursday, the administration predicted enrollment for 2016 will be less than half what the Congressional Budget Office predicted in March.

Despite subsidies to help with premiums and out-of-pocket costs, most of the uninsured who are eligible for ObamaCare are saying “no thanks.” Only one in seven is expected to sign up. That’s despite a hefty increase in the financial penalty next year for not having insurance.

The president sees the writing on the wall. You won’t be seeing the customary nationwide TV campaign to encourage sign-ups, as there were in previous years. Remember the young guy in plaid pajamas — “Pajama Boy,” to conservatives — well, he won’t be back this winter.

Bad enough that healthy people aren’t buying. Worse is that the administration is spending billions of your tax dollars covering up the problem, paying insurers to keep offering the plans, even though they’re losing their shirts. But facts are facts — and there’s no hiding these.

Health and Human Services Secretary Sylvia Burwell predicts ObamaCare enrollment will inch up by 1 million or so, to 10 million people — half what the CBO forecasted. Open enrollment for the coming year, which begins Nov. 1, “is going to be a challenge,” she said....
The Public Sector: Standing in Our Way until We Pay Up
...The problem with the standover business model, obviously, is the same as the problem of scorched-earth banditry: It drives away exactly the sort of activity that the criminal needs to make his own living — it’s a crime on the wrong side of the Laffer Curve. For this reason, banditry frequently degenerates into a protection racket, a relatively modest tax on criminal enterprises and non-criminal enterprises alike. Protection rackets have their own challenges: For one thing, you actually do have to provide some protection, mainly from other predators like you. Over the years, economic success and administrative demands eventually transform bands of roving bandits into bands of stationary bandits. One popular theory of the state — one that is pretty well-supported by the historical evidence in the European context — is that this is where governments come from: protection rackets that survive for a long enough period of time that they take on a patina of legitimacy. At some point, Romulus-and-Remus stories are invented to explain that the local Mafiosi have not only historical roots but divine sanction....

...In reality, we have governments for lots of reasons, most of them illegitimate: That ancient instinct toward banditry is powerful, and the desire to make a living by simply commanding economic resources rather than earning them through trade or labor seems to be a fixed feature of a certain subset of human beings. Patronage and clientelism are very strong forces, too, and government can be used to create public-sector salaries or welfare benefits that are well in excess of the wages that political clients could expect to earn in honest work. In the United States, our swollen public-sector payrolls, particularly at the state and local level, are little more than a supplementary welfare state, providing a more dignified form of public dependency for relatively low-skilled and mainly unenterprising people....

...When it comes to government, if you aren’t involved in the provision of actual public goods, you are involved in extortion. It may be legal. It may have the blessing of the mayor, the city council, and your union representative, but it’s still extortion. And you should be ashamed of yourself. If your only purpose is getting in the way until somebody hands you money, then you are part of a protection racket. And you might want to think about going into a more honorable line of work.

Sunday, October 18, 2015

Is there really a ‘war on cops’? The data show that 2015 will likely be one of the safest years in history for police
...According to data available from the “Officer Down Memorial Page” on the annual number of non-accidental, firearm-related police fatalities, 2015 is on track to be the safest year for law enforcement in the US since 1887 (except for a slightly safer year in 2013), more than 125 years ago (see top chart above). And adjusted for the country’s growing population, the years 2013 and 2015 will be the two safest years for police in US history (see bottom chart above), measured by the annual number of firearm-related police fatalities per 1 million people....

How Dangerous Is It to Be a Cop? (Redux)
...And no matter how you slice it, police work has been getting a lot safer. Fatalities and murders of police have been falling for decades — per resident, per officer, and even in absolute terms....

...The Washington Post’s Wonkblog took a look at that using the Bureau of Labor Statistics’ data on fatal work injuries. Unfortunately, the BLS only collects data on “patrol officers,” not all police, but even so, policing isn’t even in the top ten most dangerous professions....

...Another way to look at it is to compare homicide rates from around country to the rate for police. Here the comparison is even more striking: it’s safer to be a cop than it is to simply live in many US cities.

It’s hard to estimate the current murder rate for police, but in 2008 (the last time we had good data on the total number of officers), there were 5.2 murders per 100,000 full-time equivalent sworn officers — below the then national average of 5.4 murders per 100,000....

...In 2008, you were 12 times more likely to be killed living in New Orleans than wearing a badge....
‘There’s no stigma’: why so many Danish women are opting to become single mothers
...Rehlsdorph is one of a growing tribe of elective single mothers or “solomor” in Denmark, where one in 10 babies conceived with donor sperm is born to a woman without a partner. “It’s a trend we’ve really seen growing since single women were offered free fertility treatment in 2007,” says Karin Erb, lab director at the fertility unit of Odense University hospital. Researchers collected the personal data of single women undergoing assisted reproduction at public and private clinics for the first time last year. “And, as Denmark has the highest number of births by assisted fertility treatment in the world, these solomor represent a significant number,” says Erb. “Everyone knows someone who’s a solomor or thinking of becoming one.” Sperm banks have also noticed a rise in demand from single, heterosexual women. “Around 50% of our clients are now single,” says Ole Schou, director of Cryos International, the world’s largest sperm bank in Aarhus, Jutland. “We’re seeing an avalanche of educated older women – 85% are aged between 31-45 and half have masters degrees or higher. More and more of them are going it alone and we predict that by 2020, 70% of our clients will be single.”...
DON’T MAKE A MORAL MELODRAMA OUT OF THE MIGRANT CRISIS
...Most depressingly of all, the new narrative is explicitly about evading public engagement on this issue. A democratic discussion is the last thing Euro-officials want. But if Europe is to be turned into the new home for dispersed humanity, with hundreds of thousands coming here, surely publics should get to discuss it first? Seems not. After all, ‘public attitudes’ are bad. And so we have Angela Merkel, Francois Hollande and EU officials devising quotas for each EU nation, effectively instructing us on how many refugees we must take. This highly undemocratic solution to the refugee crisis shows how utterly distrusted European publics are. Indeed, through the refugee crisis EU officials are seeking to recover their moral authority, which was called into question during the Greek financial crisis of recent months, particularly their authority to impose on nations, and their publics, preordained political set-ups. The pseudo ‘open borders’ approach among European officials is not a genuinely liberal sentiment; it is the latest expression of the EU’s long-term project of weakening national and popular sovereignty and concentrating decision-making on important political matters in the hands of elites, far from ‘public attitudes’.

spiked is about as open borders as you can get. But in Europe right now, there is a bigger problem than border control, and that is the cynical weakening of national borders, and of the popular sovereignty within those national borders, by an EU oligarchy not remotely interested in freedom and autonomy but rather determined to water down democracy itself in the name of allowing small cliques to set quotas, write regulations and determine national destinies. Here is the great tragedy of the refugee crisis: it’s being used to dilute democracy further. And we need democracy so that we might make a real case for freedom of movement, to the public, and win the argument in a meaningful, lasting, liberty-boosting way....
Heritage: The Redistributive State — The Allocation Of Government Benefits, Services, And Taxes In The United States
...The analysis finds that the lowest three income quintiles are in fiscal deficit, while the two highest income quintiles are in surplus. Overall, there was a transfer of roughly $1 trillion in economic resources from the top 40 percent of households to the bottom 60 percent. This sum represents about 9.5 percent of total national income in 2004....
Feds Admit More Obamacare Co-Op Flops Ahead
Federal officials admitted for the first time Monday that the collapse of the largest and most costly of nearly two dozen Obamacare-funded health insurance co-ops may not be the program’s last failure.

The admission followed the collapse Friday of Health Republic of New York after regulators ordered the co-op “to cease writing new health insurance policies,” leaving 155,000 customers scrambling to find new coverage by the end of the year....

Doctors On Edge As Healthcare Gears Up For 70,000 Ways To Classify Ailments
Melinda Beck reports in the WSJ that doctors, hospitals and insurers are bracing for possible disruptions on October 1 when the U.S. health-care system switches to ICD-10, a massive new set of codes for describing illnesses and injuries that expands the way ailments are described from 14,000 to 70,000. Hospitals and physician practices have spent billions of dollars on training programs, boot camps, apps, flashcards and practice drills to prepare for the conversion, which has been postponed three times since the original date in 2011. With the move to ICD-10, the one code for suturing an artery will become 195 codes, designating every single artery, among other variables, according to OptumInsight, a unit of UnitedHealth Group Inc. A single code for a badly healed fracture could now translate to 2,595 different codes, the firm calculates. Each signals information including what bone was broken, as well as which side of the body it was on.

Propoenents says ICD-10 will help researchers better identify public-health problems, manage diseases and evaluate outcomes, and over time, will create a much more detailed body of data about patients' health—conveying a wealth of information in a single seven-digit code—and pave the way for changes in reimbursement as the nation moves toward value-based payment plans. "A clinician whose practice is filled with diabetic patients with multiple complications ought to get paid more for keeping them healthy than a clinician treating mostly cheerleaders," says Dr. Rogers. "ICD-10 will give us the precision to do that." As the changeover deadline approaches some fear a replay of the Affordable Care Act rollout debacle in 2013 that choked computer networks, delaying bills and claims for several months. Others recollect the end-of-century anxiety of Y2K, the Year 2000 computer bug that failed to materialize. "We're all hoping for the best and expecting the worst," says Sharon Ahearn. "I have built up what I call my war chest. That's to make sure we have enough working capital to see us through six to eight weeks of slow claims."

So the DEA has been seizing patient records without a warrant
...Drug Enforcement Administration agents have been accessing personal medical files without a warrant, generating a backlash from doctors and privacy advocates who say the practice is intrusive and unconstitutional — and have taken the agency to court.

“It’s just not right,” Texas attorney Terri Moore said.

The controversial record searches are part of the government’s effort to crack down on illegal “pill mills” and prescription drug abuse. But they’ve set up a clash over privacy rights, and a legal battle is now playing out in the 5th and 9th Circuit appeals courts. Lower courts have issued conflicting rulings to date, with one backing the DEA and another demanding the agency get warrants if it wants to look at patient records....
OBAMA AND GUNS: THEN AND NOW
...Here’s Obama in 2008:

“I just want to be absolutely clear. Alright, So I don’t want any misunderstanding when you all go home and you are talking to your buddies and you say, ah ‘He wants to take your guns away.’ You’ve heard it here, I’m on television so everybody knows it. I believe in the Second Amendment. I believe in people’s lawful right to bear arms. I will not take your shotgun away. I will not take your rifle away. I won’t take your handgun away.”...

Wendy Davis only supported open-carry to get elected
...During her gubernatorial campaign, Davis said she supported an expansion of gun rights in Texas that included open-carry.

Davis now says that she has “always been true to my core beliefs.” Except, of course, when she wasn't....

Australia’s 1996 Gun Confiscation Didn’t Work – And it Wouldn’t Work in America
...Did the Australian model at least reduce gun-related homicides?

That is hotly disputed.

University of Melbourne researchers Wang-Sheng Lee and Sandy Suardi concluded their 2008 report on the matter with the statement, “There is little evidence to suggest that [the Australian mandatory gun-buyback program] had any significant effects on firearm homicides.”

“Although gun buybacks appear to be a logical and sensible policy that helps to placate the public’s fears,” the reported continued, “the evidence so far suggests that in the Australian context, the high expenditure incurred to fund the 1996 gun buyback has not translated into any tangible reductions in terms of firearm deaths.”

A 2007 report, “Gun Laws and Sudden Death: Did the Australian Firearms Legislation of 1996 Make a Difference?” by Jeanine Baker and Samara McPhedran similarly concluded that the buyback program did not have a significant long-term effect on the Australian homicide rate....
Guardian Columnist Julie Bindel Says Put All Males ‘In Some Kind of Camp’
... I mean, I would actually put them all in some kind of camp where they can all drive around in quad bikes, or bicycles, or white vans. I would give them a choice of vehicles to drive around with, give them no porn, they wouldn’t be able to fight – we would have wardens, of course! Women who want to see their sons or male loved ones would be able to go and visit, or take them out like a library book, and then bring them back.

I hope heterosexuality doesn’t survive, actually. I would like to see a truce on heterosexuality. I would like an amnesty on heterosexuality until we have sorted ourselves out. Because under patriarchy it’s sh–.

And I am sick of hearing from individual women that their men are all right. Those men have been shored up by the advantages of patriarchy and they are complacent, they are not stopping other men from being sh–.

I would love to see a women’s liberation that results in women turning away from men and saying: “when you come back as human beings, then we might look again.”...
$18 trillion and counting
...Take, for example, the domestic economic policy initiatives he supports. His fiscal irresponsibility, his desire to tax and spend, and his willingness to let the federal government control the economy are staggering, even when compared to other Democrats who have run for president in recent years.

He has called for new spending that (for now!) totals $18 trillion over the next 10 years. This massive sum is to be spent, among other things, on single-payer health care, an expansion of Social Security and a massive taxpayer-funded infrastructure program.

Under his plan, the federal government would directly control 30 percent of spending in the economy, compared to the 20 percent we have seen in recent decades. For a comparison, the European Union’s “federal” budget equals about 1 percent of the economy of its member states.

He has so far announced new taxes that are supposed to raise some $6.5 trillion over the 10-year window, with more to come. To put that number into perspective, Obamacare increased taxes by “only” about half a trillion dollars over a similar period. But even such an enormous package of tax increases would not be enough to avoid a future of disastrous deficits and a rapidly escalating federal debt burden, as his spending proposals exceed his proposed tax hikes by well more than $10 trillion....

...How do Sanders and his acolytes in the media defend his destructive policy proposals? They argue that these costs are exaggerated. Why are they exaggerated? Because, they say, there is no new spending: The money he wants the government to spend is simply money that consumers are spending right now. ...
Meanwhile in the Future: To Stop Climate Change, We Must Genetically Engineer Humans
...Another modification that Liao proposed was an induced allergy to meat, to help people reduce their consumption of animals. ...

Scientists Ask Obama To Prosecute Global Warming Skeptics
The science on global warming is settled, so settled that 20 climate scientists are asking President Barack Obama to prosecute people who disagree with them on the science behind man-made global warming.

Scientists from several universities and research centers even asked Obama to use the Racketeer Influenced and Corrupt Organizations Act (RICO) to prosecute groups that “have knowingly deceived the American people about the risks of climate change, as a means to forestall America’s response to climate change.”

RICO was a law designed to take down organized crime syndicates, but scientists now want it to be used against scientists, activists and organizations that voice their disagreement with the so-called “consensus” on global warming. The scientists repeated claims made by environmentalists that groups, especially those with ties to fossil fuels, have engaged in a misinformation campaign to confuse the public on global warming.

“The actions of these organizations have been extensively documented in peer-reviewed academic research and in recent books,” the scientists wrote.

But these riled up academics aren’t the first to suggest using RICO to go after global warming skeptics. The idea was first put forward by Rhode Island Sen. Sheldon Whitehouse, who argued using RICO was effective at taking down the tobacco industry....

This is why media coverage of climate debate has been corrupted
...News journalists are being bribed by the United Nations and the Oxfam charity to write scare stories about climate change ahead of the global climate treaty negotiations in Paris later this year.

Details of the bribes – which take the form of ego-boosting “awards”, global travel in CO2 generating airliners and financial payments – are contained in a news release just published by the UNDP today, an organisation headed by former New Zealand Prime Minister Helen Clark.

Journalists’ codes of ethics prohibit being induced to give favourable coverage, but those rules have increasingly been ignored in recent years by the use of backdoor mechanisms like funding journalism “awards” as a means of generating content and rewarding propaganda-writers.

New Zealand’s major media, like the TV3 network, have frequently covered climate stories in the Pacific with the financial “assistance” of lobby groups like Oxfam and Greenpeace....

Report: Climate scientist who wants to bring skeptics up on RICO charges makes $750K/yr thanks to taxpayers