DYSPEPSIA GENERATION

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Archive for the 'Your tax dollars at work – and play.' Category

Taxing the Rich: The Record Under Obama

31st January 2015

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Not his rich, you understand; the other rich.

The idea is to help pay for other measures aimed at helping low- and middle-income families.

‘Aimed at’ but won’t; what they will do is hire and pay more government employees.

They may also be used to help pay for increased government spending.

Oh, ya think?

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GOPChairmen to Lead Task Force to Develop Obamacare Alternative

31st January 2015

Read it and gag.

It used to be that the ‘Republican alternative’ to an expensive government program was ‘Everybody to pay for their own stuff’, not ‘slightly less expensive government program for the same thing’.

But that was yesterday; and yesterday’s gone….

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This Is How Your Tax Dollars Paid for the Super Bowl

30th January 2015

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You might as well watch the Super Bowl, America: You’re paying for it.

Forget about the league’s federal antitrust exemption dating back to the ’60s that allows it to yank any game off broadcast television it likes if it feels there aren’t enough backsides in the seats. Let’s forget about the same antitrust exemption that declared the NFL a nonprofit 501(c)(6) organization on par with a Chamber of Commerce or real estate board. Hey, let’s even forget a Federal Communications Commission ruling that, for almost 40 years, forbids cable and satellite providers to switch to a live feed of a game that was blacked out in a local market.

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Big Sugar Leaves a Bitter Aftertaste

29th January 2015

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Taking candy from a baby is easy. Taking sugar from a senator? Not so much. For decades, economists, free market think tanks, good-government advocates, newspaper columnists, and even the occasional elected official have decried the special treatment enjoyed by the American sugar industry.

Under current policies, U.S. sugarcane and sugar beet farmers receive minimum price guarantees regardless of market conditions. In addition, the federal government allots 85 percent of the U.S. sugar market to domestic producers, and it imposes quotas and tariffs on the 40 countries that are allowed to export sugar to America.

In 1993, the Government Accounting Office (GAO) estimated that such policies were costing U.S. consumers $1.4 billion a year because they resulted in “higher prices for domestic sugar.” Twenty years later, the University of Michigan–Flint economist Mark J. Perry estimated that this annual cost had grown to $3 billion by 2012, and that consumers and U.S. sugar-using businesses had paid “more than twice the world price of sugar on average since 1982.”

In other words, sugar producers are getting a sweet deal, while consumers are getting screwed.

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11 Human-Trafficking Bills Passed by U.S. House Tuesday

28th January 2015

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FlickrOn Tuesday, the U.S. House of Representatives passed a spate of bills addressing human trafficking. Though politicians on both sides of the aisle have been crowing about their good work here, the bills do very little to address labor trafficking, which comprises the majority of human trafficking, according to the U.S. State Department. Rather, most focus on the more salacious prospect of sex trafficking, especially the sex trafficking of minors.

‘We have 11 human trafficing bills.’

‘Oh? How much are they charging us?’

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State Department Funded Group Working to Defeat Netanyahu

28th January 2015

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John has written about how President Obama’s campaign team is working to defeat Benjamin Netanyahu in Israel’s upcoming elections. To make matters worse, the anti-Netanyahu campaign is benefiting from U.S. taxpayer money.

As John noted, the organization “One Voice” wants to help take down Netanyahu’s party in the March 2015 Knesset elections that will ultimately determine the next Israeli Prime Minister. “One Voice” claims to be non-partisan, but it is working with V-15, an Israeli group dedicated to defeating Netanyahu. And “One Voice” itself admits that it is teaming up with V15 because Israel “need[s] a prime minister and a government who will be responsive to the people.”

I think we know the identity of the Prime Minister “One Voice” doesn’t mean. If not, here’s a hint: the son of Mahmoud Abbas reportedly sits on its advisory board.

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America’s Worst School System Will Soon Be Dead. Will What Replaces It Be Any Better?

27th January 2015

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“I have girlfriends who have a lot of children who have been killed, and I look at their pain and hurt on their faces, and I don’t want that,” says Shantella Davis, who’s an unemployed recovering drug addict and the single mother of a six-year-old named As-Sidq. “When I leave this earth I want him to be established…I want him to be able to go to college.”

They live in the impoverished city of Camden, New Jersey, which is home to some of the nation’s lowest performing public schools. “A lot of kids that came out of Camden High not knowing how to read and write,” says Davis. “How did the kid get through the school not knowing how to read and write?”

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CBO Still Refuses to Score Obamacare, Ignores 15 Tax Hikes in Healthcare Law

27th January 2015

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The Congressional Budget Office (CBO) this week released their annual Budget and Economic Outlook which sets the budget baselines and estimates for the whole year.

Buried in Appendix B of the report is CBO’s attempt to provide an updated score of Obamacare. But that’s not what they did.  They only scored the “coverage provisions” of the law, ignoring some fifteen tax increases which are also a part of Obamacare and its cost to taxpayers.

Makes you wonder what they do up there all day. But I bet they’re well paid.

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Someone Teach Him the Laws of Supply & Demand

27th January 2015

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With its “vibrant mix of residential, retail, commercial and green space,” Arlington County, Virginia is exactly where a lot of Millennials in the Washington DC area would like to live–at least according to one such Millennial named Harrison Godfrey. However, many can’t, as the median home price is $550,000, which is far more than two professionals who each earn $50,000 a year can afford.

Arlington, says Godfrey, “requires long-term planning and investment, which is why it’s important for millennials to engage in the new planning process unveiled by the county council.” Actually, he has it backwards: it is planning that got northern Virginia into this mess. Moreover, government planning is always going to be more responsive to the desires of the people who already live (and vote) in a place than to those who want to move there (but may never do so which means they’ll never vote there).

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Turkey Takes a Dim View of Obama’s Syria Policy

26th January 2015

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Thank God somebody can find Obama’s Syria policy; I’ve been looking for it for years without success.

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Pentagon Bureaucracy Grows as Troops Are Cut

26th January 2015

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The numbers of authorized staff at the Office of the Secretary of Defense and the Joint Staff have grown by about 30 percent since 2009, from about 3,200 military and civilian personnel manning those offices — at the height of the surge – to about 4,200 today, according to a report released by the Government Accountability Office last week.

My, what a surprise! Aren’t you surprised? I’m sure surprised.

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Obama Took Advantage of 529s — Before He Killed ‘em

25th January 2015

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As noted at The College Fix back on January 20, one of the ideas you’ll not likely hear about in President Obama’s tax machinations is the repeal of tax-free 529 college saving plans.

The president wants these plans now to be taxed as ordinary income, with as rates as high as 39.6%.

529 plan expert Joe Hurley says this “will result in their effective repeal, as new contributions in will ‘dry up’ overnight.”

But ironically, Mr. Obama took quite advantage of 529 tax rules back in 2007.

Forbes writer Ryan Ellis points out this presidential hypocrisy is not unlike that from 2009 when the president wanted to nix 1,700 low income school scholarships for kids in Washington DC … all the while sending his daughters to the exclusive Sidwell Friends School.

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Alaska Can’t Change Name of Tallest US Mountain, Thanks to Ohio

24th January 2015

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Ohio is one of the flattest states in the US, but due to a quirky rule held by the federal board in charge of geographic names, the state effectively has control over the name of the country’s highest mountain and is blocking efforts to change the name of the Alaskan peak that holds that honor.

Mount McKinley has been officially known as Denali in Alaska since the 1970s, but the state’s attempts to have the Koyukon Athabascan name adopted at the federal level have long been resisted by Ohio, birthplace of William McKinley, reports Alaska Dispatch News.

A gold prospector named the peak after McKinley in 1896, the year before the Republican became president. To prevent the name change, all Ohio lawmakers need to do is introduce a one-sentence bill in Congress every two years.

Have Obama do it — he doesn’t give a shit about the law.

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Whither the Ebola Czar?

23rd January 2015

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So for some time now, we have had a Czar to be in charge of Ebola. Oh, not an actual doctor, of course, just a spin doctor. A career bureaucrat and hanger-on. And we haven’t heard Word One about Ebola or the Czar since. Wouldn’t you love to know his salary? Wouldn’t you love to have it? Apparently, just appointing a Czar did the trick and the crisis is now over! Huzzah! I plan to appoint a Czar of Housekeeping and Cooking in hopes that those things will be taken care of as easily. Oh wait, I think that’s me.

So what has the head of the CDC been doing with his time, then? Could he not have outsourced to underlings the task of hounding people to get this year’s near-worthless flu shots? Better still, could they not have come closer to guessing the actual flu varieties for the shot so that my elderly parents didn’t get horribly sick along with all of their fellow residents in their assisted living facility? They all got flu shots like good little soldiers.

Then, too, they might have saved several hundred thousand dollars if they had decided to take a pass on studying why so many lesbians are fat.

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Only Police Should Have…Body Armor?

22nd January 2015

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Venturing down a line of legislative reasoning that apparently sees threats to the republic in convenience store clerks, security guards, globe-trotting journalists, and shopkeepers nervy enough to do business in troubled neighborhoods, Rep. Mike Honda (D-YouGottaBeKiddingMe) offers up HR 378, The Responsible Body Armor Possession Act. Yes, it is in fact a bill intended to limit people’s ability to own gear that reduces injuries and death caused by bullets.

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Income Inequality *Is* a Problem—When Caused by Government Meddling

22nd January 2015

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But the preferred solution, for those who bitch the loudest, is — more government meddling. Idiots.

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Sheldon Silver, New York Assembly Leader, Is Arrested on Graft Charges

22nd January 2015

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Democrat, of course, but you probably knew that.

More here. And here.

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US Senate Agrees That Climate Change Is Real in a 98 to 1 Vote

22nd January 2015

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Note that the amendment didn’t say man-made climate change.

The amendment even won support from James Inhofe (R-Oklahoma), one of the vanguard of Republican climate change deniers who had previously called the phenomenon a hoax. Inhofe voted in favor of the amendment, stating that Earth’s climate has “always changed,” and citing “biblical evidence” to support the theory.

The Senate has gone on record to agree that climate change is real, but the governmental body is still split on its causes — other amendments introduced later in the day that attributed climate change to the actions of humans failed to receive the 60 votes required to pass, despite some Republican support.

I guess they have to take their victories where they can get them.

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Brickbat: No Entrance

22nd January 2015

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Following a complaint that one entrance to Romare Bearden Park in Charlotte-Mecklenburg County, North Carolina, wasn’t handicapped accessible, officials used benches to block that stairway. Some people are now using another entrance to the park, but others, who presumably aren’t handicapped, are simply going over or around the benches.

Presumably the theory is that if handicapped people can’t use it, nobody ought to be allowed to use it.

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(More) Rail Troubles

22nd January 2015

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The latest news from Hawai’i is that the Honululu Authority for Rapid Transportation (HART) lied to the city council when it told them the city’s rail project was $500 million to $700 million over budget. It turns out it’s really $910 million over budget. HART was just hoping to cover up $210 million of the deficit by quietly transferring bus money to the rail project.

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Robin in Deadwood Forest

20th January 2015

Richard Fernandez provides some inconvenient truth.

Chris Edwards at the Cato Institute believes there should be a National Museum of Government Failure.  He argues that the displays at the Smithsonian would pale into insignificance if set beside the awe-inspiring sight of such things as the “$349 million on a rocket test facility that is completely unused“, the Superconducting Collider whose ruins include  nearly 15 miles of tunnel and the ex-future Yucca Mountain nuclear waste site.  Yet these artifacts, whose scale would surpass many a Lost City, are far from the worst failures.  The biggest fiascos by dollar value are the various government programs designed to win the war on drugs or poverty which after having spent trillions of dollars fruitlessly, lie somewhere in an unmarked bureaucratic grave.

Were Chris Edwards a distinguished economist he would realize at once that pointless activity is the best sort of government activity there is.  John Maynard Keynes couldn’t recommend it highly enough.  The great economist said that the best use of government effort was to bury money in a deep hole and employ the idled to dig them up again.

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At the Sterling Trial

19th January 2015

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Last week the government commenced its prosecution of former CIA official Jeffrey Sterling for violation of the Espionage Act. The government alleges that Sterling leaked the details of a program intended to undermine Iran’s nuclear program to New York Times reporter James Risen. The program was subject to a security classification indicating its extreme sensitivity.

Sterling did not publicly disclose the details of the CIA program; he laundered them through Risen (with a promise from Risen’s to protect Sterling’s identity as the source). So the government alleges.

The government subpoenaed Risen to testify in the case. Risen declined, and the government has abandoned its efforts to compel him to testify. He works for the Times, and the Times is, after all, on Obama’s team. The case therefore continues without the benefit of Risen’s testimony.

If Sterling violated the Espionage Act, as the government alleges, it is even clearer that Risen did so too. He is subject to the same criminal liability as Sterling and other citizens for violation of the Espionage Act, but the government has confined the prosecution to Sterling and now it has also abandoned its claim to Risen’s testimony.

Selective prosecution is a hallmark of tyrannous regimes everywhere. When friends of those in power can ignore the law with impunity, then there is no justice, just a fight for power and influence, which is what we have in America today.

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A New Study Reveals Much About How Parents Really Choose Schools

18th January 2015

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Since this is NPR, they have a behind-the-scenes political agenda that comes out in the writing as if by accident. A good example is this paragraph:

This last point is crucial because it suggests that a choice-based system all by itself won’t necessarily increase equity. The most economically disadvantaged students may have parents who are making decisions differently from other families. These parents appear to be more interested in factors other than academic quality as the state defines it. Maybe they have access to different, or less, information. If this is true, choice could actually increase, rather than diminish, achievement gaps within a city.

The first sentence is striking: What does ‘equity’ have to do with anything? A choice-based system isn’t striving for ‘equity’ but for quality of education. That ‘economically disadvantaged’ (great PC style, there) parents make different decisions from ‘other families’ ought not to come as a surprise to a moderately intelligent individual, nor the fact that these parents like schools that are close, have extended hours, and lots of extracurricular activity — poor people use public schools as free day-care, a though that not only doesn’t occur to somebody writing for NPR, but which is a thought they are carefully trained not even to think.

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Obama Calls for $320 Billion in New Taxes

18th January 2015

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My, what a surprise! Aren’t you surprised? I’m sure surprised.

After all, those golf vacations at government expense don’t come cheap.

Oh, sure, they’re supposed to fund tax breaks for the ‘middle class’ but you know how long those last.

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Senators Introduce Amendment to End Ethanol Mandate

18th January 2015

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No chance of it passing, of course — to0 much money is made from any government mandate for it to be killed — but they get credit for trying.

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2015: It’s Time to Fire the IRS

17th January 2015

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Imagine what would happen if a retail store or company like Best Buy or Home Depot announced it has plans to slash customer service, that it will make people stand in lines for at least a half hour, and that any customer due a refund will have to wait several weeks.

Oh, and it may not be able to prevent identity theft.

That company would probably soon find itself in chapter 11 bankruptcy as shoppers fled to other banks or stores or restaurants where they can get first class service.  That’s what America is about and every businessman and woman knows the customer always comes first.

But the Internal Revenue Service now says that taxpayers had better get used to shabby service from the tax collection agency. And the IRS is hardly an agency known for warm and friendly service to begin with.

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Why Not to Retire in Florida

16th January 2015

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Eric Goldman calls our attention to a rather astounding story out of Florida, involving how various Florida police departments are engaging in what appears to be basically sham “sting” operations online to arrest and shame men as child sexual predators, then steal their cars (sometimes offering to sell them back), and then doing everything possible to hide the records. The whole thing is quite crazy, and I recommend reading the entire thing. It also comes as little surprise that one of the sheriffs deeply involved in this is Polk County Sheriff Grady Judd — who we’ve written about a few times before. Back in 2009 we wrote about Judd using Craigslist to find and arrest prostitutes… and then blaming Craigslist, the very tool he used to track down the lawbreakers. A year ago, Judd got a lot more attention for his plan to arrest parents of some girls who were accused of bullying another girl into committing suicide (though, eventually charges were dropped and almost no evidence of any bullying was found).

 

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Authorities Investigate Maryland Parents Who Let Kids Walk Home Alone

16th January 2015

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A Maryland couple that believes in “free-range parenting” said they are being investigated for child neglect after police picked up their children, ages 6 and 10, walking home alone from a park.

The Washington Post reported Thursday that the kids were walking home from the park, which is about a mile from their Woodside Park neighborhood, in broad daylight last month and were stopped by police after someone reported seeing them.

The kids were returned to the home and police reportedly talked to the parents about the dangers of the world.

Ever wonder where ‘helicopter parents’ come from? Well,  they were trained early and often by insane government employees like these.

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North Korea Reportedly Billed US for Dinner During Hostage Mission

16th January 2015

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Director of National Intelligence James Clapper was presented with a bill by North Korean officials for his share of a sumptuous dinner during a secret mission to retrieve two American prisoners from captivity last November, according to a published report.

Made me laugh, I’ll give ‘em that.

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No Good Deed Goes Unpunished

15th January 2015

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Patterson found the nest of a pair of eagles he had monitored for years had blown out of its tree in June 2013. Two young eagles were on the ground, and one appeared to be severely injured, Patterson said.

Patterson said he knew they couldn’t fly.

“I could either get them and save them, or leave them and they could die,” he said.

Flint Creek director Dawn Keller took the thin and dehydrated eagles to her facility. They were a male and a female. Both had wing fractures; the male had a less serious wing injury. They were raised by an injured adult eagle, Keller said, and when the male eagle began flying confidently, Keller waited for adult eagles to return to Illinois so he could join them.

On Jan. 1, Keller released him along the Mississippi River near Rock Island. He flew a long way before he began to make his way back toward a large group of eagles, she said.

Regardless of the eagles’ outcome, La Salle County State’s Attorney Brian Towne said he will continue to pursue the case. Towne said Patterson has a conviction for wildlife tampering in Wisconsin and has had run-ins with conservation police in the past.

“He thumbs his nose at nature and the law. All under the guise of being a hero,” Towne said.

This guy needs a brain transplant.

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No Need to Raise the Gas Tax

13th January 2015

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Since 2008, the Highway Trust Fund (HTF) has spent $55 billion more than it takes in. This persistent overspending has caused some politicians to call for an increase in the gas tax. Before even considering increasing the gas tax, politicians should implement reforms to ensure that current gas tax revenue is spent efficiently. With hundreds of thousands of dollars of HTF outlays recently going to projects like squirrel sanctuaries and driving simulators, there is much work to be done.

Well, duh….

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LA Unified School District’s Defunct ‘iPad-For-All’ Plan Botched From Start, Federal Report Says

13th January 2015

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Well, yeah.

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Obamacare Full-Time Work Definition Brings Out Rift on College Campuses

12th January 2015

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Under the Affordable Care Act, large employers are required to provide health insurance to employees working full time or pay a hefty penalty. Full-time work is currently defined as 30 hours per week, but both the House and Senate are working on passing legislation that would redefine it as 40 hours a week.

Inside Higher Ed reports that many colleges and universities have started limiting the number of hours adjunct faculty can work to keep them under than 30-hour threshold and keep them as part-time workers.

Obamacare, the gift that keeps on giving.

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Vet Who Waged Year-Long Fight With VA for Cancer Check-Up Dies of the Disease

12th January 2015

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How about that government-provided health care, huh? I’m sure the people behind Obamacare would just love for us all to have access to such a high-quality system.

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HHS Execs Doing Good and Living Large, Flying First Class Around the World

10th January 2015

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Helping America’s poor, aged and sick is the U.S. Department of Health and Human Services’ reason for being, but hundreds of its top officials are traveling in style and luxury at taxpayer expense.

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Obama Proposes Free Community College Program

9th January 2015

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And YOU get to pay for it! Aren’t you proud?

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California Pretends to Start Building High-Speed Rail

8th January 2015

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With great fanfare, Jerry “Moonbeam” Brown and a host of other politicians signed a rail in Fresno as a symbolic gesture toward starting construction of California’s high-speed rail project. But, despite what they say, California can’t afford to build it, and the plan they can’t afford won’t really be high-speed rail all the way from Los Angeles to San Francisco anyway.

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America’s Chief Technologist Has to Use a BlackBerry and a 2013 Dell Laptop

6th January 2015

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And we wonder why the government sucks so badly.

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Obama Administration Imposed $181 Billion in Regulations in 2014, Report Finds

6th January 2015

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The new rules mostly focus on clean energy and vehicle regulations, said the American Action Forum, which issued the report Monday. The state that was hit the hardest by new regulations was California, which was slapped with $7.9 billion in new rules, followed by Texas ($6.5 billion) and Ohio ($3.4 billion).

“What do these huge sums mean for individuals? Higher energy prices, pricier household goods, a more expensive mortgage, and the promise of yet another year of unrelenting regulatory growth,” concludes the report, which was authored by Sam Batkins, the group’s director of regulatory policy. “No one can accuse the president of abandoning his promises on regulation in 2014.”

The report also found that the Dodd-Frank financial regulatory act and ObamaCare contributed, adding $16.7 billion and $1.9 billion in total costs, respectively. That brings the total cost of ObamaCare, which was passed into law in 2010, to $41.3 billion, according to the report.

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Lies Government Agencies Tell

4th January 2015

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After mounting legal fees and media scrutiny, the Philadelphia Redevelopment Authority (PRA) dropped its case to seize artist James Dupree’s Mantua-based studio and turn the property into a grocery store.

Dupree and his supporters welcomed PRA’s announcement on their blog: “After years of fighting the system, we have finally received written notice that the deed to our property is finally being returned!”

In their release statement PRA says, “the inability to acquire Mr. Dupree’s property puts the prospect of bringing fresh food to this community at serious risk,” such as “obesity, heart disease, [and] diabetes.”

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Over-Cautious Seattle Parks Deals Blow to Kids With Special Needs

2nd January 2015

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In mid-October, the Seattle Parks department notified the Seattle Children’s PlayGarden that we would have to dismantle a much-loved play area, citing “extreme dangers” and “hazardous conditions”. These so-called liabilities consisted of a four-foot rope ladder, secured at its top and base, a simple tree swing suspended from a large cedar tree, and a unique nest made of thick rope and bicycle tires.

The problem? It wasn’t provided by the government.

‘All within the state, nothing outside the state, nothing against the state.’ — Benito Mussolini

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Salary Info Shows Strength of Union Muscle

2nd January 2015

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The political system, as described in civics textbooks (to the degree the public schools still teach civics) and by Capitol legislators, is a temple of democracy, where elected officials solve problems and do the public’s work. But Buchanan realized that people who work for government are as motivated by economics as those who work outside of it.

They seek power and money within their organizations, just like everyone else.

This not-so-glamorous theory helps explain why most of California’s long-term financial problems are tied to one source — the unsustainable levels of compensation paid to state and municipal workers. Sacramento budget issues revolve around underfunded public-employee pensions, unfunded retiree medical care and the like.

As Jerry Pournelle likes to say, ‘The object of government is to hire and pay government employees.’

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Thought for the Day

2nd January 2015

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F-35 Could Be Delayed Another Four Years, But Pentagon and Lockheed Martin Deny Delays

1st January 2015

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America’s most expensive military project looks like it may be delayed until 2019 after it was discovered that a software glitch in the ultra-sophisticated F-35 stealth jet could prevent the aircraft from firing its powerful cannon, according to the Daily Beast. The jet, which costs about $161.1 million each and will set back the U.S. taxpayer nearly $400 billion in total, has been scheduled to enter service next year.

And it’s still a piece of crap.

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Portland’s Transportation Lemons

31st December 2014

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The Oregonian is ending the year by listing Portland’s ten biggest transportation “lemons,” which is a family-friendly way of saying screw ups. Most of them were caused by various government agencies whose goals seem more oriented to reducing people’s mobility than enhancing it.

Must be all those white people in Portland. After all, every problem is caused by white people, is it not?

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5 Most Egregious Examples of Government Waste This Year

31st December 2014

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Every year the federal government loses tens of billions of dollars to waste, fraud and abuse. Unfortunately, 2014 was no exception.

Federal auditors issued plenty of scathing reports this year flagging programs and projects that were inefficient or wasteful. They also identified numerous costly instances of wrongdoing by federal employees.

Drawing on much of our reporting throughout the year, The Fiscal Times identified 5 of the most egregious examples of government waste in 2014.

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Mystery of the Missing Illegals

30th December 2014

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The Obama administration’s preferred method of dealing with the illegals was release pending administrative hearings. How are the hearings going?

At NRO, Mark Krikorian notes that the investigative unit at Houston’s KPRC decided to find out (video below). The Daily Signal’s Natalie Johnson also picks up the story. Krikorian jumps to the story’s major finding” “Looking at the completed cases of people who snuck over the border and were released over a three-month period, the reporter found that more than 90 percent of them didn’t show up for their immigration hearings and joined the illegal population.”

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Soldiers Relocate Hawaii Wedding So That Obama Can Play Golf

30th December 2014

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Sometimes it is good to be the king.

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Demolished: The End of Chicago’s Public Housing

27th December 2014

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Well, that grand government program worked out about as well as any grand government program.

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Investigation: “Factory Farms” Producing Massive Quantities of Organic Milk and Eggs

26th December 2014

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My, what a surprise! Aren’t you surprised? I’m sure surprised.

In what has been called one of the largest fraud investigations in the history of the organic industry, The Cornucopia Institute, a Wisconsin-based farm policy research group, announced filing formal legal complaints against 14 industrial livestock operations producing milk, meat and eggs being marketed, allegedly illegally, as organic.

After years of inaction by the USDA, Cornucopia contracted for aerial photography in nine states, from West Texas to New York and Maryland, over the past eight months. What they found confirmed earlier site visits: a systemic pattern of corporate agribusiness interests operating industrial-scale confinement livestock facilities providing no legitimate grazing, or even access to the outdoors, as required by federal organic regulations.

Dude, those regulations are there to punish the little guys, not the deep-pocket campaign donors. Selective enforcement is one of the oldest tools in the book of corrupt politicians, as our President doesn’t even bother to pretend any more.

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