DYSPEPSIA GENERATION

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

More Parents Choose Homeschooling Due to Common Core

28th March 2014

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Send your kid to a government school,
And he will turn out a fool;
That’s the way
Things are today:
Your tax bucks at work and play!

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Zero Covered Dentists Within 100 Miles for Mandatory Dental Plan Under Obamacare

28th March 2014

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Thanks a bunch, Barry.

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Not Really News: Another Corrupt Democrat Legislator

27th March 2014

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Federal agents raided the offices, home and a hotel room of Democratic New York assemblyman William Scarborough Wednesday morning as part of an investigation over his expense claims, NBC4-NY reports.

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Some of the Richest Retirees Are “Public Pension Millionaires”

27th March 2014

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Some city and state government-sponsored pension plans may be struggling to remain solvent, but employees in more than a few states are retiring with some of the best benefits in the nation. So says a report dubbing “public pension millionaires” among the “richest retirees” in their states – contrary to the belief that such plans provide only a modest retirement benefit.

As John Derbyshire, Patron Saint of Dyspepsia, always says: ‘Get a government job!’

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Not Really News: California Democrat Arrested on Public Corruption Charges

26th March 2014

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State Sen. Leland Yee, called “one of the most powerful Democratic politicians in California,” was arrested Wednesday morning in a major series of federal raids in the Bay Area targeting corruption and gang activity, CBS San Francisco reports.

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Obama’s Honolulu, Africa Flights Cost Taxpayers Nearly $16 Million

26th March 2014

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New Air Force documents show that the tab to taxpayers for recent trips President Obama and his family took to Africa and Honolulu was nearly $16 million – and that’s just for the flights.

The documents obtained by activist group Judicial Watch show the Africa trip required 35.5 flight hours. At a cost of $228,288 per flight hour, the total cost was a staggering $8,104,224.

For the Obamas’ Christmas vacation in Honolulu, starting in December 2013 and ending in January 2014, the documents, obtained under the Freedom of Information Act, show the first family accumulated 36.9 total flight hours. At a cost of $210,877 per flight hour, the flight costs alone for that trip totaled $7,781,361.30, according to the Air Force documents.

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EPA Proposes Huge Land Grab

26th March 2014

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The Environmental Protection Agency has come up with a way to execute one of the biggest land grabs by the federal government ever perpetrated on the American public.  On Tuesday, the EPA proposed a change to the Clean Water Act so that the EPA would have the power to regulate temporary wetlands and waterways.

The EPA is one of many reasons that Richard Nixon will burn in Hell for all eternity.

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A Serious Challenge to the Affordable Care Act, But Not That One

26th March 2014

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The 2010 health law says lower earners qualify for tax credits if they obtain health insurance through an exchange “established by the state.” But dozens of states refused to set up their own marketplaces, leaving the task to the federal government.

As The Wall Street Journal’s Jennifer Corbett Dooren reports, the U.S. Court of Appeals for the D.C. Circuit was divided Tuesday over whether the federal government can stand in for the 36 states that opted out of the exchanges.

If it can’t, the subsidies would be unavailable to a large swath of Americans with incomes ranging from the federal poverty level to up to four times that amount, or $95,400 a year for a family of four. That, in turn, could render the individual mandate meaningless in those 36 states.

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The Government’s Appalling Campaign Against Small Bus Companies

25th March 2014

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What led to the rapid downfall of Southeastern Tours? On October 14, 2013, the Federal Motor Carrier Safety Administration (FMCSA), a federal agency, ordered the company to cease operations on the grounds that it was a hazard to public safety. Southeastern Tours had never been involved in a serious accident, but during a three-day audit in August, FMCSA inspectors found, among other things, that its drivers filled out their logs incorrectly, that the Rodgers failed to provide their employees with educational materials, and that they allowed a former driver to get back behind the wheel before waiting for the results of his alcohol and drug tests. (They came back negative.)

When their troubles with the FMCSA began in early August, the Rodgers committed themselves to doing whatever it took to get back in the government’s good graces. They hired a consulting firm that was personally recommended by an FMCSA investigator; they installed new devices on their buses for wirelessly submitting drivers’ logs as a way to eliminate bookkeeping errors; and they retained a respected maintenance company to conduct regular vehicle inspections. But after a tumultuous six months of dealings with the FMCSA, the Rodgers are still forbidden to run their buses and they’re beginning to make plans to dissolve the company.

‘We’re from the government, and we’re here to help … you to the poorhouse.’

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Obama Admin: Quiescent on Ukraine but Strident on Ugandan Gay Rights

24th March 2014

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If your country is invaded by Russia, with thousands of its troops occupying your homeland, don’t expect much from the Obama administration, but if you pass anti-gay laws, the Obama Administration will act faster than you can say “Uganda.” After Ugandan President Yoweri Museveni passed a law that gave a lifetime prison sentence for homosexuality, the Obama Administration leaped into action, saying it would review all U.S funded programs in the country.

It’s all about priorities, man. Not many Ukrainians vote in American elections.

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Least Transparent Administration Ever

23rd March 2014

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The Obama administration has a standard response to all scandals: it stonewalls. Getting information from the administration is like pulling teeth, only slower. Document requests and subpoenas go unanswered, or inadequately answered, for years.

So far Obama’s stonewall strategy has worked quite well. After a year or two, a scandal is treated as old news, even though the administration has never produced the information that would allow Congressional committees, reporters or the public to evaluate it. If the administration stalls long enough, it wins.

In perfecting the art of the stall, Obama has done something that has been tried by no previous president: he has put the White House into the loop when federal agencies respond to subpoenas and Freedom of Information Act requests. A group called Cause of Action has uncovered an April 15, 2009 memo by White House Counsel Greg Craig that lays out the administration’s unprecedented stonewall strategy. Craig’s memo went to every executive department and federal agency.

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Sinkhole of Bureaucracy

23rd March 2014

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Here, inside the caverns of an old Pennsylvania limestone mine, there are 600 employees of the Office of Personnel Management. Their task is nothing top-secret. It is to process the retirement papers of the government’s own workers.

But that system has a spectacular flaw. It still must be done entirely by hand, and almost entirely on paper.

The employees here pass thousands of case files from cavern to cavern and then key in retirees’ personal data, one line at a time. They work underground not for secrecy but for space. The old mine’s tunnels have room for more than 28,000 file cabinets of paper records.

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No Justice Department Charges Against Ohio Woman Who Voted Six Times for Obama

23rd March 2014

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Last week Al Sharpton embraced convicted vote fraudster Melowese Richardson at a “voting rights” rally in Cincinnati.  The United States Department of Justice under Eric Holder has done nothing to Melowese Richardson 410 days after she admitted on camera that she committed multiple federal felonies by voting six times for President Obama’s reelection.

And why would they? She’s their hero. Expecting Eric Holder’s Justice Department to charge a black woman with vote fraud is like expecting Bill Clinton to keep his pants zipped. Ain’t gonna happen.

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Cover Oregon Uncovered

23rd March 2014

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On Thursday, Cover Oregon director Bruce Goldberg resigned as Democratic Gov. John Kitzhaber struggled to explain findings from a devastating report showing gross negligence by the state and website contractors in managing the $305 million of taxpayer money the state received to implement its busted Obamacare system.

A report by KATU also revealed charges from a whistleblower who alleged Oregon Obamacare workers pushed through illegal immigrant applications lacking Social Security numbers; used lax identity security such that a reporter plucked a Social Security number out of a garbage dumpster; held rock-paper-scissors tournaments on taxpayer-funded time; and provided front-of-the-line service in processing politicians’ applications ahead of regular Oregonians.

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Yet Another Corrupt Democrat Politician

23rd March 2014

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The Friday raids were carried out by the U.S. attorney’s office, FBI, IRS and state police. Boxes of evidence were carried off, but officials have not said whom or what they are investigating.

Fox has represented Rhode Island’s capital in the General Assembly for more than 20 years. He came out in 2004, in an unplanned announcement, while addressing a gay marriage rally. He became the nation’s first openly gay House speaker when he assumed the post in 2010.

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Death to the Federal Gas Tax

22nd March 2014

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Last November, Graves introduced the Transportation Empowerment Act, which was cosponsored through Senate legislation by Republican Mike Lee. By drastically reducing the tax, it would enable states to manage their own transportation policies, improving a process that has become massively inefficient under federal oversight.

“It’s rather silly,” Graves told the Atlanta Journal-Constitution, that “taxpayers pay taxes at the pump that go to the federal government, [which] then tells our state how it must spend the money,” even though it doesn’t “give you all the money you submitted.”

The only money you can get from the government is the money they stole from you (and everybody else) in the first place, after they wet their beaks (and handsomely, too).

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Agencies Withhold Documents About Closures of Private Businesses in Government Shutdown

21st March 2014

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In last October’s government shutdown, the Obama administration closed down, or blocked access to, many private businesses that had been allowed to operate in earlier shutdowns, such as during the Clinton administration.  After lawyers and legal commentators suggested that these closures of private businesses were illegal, and pointed out that they were an unexplained departure from past agency practice, I filed a series of Freedom of Information Act (FOIA) requests with the agencies that carried out these closures — the National Forest Service, the National Park Service, and the Department of the Interiors — seeking to find out which officials were responsible for these improper closures, and how the decision to close them was made.

Hey hey hey, it’s the Chicago way — hardball! Hardball! Hardball!

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FDA Review of New Sunscreen Ingredients Has Languished for Years, Frustrating Advocates

21st March 2014

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The tourists flocking to the French Riviera or Spain’s Costa del Sol this summer will slather on sunscreen containing the latest ingredients for protecting against the sun’s most harmful ultraviolet rays.

But American beachgoers will have to make do with sunscreens that dermatologists and cancer-research groups say are less effective and have changed little over the past decade.

That’s because applications for the newer sunscreen ingredients have languished for years in the bureaucracy of the Food and Drug Administration, which must approve the products before they reach consumers.

“We have a system here that’s completely broken down, and everybody knows that it has broken down,” said Wendy Selig, president of the Melanoma Research Alliance, the largest private funder of melanoma research.

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Who’s Counting the Costs?

21st March 2014

The Antiplanner hears his Bullshit Detector go off.

Per capita incomes in Flint, Michigan, are only about half the national average, and poverty rates are three times the national average. So what does the city’s transit agency do? Why, spend $2.4 million for a $327,000 bus.

Of course, this is a special bus: instead of being powered by Diesel fuel, it is powered by hydrogen fuel cells. And everyone knows that hydrogen power has zero emissions. The transit agency is so happy with the bus that it wants to order up to 30 more.

According to the National Transit Database, Flint’s transit agency drove its hydrogen-powered bus less than 9,000 miles in 2012, but it drives its most popular Diesel-powered buses about 48,000 miles a year. Based on the California study, if Flint replaces one of its Diesel buses with another hydrogen-powered bus and drives it 48,000 miles, it will reduce greenhouse gas emissions by about 38.4 tons per year. Amortizing the difference in the cost of the buses over 15 years results in a cost per ton of abated greenhouse gases of more than $4,000. (Remember, McKinsey & Company says anything costing more than $50 a ton is a waste.) This doesn’t even count maintenance, which–according to a study of San Francisco Bay Area fuel-cell buses–is more than 75 percent greater for fuel-cell buses than ordinary Diesel buses.

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Veterans Affairs Wind Turbine, Built for $2.3 Million, Stands Dormant

21st March 2014

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A $2.3 million federal stimulus project at the Veterans Affairs Medical Center in St. Cloud is giving green energy initiatives a bad name.

A 600-kilowatt wind turbine — some 245 foot tall — stands on the wintry VA grounds, frozen in time and temperature, essentially inoperable for the past 1 1/2 years. No one is working to fix it, though many attempts were made to repair the turbine, once billed as a model green energy project.

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Seized Property Sits Vacant Nine Years After Landmark Kelo Eminent Domain Case

21st March 2014

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Nine years after the high court sided with a Connecticut municipality in Kelo v. City of New London, a ruling Associate Justice Antonin Scalia has likened to the court’s disastrous Dred Scott decision, the 90-acre plot once earmarked for office buildings, luxury apartments and a new marina, remains vacant.

Seven residents who fought all the way to the Supreme Court to keep their working-class homes in the city’s Fort Trumbull section have only their memories and whatever remains of the money they were forced to accept.

“See that pole with the transformer hanging from it?” Michael Cristofaro, a 52-year-old computer network engineer, told The Weekly Standard, which recently visited the town. “That was where my family’s home was.”

Shut up, slave!

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FDA Bureaucratic Backlog Is Killing People

20th March 2014

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In 2010 a Swiss company successfully completed Phase III trials for a groundbreaking vaccine to fight a rare but deadly strain of meningitis. Four years later, outbreaks of Meningitis type B (MenB) are spreading in college campuses across the United States, though the product still awaits approval by the Food and Drug Administration.

What a former FDA official attributes to “risk-aversion,” the agency has yet to certify Bexsero, the first MenB vaccine made by Novartis, though it is already available in Europe, Australia, and Canada.

Since Bexsero is not approved, the FDA must grant “special permission” for universities with outbreaks, such as Princeton and the University of California, Santa Barbara, to obtain the vaccine, adding months to the deployment process.

The vaccine came too late for Emily Stillman, Stephanie Ross, and Aaron Loy.

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Congressman Jim Jordan Calls for a Special Prosecutor to Investigate the IRS

20th March 2014

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The House Oversight Committee’s investigation of the IRS is at an inflection point. The president’s congressional supporters realize that the administration’s version of the agency’s targeting of conservative nonprofits seeking tax-exempt status—such as blaming local officials in the Cincinnati office or claiming that liberal groups were victimized along with conservative groups—is nonsense. Instead of debating the substance, they have resorted to procedural antics and misleading rhetoric.

I have spent a considerable amount of time and energy on the investigation—which included 38 daylong interviews of IRS and Treasury employees ranging from line employees in Cincinnati to the IRS commissioner to the chief of staff of the U.S. Treasury. The real news has been revealed at the Lois Lerner hearing on March 5 and in the report of the House Committee on Oversight and Government Reform on March 11: “Lois Lerner’s Involvement in the IRS Targeting of Tax-Exempt Organizations.”

The evidence brought to light in that hearing and report completely discredited Ms. Lerner’s claims about her involvement in what went on. It also eviscerated the notion that liberal and conservative groups were targeted.

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Study: 38% of Minimum-Wage Employers Will Fire Workers If Minimum Wage Reaches $10.10

20th March 2014

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

A new survey reports that if Congress raises the current minimum wage from $7.25 to $10.10, there will be catastrophic effects. Among private employers paying the minimum wage, 38% will fire workers, 54% will reduce the number of employees they hire, and 65% will raise the prices on the goods and services they provide.

The survey, conducted by Express Employment Professionals, also revealed that among employers including those who pay minimum wage and those who pay more, if the minimum wage is raised, 19% would fire workers, 39% would cut their hiring, and 51% would raise their prices.

The Congressional Budget Office said last month that even raising the country’s minimum wage gradually to $10.10 by 2016 would see employment numbers plummet by 500,000 workers by the second half of 2016. Other estimates say that there is a 70% chance that the number of 500,000 could zoom close to one million.

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Our Criminal Justice System? It’s a Crime

20th March 2014

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One of the hallmarks of a totalitarian state is that there are so many laws and regulations that no one can possibly know what they are, let alone obey them. Thus everyone is a criminal, and only the despot’s discretion separates the solid citizen from the criminal. Unfortunately, the United States is rapidly approaching–if it has not already reached–this dystopian status.

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Obamacare Patients Denied Access to Doctors, Hospitals, Cancer Centers

20th March 2014

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Obamacare patients are discovering that many doctors, hospitals, and top cancer centers do not accept the plans they purchased.

“It’s so frustrating,” Terri Durheim of Enid, Okla., told CNN. “It’s not doing me a lot of good.”

Durheim is not alone. Obamacare’s so-called “narrow networks” are designed to limit customer choices to push patients into cheaper choices in an effort to control costs. Earlier this year Washington Post health writer Sarah Kliff warned that “Obamacare’s narrow networks are going to make people furious – but they might control costs.” A McKinsey and Co. study finds that more than one in three (38%) Obamacare plans permit patients to select from just 30% of the largest 20 hospitals in their geographic region.

That’s why they call it the Affordable Care Act. Care you can’t get is always affordable.

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Wages Are Like Love

19th March 2014

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 All this talk about raising the minimum wage has very little to do with reality. Raising it will not create a single job—if you aren’t earning a wage, making yourself more expensive is not going gain you a job—and will not likely cause anyone’s wages to rise. It’s hard to find anyone who is actually willing to contradict those claims, because they stem from basic price theory: Less of the same good will be purchased at a higher price than a lower price.

The timing is also incredibly bad. Business is already dealing with huge cost increases because of Obamacare. Many businesses are in full protest mode. Plus, employment markets are soft.

Economic growth in general is under downward pressure, with even past growth rates being revised downward. Economic growth is so pathetic now that Janet Yellen, the new head of the Fed, took a page from the Soviet playbook and suggested the bad weather itself is what is to blame—a line still used by Zimbabwe to explain its perpetual woes. It’s a heck of a time to force higher wages on businesses.

‘Hey, we’ll just pass a law! That will make everything better!’ Yeah, right.

 What the editorial suggests is that higher wages need to be forced on business because otherwise managers would not understand their own interests. Businesses makes thousands of decisions every week regarding inventory, real estate, websites, accounting, product development, marketing, research and development, and vastly more, but, according to the minimum wage idea, they are clueless about how to manage the wages and salaries of their own workforce with an eye to profit maximization. For this, businesses need government to tell them what to do.

Do you see the presumption here? It is that the Department of Labor—not a profit-making firm but one run by people whose wages and salaries are dictated by law rather than markets—is in a better position than the private sector to know what the market demands. That’s implausible on the face of it, unless you fundamentally believe that markets are dumber than governments and that the price system is nonfunctioning.

That lack of basic economic understanding is only the beginning of the frustrations that economists have when looking at these debates. The urge to boost the minimum wage is driven not by economic considerations but political ones. It is a favor thrown toward unions and large corporations—institutions that already enjoy or pay high wages—at the expense of smaller companies or unemployed/marginal workers who have a hard time gaining any kind of foothold in the market.

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Feds Sieze Customer List From California Gun Parts Store in ATF Raid

19th March 2014

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Dimitrios Karras, owner of Ares Armor in National City, told Fox5SanDiego.com the raid by Bureau of Alcohol, Tobacco, Firearms and Explosives agents took place just days after the company obtained a temporary restraining order against the agency.

‘Injunction? We don’t heed no stinking injunction!’

“There were women and children inside our retail establishment when the (ATF) agents came in with guns drawn,” Karras told the station. “They came into our firearms manufacturing facility saying, ‘Arms up!’ like they were invading Iraq.”

Hey, those women and children could be armed and dangerous.

“I’m kind of fearful and I’m a law abiding citizen,” Arnold Yaptangco, a Marine, told KNSD-TV. “I feel if they could do it to these guys 100 percent legit business, they could do it to anyone.They can just raid in and search for whatever reason.”

Welcome to the Obamanation. Be careful not to step in the leadership.

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Vegas Man Stuck With $407,000 Medical Bill After ObamaCare Breakdown

19th March 2014

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Hey, that’s why they called it the Affordable Care Act! If you like your bankruptcy, you can keep your bankruptcy!

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Deaths of Bighorn Sheep in Arizona Spark Controversy Over Conservation Effort

19th March 2014

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The first phase of a three-year plan by Arizona wildlife officials to bolster herds of bighorn sheep has resulted in the death of half the population, after the 31 sheep were transplanted at a cost of $150,000 into the Catalina Mountains where mountain lions killed 15 of the protected species within a few months.

‘Hey, dinner delivered to your door! Must be an Internet thing….’

Some animal welfare groups are pushing for an end to the project, but wildlife officials say the conservation effort is not a failure and expect the projected $600,000, three-year plan to result in greater numbers of bighorns in an area where they once co-existed with mountain lions for centuries.

God forbid that a government official at any time at any place admit that a program is a failure.

The Catalina Bighorn Advisory Committee — comprised of groups such as the Arizona Desert Bighorn Sheep Society, the Wilderness Society and the Center for Biological Diversity — had recommended that officials not kill any mountain lions prior to the transplant of bighorns.

And we see how well that turned out. They could combine efforts and sign the sheep up for Obamacare while they’re at it.

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Born to Run From High Taxes: Study Shows Wealthy NJ Residents Fleeing

19th March 2014

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The study, Exodus on the Parkway, was completed by Regent Atlantic last year but held for publication until after the November 2013 elections. The study stated it “intentionally” held its results “as 2014 is not an election year for state legislators” and it will “hopefully encourage a serious and objective dialogue aimed at addressing and solving the challenges that New Jersey currently faces.”

The study shows the state has been steadily losing high-net-worth residents since 2004, when Democratic Gov. Jim McGreevey signed the millionaire’s tax into law. The law raised the state income tax 41 percent on those earning $500,000 or more a year.

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

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States Push to Regulate, Tax Booming E-Cigarette Industry

19th March 2014

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If it moves, tax it.

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White House Pastry Chef Resigns: ‘I don’t want to demonize cream, butter, sugar and eggs’

18th March 2014

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If Mama ain’t happy, ain’t nobody happy.

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One Pizza, With Extra Federal Handouts

18th March 2014

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Reason readers are likely already familiar with the perverse federal subsidy system that doles out billions to major agribusiness nationwide. When ag subsidies began, in the 1930s, then-Secretary of agriculture Henry Wallace called them “a temporary solution to deal with an emergency.” That temporary solution has now lasted nearly a century, in both good and bad times for farmers, and even today when farm household incomes greatly exceed our national average.

But less well-known are the federal efforts to directly aid pork producers. The swine flu surplus buy-up was unfortunately not an isolated incident. In fact, when the country started experiencing drought, USDA stepped in to buy an additional $100 million of unwanted pork.

Were public school kids, service-members, prisoners, and other recipients of federally purchased food demanding more pig on their pizzas? No. Agriculture Secretary Tom Vilsack was clear about the motivation: “President Obama and I will continue to take swift action to get help to America’s farmers and ranchers.” No doubt many other industries wouldn’t mind the administration paying them for products they’re having a tough time selling.

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The ‘Most Transparent Administration in History’ Sets New Record in Denying Freedom of Information Requests

18th March 2014

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 On the day of his inauguration in 2009, President Barack Obama announced that his administration would be “the most open and transparent in history.” It did not take long for that promise to be tossed aside, and it has been clear for quite a while that this administration is perhaps the most secretive in history. A new analysis by the AP of how the administration responds to FOIA requests confirms that it is becoming even more secretive each year:

The Obama administration more often than ever censored government files or outright denied access to them last year under the U.S. Freedom of Information Act, according to a new analysis of federal data by The Associated Press.

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

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Why Would Any Foreign Government Trust America?

18th March 2014

Mark Steyn is not afraid to ask the hard questions.

Speaking of “secession”, it is possible to have an honest difference of opinion about Moscow’s claims upon the Crimea, which was transferred from Russia to the Ukraine in 1954 as little more than a bit of internal housekeeping within the Soviet Union. But it is not possible if one is the Government of the United States or the United Kingdom. London, Washington and Moscow signed something called “the Budapest Agreement” in 1994, guaranteeing Ukraine’s sovereignty in return for the newly independent nation giving up its nuclear weapons. By “guaranteeing”, I mean that Russia agreed to respect Ukraine’s sovereignty, and Britain and America committed themselves to seeing that Russia did so. It was shortly after the USSR went out of business and in the heyday of all that talk about the new “unipolar” world. The agreement wasn’t a big news story at the time, and one can argue that there was no reason for London or Washington to get mixed up in the redefined relationships of a hastily deSovietized empire. But the fact is they did sign it, and great powers should not give their word unless they intend to keep their word.

They have now broken it, as Vladimir Putin knew they would.

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Weaponizing the IRS

17th March 2014

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Just shy of a decade ago, a retired rector named George Regas stepped into the pulpit at All Saints Episcopal Church in Pasadena, California, a few days before the November election and let fly with some good, old-fashioned fire and brimstone. The targets of his passion: President George W. Bush and the war in Iraq. Also, “conservative politicians.” Not to mention “the religious right.” Regas described war as “the most extreme form of terrorism.” Speaking in the voice of Jesus Christ, he said, “The killing of innocent people to achieve some desired goal is morally repudiated by anyone claiming to follow Me as their savior and guide.” He went on to condemn poverty, defend abortion rights, and so on.

What happened next will surprise you only if you just fell off a turnip truck: The IRS came knocking. It threatened the church’s tax-exempt status, demanded all kinds of paperwork, and carried on an investigation that lasted more than two years—and cost the church $200,000.

The saga of All Saints could soon be coming to a community near you.

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Democrat Attorney General Shuts Down Corruption Investigation After Catching Democrats Accepting Cash Bribes, Because Racism

17th March 2014

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Being a black Democrat means never having to say you’re sorry.

I guess we’re all Trayvon Martin now — except for white people, of course.

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Jack Daniel’s Favors Tennessee Whiskey Law Defining Tennessee Whiskey as Jack Daniel’s

17th March 2014

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FlickrTennessee whiskey maker Jack Daniel’s is an unsurprisingly big fan of a local law that basically defines whiskey by standards set by Jack Daniel’s. Under current Tennessee law, only locally-made spirits fermented from mash of at least 51 percent corn, aged in new charred oak barrels, filtered through maple charcoal, and bottled at a minimum of 80 proof can legally be labeled “Tennessee whiskey.” Not coincidentally, that’s “almost to the letter the process used to make Jack Daniel’s,” The Associated Press reports.

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

This writing of one company’s business process into the law is known as ‘crapitalism’, although you won’t year any of the Usual Suspects, right or left, admit that.

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Lawmakers From Hawaii, Alaska Put Pressure on Feds to Reconsider Jones Act

17th March 2014

Read it. And watch the video.

Passed in 1920, the Jones Act was created to protect the U.S. shipping industry by mandating that only ships made in the U.S. and flying the American flag can deliver goods between American ports. This means that a ship from China can only make one stop in the U.S. at a time – it would be unable to unload goods in Hawaii on the way back from Los Angeles.

The law has negatively impacted the Hawaiian economy and now lawmakers are fighting back.

Laws passed to favor one group over another, if they don’t match actual market conditions, result in either smuggling or destruction of the very trade they are intended to constrain. Somehow, politicians never seem to learn this. (Of course, since this is a long-term problem and they’re only interested in the short term [i.e. how much money and votes can I acquire to keep me in office two years from now?], they have absolutely no incentive to pay any attention to it.)

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Democrats Are Making Income Inequality Worse

15th March 2014

George Will lays out some inconvenient truth.

Nearly two-thirds of households receiving food stamps qualify under “categorical eligibility” because they receive transportation assistance or certain other welfare services. We spend $1 trillion annually on federal welfare programs, decades after Daniel Patrick Moynihan said that if one-third of the money for poverty programs was given directly to the poor, there would be no poor. But there also would be no unionized poverty bureaucrats prospering and paying dues that fund the campaigns of Democratic politicians theatrically heartsick about inequality.

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The War on Julie Boonstra

15th March 2014

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We’ve written about cancer survivor/Obamacare victim Julie Boonstra several times. Today Henry Payne adds to the story and draws the appropriate lessons in “The war on Julie Boonstra.” Payne notes how Boonstra, “a schoolteacher, has come under assault from Democrats and their media allies decrying her as a liar and an ignoramus for failing to embrace her new, Obamacare-approved plan.”

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Zuckerberg Voices Frustration With Obama Over NSA

15th March 2014

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Lie down with dogs, get up with fleas. Be careful whom you vote for; you just might get him.

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HHS Official Tells Government to Take This Job and Shove It in Resignation Letter

15th March 2014

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David Wright, the director of the federal agency’s Office of Research Integrity, sent a scathing resignation letter to his boss late last month detailing — with the precision of a seasoned researcher — all his reasons for quitting the federal government. The letter catalogued the frustrations of getting minor expenses approved, of navigating department politics and of spinning his wheels on producing “repetitive and often meaningless data and reports to make our precinct of the bureaucracy look productive.”

“I’m offended as an American taxpayer that the federal bureaucracy — at least the part I’ve labored in — is so profoundly dysfunctional,” Wright wrote to Assistant Secretary for Health (ASH) Howard Koh.

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Audit Finds EPA Workers Used Gov’t-Issued Cards for Dubious Expenses

14th March 2014

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A government audit found employees from the Environment Protection Agency used federally-issued charge cards to buy gym memberships, gift cards and other items that were either forbidden or not even documented.

The report by the office of the Inspector General faulted the agency for not keeping track of scores of transactions made by employees authorized to use so-called “SmartPay” cards. It found more than half of $150,000 in expenditures singled out for scrutiny was not in compliance with federal regulations.

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

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NYPD Denies Freedom of Information Request for Freedom of Information Handbook

13th March 2014

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It’s all part of being on Double Secret Probation. Don’t these journalists know anything?

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Government’s Empty Buildings Are Costing Taxpayers Billions

13th March 2014

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The boarded up building in the photo sits a mere 6 blocks from the White House on prime real estate but it’s been empty for 30 years! What’s the problem? The building is owned/controlled by the Federal government which often doesn’t even know what it owns, lacks the incentive to control costs and whose bureaucratic strictures make selling difficult even when motivation exists. – See more at: http://marginalrevolution.com/marginalrevolution/2014/03/wasted-resources.html#sthash.liL34h0A.dpuf

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Eat Right and Save the Planet

12th March 2014

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Every five years, a committee of officials chosen by the U.S. Department of Agriculture and the U.S. Department of Health and Human Services reviews the federal dietary guidelines. This committee, called the Dietary Guidelines Advisory Committee, is mandated by Congress to work on “providing nutritional and dietary information and guidelines for the general public . . . based on the preponderance of scientific and medical knowledge currently available.”

In other words, these are the government-fat-camp counselors, and they’re here to tell you what to eat.

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Emails Reveal Obama Admin Shut Down WW II Memorial Knowing Vets Were Coming

11th March 2014

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

 

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Austin Police to SXSW Attendees: Uber Not Permitted

11th March 2014

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Austin, the blue pustule on the butt of Texas, demonstrates why the rest of Texas is a red state.

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