Roll Tide

One might be forgiven for thinking health insurers are cracking under the strain of Obamacare’s broken insurance exchanges. But don’t be fooled: it is the 10 million Obamacare enrollees who are in trouble, not the insurers.

To be sure, new nonprofit cooperative insurers, set up with special subsidies to compete in the exchanges, have had a terrible run. They deliberately underpriced their premiums to gain market share, expecting the federal government to bail out their losses. Once the Republicans took over the House of Representatives, then the Senate, this became unlikely. As a result, the administration announced in November that 12 of 23 nonprofit cooperative insurers were shutting down.

However, these nonprofit cooperative insurers, which did not exist before Obamacare, are not important overall. That is why UnitedHealth Group’s November 19 announcement that it is losing $500 million on the Obamacare exchanges and might withdraw from Obamacare in 2017 is a big deal. Just a few weeks earlier, UnitedHealth Group had announced it would expand into 11 new states’ Obamacare markets.

The insurer is also dialing back advertising and brokers’ commissions for 2016, even though it is too late to withdraw from the market literally. (We are in the middle of Obamacare’s third open season.) However, it is the threat of absolute withdrawal in 2017 that has shocked many. By 2017, the fourth year of Obamacare, the market is supposed to have shaken out. Both insurers and Obamacare’s political sponsors understood that insurers would not know how expensive claims would be from those who signed up during the first three years. That is why insurers were given temporary taxpayer subsidies, called reinsurance and risk corridors, for 2014 through 2016. Reinsurance is a direct handout of $25 billion from taxpayers to insurers. Risk corridors were more complicated and supposed to be budget-neutral. Insurers that made more money than expected would pay money to those that lost more money than expected.


When it became clear that the losers far outnumbered the winners, the administration tried to raid the kitty to make risk-corridor payments from the general fund. By this time a new Congress (in which the majority opposed Obamacare) actually read the bill that its predecessor had passed in 2010 and pointed out that the administration could not pay out that money. As a result, Obamacare insurers will only receive $362 million of $2.9 billion of risk-corridor payments requested.

However, even if Congress did cave in and pay the risk corridors in full, payments would finish in 2016. That is what makes UnitedHealth Group’s announcement about dropping out in 2017 so important: it is effectively an admission that three years are not enough to learn how to manage risks in Obamacare’s exchanges. Indeed, it suggests that risks are unmanageable, that the vicious circle of increasing premiums’ driving healthy subscribers away and leaving only sick ones on the books cannot be stopped under Obamacare.

The exchanges have fewer victims than initially expected. The economy has been strong enough that employer-based coverage has stood up to Obamacare. As a result, only 10 million people are caught in them, instead of the 21 million forecast when the law was passed. However, this is a mixed blessing. These 10 million are a politically weak constituency of working-class and lower middle-class citizens in middle age — the people whose needs politicians always talk about but seldom address because they are not politically active.

The only group politically powerful enough to renegotiate the exchanges are the insurers, and they show no more creativity than to lobby for their subsidies to be restored, which this Congress has promised not to do. On the other hand, simply quitting the exchanges is not very painful for large health insurers. UnitedHealth Group’s stock took a small hit when it admitted its struggles, but Obamacare exchanges are a tiny share of its business. As more insurers make the same decision to quit, 10 million Obamacare subscribers will be left high and dry in short order. (DC)

Political Cartoons by Michael Ramirez
Political Cartoons by Bob Gorrell
Political Cartoons by Jerry Holbert
Political Cartoons by Bob Gorrell


Raise the cost of something, and inevitably demand for that thing goes down. It’s a venerable principle in economics.

So five years ago when ObamaCare was being enacted, we and many others warned that its coverage mandates for employers would result in hours being cut back and workers being laid off. We were criticized at the time as Chicken Littles. Now comes a survey of 743 personnel executives by the Society of Human Resource Management, as reported by Robert King of the Washington Examiner, that shows businesses are doing just that. Nearly 14% of firms have cut part-time hours for workers, King wrote, and another 6% plan to do so.

Still worse, 5% of companies have already either cut or plan to cut the total number of workers they have, thanks to ObamaCare.

ObamaCare’s employer mandate requires businesses with 100 or more employees to provide health insurance to 70% of their workers who put in 30 or more hours a week. That goes up to 95% next year.

Meanwhile, small businesses with 50 to 99 workers will start feeling the pinch in 2016, when the mandate hits them, too.

So it’s only logical: Businesses are cutting hours to avoid having to pay for the mandate — a predictable response in the real world, but apparently not in the world of the economists, politicians and planners who concocted ObamaCare’s destructive rules.

As for “bending the cost-curve down,” as President Obama promised repeatedly, forget about it. The survey found that 77% of companies had higher health-care costs this year than last year, and just 6% saw their costs decrease. For those who had costs rise, 24% saw costs go up 16% or more.

If you want to know why this job recovery has been the worst since the Great Depression, you need look no further than these depressing statistics.

In September 2009, President Obama addressed Congress, vowing that his healthcare plan would “slow the growth of healthcare costs for our families, our businesses, and our government.” But costs for all three have actually grown.

During the campaign in 2008, Obama repeatedly said that his health reform plan would save the average family $2,500 a year in premiums. But this year, almost half of those surveyed by CBS and the New York Times characterized “the affordability of basic medical care as a hardship.” That’s a quarter more people than said so last year.

The Kaiser Family Foundation, the New York Times, and Avalere Health crunched government numbers and concluded that even premiums for coverage offered on the exchanges would rise between 2 and 5% during 2015.

Meanwhile, a study from the National Bureau of Economic Research determined that premiums in the non-group market in 2014 increased by 24.4% over what they would have cost without Obamacare.

Costs for small businesses have also grown. Last year, the average cost of employer-sponsored health insurance for an individual exceeded $5,700. That’s 23% more than in 2009, the year before Obamacare was signed into law.

One in 10 businesses has laid off workers to cope with growing healthcare costs. And “one-third of small firms say they are purposefully not growing as a result of the Affordable Care Act,” according to a National Small Business Association Survey.

Meanwhile, one in five companies has reduced employee hours to avoid falling afoul of Obamacare’s employer mandate, which requires companies with 100 or more employees who work more than 30 hours a week to provide health insurance this year. Next year, companies with 50 or more workers will be subject to the mandate.

Companies who fail to comply must pay fines of the lesser of $3,000 per employee who receives subsidies in Obamacare’s insurance exchanges or $2,000 for every worker after the first 30.

The cost of Obamacare has also grown dramatically for the government — and thus for taxpayers. In 2009, President Obama claimed that his plan would cost a little more than $900 billion over the next decade. But according to a recent report from the Congressional Budget Office, the law’s net price tag has ballooned to nearly $1.2 trillion.

The law’s ballooning cost is largely the result of its failure to slow overall health spending. Nationwide, health spending grew 5% in 2014, compared to a 3.6% increase the year prior, according to a new report from Altarum Institute. The Centers for Medicare and Medicaid Services forecast spending to grow by 6% a year from 2015 through 2023 — “largely as a result of the continued implementation of the ACA coverage expansions.”

To make matters worse, the health law has also failed to deliver “the best care, not just the most expensive care,” as the President promised in 2009. Under Obamacare, Americans now have fewer healthcare options than before.

The number of insurers selling to individual consumers in the exchanges has dropped by more than 20% compared to the year before Obamacare took effect, according to the Heritage Foundation. Consumers who buy coverage on the exchanges often find that their preferred hospitals are out of network, McKinsey & Co. reports.

Meanwhile, Deloitte surveyed 20,000 doctors and discovered that many are cutting their work hours or leaving the practice of medicine altogether. USA TODAY recently reported that many doctors are limiting their intake of patients who bought coverage on the exchanges; the reimbursement rates offered by their policies are just too low.

“Physicians who are in solo practices have to be careful not to take too many patients reimbursed at lower rates or they’re not going to be in business too long,” said the President of the Medical Society of the State of New York.

For patients, this exodus of doctors translates into less access, longer waits before appointments, and less one-on-one time with the few doctors who will see them. Last year, patients had to wait an average of 18 days for appointments with specialty doctors. This waiting game is “going to get worse and not better,” according to a study from consultancy Merritt Hawkins.

But since it “felt good” and they “had the best of intentions” and it’s all the fault of evil insurance companies the Liberal won’t hold themselves responsible for making things much worse than if they hadn’t meddled in the first place.

Frog Tales

“That’s the good thing about being president. I can do whatever I want.” – President Obama

Michael Ramirez Cartoon

Obama officials made clear in a press briefing that firms would not be allowed to lay off workers to get into the preferred class of those businesses with 50 to 99 employees. How will the feds know what employers were thinking when hiring and firing? Simple. Firms will be required to certify to the IRS – under penalty of perjury – that ObamaCare was not a motivating factor in their staffing decisions. To avoid ObamaCare costs you must swear that you are not trying to avoid ObamaCare costs. You can duck the law, but only if you promise not to say so.

And having the IRS serve as the talking-point enforcer for businesses tempted to speak out about firings under the law will sure help message discipline. (FOX)

Gee, no one saw the IRS Gestapo/Thought Police coming…🙂

Desperate to keep ObamaCare from hurting Democrats’ chances in the midterm elections this November, the Obama administration is putting off part of the employer mandate for yet another year.

On Monday, administration officials said that companies with between 50 and 99 workers won’t have to comply with the mandate until 2016. Those with more than 100 workers will still have to provide “affordable” health benefits to their workers or pay a steep fine.

But larger firms will have to cover only 70% of their full-time workers next year to avoid any penalty, and 95% the year after. The Treasury Department claimed the delay was because medium-sized firms “need a little more time to adjust to providing coverage.”

Pure poppycock. The one and only reason for this delay is political. Obama wants to hide the job-killing effects of ObamaCare until after midterm elections.

When the administration first delayed the employer mandate last July — pushing it off to January 2015 — it claimed that companies needed more time to comply with all the new paperwork burdens.

Apparently, however, they didn’t realize this delay would force companies to confront the cost of the ObamaCare mandate just before the November elections. Thus the new extension.

The administration has now changed the law dozens of times, mainly to deal with political land mines going off. No one can make any serious plans based on it.

Just before its latest revision, for example, Obama decided to let people who wanted to keep their current plans do so for more than just one year. This was another political concession meant to prevent another round of cancellations stories.

The problem is that this law was supposedly written so all the pieces fit together just so.

Without an employer mandate, for example, companies would be more tempted to dump workers into the ObamaCare exchanges, forcing taxpayers to pick up the tab for any insurance subsidies.

And the claim that ObamaCare wouldn’t add to the deficit depended to some degree on companies paying those penalties. No employer mandate, no penalty.

Meanwhile, Republicans and conservatives have been busy crafting credible alternatives to ObamaCare — calling Obama’s recent bluff that he’ll consider any ideas so long as they help cover the uninsured, protect those with health problems, and cut health costs. (None of which ObamaCare effectively achieves, by the way.)

After the latest delay, House Majority Leader John Boehner complained that “once again, the president is rewriting law on a whim.”

It’s actually worse than that.

Obama is unilaterally changing ObamaCare for a reason. He wants to stretch the pain out as long as possible, hoping no one will notice they’ve been cooked. (IBD)

Because you throw a frog in Boiling Water, it leaps out. Throw it in cold or warm water and turn up the heat it boil to death. Just like you on ObamaCare.

Say who are those guys in the Black suits coming to the door…🙂

Political Cartoons by Lisa Benson

Political Cartoons by Bob Gorrell

 Political Cartoons by Eric Allie

 Political Cartoons by Steve Kelley
 Political Cartoons by Michael Ramirez


No They Cant! The Sequel

John Stossel: President Obama said in his State of the Union Address that he is putting colleges on notice to lower costs. A few days later, he spoke to students at the University of Michigan, with a promise of more federal aid. Politicians claim they can make college affordable. No They Can’t!

In the last 30 years, inflation is up 160%, but tuition costs are up 750%.

It’s because colleges have no incentive to cut prices when students can get money from government. Federal aid, adjusted for inflation, increased from 32 billion in 1987, to 169 billion in 2010.

Government tells us, “Here’s the gap between what you can afford and what the college is charging, we will now make up that gap. And then the college just inches up the tuition a little bit higher,” says Naomi Riley author of The Faculty Lounges: and Other Reasons Why You Won’t Get the College Education You Paid For.

Colleges don’t use all or even most of that money in the classroom. We were stunned at the gyms and dining halls that serve lobster and sushi. Check out the University of Missouri, which is proud of its spa, rock climbing wall and “Tiger Grotto” – an elaborate pool complex.

Government creates perverse incentives. Colleges compete on prestige and luxury amenities, not their price tag. Administrators don’t worry about high tuition costs because their customers have government subsidies.

And so what if they graduate with a mountain of debt and their job prospect are sh*t. They government will take of them too. And if ObamaCare survives they can be on their parents Health Insurance until they are 26.

And they’ve been raised by the liberal socialists to believe they are entitled to be look after just because.

So who cares, the Government will take care of you. You may remember that The Obama Administration took over the  student loans because they were going bankrupt.

2010: President Obama will sign a bill today that ends a 45-year-old program under which banks and other private-sector lenders such as Sallie Mae receive a federal subsidy for making government-guaranteed college loans.

Instead, the U.S. Department of Education – which already makes roughly a third of these loans through its direct-lending program – will make 100 percent of them starting July 1.

Students who previously had to choose a private-sector lender for their guaranteed loans will now have only one choice: the government. (SFGATE)

But the newly passed legislation does nothing to address the rapidly rising cost of education–and adds to our national debt. (Forbes)

A “single payer” system, you might say.🙂

And costs are up 5 times inflation because colleges only incentive is to spend more to make college look like an French Riviera resort.

Costs? Who gives a crap about costs. The Government is paying for it.

Then they graduate and reality hits them in the face.

Students who graduated from college in 2010 with student loans owed an average of $25,250, up 5 percent from the previous year, according to a report scheduled for release Thursday.

The average debt — once again the highest on record — came as the class of 2010 faced an unemployment rate for new college graduates of 9.1 percent, the highest in recent years, according to the report by the Project on Student Debt, which pointed out that unemployment rates for those without college degrees were still higher.

The median starting salary for students graduating from four-year colleges in 2009 and 2010 was $27,000, down from $30,000 for those who entered the work force in 2006 to 2008, according to a study released on Wednesday by the John J. Heldrich Center for Workforce Development at Rutgers University. That is a decline of 10 percent, even before taking inflation into account.

35 percent of unemployed college graduates have been without a job for a year or longer. And, the long-term unemployment rate for those 25 and older is almost the same across the board—regardless of educational level.

Sidenote: remember, most report unemployment statistics don’t count people who have given up completely looking for a job.

CNN Last week: But the competition is steep, with employers reporting that they have received nearly 33 applications for every job posting, up from 21 applications per posting last year.

Enter Occupiers. “Entitled” little skulls of  unemployed (and many cases unemployable narcissistic and anarchist) socialist mush who have had reality hit them in the face and they just want to whine about it.

New York Times: The high cost of college and the growing debt burden of student loans have become increasingly potent political issues in recent years, high on the agenda of Occupy Wall Street and related protests across the country.

And then there’s the next line of graduate-in-waiting: Teenagers

The high teen unemployment rate, which came in at 23.8% for February (2012). Their unemployment rate remains above 20% for the 40th month in a row, the first time this has happened since the government started keeping records in 1948.

And since Obama was elected the first by getting naive 20-somethings to believe in his Messianic self he has to throw bones to his peeps, especially as their support has cooled over the years because a lot of them are not college students anymore but unemployed and underemployed debtors.

So he’ll need a new crop of naive morons to vote for him.

“Student debt goes up and it doesn’t ever go down,” said Mark Kantrowitz, the publisher of and, two Web sites that offer advice on paying for college. “We’re clearly heading in the direction of decreased college affordability. Among lower-income students, the canaries in the cage that squawk first, we’re already seeing a decline in enrollment in four-year colleges and an increase in lower-cost two-year institutions,” he said.

Mr. Kantrowitz estimated that for the class of 2011, average debt was $27,200 — or, if parent loans were included, $34,000.

This is the fifth consecutive year in which the public universities that serve most students raised their tuition at a faster rate than the far more expensive private universities. (NYT)

So that’s why Obama has proposed….<<Drum Roll>> SPENDING EVEN MORE on student loan programs!!!

Now, I know that’s a shocker!🙂

So when in Debt SPEND EVEN MORE!

When the system is bleeding red ink and it’s failing SPEND EVEN MORE!

When your house is burning down throw more Napalm on the Fire that will help!!

Liberal Economics at it’s finest.

But don’t worry, It’s all the Republicans! and “the rich”‘s Fault!🙂

The Improving Cheese

“This is a disaster,” Mark Miller, the Wisconsin Senate Democratic leader, said in February after Republican Gov. Scott Walker proposed a budget bill that would curtail the collective-bargaining powers of some public employees. Miller predicted catastrophe if the bill were to become law — a charge repeated thousands of times by his fellow Democrats, union officials and protesters in the streets.

Now the bill is law, and we have some early evidence of how it is working. And for one beleaguered Wisconsin school district, it’s a godsend, not a disaster.

The Kaukauna Area School District, in the Fox River Valley of Wisconsin near Appleton, has about 4,200 students and about 400 employees. It has struggled in recent times and this year faced a deficit of $400,000. But after the law went into effect at 12:01 a.m. June 29, school officials put in place new policies they estimate will turn that $400,000 deficit into a $1.5 million surplus. And it’s all because of the very provisions that union leaders predicted would be disastrous.

In the past, teachers and other staff at Kaukauna were required to pay 10 percent of the cost of their health-insurance coverage and none of their pension costs. Now they’ll pay 12.6 percent of the cost of their coverage (still well below rates in much of the private sector) and contribute 5.8 percent of salary to their pensions. The changes will save the school board an estimated $1.2 million this year, according to board president Todd Arnoldussen.

Of course, Wisconsin unions had offered to make benefit concessions during the budget fight. Wouldn’t Kaukauna’s money problems have been solved if Walker had just accepted those concessions and not demanded cutbacks in collective-bargaining powers?

“The monetary part of it is not the entire issue,” says Arnoldussen, a political independent who won a spot on the board in a nonpartisan election. Indeed, some of the most important improvements in Kaukauna’s outlook are because of the new limits on collective bargaining.

In the past, Kaukauna’s agreement with the teachers union required the school district to purchase health-insurance coverage from something called WEA Trust — a company created by the Wisconsin teachers union. “It was in the collective-bargaining agreement that we could negotiate only with them,” says Arnoldussen. “Well, you know what happens when you can negotiate with only one vendor.” This year, WEA Trust told Kaukauna that it would face a significant increase in premiums.

Now the collective-bargaining agreement is gone, and the school district is free to shop around for coverage. And all of a sudden, WEA Trust has changed its position. “With these changes, the schools could go out for bids, and, lo and behold, WEA Trust said, ‘We can match the lowest bid,'” says Republican state Rep. Jim Steineke, who represents the area and supports the Walker changes. At least for the moment, Kaukauna is staying with WEA Trust but saving substantial amounts of money.

Then there are work rules. “In the collective-bargaining agreement, high-school teachers had to teach only five periods a day out of seven,” says Arnoldussen. “Now they’re going to teach six.” In addition, the collective-bargaining agreement specified that teachers had to be in the school 37-1/2 hours a week. Now it will be 40 hours.

The changes mean Kaukauna can reduce the size of its classes — from 31 students to 26 students in high school and from 26 students to 23 students in elementary school. In addition, there will be more teacher time for one-on-one sessions with troubled students. Those changes would not have been possible without the much-maligned changes in collective bargaining.

Teachers’ salaries will stay “relatively the same,” Arnoldussen says, except for higher pension and health care payments. (The top salary is about $80,000 per year, with about $35,000 in additional benefits, for 184 days of work per year — summers off.) Finally, the money saved will be used to hire a few more teachers and institute merit pay.

It is impossible to overstate how bitter and ugly the Wisconsin fight has been, and that bitterness and ugliness continues to this day with efforts to recall senators and an unseemly battle inside the state Supreme Court. But the new law is now a reality, and Gov. Walker recently told the Milwaukee Journal Sentinel that the measure would gain acceptance “with every day, week and month that goes by that the world doesn’t fall apart.”

In the Kaukauna schools, the world is definitely not falling apart — it’s getting better. (Byron York)

But never forget the Unions will fight tool and nail to your death to have their exclusive members-only kiss-ass club back. They are too arrogant and “entitled” not to.

Much like most Democrats.

Political Cartoons by Michael Ramirez

Political Cartoons by Bob Gorrell

Political Cartoons by Eric Allie

Political Cartoons by Ken Catalino

Political Cartoons by Glenn Foden

Political Cartoons by Nate Beeler

NO FearMongering Here!

Brilliant Listen: Ted Nugent on KFYI

Political Cartoons by Gary Varvel

“It is unfair to ask seniors to get less in benefits and wait longer to get onto Medicare — all while Republicans back tax breaks for Big Oil and corporations that ship American jobs overseas,” said House Minority Leader Nancy Pelosi (D-Calif.) “Just like the Republican plan to end Medicare, this proposal is unacceptable, especially for struggling middle-class Americans.”

But don’t worry, it’s all those Republicans fault that we can’t deal with the problem. And let’s throw in some Class Warfare will we are at it!

Do the Democrats ever mention the $500 Billion ObamaCare cut from Medicare and then double-counted it as savings? Naw, why would they when they can just straight for the fear and class warfare.

“A plan that slashes Medicare for vulnerable seniors is a plan that slashes Medicare for vulnerable seniors no matter what co-sponsors you put on it,” said Protect Your Care spokesman Eddie Vale. “This so called ‘plan’ is just as dangerous for seniors as the Republican budget that ends Medicare.”

“We believe the right way to strengthen Medicare is to improve the quality and lower the cost of care throughout the health care system,” said AARP’s Nancy LeaMond. “Simply shifting the bill to seniors does nothing to improve health care quality or combat the real problem of rising costs.”

Yet, the one program that was working, Medicare Advantage will be savaged by Obamacare in favor of the less efficient and more expensive MediGap.

Gee, I wonder which one AARP favors?  Do you even have to ask…🙂

Debt Ceiling: The president called on Republicans to back off their “stubborn” refusal to compromise on their “sacred cow” (no tax hikes), asserting that everyone else at the table has displayed a willingness to do so.  This is news to me, as Democrats have consistently refused to deal seriously with entitlements, and have shamelessly demagogued Republican reform efforts.  One could also argue that Democrats’ true sacred cow in this debate is their insistence on raising taxes, a stance from which they have not backed down.

And the Democrats only want “revenue increases” the new Orwellian term for TAX INCREASES! And anything else is just stupid in their minds. But don’t worry, it’s the Republican’s fault for being intractable.

“I am the President of the United  States, and I want to make sure I’m not engaged in fear-mongering.”   Republicans should file this quote away and resurrect it whenever the  president feeds his insatiable appetite for precisely the practice he  claims to reject.  In fact, he fear-mongered at today’s press  conference.  He can’t help himself.  Absent tax increases, he warned,  children could go without scholarships, food safety measures could be  loosened, and medical research could dry up, etc, etc.  It’s fat-cat  corporate jet-setters vs. the children, you see.  I’d try to accumulate Obama’s greatest fear-mongering hits, but that task could consume my entire afternoon. (But I am considering starting a blog about it…)

“If we do not have revenues (aka TAX INCREASES!), that means there are a bunch of kids out there who are not getting college scholarships.  If we do not have those revenues, then the kinds of cuts that would be required might compromise the National Weather Service.  It means that we would not be funding critical medical research.  It means that food inspection might be compromised.  And I’ve said to some of the Republican leaders, you go talk to your constituents, the Republican constituents, and ask them are they willing to compromise their kids’ safety so that some corporate jet owner continues to get a tax break.  And I’m pretty sure what the answer would be.”

So it’s Armageddon if we don’t have Tax Increases!! And he’s absolutely not fearmongering!!!!🙂

But it’s the Republican’s “sacred cows” that are the problem!

And the Left has no “sacred cows” that are a problem.🙂

DEBT: Obama demanded that legislators “do their job” on the debt crisis.  Um,  Mr. President, the Republican-controlled House did its job on the debt.   It passed Paul Ryan’s budget, which reduces the debt by four trillion  dollars, reforms the tax code, and saves the social safety net by  distrupting its inexorable march toward insolvency.  The Democrat-held  Senate has not done its job.  791 days have passed since Harry Reid’s caucus even introduced a  budget.  Oddly, the president failed to mention these salient facts.   He did, however, demand that Congress make “tough choices.”  Is he  referring to the brand of politically risky leadership he’s deliberately avoided?

July 8th, 2011 will be 800 days since the Democrats passed a budget AT ALL.

“I’m the President of the United States not running off of scare tactics,” Treasury Secretary Geithner.

In a ham-fisted class warfare gambit, Obama took aim at tax breaks for  private jet owners.  His point, presumably, was to highlight an  unpopular tax provision Republicans are “protecting” through their  blanket refusal to entertain any tax increases.  Say, where’d those evil  private jet-related tax breaks come from, anyway?  Clue: The answer may  involve an infamous bill that zero House Republicans supported, and  that Barack Obama signed into law.

The vaulted STIMULUS!

The Liberal giveth, and The Liberal wants to take it away when it benefits them politically. Now doesn’t that feel you with confidence?

Oh, and the tax break will bring in $3 Billion dollars over 10 years. OOOH! That’ll fix a $14,400,000,000,000 budget deficit!

Damn those evil greedy rich people!!


One Republican Senate aide, however, shot back in an email to The Daily Caller, saying that the White House only recently sent over the agreements for Congress’ approval. The aide also said that when it comes to tax breaks for corporate jets, “Who would really bear the brunt — wealthy corporate jet owners or the workers who build the jets?”

On the president’s call to put construction workers back to work, presumably through government-sponsored projects, the aide said, “He [Obama] said the same thing before the stimulus and it turned out to be a complete hoax. Only a tiny portion of the stimulus went to infrastructure … Also, we simply can’t afford it and the stimulus has proven we can’t spend our way to prosperity.”

But that’s the sacred cow of the Left though so that doesn’t exist.🙂

Political Cartoons by Lisa Benson

Political Cartoons by Chip Bok

Political Cartoons by Michael Ramirez

Political Cartoons by Steve Breen

Put Down that Burger, Fatso!


The federal government has a growing interest in the eating habits of Americans for the same reason it has an interest in tobacco consumption, said Kathleen Sebelius, the secretary of the Department of Health and Human Services.

The reason is money, because three-quarters of medical-spending is driven by chronic diseases, such as obesity and tobacco-related diseases, she said.

Sebelius’ comments came at the tail-end of Tuesday’s White House press conference where officials showcased nine new photos that must be carried on cigarette packs. Officials used a survey of 18,000 people to find the images that would have the most distressing impact on groups of smokers, including young smokers and mothers of young kids.

“We want teenagers to understand smoking is gross, not cool,” said the HHS chief. If the public becomes desensitized to the distressing pictures, they’ll be replaced by new pictures, she said.

The regulations are justified, she said, because tobacco causes 443,000 premature deaths, and creates “$200 billion a year in health costs that we clearly could spend better elsewhere,” she said.

But the press questions shifted to food labels when a reporter pressed officials about new food-labeling standards being promoted by the government.

The standards are part of a much larger push by medical professionals to regulate the food sector. The medical professionals, led by the Atlanta-based Centers for Disease Control and Prevention, have allied with professional advocacy groups, such as Center for Science in the Public Interest, and with leading Democratic politicians, to blame the food-sector for increasing obesity rates in the American population, and especially among African-Americans.

People like to eat the increasing amount of cheap food produced by the food industry, and the rate of obesity has climbed steadily. In turn, obesity has spiked government and private health-care costs, because fat people are more prone to expensive diseases such as heart-failure and diabetes.

Federal health-care bills have risen in step, partly because of obesity’s costs, but also because many medical-professionals and Democrats want the federal government to fund a growing portion of the nation’s health-care spending.

These political interests reinforce each other. Health-care professionals say their expertise can reduce the federal government’s health-care costs, and politicians say they need professional expertise to curb the growing cost of expanding federal health-care programs.

First Lady Michelle Obama, for example, has accelerated the process by simultaneously supporting the Obamacare expansion of government spending, while also establishing her ‘Let’s Move’ anti-obesity campaign. The professional campaign is aimed chiefly at African-Americans, and urges parents and children to exercise more and to eat carefully.

In April, the FDA published a new set of rules requiring restaurants to show the calories in each menu item, and the Federal Trade Commission released a set of guidelines for food that is marketed to children. These steps were mandated by the 2009 Obamacare health-sector law.

When asked if the government would extend tobacco-style regulations to food deemed fattening, Sebelius told the reporters that the federal guidelines are only voluntary.

In the same press conference, Margaret Hamburg, the FDA’s chief, added that “we need to work with industry to provide consumers … with the best possible information about nutrition and health so that we can all make good choices in terms of promoting and protecting health.”

“The food industry recognizes there are ways they can improve,” said Hamburg. “We certainly have a vested interest in that as a public health agency, and we want to work with them on that.”

“When the combined voice of the four most important regulatory agencies for [your industry] speak, it is hard for companies to ignore those guidelines, even if you feel they are unwarranted or unfounded,” said McBride. “Industry shares Ms. Obama’s goal of solving childhood obesity within a generation, and we will continue to work with government stakeholders towards that goal,” he said.

Sebelius deflected questions about whether food officials would mandate distressing pictures on food they consider unhealthy.  (For Now)

SECRETARY SEBELIUS: Well, again, I think tobacco is unique. It is a product that is the number one cause of preventable death. We know that there are strategies that can be very effective, because they’ve been in place. We also know that we’ve been stalled in this country. So I think this effort about tobacco regulation, efforts around tobacco cessation, has been decades-old and is something that is a unique situation.

Having said that, I do think that there are going to be ongoing discussions — as you look at the underlying health care costs, where we spend 75 cents of every health care dollar treating chronic disease — what are the areas, if you want to lower health costs and have a healthier country, that you can focus on? Certainly, tobacco and obesity become two of the major underlying causes. So the work around obesity and healthier, more nutritious eating, more exercise will continue to be I think an ongoing focus.

I think this is some space that is going to continue to have a robust conversation, because, again, it has a lot to do with underlying health costs and overall health of our nation. (Aka ObamaCare)🙂

But as she stepped off the podium, Sebelius finally threw an answer back to the reporter who had asked if distressing images would be mandated for fattening foods. “Just lots of celery stalks and broccoli,” she said. (

So put down that cookie Fatso!!

And that Microwave Dinner, EVIL!

The Food Police are Coming For you Tubby!

Mama Government does not approve.

The government knows better.

Tony the Tiger, some NASCAR drivers and cookie-selling Girl Scouts will be out of a job unless grocery manufacturers agree to reinvent a vast array of their products to satisfy the Obama administration’s food police.

Either retool the recipes to contain certain levels of sugar, sodium and fats, or no more advertising and marketing to tots and teenagers, say several federal regulatory agencies.

The same goes for restaurants.

It’s not just the usual suspected foods that are being targeted, such a thin mint cookies sold by scouts or M&Ms and Snickers, which sponsor cars in the Sprint Cup, but pretty much everything on a restaurant menu.

Although the intent of the guidelines is to combat childhood obesity, foods that are low in calories, fat, and some considered healthy foods, are also targets, including hot breakfast cereals such as oatmeal, pretzels, popcorn, nuts, yogurt, wheat bread, bagels, diet drinks, fruit juice, tea, bottled water, milk and sherbet.

Food industries are in an uproar over the proposal written by the Federal Trade Commission, Centers for Disease Control and Prevention, Food and Drug Administration and the U.S. Department of Agriculture.

“The most disturbing aspect of this interagency working group is, after it imposes multibillions of dollars in restrictions on the food industry, there is no evidence of any impact on the scourge of childhood obesity,” said Dan Jaffe, executive vice president of the Association of National Advertisers.

The “Interagency Working Group on Food Marketed to Children, Preliminary Proposed Nutrition Principles to Guide Industry Self-Regulation Efforts” says it is voluntary, but industry officials say the intent is clear:  Do it, or else.

“When regulators strongly suggest a course of action, it’s treated as a rule, not a suggestion,” said Scott Faber, vice president of federal affairs for the Grocery Manufacturers Association.  “Industry tends to heed these suggestions from our regulators, and this administration has made it clear they are willing to regulate if we don’t implement their proposal.”

It’s not just the food industry that will be impacted.  Hundreds of television shows that depend on the advertising revenue, such as the Nickelodeon Channel, ESPN, and programs including “American Idol” will be affected, critics of the proposal say—at a cost of $5.8 trillion in marketing expenditures that support up to 20 million American jobs.

If the food is not reformulated, no more ads or promotions on TV, radio, in print, on websites, as well as other digital advertising such as e-mail and text messaging, packaging, and point-of-purchase displays and other in-store marketing tools; product placement in movies, videos, video games, contests, sweepstakes, character licensing and toy branding; sponsorship of events including sport teams and individual athletes; and, philanthropic activity tied to branding opportunities.

That includes softball teams that are sponsored by food companies and school reading programs sponsored by restaurants.

“The Interagency working group recommends that the food industry, through voluntary self-regulatory efforts, make significant improvements in the nutritional quality of foods marketed to children and adolescents ages 2 to 17 years,” the proposal says.

“By the year 2016, all food products within the categories most heavily marketed directly to children should meet two basic nutrition principles.  Such foods should be formulated to … make a meaningful contribution to a healthful diet and minimize the content of nutrients that could have a negative impact on health and weight.”

The foods most heavily marketed directly to children and adolescents fall into 10 categories: “breakfast cereals, snack foods, candy, dairy products, baked goods, carbonated beverages, fruit juice and non-carbonated beverages, prepared foods and meals, frozen and chilled desserts, and restaurant foods.”

Beth Johnson, a dietician for Food Directions in Maryland, said many of the foods targeted in this proposal are the same foods approved by the federal government for the WIC nutrition program for women, infants and children.

“This doesn’t make any sense whatsoever,” Johnson said.  “It’s not going to do anything to help with obesity.  These are decisions I want to make for my kids.  These should not be government decisions.” (Human Events)

But it will make a bunch of Liberals “feel good” that they have “done something” to save kids from evil capitalists trying to make them fat!🙂

Rejoice!  The Government is here to save you and your Kids from YOU!

They’rrre Grrrreattt!🙂