Systemic Failure

Are you too picking up on the widening Obama administration pattern here of mismanagement, incompetence, no accountability and completely wasted taxpayer money?

We are from The Government and We are here to Help You… 🙂

Yet another government audit out Wednesday, this one dissecting last fall’s ObamaCare roll-out debacle. Everyone except Obama, he claims, knew about it instantly on Oct. 1 when the half-billion dollar website collapsed, over and over, after three years of development, as in 36 months.

The new report from the nonpartisan General Accounting Office blames systemic problems such as poor planning, lack of follow-up, ineffective oversight and chaotic coordination. Expenses for the website alone stand at $840 million — and that was last March!

“As the cost of the (website) closes in on a billion dollars,” House Energy and Commerce Committee Chair Fred Upton said, “even to this day the system is not fully built.” GoDaddy.com could have done it for much less.

But ObamaCare is just the latest failure. Remember that awful Benghazi night of 9/11/12 when the president was somewhere unknown while four poor Americans died at the hands of a terrorist mob with zero rescue effort attempted?

The Accountability Review Board that investigated that scandal without talking to the woman in charge that night, Hillary Clinton, found systemic failures of management, planning and oversight by the Obama administration crew. But no one was held accountable.

Remember the IRS scandal where high-handed agents illegally targeted Obama’s political opponents and even religious groups for audits and long-term hassles? If these were rogue agents, as Democrats claim, they were rogues who reported regularly to higher-up politicos in Washington during the 2012 campaign. But, wouldn’t you know, all of their computers coincidentally crashed, swallowing many incriminating emails.

Obama runs the White House as such a tight ship that his own lawyer just down the hall neglected to inform her boss of the unfolding political scandal, he claims.

Remember the Veterans Administration scandal? That’s where an unknown number of vets died for lack of timely medical care, workers forged false schedules and accounts to protect their performance bonuses and Obama’s pick, a combat veteran who ran the entire Army, could not figure it out.

VA problems are long-standing. In fact, Obama ran on a promise to fix them seven years ago. But last spring he professed ignorance until CNN’s exposes gained media traction. Now, Obama’s turned to a veteran of corporate wars to attempt reforms.

Obama was off in Kansas City yesterday at another pep rally, mocking House Republicans as his go-to excuse for government paralysis. That doesn’t explain Obama’s first two years when Republicans controlled zip and Democrats couldn’t spend a trillion in stimulus money so it created millions of promised jobs.

For $840 million we can maybe deliver it in a year or two.For $840 million we can maybe deliver it in a year or two.

At the more than 400 fundraisers that Obama does run efficiently, he dismisses these systemic administration failures as phony scandals. But a growing number of investigative agencies within the federal government seem to disagree.

Obama’s serial scandals and his tardy, begrudging responses inevitably blaming others are fast creating the image of Democrats as the folks who can win the White House but can’t run anything once they’re in. Obama can only have Osama bin Laden killed once.

More importantly, the Obama administration’s chronic pratfalls raise serious questions about the viability of his vaunted welfare state where big government takes on more concerns and responsibilities with more regulations, taxes and spending.

Maybe all this will teach American voters not to elect as the nation’s leader an inexperienced, unvetted rookie legislator who hadn’t managed a lemonade stand.

But then, looking at the choice they could have made for president in 2012, maybe not. (IBD)

So here’s a fright f0or 2016 for you…

Somebody actually put this on their car and may have officially invented vision pollution in the process. Be Afraid…

Lunch Politics

First off, I am for healthy foods. Pre-packaged foods are bad for you and you should have more fruits and vegetables. But I’m just not for the Government mandating it. What’s next, the Adults? 🙂

New school lunch standards implemented as a result of First Lady Michelle Obama’s anti-obesity campaign have led to more than 1 million children leaving the lunch line, according to a new report.

The Government Accountability Office (GAO) released a wide-ranging audit of the Healthy Hunger-Free Kids Act nutrition standards last week, finding 48 out of 50 states faced challenges complying with Mrs. Obama’s Healthy Hunger-Free Kids Act.

The new standards led to kids throwing out their fruits and vegetables, student boycotts, higher lunch costs, and odd food pairings such as “cheese stick with shrimp” in order for schools to comply with the complicated rules.

The National School Lunch Program saw a sharp decline in participation once the healthy standards went into effect during the 2012-2013 school year. A total of 1,086,000 students stopped buying school lunch, after participation had increased steadily for nearly a decade.

The report found that 321 districts left the National School Lunch Program altogether, many of which cited the new standards as a factor.

The decline was “influenced by changes made to comply with the new lunch content and nutrition standards,” state and local officials said.

Though the USDA has claimed the standards were “proving popular,” the GAO report cited numerous cases where kids are unhappy with their new menus.

In Georgia, kids resisted the loss of their beloved fried chicken. In New Mexico, whole-wheat tortillas went straight to the trash can. And in Tennessee, after schools replaced familiar flaky white biscuits with a whole-grain variety, one official reported a “severe amount of rejection.”

What began as an effort led by first lady Michelle Obama to serve more-healthful food to American schoolchildren has turned into a clash of cultures across the country — and, now, a high-profile Washington lobbying battle.

So it’s gone Political. YOU will comply with MAMMA Government!! 🙂

Some school officials, particularly in rural communities, have complained about the White House seeking to impose costly food standards on districts that don’t want them. Several of these critics, speaking with reporters this week, complained about cafeteria garbage cans swelling with fruits, veggies and other healthful foods rejected by students.

“We can’t force students to eat something they don’t want,” said Lyman Graham, food service director for consolidated schools near Roswell, N.M. “Many families in the Southwest will not accept whole-grain tortillas.

“Schools can’t change cultural preferences,” Graham added. “And with sky-high produce costs, we simply cannot afford to feed our trash cans.”

BUT WE ARE FROM THE GOVERNMENT AND WE ARE SANCTIMONIOUS CRONY LIBERALS WE KNOW BEST!! So just shut up and eat your government prepared food and like it or else!

So what if your food costs go sky high why the hell would we care? Look what we’re doing to your Gasoline and Electric Bills!

It’s for your Own Good! Government knows Best!  Momma Obama knows best!

And you don’t want to make Momma mad now do you?! 🙂

The standards forced some schools to stop serving peanut butter and jelly sandwiches, and led middle school and high school students to opt for vending machines or buying food off campus to avoid the lunch line.

Jonathan Dickl, school nutrition director in Knox County, Tenn., described anger over the demise of traditional biscuits, a food he called a “mainstay” in the South.

The GAO conducted a nationwide survey of nutrition directors and visited 17 schools in eight school districts for the audit. In each district, “students expressed dislike for certain foods that were served to comply with the new requirements, such as whole grain-rich products and vegetables in the beans and peas (legumes) and red-orange sub-groups, and this may have affected participation.”

The standards brought “negative student reactions.” In one case, middle school and high school students organized a three-week boycott after their school changed their sandwiches to comply with the rules.

All eight School Food Authorities (SFAs) the GAO visited “modified or eliminated” popular food items. One district had to cut cheeseburgers because “adding cheese to the district’s burger patties would have made it difficult to stay within the weekly meat maximums.”

The new standards are exhaustive, including calorie ranges for each age group, sodium limits, zero tolerance for trans fats, and specific ounce amounts for meats and grains. White bread will be mostly phased out beginning in 2014 because only “whole grain rich” items will be allowed.

Portion requirements and calorie limits are also in conflict, leading some SFAs to add unhealthy food such as pudding or potato chips to the menu, and serve odd food combinations in order to meet the rules.

“For example, one SFA served saltine crackers and croutons with certain salads to meet the minimum daily grain requirement and a cheese stick with shrimp to meet the minimum daily meat requirement,” the GAO said.

Unappetizing food led to the biggest problem school officials faced: food waste.

“Students may take the food components they are required to as part of the school lunch but then choose not to eat them,” the GAO said. As a result, 48 out of 50 states cited waste as a challenge.

“In our lunch period observations in 7 of 17 schools, we saw many students throw away some or all of their fruits and vegetables,” the GAO said.

The “morale” for cafeteria workers has also suffered under the new standards.

“Staff in one SFA noted that the increased amount of time and effort to prepare fruits and vegetables also led to morale issues when staff saw students throw the fruits and vegetables in the trash,” the GAO said.

Lunchroom costs are also going up due to the need for “new spoons and ladles to match the new portion size requirements.” Thirty-one percent of SFAs nationwide said they needed additional kitchen equipment to comply with the new lunch requirements last school year.

The law mandated that schools increase the price of school lunches, causing students to stop buying “because they felt they were being asked to pay more for less food.” Kids who pay full price for meals declined by 10 percent last school year, the lowest rate in over a decade.

Challenges with the school lunch program, which cost $11.6 billion in 2012, are expected to continue, as further regulations go into effect. The “first of three” sodium limits starts in 2014-2015, though “many of the foods available from manufacturers do not yet comply with these limits.”

School officials noted, “it will be very difficult” to serve food that is “palatable to students” under the sodium standards.

As for the other requirements, the GAO said students would get used to it.

“Although school lunch participation has declined, it is likely that participation will improve over time as students adjust to the lunch changes,” they said.

Because they will have no choice. Eat Momma Government’s porridge or Starve!

The Adults are next!

<<maniacal Laugh>>

 

Happy Anniversary!

Today is the 4th anniversary of this blog.

Egads, how time flies.

So let’s not let it go to Waste….on second thought….
let’s scroll through the Government Accountability Office’s (GAO) annual report highlighting just some of the waste and redundant programs still funded by our tax dollars.

Wasteful Spending Program #1: $14 million on Catfish Inspections

“Government doesn’t have a spending problem.”- President Obama, Jan. 2013

Not only does government have a spending problem, but with a budget shortfall estimated at $845 billion this year, we have a massive wasteful spending problem. Take for instance Catfish Inspections. The GAO reports that we could easily save $14 million annually by consolidating the overlapping inspection processes on Catfish.

The actual cost of our absolutely critical Catfish inspections are more than $100 million every year, but due to a system riddled with inefficiencies we’re throwing money down the stream. The United States Department of Agriculture, under a provision of the 2008 Farm Bill, has the power to inspect and create inspection programs for meat, poultry, and seafood. One inspection process, Catfish, has grown into three separate taxpayer-funded agencies each with overlapping research and responsibilities.

Wasteful Spending Program #2: $4 Billion by not buying in bulk

“Deficit reduction is not a worthy goal.” – White House spokesman Jay Carney

Ask any big American family how they save money on groceries and household supplies, and they’ll probably pull out a Costco card. We understand that buying in bulk will reduce costs, but sadly our Federal Government doesn’t understand that basic tip for saving tax dollars. Instead each department or agency buys many of the same goods independently, dramatically reducing our national purchasing power and wastefully spending your tax dollars. The GAO reports that, “By simply buying together the critical agencies like the Departments of Defense, Homeland Security, Energy, and Veterans Affairs could save over $4 billion a year.”

Wasteful Spending Program #3: $82 million spent on 7 different camouflage uniforms

“It’s almost a false argument to say that we have a spending problem.” – House Minority Leader Nancy Pelosi

In 2002 the military began a change from two camouflage patterns to the seven service-specific camouflage uniforms, all with different colors and patterns which we have today. The camouflage uniforms look incredibly similar, yet because each branch of the military is developing its own uniforms they are spending nearly $82 million in the design, creation and acquisition of the different uniforms. Instead of the military branches working together, they are all moving separately. The GAO report found that consolidating the uniforms would be more efficient, better protect service members and save millions. During the sequester debate, we made it clear that providing for national defense was a legitimate and vital function of the US Government, but maintained that even the military could trim spending by finding and eliminating inefficiencies. The $82 million in overspending here seems like a great place to start.

Implementing just these three simple changes above would save $5 billion the very first year. With the hundreds of other reforms suggested by the GAO report there would be an annual savings of roughly $250 billion. As Senator Coburn said, “That’s three times what the sequester was. Just in waste, in duplication, in stupidity, and lack of efficiency and effectiveness by the federal government. (It) makes you want to pull your hair out.”

Well said Senator Coburn…well said.

I don’t really have that much hair left to pull though.

You remember the Sequester, the 2% cut in the increase in spending that, as Liberals portray, has brought Hell on Earth, people are starving, kids as being thrown out into street, grandma is eat dog food in a back alley!

Nothing serious. 🙂

So here’s more ditties for ya:

According to the Washington Post, the U.S. government is going to leave 7 billion dollars worth of military equipment behind in Afghanistan.

The NIH plans to spend $509,840 on a study that “will send text messages in ‘gay lingo’ to methamphetamine addicts to try to persuade them to use fewer drugs and more condoms.”

The National Science Foundation has given $384,949 to Yale University to do a study on “Sexual Conflict, Social Behavior and the Evolution of Waterfowl Genitalia”.  Try not to laugh, but much of this research involves examining and measuring the reproductive organs of male ducks.

The IRS spent $60,000 on a film parody of “Star Trek” and a film parody of “Gilligan’s Island”.  Internal Revenue Service employees were the actors in the two parodies, so as you can imagine the acting was really bad.

The NIH has given $1.5 million to Brigham and Women’s Hospital in Boston, Massachusetts to study why “three-quarters” of lesbians in the United States are overweight and why most gay males are not.

The NIH has also spent $2.7 million to study why lesbians have more “vulnerability to hazardous drinking”.

The U.S. government is giving sixteen F-16s and 200 Abrams tanks to the Muslim Brotherhood in Egypt even though the new president of Egypt, Mohammed Morsi (a member of the Muslim Brotherhood), constantly makes statements such as the following…

 
 

“Dear brothers, we must not forget to nurse our children and grandchildren on hatred towards those Zionists and Jews, and all those who support them”

 During 2012, the salaries of Barack Obama’s three climate change advisers combined came to a grand total of more than $370,000.

 Overall, 139 different White House staffers were making at least $100,000 during 2012, and there were 20 staffers that made the maximum of $172,200.

Amazingly, U.S. taxpayers spend more than 1.4 billion dollars a year on the Obamas.  Meanwhile, British taxpayers only spend about 58 million dollars on the entire royal family.

 During 2012, $25,000 of federal money was spent on a promotional tour for the Alabama Watermelon Queen.

The U.S. government spent $505,000 “to promote specialty hair and beauty products for cats and dogs” in 2012.

NASA spends close to a million dollars a year developing a menu of food for a manned mission to Mars even though it is being projected that a manned mission to Mars is still decades away.

During 2012, the federal government spent 15 million dollars to help the Russians recruit nuclear scientists.

 Over the past 15 years, a total of approximately $5.25 million has been spent on hair care services for the U.S. Senate.

The U.S. government spent 27 million dollars to teach Moroccans how to design and make pottery in 2012.

 At a time when we have an epidemic of unemployment in the United States, the U.S. Department of Education is spending $1.3 million to “reduce linguistic, academic, and employment barriers for skilled and low-skilled immigrants and refugees, and to integrate them into the U.S. workforce and professions.”

 The federal government still sends about 20 million dollars a year to the surviving family members of veterans of World War I, even though World War I ended 94 years ago.

 The U.S. government is spending approximately 3.6 million dollars a year to support the lavish lifestyles of former presidents such as George W. Bush and Bill Clinton.

During fiscal 2012, the National Science Foundation gave researchers at Purdue University $350,000.  They used part of that money to help fund a study that discovered that if golfers imagine that a hole is bigger it will help them with their putting.

 The U.S. government is giving hundreds of millions of dollars to the Palestinian Authority every single year.

 Federal agencies have purchased a total of approximately 2 billion rounds of ammunition over the past couple of years.  It is claimed that all of this ammunition is needed for “training purposes”.

During 2012, the National Science Foundation spent $516,000 on the creation of a video game called “Prom Week” which apparently simulates “all the social interactions of the event.”

 If you can believe it, $10,000 of U.S. taxpayer money was actually used to purchase talking urinal cakes up in Michigan.

 When Joe Biden and his staff took a trip to London, the hotel bill cost U.S. taxpayers $459,388.65.

 Joe Biden and his staff also stopped in Paris for one night.  The hotel bill for that one night came to $585,000.50.

If you can believe it, close to 15,000 retired federal employees are currently collecting federal pensions for life worth at least $100,000 annually.  That list includes such names as Newt Gingrich, Bob Dole, Trent Lott, Dick Gephardt and Dick Cheney.

The U.S. Department of Agriculture has spent $300,000 to encourage Americans to eat caviar.

The National Institutes of Health recently gave $666,905 to a group of researchers that is conducting a study on the benefits of watching reruns on television.

The National Science Foundation has given 1.2 million dollars to a team of “scientists” that is spending part of that money on a study that is seeking to determine whether elderly Americans would benefit from playing World of Warcraft or not.

The National Institutes of Health recently gave $548,731 to a team of researchers that concluded that those that drink heavily in their thirties also tend to feel more immature.

The National Science Foundation recently spent $30,000 on a study to determine if “gaydar” actually exists.  This is the conclusion that the researchers reached at the end of the study….

 
 

“Gaydar is indeed real and… its accuracy is driven by sensitivity to individual facial features”

In 2011, the National Institutes of Health spent $592,527 on a study that sought to figure out once and for all why chimpanzees throw poop.

 The National Institutes of Health has spent more than 5 million dollars on a website called Sexpulse that is targeted at “men who use the Internet to seek sex with men”.  According to Fox News, the website “includes pornographic images of homosexual sex as well as naked and scantily clad men” and features “a Space Invaders-style interactive game that uses a penis-shaped blaster to shoot down gay epithets.”

The General Services Administration spent $822,751 on a “training conference” for 300 west coast employees at the M Resort and Casino in Las Vegas.  The following is how the Washington Post described some of the wasteful expenses that happened during this “conference”…

 
 

Among the “excessive, wasteful and in some cases impermissable” spending the inspector general documented: $5,600 for three semi-private catered in-room parties and $44 per person daily breakfasts; $75,000 for a “team-building” exercise — the goal was to build a bicycle; $146,000 on catered food and drinks; and $6,325 on commemorative coins in velvet boxes to reward all participants for their work on stimulus projects. The $31,208 “networking” reception featured a $19-per-person artisanal cheese display and $7,000 of sushi. At the conference’s closing-night dinner, employees received “yearbooks” with their pictures, at a cost of $8,130.

 Do you remember when credit rating agency Egan Jones downgraded U.S. government debt from AA+ to AA?  Well, someone in the federal government apparently did not like that at all.  According to Zero Hedge, the SEC planned to file charges against Egan Jones for “misstatements” on a regulatory application with the SEC.

Normally, the SEC does not go after anyone.  After all, when is the last time a major banker went to prison?

No, the truth is that the SEC is usually just a huge waste of taxpayer money.  According to ABC News, one investigation found that 17 senior SEC officials had been regularly viewing pornography while at work.  While the American people were paying their salaries, this is what senior SEC officials were busy doing…

 
 

One senior attorney at SEC headquarters in Washington spent up to eight hours a day accessing Internet porn, according to the report, which has yet to be released. When he filled all the space on his government computer with pornographic images, he downloaded more to CDs and DVDs that accumulated in boxes in his offices.

An SEC accountant attempted to access porn websites 1,800 times in a two-week period and had 600 pornographic images on her computer hard drive.

Another SEC accountant used his SEC-issued computer to upload his own sexually explicit videos onto porn websites he joined.

And another SEC accountant attempted to access porn sites 16,000 times in a single month.

According to InformationWeek, the federal government is spending “millions of dollars” to train Asian call center workers.

If you can believe it, the federal government has actually spent $750,000 on a new soccer field for detainees held at Guantanamo Bay.

 The U.S. Agency for International Development spent 10 million dollars to create a version of “Sesame Street” for Pakistani television.

 The Obama administration has plans to spend between 16 and 20 million dollars to help students from Indonesia get master’s degrees.

The National Science Foundation spent $198,000 on a University of California-Riverside study that explored “motivations, expectations and goal pursuit in social media.” One of the questions the study sought an answer to was the following: “Do unhappy people spend more time on Twitter or Facebook?”

 In 2011, $147,138 was given to the American Museum of Magic in Marshall, Michigan.  Their best magic trick is making U.S. taxpayer dollars disappear.

The federal government recently spent $74,000 to help Michigan “increase awareness about the role Michigan plays in the production of trees and poinsettias.”

In 2011, the federal government gave $550,000 toward the making of a documentary about how rock and roll contributed to the fall of the Soviet Union.

 The National Institutes of Health has contributed $55,382 toward a study of “hookah smoking habits” in the country of Jordan.

 The federal government gave $606,000 to researchers at Columbia University to study how heterosexuals use the Internet to find love.

A total of $133,277 was recently given to the International Center for the History of Electronic Games for video game preservation.  The International Center for the History of Electronic Games says that it “collects, studies, and interprets video games, other electronic games, and related materials and the ways in which electronic games are changing how people play, learn, and connect with each other, including across boundaries of culture and geography.”

The federal government has given approximately $3 million to researchers at the University of California at Irvine to fund their “research” into video games such as World of Warcraft.

 In 2011, the National Science Foundation gave one team of researchers $149,990 to create a video game called “RapidGuppy” for cell phones and other mobile devices.

 In 2011, $936,818 was spent developing an online soap opera entitled “Diary of a Single Mom”.  The show “chronicles the lives and challenges of three single mothers and their families trying to get ahead despite obstacles that all single mothers face, such as childcare, healthcare, education, and finances.”

Last year, the federal government spent $96,000 to buy iPads for kindergarten students in Maine.

 The U.S. Postal Service once spent $13,500 for a single dinner at Ruth’s Chris Steakhouse.

In 2011, the Air Force Academy completed work on an outdoor worship area for pagans and Wiccans.  The worship area consists of “a small Stonehenge-like circle of boulders with [a] propane fire pit” and it cost $51,474 to build.  The worship area is “for the handful of current or future cadets whose religions fall under the broad category of ‘Earth-based’, which includes Wiccans, druids and pagans.”  At this point, that only includes 3 current students at the Air Force Academy.

The National Institutes of Health once gave researchers $400,000 to study why gay men in Argentina engage in risky sexual behavior when they are drunk.

 The National Institutes of Health once gave researchers $442,340 to study the behavior of male prostitutes in Vietnam.

 The National Institutes of Health once spent $800,000 in “stimulus funds” to study the impact of a “genital-washing program” on men in South Africa.

 The National Science Foundation recently spent $200,000 on a study that examined how voters react when politicians change their stances on climate change.

The federal government recently spent $484,000 to help build a Mellow Mushroom pizzeria in Arlington, Texas.

 At this point, China is holding over a trillion dollars of U.S. government debt.  But that didn’t stop the United States from sending 17.8 million dollars in foreign aid to China in 2011.

 The U.S. Department of Agriculture gave the largest snack food maker in the world (PepsiCo Inc.) a total of 1.3 million dollars in corporate welfare that was used to help build “a Greek yogurt factory in New York.”

 The National Science Foundation recently gave a whopping $697,177 to a New York City-based theater company to produce a musical about climate change.

The federal government once shelled out $2.6 million to train Chinese prostitutes to drink responsibly.

 The U.S. Department of Agriculture once handed researchers at the University of New Hampshire $700,000 to study methane gas emissions from dairy cows.

 The federal government has spent $175,587 “to determine if cocaine makes Japanese quail engage in sexually risky behavior”. (zero hedge)

But remember the Sequester has ruined everyone and everything! 🙂

Political Cartoons by Lisa Benson

Political Cartoons by Jerry Holbert

 Political Cartoons by Michael Ramirez
Political Cartoons by Gary Varvel

Surprise Surprise!

In September 2009, President Obama promised the country that “I will not sign a plan that adds one dime to our deficits — either now or in the future.”

And if you thought he was being truthful, you really are a naive.

But it turns out Obama did sign such a plan — in fact, ObamaCare could add upwards of 180 billion dimes to the deficit in its first 10 years, an IBD analysis of various official budget reports found.

And when the Medicare cuts that were double counted as both cost and savings don’t happen for political reasons then it will skyrocket even more.

According to the Congressional Budget Office’s initial forecast made in March 2010, ObamaCare was supposed to cut the deficit a total of $124 billion in its first decade. Democrats seized on this to show Obama had lived up to his promise.

Almost as soon as Obama signed the law, however, his administration started making changes that added costs and cut revenues. The most recent was the one-year delay in the employer mandate.

The result is instead of a $124 billion deficit cut from 2010 to 2019, ObamaCare will likely add about $18 billion in red ink over those same years. And that assumes nothing else changes in the years ahead.

Which it will.

Costly Delays

When the administration announced the employer mandate delay, it said its decision resulted from business complaints about complex reporting requirements.

What it didn’t say is it would cost as much as $10 billion in lost revenues, which is how much the CBO expected in fines from companies that didn’t provide health benefits to workers that first year.

In addition, experts believe the delay will push more people into the subsidized exchanges, which could add as much as $5.3 billion in taxpayer costs, according to an analysis by the Committee for a Responsible Federal Budget.

Meanwhile, the Obama administration has also been putting off steep cuts to the Medicare Advantage program, which were supposed to help cover ObamaCare costs.

Medicare Advantage lets seniors choose from an array of private health plans, with premiums largely paid by Medicare. About 28% have enrolled in one of these plans.

Obama has been critical of Medicare Advantage, saying it provided “unwarranted subsidies” that “pad their profits but don’t improve the care of seniors.” And ObamaCare planned to squeeze $136 billion out of it between 2010 and 2019.

But just as these cuts were set to bite, the administration started handing out $8.35 billion in “quality improvement” bonuses to Advantage companies, under the guise of a “demonstration project.”

The bonuses eliminated most of the scheduled cuts in 2012, according to the Government Accountability Office, which also challenged the claim that it was a legitimate demonstration project. That led to charges that Obama was just postponing the cuts to avoid upsetting seniors in an election year.

Just like now. 🙂

He wants to escape any of the blame for this monster and for it to be “his legacy” and for it not to effect HIM while in office, after that then it will be someone elses fault! And they just suck it up…

Earlier this year, his administration again reversed course on Medicare Advantage cuts, turning a planned 2.3% reduction in payments for 2014 into a 3.3% increase. Regulators claimed the payment boost resulted from a new methodology, but the change came after a flurry of protests from industry and lawmakers.

CLASS Dismissed

And in October 2011, Obama jettisoned an ObamaCare program, called CLASS, that was supposed to provide subsidized long-term care insurance for seniors.

Because CLASS collected premiums for years before paying any benefits, it appeared to cut ObamaCare’s costs by $72 billion in the first 10 years.

But the program was so badly designed it would have gone bankrupt soon after that, and so the administration dumped it.

Just like they want to dump the medical devices tax.

That decision, however, vaporized more than half of ObamaCare’s promised deficit cuts.

After accounting for all these changes, along with overall changes in the CBO’s cost projections, the law is now on track to add to the federal deficit in the first 10 years, albeit by a relatively small amount.

Supporters argue that even with these changes ObamaCare is still cutting deficits because it’s lowering health spending and improving efficiency, and these savings will grow over time as deeper Medicare cuts and bigger tax bills kick in.

But a January report from the Government Accountability Office found that claims of long-term ObamaCare deficit cuts are based on dubious cost-saving assumptions that several independent agencies “expressed concerns about.”

After factoring those out, the GAO found ObamaCare will add $6.2 trillion to deficits over the next 75 years.

Gee, no one saw that coming…
Political Cartoons by Gary McCoy
Political Cartoons by Nate Beeler

Michael Ramirez Cartoon

Political Cartoons by Jerry Holbert

Political Cartoons by Gary Varvel

The Final Arbiters

Thomas Jefferson: When all government, domestic and foreign, in little as in great things, shall be drawn to Washington as the centre of all power, it will render powerless the checks provided of one government on another, and will become as venal and oppressive as the government from which we separated …. — Letter to C. Hammond, July 1821

The Health and Human Services Department earlier this year exposed just how vast the government’s data collection efforts will be on millions of Americans as a result of ObamaCare.

Big Brother will be watching you! And he will know everything…. (and the Supreme Court is the final arbiter -see later farther down)

Sen. Max Baucus, D-Mont., asked HHS to provide “a complete list of agencies that will interact with the Federal Data Services Hub.” The Hub is a central feature of ObamaCare, since it will be used by the new insurance exchanges to determine eligibility for benefits, exemptions from the federal mandate, and how much to grant in federal insurance subsidies.

In response, the HHS said the ObamaCare data hub will “interact” with seven other federal agencies: Social Security Administration, the IRS, the Department of Homeland Security, the Veterans Administration, Office of Personnel Management, the Department of Defense and — believe it or not — the Peace Corps. Plus the Hub will plug into state Medicaid databases.

And what sort of data will be “routed through” the Hub? Social Security numbers, income, family size, citizenship and immigration status, incarceration status, and enrollment status in other health plans, according to the HHS.

“The federal government is planning to quietly enact what could be the largest consolidation of personal data in the history of the republic,” noted Stephen Parente, a University of Minnesota finance professor.

Not to worry, says the Obama administration. “The hub will not store consumer information, but will securely transmit data between state and federal systems to verify consumer application information,” it claimed in an online fact sheet .

And no one will steal or hack anything. 🙂 No Wiki-Snowden… 🙂

But a regulatory notice filed by the administration in February tells a different story.

That filing describes a new “system of records” that will store names, birth dates, Social Security numbers, taxpayer status, gender, ethnicity, email addresses, telephone numbers on the millions of people expected to apply for coverage at the ObamaCare exchanges, as well as “tax return information from the IRS, income information from the Social Security Administration, and financial information from other third-party sources.”

They will also store data from businesses buying coverage through an exchange, including a “list of qualified employees and their tax ID numbers,” and keep it all on file for 10 years.

In addition, the filing says the federal government can disclose this information “without the consent of the individual” to a wide range of people, including “agency contractors, consultants, or grantees” who “need to have access to the records” to help run ObamaCare, as well as law enforcement officials to “investigate potential fraud.”

Rep. Diane Black, R-Tenn., complained that just months before ObamaCare officially starts, the Obama administration still hasn’t answered “even the most basic questions about the Data Hub,” such as who will have access to what information, or what training and clearances will be required.

Beyond these concerns is the government’s rather sorry record in protecting confidential information.

Late last year, for example, a hacker was able to gain access to a South Carolina database that contained Social Security numbers and bank account data on 3.6 million people.

A Government Accountability Office report found that weaknesses in IRS security systems “continue to jeopardize the confidentiality, integrity, and availability of the financial and sensitive taxpayer information.”

A separate inspector general audit found that the IRS inadvertently disclosed information on thousands of taxpayers between 2009 and 2010. In 2011, the Social Security Administration accidentally released names, birth dates and Social Security numbers of tens of thousands of Americans.

If these government agencies can’t protect data kept on their own servers, how much more vulnerable will these databases be when they’re constantly getting tapped by the ObamaCare Data Hub?

In any case, creating even richer and more comprehensive databases on Americans will create a powerful incentive to abuse them among those looking to score political points by revealing private information or criminals who want to steal identities.

A recent CNN poll found that 62% of Americans say “government is so large and powerful that it threatens the rights and freedoms of ordinary Americans.”

What will the public think once ObamaCare and its vast data machine is in full force? (IBD)

More likely, what will they be allowed to think?

The Imperial Judiciary

A House, Senate and president together defending traditional marriage is ruled unconstitutional. Can a Roe v. Wade-like “right” to same-sex marriage — pulverizing religious liberty — be far behind?

Under ObamaCare, the Obama administration is already trying to force religious institutions to violate their precepts and fund abortions, or be found in violation of law. There is little, if any, distance between that kind of disregard for religious freedom and forcing churches to marry same-sex couples — a new kind of “shotgun wedding” for the 21st century.

That is where the imperial judiciary quite clearly intends to take us, running over anything standing in the way. As Justice Scalia’s scathing dissent in Wednesday’s 5-to-4 U.S. v. Windsor ruling observes: “In the majority’s telling, this story is black-and-white: Hate your neighbor or come along with us.”

Justice Anthony Kennedy — Ronald Reagan’s biggest, longest-lasting mistake — joined with the high court’s four liberals, charging in his decision that large majorities of both houses of Congress, not to mention President Bill Clinton, in 1996 chose “to demean those persons who are in a lawful same-sex marriage” today.

The court declared Congress “cannot deny the liberty protected by the Due Process Clause of the Fifth Amendment.” It takes the judicial elite to construe the Bill of Rights’ safeguard against being “deprived of life, liberty, or property, without due process of law” as a license to keep elected officials from acting to protect man’s oldest institution from being revolutionized.

As Scalia noted, the court was “eager — hungry — to tell everyone its view of the legal question at the heart of this case” — so much so that it, unprecedentedly, took on a case in which the five justices actually “agree that the court below got it right.”

The result is “a Supreme Court standing (or rather enthroned) at the apex of government, empowered to decide all constitutional questions, always and everywhere ‘primary’ in its role.”

“The most important moral, political, and cultural decisions affecting our lives are steadily being removed from democratic control” Judget Bork 1996 (!)

Thomas Jefferson: If [as the Federalists say] “the judiciary is the last resort in relation to the other departments of the government,” … , then indeed is our Constitution a complete felo de so. … The Constitution, on this hypothesis, is a mere thing of wax in the hands of the judiciary, which they may twist and shape into any form they may please. It should be remembered, as an axiom of eternal truth in politics, that whatever power in any government is independent, is absolute also; in theory only, at first, while the spirit of the people is up, but in practice, as fast as that relaxes. Independence can be trusted nowhere but with the people in mass. They are inherently independent of all but moral law … Letter to Judge Spencer Roane, Nov. 1819

Thomas Jefferson: You seem to consider the judges the ultimate arbiters of all constitutional questions; a very dangerous doctrine indeed, and one which would place us under the despotism of an oligarchy. Our judges … and their power [are] the more dangerous as they are in office for life, and are not responsible, as the other functionaries are, to the elective control. The Constitution has erected no such single tribunal, knowing that to whatever hands confided, with the corruptions of time and party, its members would become despots. It has more wisely made all the departments co-equal and co-sovereign within themselves … . When the legislative or executive functionaries act unconstitutionally, they are responsible to the people in their elective capacity. The exemption of the judges from that is quite dangerous enough. I know of no safe depository of the ultimate powers of the society, but the people themselves. ….Letter to Mr. Jarvis, Sept, 1820

“The Teahouse of the August Moon”. Glenn Ford plays an American officer attempting to explain democracy to the Japanese after World War II. He says, “democracy is where the people have the right to make the wrong decisions.” The statement is the essence of democracy. If elected officials make the wrong decision on behalf of the people voters can rectify the situation by electing replacement officials to make the right decisions. If non-elected officials make the wrong decisions the people have no recourse other than overthrowing the government.

People don’t become infallible just because they hold a high government office even if they are absolute monarchs who have supposedly been chosen by their deities to run the government. Those of us who are familiar with the history of the Supreme Court known that it is extremely fallible. The Supreme Court has made some extremely bad decisions, particularly.when it has gotten involved in social issues with decisions involving social theories rather than law.

The decision in Dred Scott v. Sanford is easily the worst decision in the history of the Supreme Court. The Court attempted to use the case to deal with the divisive social issue of slavery. Chief Justice Roger Taney’s ruling inflamed northern public opinion against slavery which many northerners regarded as immoral. The decision insured that slavery would be a major issue in the 1860 presidential election. The decision didn’t cause the Civil War, but provided the catalyst to turn the controversy over slavery and broader economic issues into a war.

The 1896 Plessy v. Ferguson decision is the Court’s second worst decision. The Court’s acceptance of the questionable social concept of “separate but equal” condemned generations of black southerners to mistreatment including rape and murder. The Court refused to admit that “separate but equal” was nonsense until the 1954 Brown v. Board of Education decision.

“Separate but equal’ wasn’t the only nonsense theory the Court accepted in the late 19th Century. The Court prevented state government from protecting workers from exploitive employers by accepting a nonsense theory called “freedom of contract”. Under this theory, government protection of workers supposedly prevented their “free” ability to contract with employers. The Court ignored the fact that workers weren’t in a position to negotiate. They had to accept bad working conditions or risk possible starvation. (Free Republic)

So with the trend of making the Supreme Court the final arbiter of everything makes them supremely powerful and that is a very dangerous game.

After all, the people Boo-ing and Hissing the Supreme Court the day before on the Voting Rights Acts are the ones dancing in the street and celebrating the next day!
And Vice  Versa.
If that doesn’t mean the whole thing is unstable what does?
Political Cartoons by Chuck Asay

 Political Cartoons by Steve Breen

Political Cartoons by Gary Varvel

 Political Cartoons by Lisa Benson

Hail Armageddon

Political Cartoons by Michael Ramirez

(Charles Krauthammer) “The worst-case scenario for us,” a leading anti-budget-cuts lobbyist told The Post, “is the sequester hits and nothing bad really happens.”

Think about that. Worst case? That a government drowning in debt should cut back by 2.2 percent — and the country survives. That a government now borrowing 35 cents of every dollar it spends reduces that borrowing by two cents “and nothing bad really happens.” Oh, the humanity!

A normal citizen might think this a good thing. For reactionary liberalism, however, whatever sum our ever-inflating government happens to spend today (now double what Bill Clinton spent in his last year) is the Platonic ideal — the reduction of which, however minuscule, is a national calamity.

Or damn well should be. Otherwise, people might get the idea that we can shrink government and live on.

To a liberal the horror of you not needing them or not needing them more and more is a their worst nightmare. You have to be dependent on them, for everything, including your thoughts. That’s just the way their universe works.

You can’t possibly survive without their “benevolence”, their “fairness” and their “justice”!

And cutting a few days of overspending is like a mortal wound to these guys.

Remember, they are the drug dealers (money) who depend on you being addicted to them.  But they are also Drug addicts who need a bigger and bigger hit to get that buzz of importance and power they crave.

The Obama administration has every incentive to make the sky fall, lest we suffer that terrible calamity — cuts the nation survives. Are they threatening to pare back consultants, conferences, travel and other nonessential fluff? Hardly. It shall be air-traffic control. Meat inspection. Weather forecasting.

On the local level it’s always, Cops, and Firefighters. It’s an all trick.

Then in Phoenix, they pass a Food Tax to create more Firefighters and Cops and don’t do it and now they have a fight to keep or else…Guess what? 🙂

In Education, they never talk about cutting the Administrators and Bureaucrats. The people who SHOULD be cut.

Nope, it’s all about FEAR.

“Fear is the most basic emotion we have. Fear is primal. Fear sells.”

― Max Brooks, World War Z: An Oral History of the Zombie War

A 2011 Government Accountability Office report gave a sampling of the vastness of what could be cut, consolidated and rationalized in Washington: 44 overlapping job training programs, 18 for nutrition assistance, 82 (!) on teacher quality, 56 dealing with financial literacy, more than 20 for homelessness, etc. Total annual cost: $100 billion-$200 billion, about two to five times the entire domestic sequester.

Are these on the chopping block? No sir. It’s firemen first. That’s the phrase coined in 1976 by legendary Washington Monthly editor Charlie Peters to describe the way government functionaries beat back budget cuts. Dare suggest a nick in the city budget, and the mayor immediately shuts down the firehouse. The DMV back office, stacked with nepotistic incompetents, remains intact. Shrink it and no one would notice. Sell the firetruck — the people scream and the city council falls silent about any future cuts.

After all, the sequester is just one-half of 1 percent of GDP. It amounts to 1.4 cents on the dollar of nondefense spending, 2 cents overall.

Because of this year’s payroll tax increase, millions of American workers have had to tighten their belts by precisely 2 percent. They found a way. Washington, spending $3.8 trillion, cannot? If so, we might as well declare bankruptcy now and save the attorneys’ fees.

The problem with sequestration, of course, is that the cuts are across the board and do not allow money to move between accounts. It’s dumb because it doesn’t discriminate.

Fine. Then change the law. That’s why we have a Congress. Discriminate. Prioritize. That’s why we have budgets. Except that the Democratic Senate hasn’t passed one in four years. (1,402 days) And the White House, which proposed the sequester in the first place, had 18 months to establish rational priorities among accounts — and did nothing.

When the GOP House passed an alternative that cut where the real money is — entitlement spending — President Obama threatened a veto. Meaning, he would have insisted that the sequester go into effect — the very same sequester he now tells us will bring on Armageddon.

Good grief. The entire sequester would have reduced last year’s deficit from $1.33 trillion to $1.24 trillion. A fraction of a fraction. Nonetheless, insists Obama, such a cut is intolerable. It has to be “balanced” — i.e., largely replaced — by yet more taxes.

Which demonstrates that, for Obama, this is not about deficit reduction, which interests him not at all. The purpose is purely political: to complete his Election Day victory by breaking the Republican opposition.

At the fiscal cliff, Obama broke — and split — the Republicans on taxes. With the sequester, he intends to break them on spending. Make the cuts as painful as possible, and watch the Republicans come crawling for a “balanced” (i.e., tax-hiking) deal.

In the past two years, House Republicans stopped cold Obama’s left-liberal agenda. Break them now, and the road is open to resume enactment of the expansive, entitlement-state liberalism that Obama proclaimed in his second inaugural address.

But he cannot win if “nothing bad really happens.” Indeed, he’d look both foolish and cynical for having cried wolf.

Obama’s incentive to deliberately make the most painful and socially disruptive cuts possible (say, oh, releasing illegal immigrants from prison) is enormous. And alarming.

Which was over a thousand BEFORE the Sequester not 300 as claimed. It was a just an excuse to do what THEY wanted to do all along anyhow.

Hail Armageddon.

When the people fear the government, there is tyranny. When the government fears the people, there is liberty.
Thomas Jefferson

And Obama says he’s “Not a Dictator”. 🙂
It’s just his way or Armageddon!
Vote for Armageddon! 🙂
Political Cartoons by Henry Payne

 Political Cartoons by Gary Varvel

Michael Ramirez Cartoon
Political Cartoons by Eric Allie

 

 

 

But I Can’t Stop Now!

Michael Ramirez Cartoon

“At one point several weeks ago,” Boehner told the Wall Street Journal, “the president said to me, ‘We don’t have a spending problem.'”

That would be news to Obama’s debt commission, which in its final report made clear that spending is the driving force behind the nation’s debt crisis.

Here’s what the report said: “Even after the economy recovers, federal spending is projected to increase faster than revenues, so the government will have to continue borrowing money to spend.”

The panel added, “Over the long run, as the baby boomers retire and health care costs continue to grow, the situation will become far worse.”

And it recommended: “We should cut all excess spending — including defense, domestic programs, entitlement spending, and spending in the tax code.” (IBD)

But the Hard Core leftist meme seems to be that we can’t not pay the bills we already have so let’s ignore the spending problem.
That’s like saying I’m a shop-alcholic and I spend $3000 day (but take in a 300) and puts $10,000 on the credit card and then says “but I can’t stop now because I have bills to pay!!!”
It’s not rational.
So what we get is irrational partisan, protect-the-party at all costs, screw everyone else.
Political Cartoons by Gary Varvel

By 2022, federal revenues will top 19% of GDP, which is significantly higher than the post-World War II average. But spending will exceed 22%, and keep climbing.

Meanwhile, a Government Accountability Office report concluded that spending is “on an unsustainable long-term fiscal path” and blamed entitlements.

And countless Congressional Budget Office reports have documented how, left unchecked, federal entitlement programs will soon swamp the entire budget.

Apparently Obama didn’t read any of those, either.

When it comes to federal spending, Obama is like the alcoholic who says that the only drinking problem he has is when he can’t get a drink.

And we all drown in debt because of it.
The Following is from The American Academy of Child and Adolescent Psychiatry about children of alcoholics.

A child being raised by a parent or caregiver who is suffering from alcohol abuse may have a variety of conflicting emotions that need to be addressed in order to avoid future problems. They are in a difficult position because they cannot go to their own parents for support. Some of the feelings can include the following:

  • Guilt. The child may see himself or herself as the main cause of the mother’s or father’s drinking.
  • Anxiety.  The child may worry constantly about the situation at home.  He or she may fear the alcoholic parent will become sick or injured, and may also fear fights and violence between the parents.
  • Embarrassment.  Parents may give the child the message that there is a terrible secret at home.  The ashamed child does not invite friends home and is afraid to ask anyone for help.
  • Inability to have close relationships.  Because the child has been disappointed by the drinking parent many times, he or she often does not trust others.
  • Confusion.  The alcoholic parent will change suddenly from being loving to angry, regardless of the child’s behavior.  A  regular daily schedule, which is very important for a child, does not exist because bedtimes and mealtimes are constantly changing.
  • Anger.  The child feels anger at the alcoholic parent for drinking, and may be angry at the non-alcoholic parent for lack of support and protection.
  • Depression.  The child feels lonely and helpless to change the situation.

Although the child tries to keep the alcoholism a secret, teachers, relatives, other adults, or friends may sense that something is wrong.  Teachers and caregivers should be aware that the following behaviors may signal a drinking or other problem at home:

  • Failure in school; truancy
  • Lack of friends; withdrawal from classmates
  • Delinquent behavior, such as stealing or violence
  • Frequent physical complaints, such as headaches or stomachaches
  • Abuse of drugs or alcohol; or
  • Aggression towards other children
  • Risk taking behaviors
  • Depression or suicidal thoughts or behavior

Now consider the denial by the left of the problem, the hatred they spew for anyone even mentioning it and wanting to “fix it”. The Guilt trips, the bribes, the fear, the anxiety of yet another Crisis that doesn’t go to waste.

Fear, Guilt, Intimidation, Anger, Irrational Behavior, Denial…sound familiar?

Even though, not all children of alcoholic parents are adversely affected. An overwhelming number of evidence has shown that alcohol dependence runs in families. So, children of alcoholic parents can often time find themselves following in their parents’ footsteps

The one who don’t of course are ridiculed as “morons” “stupid” “violent” “racist” “neo-con” “baggers”  and you don’t want to be one of those now do you! 🙂

So like most authoritarian dictators you educate them young into your ways before they know it, they are drug addicts just like you.

Welcome to the 21st Century drunk on the power of money and the power that money brings. And all we want is another drink…

And what we really need is an Adult Intervention because we are dying of alcohol poisoning and our kids are drowning because of it.

Political Cartoons by Robert Ariail

Political Cartoons by Eric Allie

 Political Cartoons by Steve Breen

Political Cartoons by Steve Breen