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Monthly Archives: September 2013

Greece Is the Word

September 30th, 2013 - 4:23 pm

Daniel Hannan:

Economic collapse, mass joblessness, uniformed paramilitaries, street violence, political assassinations and, now, a round-up of opposition MPs. Euro-wracked Greece is beginning to feel eerily like Weimar Germany.

The beleaguered Athens government has arrested five deputies and 15 other activists from the fascist party Golden Dawn, including the leader, Nikolaos Michaloliakos. The Greek constitution prohibits the outright banning of political parties, but the authorities have got around that by classing Golden Dawn as a criminal organisation and linking it to the murder 11 days ago of a Leftist musician.

Honestly, I’m not going to lose any sleep over Greek fascists unless they demand the return of the Sudetenland.

The Individual Mandate Explained to Young People

September 30th, 2013 - 3:11 pm

I hope that clears things up.

wine glassSo this is a thing:

A new study from Iowa State and Cornell revealed that individuals who use a narrow glass and pour wine while keeping the glass on the table drank less, compared to those who used a wide glass and poured wine while holding the glass, Nature World News reported.

According to the researchers, it all has to do with the drinker’s perceptions of quantity.

“People have trouble assessing volumes,” said Laura Smarandescu, an assistant professor of marketing at Iowa State. “They tend to focus more on the vertical than the horizontal measures. That’s why people tend to drink less when they drink from a narrow glass, because they think they’re drinking more.”

In reality then, the glass is neither half empty nor half full. It’s simply time to refill your drink.

(The engineer will tell you the glass is exactly twice the size it needs to be, but who the hell do they think they’re kidding?)

Salut.

Support for Shutdown Plummets

September 30th, 2013 - 12:40 pm

Rasmussen:

Two weeks ago, 53% of Likely U.S. Voters said they’d rather have a partial government shutdown until Democrats and Republicans can agree on what spending to cut, while 37% said they’d rather avoid a shutdown by authorizing spending at existing levels. Now, a new Rasmussen Reports national telephone survey finds that 45% favor a shutdown until spending cuts are agreed on, and 46% want to move ahead with spending at existing levels.

This drop was inevitable, as I’ve been saying for months — there was no way public support was going to hold up in the face of determined MSM opposition to the GOP and cheerleading for the Dems.

And until someone — seriously, it’s been months and I’m still waiting — can show me a realistic gameplan for turning around that public perception, then it’s Game Over, Man.

Let. It. Burn.

Profiles in Discourage

September 30th, 2013 - 11:50 am

Hillary Rodham ClintonDocumentary filmmaker Charles Ferguson wanted to make a movie about Hillary Clinton, but had to scrap his plans:

“When I approached people for interviews, I discovered that nobody, and I mean nobody, was interested in helping me make this film. Not Democrats, not Republicans — and certainly nobody who works with the Clintons, wants access to the Clintons, or dreams of a position in a Hillary Clinton administration.”

Mr. Ferguson said that even journalists refused to talk.

“Not even journalists who want access, which can easily be taken away,” he said in the media report. “I even sensed potential difficulty in licensing archival footage from CBN [Pat Robertson] and from Fox. After approaching well over a hundred people, only two people who had ever dealt with Mrs. Clinton would agree to an on-camera interview, and I suspected that even they would back out.”

Cowards, the lot of them.

Required Viewing

September 30th, 2013 - 11:45 am

I Think George Lucas Gonna Sue Somebody

September 30th, 2013 - 10:37 am

Scientists discover way to make lightsabers. Really:

Harvard and MIT physicists writing in the new edition of Nature say they have discovered a way to bind photons together in order to form a new molecule which behaves almost exactly like George Lucas’s deadly devices.

Most of the properties of light we know about originate from the fact that photons are massless and do not interact,” said Harvard university physics professor Mikhail Lukin. “What we have done is create a special type of medium in which photons interact with each other so strongly that they act as though they have mass, and bind together to form molecules.

“It’s not an in-apt analogy to compare this to lightsabers. When these photons interact with each other, they’re pushing against and deflect each other. The physics of what’s happening in these molecules is similar to what we see in the movies.”

This is the most exciting thing since the Death Star trench run.

121031085533-darth-vader-story-top

Off the Rails

September 30th, 2013 - 9:45 am

Before there was government-run health insurance exchanges, there was government-run passenger rail:

Amtrak trains running between Boston and New York were delayed up 90 minutes because of the power problems. Amtrak officials said Sunday that the New York-to-Boston Acela Express will resume service Monday morning.

Meanwhile, regional Amtrak trains through that corridor — which have had to switch to diesel, a process that has caused delays of up to 90 minutes — will continue to operate that way and delays may continue, said Amtrak spokesman Craig Schultz.

Con Ed spokesman Allan Drury said the cause of the power failure to the rail line has not yet been determined. “Right now, the focus is on restoring power to the tracks,” he said.

Full service won’t be restored before October 8, they say.

Can You Hear Me Now?

September 30th, 2013 - 8:31 am

I see leaks within leaks:

Since news reports in early August revealed that the United States intercepted messages between Ayman al-Zawahri, who succeeded Osama bin Laden as the head of Al Qaeda, and Nasser al-Wuhayshi, the head of the Yemen-based Al Qaeda in the Arabian Peninsula, discussing an imminent terrorist attack, analysts have detected a sharp drop in the terrorists’ use of a major communications channel that the authorities were monitoring. Since August, senior American officials have been scrambling to find new ways to surveil the electronic messages and conversations of Al Qaeda’s leaders and operatives.

“The switches weren’t turned off, but there has been a real decrease in quality” of communications, said one United States official, who like others quoted spoke on the condition of anonymity to discuss intelligence programs.

Given what we know of the breadth and depth of NSA’s eavesdropping, you have to wonder if this new leak isn’t designed to make al Qaeda feel comfortable using whatever is their new high-level comms link — which NSA is also already listening to.

Fill it to the RIM — With Fail

September 30th, 2013 - 7:14 am

Globe and Mail has a long piece on the long fall from grace of BlackBerry/RIM that I spent some time with over the weekend. Here’s just one sordid detail:

Inside RIM, the brash Mr. Balsillie had championed a bold strategy to re-establish the company’s place at the forefront of mobile communications. The plan was to push wireless carriers to adopt RIM’s popular BlackBerry Messenger (BBM) instant messaging service as a replacement for their short text messaging system (SMS) applications – no matter what kind of phone their customers used.

It was a novel plan. If RIM could get BBM onto hundreds of millions of non-BlackBerry phones, and charge fees for it, the company would have an enormous new source of profit, Mr. Balsillie believed. “It was a really big idea,” said an employee who was involved in the project.

But the plan ran into stiff opposition at senior levels. Not long after Mr. Heins took over as RIM’s CEO in January, 2012, he killed it, with Mr. Lazaridis’s support.

That was it for Mr. Balsillie. Weeks later, he resigned from the board and cut his ties to the company.

“My reason for leaving the RIM board in March, 2012, was due to the company’s decision to cancel the BBM cross-platform strategy,” Mr. Balsillie said in a brief statement to The Globe and Mail, his first public comments on his departure. He declined a request for an interview.

BlackBerry finally did release BBM for Android and iOS a week or so ago, only to immediately pull it due to security and server concerns.

And that’s been the story of BlackBerry for years now — unable to put enough resources behind any one project (Storm, PlayBook, BlackBerry 7, BB10) to make it a success.

Read the whole thing for a series of lessons on exactly what not to do.

Such Violent Rhetoric!

September 30th, 2013 - 6:09 am

Jon Favreau, Professor Ditherton Wiggleroom’s former speechwriter, calls Republicans “hostage-takers” who are “wreaking havoc” because they are “a roving band of anarchists” determined to let “insurance companies do as they please” which “isn’t democracy” and certainly “isn’t America” because they’re “resorting to extortion that threatens the economic destruction.”

“Nihilistic madness,” claims the man pictured here on the left.

favreau-obama-speechwriter

Better tone down that rhetoric before somebody gets killed, Jon.

The Declinist Doctrine

September 30th, 2013 - 5:09 am

KERRY

We’ve now reached the middle stages of an essentially senile foreign policy, which is unable to remember any recent lessons, but maintains perfect memory of ancient forms — without context.

This is how our Secretary of State is able to mistake, or at least pretend to mistake, words on a page for real-world accomplishments. And of course those accomplishments will prove difficult or impossible to achieve in a war zone, which also won’t be affected by words on a page. The only thing of any heft achieved here by Kerry of Wiggleroom is to turn a murderous dictator into a permanent “peace” partner, and restore to Russia a position it hasn’t enjoyed in the Middle East for 40 years.

The collapse of American power in that region has been as swift as it has been mind-bogglingly needless.

UPDATE: What did Wiggleroom talk to Rouhani about?

News You Can Use

September 29th, 2013 - 2:30 pm

DRIVING

Huh. Who knew?

Maybe having sex in cars can work as birth control.

What’s Your Number?

September 29th, 2013 - 1:21 pm

I have 39 of “40 Things Every Self-Respecting Man Over 30 Should Own.” The one I don’t have is the Leatherman, which I’ve never found as nice or as convenient to use as a Swiss Army Knife and a pair of needle nose pliers. And the record player hasn’t been actually wired into anything for years.

Curiously, I had them all except for the Leatherman and an umbrella (of all things) by my late 20s, before marrying Melissa. I came “pre-trained,” as she like to say.

I also don’t understand why a black suit. If you own only one suit, it should be navy. You buy black as your third or fourth suit, after you add charcoal and then maybe something summer weight, like a light gray Glen plaid. But navy will get you in and out of everything from a job interview to a casket.

Are you missing anything?

(Hat tip, Glenn — who’s still carrying a kid’s wallet? Really? Still, he’s got the Leatherman.)

There’s No Excuse for this Much Stupid

September 29th, 2013 - 11:49 am

Mark Steyn:

A few years ago, after the publication of my book “America Alone,” an exasperated reader wrote to advise me to lighten up, on the grounds that “we’re rich enough to be stupid.” That’s to say, Western democracies and their citizens are the wealthiest societies ever known, and no matter how much of our energies are wasted on pointless hyper-regulation for the business class and multigenerational welfare for the dependency class and Transgender and Colonialism Studies for our glittering youth, we can afford it, and the central fact of our wealth will ensure that our fortunes do not change. Since the collapse of Lehman Brothers in 2008, we have been less rich, and our stupidity ought in theory to be less affordable. Instead, it’s been supersized. To take only the most obvious example, President Obama has added six-and-a-half trillion bucks to the national debt, and has nothing to show for it. As Churchill would say, had his bust not been bounced from the Oval Office, never in the field of human spending has so much been owed by so many for so little.

Short version: It can happen here.

A nation can survive political and cultural classes which don’t believe in and support its heritage and its institutions — but not for very long.

We do still have time to turn this thing around, and in the end I believe we will. But it’s going to get rough, much rougher than its been. Because before we can turn it around, we’re going to have to first run out of excuses for stupidity.

Stupid Question

September 29th, 2013 - 10:54 am

EYES

Why are we eying Republicans for a possible shutdown when it’s Professor Ditherton Wiggleroom who refuses to negotiate?

Oh. Right. CBS News.

“Welcome to the New Anarchy”

September 29th, 2013 - 8:34 am

Donlyn Turnbull:

Immediately after Texas Senator Ted Cruz finished his 21-hour mother of all speeches, Senate Majority Leader Harry Reid killed the euphoria by responding with some blunt words for the freshman Senator as well as the Tea Party. “I do believe that what we have here with the so-called Tea Party is a new effort to strike government however they can, to hurt government,” Reid said. “Any day that government is hurt is a good day for them. It’s, as I said before, the new anarchy.”

Reid has a point, although he doesn’t realize it and it’s wrapped up in a lie. Of course, Reid was speaking, so that last part is a given.

Typically when we think of anarchy, we think of the absence of laws, or the inability of the government to maintain law & order. But there’s another kind of anarchy, and that other kind is the inevitable result of the government getting into everything, issuing mandates, spending money it doesn’t have, picking winners and losers, transferring wealth. It’s the anarchy of pressure-group warfare-by-law, where each increasingly atomized pressure group seeks to use the law to gain advantage, or to disadvantage other pressure groups.

It’s thuggery-by-legal fiat, and it’s a worse form of anarchy than simple lawlessness, because it destroys public trust in public institutions. The IRS scandal is a recent example. So is Democrat intransigence on spending.

For a more detailed account of how it works, I’ll refer you to the Modern Progressive Instruction Manual — sometimes also known as Atlas Shrugged.

How to Make Star Wars Great Again

September 28th, 2013 - 2:32 pm

Endorsed.

(Hat tip, Jim D.)

Hint: They Didn’t Steal it from Google

September 28th, 2013 - 12:56 pm

The secret history of the development of the iPhone. It began its life as the “shankphone.”

I’m enjoying Apple’s new (comparative) openness, but I don’t ever expect it to extend to new products.

Sigh.

Clintonian Corruption So Very Clintonian

September 28th, 2013 - 10:52 am

This totally doesn’t stink at all:

A longtime adviser and confidante of Hillary Clinton had “special government status” while the former Secretary of State was at Foggy Bottom, allowing her to work on a targeted project about women’s issues while she maintained her own business, officials told POLITICO.

Maggie Williams, who has been in Hillary Clinton’s orbit for years and who took over her campaign after a shakeup in the 2008 presidential race, was granted “SGE status” to work with the Global Women’s Issues office, officials said.

Global Women’s Issues office? $16,000,000,000,000 in the hole and we have a Global Women’s Issues office? And what does one do while working at the Global Women’s Issues office? This:

“Maggie Williams joined the State Department in May 2011 to develop an actionable plan combining communication, policy development and implementation and other dynamic tools and strategies to focus public attention on issues threatening the lives of women and girls,” said a State Department official. “She stayed on to help implement that ambitious plan.”

Uh-huh.

Here’s an idea. If you’re going to earn six figures for bullshit makework, the least you can do is actually show up at the bullshit makework office.

Is This Lasagne Gay or What?

September 28th, 2013 - 10:18 am

Did you miss Italy’s Great Gay Pasta Kerfuffle of 2013?

Here’s how it started:

Guido Barilla, who controls the fourth-generation Barilla Group family business with his two brothers, sparked outrage among activists, consumers and some politicians when he said he would not consider using a gay family to advertise Barilla pasta.

“For us the concept of the sacred family remains one of the basic values of the company,” he told Italian radio on Wednesday evening. “I would not do it but not out of a lack of respect for homosexuals who have the right to do what they want without bothering others … [but] I don’t see things like they do and I think the family that we speak to is a classic family.”

Now, I fully support Barilla’s right to say stupid stuff that will alienate some customers, or maybe what he said was a smart thing that will cement his company’s relationship with a larger set of customers. His pasta company, his rules. Although my own personal preference is for pasta companies that make good pasta, not political statements.

But of course now a gay Italian lobby group is all up in arms, because, well — that’s what lobby groups do. They’re boycotting Barilla pasta, even after Guido Barilla apologized for having offended anybody.

We’ll give Ace his say on this one, because I think he nailed it:

Yes, not clapping hard enough for the sexual choices of gays constitutes “homophobia” now. “Intolerance” now means “an uncivilized lack of moist enthusiasm.”

I’ve always dreamed in living in a world where I was Free to Celebrate precisely those cult objects that the left demanded I Celebrate. I always dreamed of a world in which I was Free to be rentlessly henpecked, anklebitten, bullied & boycotted by well-funded leftist groups paid to harass citizens every waking moment of every single day.

Actually… It seems to me the question was asked for this reason: The gay lobby wants Barilla (and all other corporations) to affirmatively campaign for their political agenda. Ergo, Barilla’s statement that they won’t be doing that is now defined as “homophobia.”

I say “now” as if this is a new wrinkle. Of course it’s been going on for a quite a while.

Precisely. It’s not enough to leave people alone; you must promote their causes whether you believe in them or not, lest you get labelled a hater.

Now comes Italy’s Garofalo Pasta with an important message.

Garofolo Pasta

Funny, isn’t it, when a food company is just about the food?

And paying customers, of course.

ONE MORE THING: I should add a little something to stop any confusion before it starts.

Yes, I do support gay causes, including gay marriage. But what Equality Italia is trying to do with this boycott isn’t a gay cause per se. It’s the progressive cause of conform, conform, conform. It’s the same way progressives in this country use gay marriage as a convenient club for bludgeoning America’s heterodox churches into the progressive orthodoxy.

And Guido Barilla? If I were in the business of selling the most pasta to the most people, I’d keep my mouth shut and just let the ads speak for themselves.

Good Times, Google, Good Times

September 28th, 2013 - 7:51 am

Good Times

Google has set the Wayback Machine to 1998.

(Hat tip, USA Today.)

Friday Night Videos

September 27th, 2013 - 10:16 pm

The first time I heard Marvin Gaye’s “Sexual Healing” I would have been 13 and riding with one mom and four or five similarly-aged boys in carpool on the way to school in the eighth grade. And I remember thinking, “Can they say that on the radio???” There were, in my brain, at least three question marks at the end of the sentence.

But what a song. It stayed at number one for ten weeks before getting knocked off by the best-forgotten Michael Jackson/Paul McCartney duet, “The Girl Is Mine.” What dreck.

Gaye never had a chance to top that run. The album it came from, Midnight Love, had barely left the charts before Gaye was shot and killed by his own father during an argument over business disagreements. Without Gaye’s example, the Soul artists who followed have been in kind of a confused funk.

There are plenty of artists who can copy Gaye’s phrasing, but none I’ve found has captured his ability to tell a story, to perform a song. Robin Thicke, who I didn’t even know was a person until a couple weeks ago, has a monster hit with “Blurred Lines,” which is little more than a photocopy of a photocopy of a photocopy of Gaye’s “Got To Give It Up.” The video is completely NSFW and totally worth watching with the sound off, because of the topless dancing brunette. I coined the word “acheworthy” just for her.

But the song itself, although ostensibly Soul, is utterly without a soul of its own.

Worse are those performers — I’m looking at you, Mariah Houston Dion — who mistake vocal exercises for a performance.

Maybe it’s the younger artists, maybe it’s the times we live in. Maybe Soul has yet to recover from losing one of its founders so young.

For a while it looked like Soul might be saved by a couple of Englishwomen, as unlikely as that seems. Amy Winehouse had a pure Motown sound that could have been right out of Gaye’s golden days in the ’60s and ’70s. Corinne Bailey Rae still has that big Philadelphia sound. Both ladies seem to understand that the key to soul is knowing when to lay it low. But we all know what happened to Winehouse, and Rae hasn’t released anything longer than an EP in the last three years. I hope she’s spent the time making something as smooth as her self-titled album from 2007. Check out “I’d Like To” from that one to hear something I think Gaye would have been proud to call his own.

But before you do that, spend a few minutes with Marvin Gaye’s second-to-last hit — one of Soul’s timeless classics.

Oh, and it turned out you could say that on the radio in 1982. And by today’s standards it seems almost tame.

Muckraking Like a Boss

September 27th, 2013 - 3:06 pm

Seymour Hersh is profiled by the Guardian:

Don’t even get him started on the New York Times which, he says, spends “so much more time carrying water for Obama than I ever thought they would” – or the death of Osama bin Laden. “Nothing’s been done about that story, it’s one big lie, not one word of it is true,” he says of the dramatic US Navy Seals raid in 2011.

Hersh is writing a book about national security and has devoted a chapter to the bin Laden killing. He says a recent report put out by an “independent” Pakistani commission about life in the Abottabad compound in which Bin Laden was holed up would not stand up to scrutiny. “The Pakistanis put out a report, don’t get me going on it. Let’s put it this way, it was done with considerable American input. It’s a bullshit report,” he says hinting of revelations to come in his book.

The Obama administration lies systematically, he claims, yet none of the leviathans of American media, the TV networks or big print titles, challenge him.

“It’s pathetic, they are more than obsequious, they are afraid to pick on this guy [Obama],” he declares in an interview with the Guardian.

Read the whole thing.

Required Viewing

September 27th, 2013 - 1:53 pm

And the ugly hasn’t even really kicked in yet.

Change it Back

September 27th, 2013 - 12:47 pm

Peggy Noonan had an off-the-record conversation with someone notable:

“In the past we have seen some America overreach,” said the prime minister of a Western democracy, in a conversation. “Now I think we are seeing America underreach.” He was referring not only to foreign policy but to economic policies, to the limits America has imposed on itself. He missed its old economic dynamism, its crazy, pioneering spirit toward wealth creation—the old belief that every American could invent something, get it to market, make a bundle, rise. The prime minister spoke of a great anxiety and his particular hope. The anxiety: “The biggest risk is not political but social. Wealthy societies with people who think wealth is a given, a birthright—they do not understand that we are in the fight of our lives with countries and nations set on displacing us. Wealth is earned. It is far from being a given. It cannot be taken for granted. The recession reminded us how quickly circumstances can change.” His hope? That the things that made America a giant—”so much entrepreneurialism and vision”—will, in time, fully re-emerge and jolt the country from the doldrums.

Not any time soon, because we have a man and and party in charge who simply don’t believe that American is — or should be — exceptional.

Good Company II

September 27th, 2013 - 11:30 am

Yesterday it was George Will, and today it’s Daniel Henninger:

The odds of ObamaCare’s eventual self-collapse look stronger every day. After that happens, then what? Try truly universal health insurance? Not bloody likely if the aghast U.S. public has any say.

Enacted with zero Republican votes, ObamaCare is the solely owned creation of the Democrats’ belief in their own limitless powers to fashion goodness out of legislated entitlements. Sometimes social experiments go wrong. In the end, the only one who supported Frankenstein was Dr. Frankenstein. The Democrats in 2014 should by all means be asked relentlessly to defend their monster.

Republicans and conservatives, instead of tilting at the defunding windmill, should be working now to present the American people with the policy ideas that will emerge inevitably when ObamaCare’s declines.

But instead they’re spending their time and energy on a defund effort which will go nowhere, and getting their own fingerprints all over the Democrats’ crime scene.

Let. It. Burn.

But other than that, Professor Ditherton Wiggleroom was great on the stump:

“One congressman said that Obamacare is the most dangerous piece of legislation ever passed,” Obama said in Largo, Md. “Ever, in the history of America, this is the most dangerous piece of legislation. Providing — creating a marketplace so people can buy group insurance plan, the most dangerous ever.”

“You had a state representative somewhere say that it’s as destructive to personal and individual liberty as the Fugitive Slave Act,” he added. “Think about that. Affordable health care is worse than a law that lets slave owners get their runaway slaves back. I mean, these are quotes. I’m not making this stuff up.”

Here’s the thing. He is making this stuff up — the stuff about ObamaCare creating a free market, and making health care affordable. What ObamaCare does is set up little boutiques where everyone (which is hardly anyone) is forced to sell overpriced, fancy goods to people who are required to buy them.

I’m not sure where that’s free and I’m not sure how that’s affordable — but whatevs, right? Gotta make a speech to drum up support.

But the speech Wiggleroom gave is not the type of speech that wins the middle. It’s the kind of speech that rallies the base. The most recent Rasmussen robopoll shows that only 30% of Americans think ObamaCare will actually improve the economy. Curiously, about 30% of the electorate consists of Democrats.

In other words, the base is pretty well rallied. The Kool-Aid drinkers’ tongues are all stained bright red. And he’s not going to win over any Republicans, period. Certainly not after the way he’s treated them the last five years, beginning with “I won.”

What Wiggleroom needs to do is appeal to middle of the country, where there are still some hearts and minds to be won. His problem is, those hearts and those minds are sitting atop empty wallets.

Empty because of ObamaCare and nearly five years of Obamanomics.

They’re not listening to the Professor anymore — and for good reason.

Kids Are Dumb

September 27th, 2013 - 8:55 am

tearsHere’s today’s ObamaCare Rah-Rah story from USA Today:

Three years ago, Carey’s father passed away from a chronic blood disorder after being laid off and losing his health insurance, rendering him temporarily unable to afford chemotherapy treatments. With her mother unemployed and uninsured, the Emory University junior was required by her school to get insured, but opted out of Emory’s Student Aetna plan because it didn’t offer reasonable coverage.

“The insurance that I have now actually is fine — it has great coverage with low co-pays, but the premium costs too much of my monthly income,” says Carey, 20. “When I had the Aetna plan as a freshman and sophomore, the amounts I paid out of pocket were ridiculous. I had to have a minor surgery that cost roughly $4,000, and I had to pay $2,500 — doesn’t exactly sound like good coverage for a college student.”

Actually, Carey had great coverage. It was exactly the kind of inexpensive, catastrophic plan kids should have, if they can even be bothered to get insurance.

Here’s how insurance works. You’re betting that you’ll need more health care than the insurance company thinks you will, and the insurance company is betting that you’ll need less health care than you think you will. The insurance company has all kinds of actuarial tables to help them figure out how much you’re likely to need, then charges what they think will earn them a profit.

You can get the insurance company to agree to lower upfront costs, if you agree to pay higher backend costs like copays and deductibles.

Young Carey bet she’d stay pretty healthy. That’s a good bet for a 20-year-old. For example, my only medical expenses at that age were booze and aspirin and in that order. I was also making $4.50 an hour, so after all the booze and aspirin there wasn’t anything leftover to pay for luxuries like health insurance. If I’d have been hit by the same thing Carey had been, I’d have been out the full $4,000.

But you know what? $4,000 wouldn’t have ruined me, even when it was damn near half my annual take-home pay. It wouldn’t have ruined Carey, either.

She bought the smart policy, but she lost the bet. Life happens. Then life goes on — even if you are $4,000 in the hole for the privilege.

Judging by what we know of the coverage Carey did choose to buy, she’d have bought the ObamaCare catastrophic plan three years ago, had it been available then. Under its terms, she’d have been left paying $1,600 instead of $2,500.

Go back and re-reread those numbers.

All this fuss, all this griping, all this hand-wringing over saving a college girl $900. She could have saved that much in two or three semesters, just buying used books instead of new ones.

In other words, the Democrats ruined full-time employment, put the squeeze on small business, hammered the GDP, and put Big Pharma and Big Business to jump into bed with Washington so they could do stuff you can’t even find in the Kama Sutra — just to save Carey $900 on an unlikely surgery.

And to make her a lifelong Democrat, of course.

I’m not sure I’ve ever been so angry.

And So it Begins…

September 27th, 2013 - 7:41 am

First crack in the wall holding up ObamaCare:

U.S. Senator Joe Manchin of West Virginia broke ranks with fellow Democrats and said he’d support a stopgap spending plan that delays the individual mandate in President Barack Obama’s health-care law.

“There’s no way I could not vote for it,” Manchin said at a Bloomberg Government breakfast today. “It’s very reasonable and sensible.”

The individual mandate is the linchpin of the law that requires most Americans to purchase health care through government-run insurance exchanges. Republicans, led by a group of newcomers in the House, are pushing to dismantle the health-care law and are using a ticking clock on a possible Oct. 1 government shutdown as leverage.

The Democratic-led Senate will vote in coming days on the stopgap spending plan and before sending it back to the House will remove language that defunds Obamacare. Obama and House Majority Leader Harry Reid, a Democrat, have said they won’t support using the budget to change the health law.

Yeah, well, it won’t take too many Democrats breaking ranks to break the mandate.