Merry Christmas: Obama Engineers the Death Panels' Return

What did you get for Christmas? Maybe a new cell phone, some clothes, a TV or video game?

You also got the beginnings of a federally funded death panel. Merry Christmas!

When a proposal to encourage end-of-life planning touched off a political storm over “death panels,” Democrats dropped it from legislation to overhaul the health care system. But the Obama administration will achieve the same goal by regulation, starting Jan. 1.

Under the new policy, outlined in a Medicare regulation, the government will pay doctors who advise patients on options for end-of-life care, which may include advance directives to forgo aggressive life-sustaining treatment.

How nice.  This is our president in a nutshell: Public finds out about horrid policy, opposes it, Congress acquiesces and stops it, only to have Obama instate it by executive fiat anyway.

The amusing bonus in all this is that, in 2009, it was the New York Times that did its best to knock down the whole death panel thing.  Now here they are confirming that it has returned.

So...what else did you get for Christmas?  A feast?  Maybe a new Blu-Ray player?

How about federal control of your state's air quality system, which will lead to higher energy prices at a time when gas prices are already sneaking up toward $3 a gallon.  If you're in Texas, that's just what you got.  Merry Christmas!

The U.S. Environmental Protection Agency said it will take control of carbon-emission rules in Texas after Governor Rick Perry rejected new federal regulations intended to combat climate change.

The EPA will decide directly on greenhouse-gas permits for companies seeking to build or upgrade power plants and oil refineries in Texas, the agency said today in a statement. The EPA's nationwide carbon rules, imposed under the Clean Air Act, take effect Jan. 2.

There are a couple of facts on this that are worth pointing out.  One, Texas' air quality regime has been in place since the 1990s, has enjoyed bipartisan support, and has been extremely effective.  But the EPA just cannot abide not having control, and Obama is hell-bent on forcing energy prices to skyrocket via cap and trade, so here we are.  Once again, Congress considered a policy, the public rose up to oppose it, Congress opted out, but President Obama opted in anyway.

Texas is fighting the EPA on this, of course.