Saturday, August 30, 2014
Posted by Steve Bartin at 8:56 PM
Wisconsin State Journal reports on socialism:
Mell paid $1,000 in closing costs plus other fees associated with the purchase, and — in a major piece of making it possible — received $42,000 in gift equity through the program to use as a down payment on the $130,000 mortgage from U.S. Bank. The gift equity represented the home’s increased value during the nearly 11 years she lived there, plus the four years that a previous participant who quit the program had rented it.The "special program" you are paying.
Posted by Steve Bartin at 8:11 PM
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USA Today has an update on national socialism here in America:
When Congress passed the Affordable Care Act, it required health insurers, hospitals, device makers and pharmaceutical companies to share in the cost because they would get a windfall of new, paying customers.Fascism trumps federalism and the freedom to be left alone.
But with an $8 billion tax on insurers due Sept. 30 — the first time the new tax is being collected — the industry is getting help from an unlikely source: taxpayers.
States and the federal government will spend at least $700 million this year to pay the tax for their Medicaid health plans. The three dozen states that use Medicaid managed-care plans will give those insurers more money to cover the new expense. Many of those states — such as Florida, Louisiana and Tennessee — did not expand Medicaid as the law allows, and in the process turned down billions in new federal dollars.
Other insurers are getting some help paying the tax as well. Private insurers are passing the tax onto policyholders in the form of higher premiums. Medicare health plans are getting the tax covered by the federal government via higher reimbursement.
State Medicaid agencies say they have little choice but to pay the tax for health plans they hire to insure their poorest residents. That's because the tax is part of the health plans' costs of doing business. Federal law requires states to pay the companies adequate rates.
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The New York Times reports:
Six years after being struck by economic crisis, Europe is facing a fresh downturn, with few new ideas on the table for reigniting growth and deepening political divisions over the austerity policies that many blame for worsening the malaise.Keynesian economics update.
Even as the United States economy rebounds from its worst recession since the 1930s, Europe is heading in the opposite direction. A halting recovery that took hold in the 18-nation euro currency bloc in the last year has now gone into reverse as Germany, France and Italy, its three largest economies, stumble anew. Some analysts say the region could be headed for another full-scale recession — a slowdown that could have ramifications in the United States, Europe’s biggest trading partner. For American companies that do business in Europe, profits would suffer.
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Illinois Review reports:
A New York couple fined $13,000 for choosing to hold to their religious convictions rather than host a lesbian wedding ceremony will no longer be hosting any weddings, they announced Friday.Will black business owners one day have to serve the KKK ?
Cynthia and Robert Gifford said they would not go against their religious beliefs, so they would not schedule any further weddings in the future. ”Since the order essentially compelled them to do all ceremonies or none at all, they have chosen the latter in order to stay true to their religious convictions, even though it will likely hurt their business in the short run,” their Alliance Defending Freedom attorney James Trainor told The Blaze.
Posted by Steve Bartin at 10:42 AM
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Rahm and His Financial Angel, Republican Candidate For Ill. Gov. Bruce Rauner: An American Love Story
The Chicago Tribune front page Sunday headline story about true love.
Posted by Steve Bartin at 10:11 AM
Bloomberg Businessweek reports:
With the rise of “cashless” turnpikes, where tolls are collected via a device such as EZ-Pass rather than at tollbooths, rental car companies have found two ways to pass those costs on to their customers, both unpopular: Customers can choose to rent a pass for as much as $20 a day, which they’ll pay whether or not they pass through a toll plaza, or they can pay the fines for going through the lanes without a pass, plus a hefty processing fee tacked on by the rental company.What some politicians will do to tax those who can't vote in their state!
Customers are ticked at what seems like yet another charge, like fees for checked baggage. After a Florida Dollar Rent a Car added $30 in administrative fees to a bill for $2.74 in tolls, Roxanna Usher of Redwood Valley, Calif., vented her spleen on the entire state. “I’m angry beyond belief and can’t even imagine coming back to your state,” she wrote in a Jan. 13 complaint to Florida’s attorney general. “Talk about a corrupt state! It’s disgusting what you’re doing to tourists—the mainstay of your economy.”
Posted by Steve Bartin at 7:32 AM
Detroit Expected $55 Million in Property Tax Revenue; It Brought in $6.7 Million Finance expert: Missed projections 'compares to that in many third world cities'
Michigan Capitol Confidential reports:
In the fourth quarter of its fiscal year 2014, the city of Detroit projected it would bring in $55 million in property taxes. Instead, it collected just $6.7 million, about $48.3 million short of what it expected.The great moments of ObamaCare.
The city revealed the shortfall in its most recent filing with the Michigan Department of Treasury by Emergency Manager Kevyn Orr.
Posted by Steve Bartin at 7:26 AM
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The Sacramento Bee reports:
Suicide is now the most prevalent cause of death in California resulting from the misuse of a firearm, slightly outpacing murder and far outpacing accidents, the latest state figures show.Just a reminder the next time a gun banner wants to tell you the facts about "guns and murders".
The number of gun-related murders has fallen sharply in California during the last decade; the number of gun-related suicides has not. About 1,540 Californians killed themselves with a gun in 2012 while about 1,430 were murdered with a gun.
The trend diverges sharply by race. White Californians are about three times as likely as blacks and roughly six times as likely as Hispanics to kill themselves with a firearm. But blacks are 15 times more likely to die from a firearm-related murder than whites; Hispanics are four times as likely.
Age also matters: California white males 50 and older are, by a wide margin, the most likely group to use a firearm to commit suicide.
Posted by Steve Bartin at 7:08 AM
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The Hill reports:
The Obama administration is employing an ObamaCare contractor that was once based in the tax haven of Bermuda, even as it assails corporations for lacking the “economic patriotism” to pay taxes.Imagine that.
Accenture was awarded a contract in January that's now grown to well over $100 million to make improvements to HealthCare.gov, the federal enrollment portal that has caused a slew of headaches for President Obama.
Posted by Steve Bartin at 6:46 AM
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Friday, August 29, 2014
Posted by Steve Bartin at 10:06 PM
IBD reports on public education:
According to Pennsylvania Sen. Pat Toomey, 275 U.S. teachers have been accused of abuse since Jan. 1. And that's only those who've been accused. By comparison, the Catholic League estimates seven credible sexual abuse cases each year for 40,000 priests.The sad moments of public education.
The most widely cited study available, conducted in 2004 by the U.S. Education Department, estimated that 1-in-10 students will be sexually abused by a teacher during their years in school. One-in-10.
A February 2012 Slate.com article asked: "How many kids are sexually abused by their teachers?" The alarming answer: "Probably millions." It's an epidemic.
If so, why the silence? For one, teachers unions don't want the truth to complicate contract talks and tarnish teachers' carefully cultivated image with the public. Administrators say it's almost impossible to fire a teacher.
Posted by Steve Bartin at 9:15 PM
Posted by Steve Bartin at 8:42 PM
The Tennessean reports:
Longtime Franklin Alderman Dana McLendon is a lawyer, an outspoken gun-rights advocate and a married father of two. But his biggest claim to fame may be as a self-proclaimed dating expert thanks to an online video that’s gone viral.Here's the video.
The video, “Hot Crazy Matrix: A Man’s Guide to Women,” features McLendon standing at a white-board and detailing a “hot-to-crazy” scale to help men looking for women. The matrix features such areas such as the “danger zone,” the “date zone,” the “wife zone” and the “unicorn zone.” His guide for women looking for men — which he covers in the final minute of the seven-minute video — is much simpler and is based on looks and how much money a guy may or may not have.
Though the idea is a riff on a similar dating diagram seen on the TV show “How I Met Your Mother,” McLendon’s video has clearly hit a nerve.
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Illinois Review reports:
With mid-term elections looming, Illinois' U.S. Sen. Dick Durbin joined his left-wing colleague Congressman Luis Gutiérrez (D-IL), in calling on President Obama to act through executive order on immigration.Who's supposed to make for the illegals with grey hair showing up to your local public school?
Voicing traditional liberal bromides, Durbin said: “Voices of hatred, voices of division, voices that tell us we should not embrace the diversity of this country, that we shouldn’t show the sense of caring and compassion for those less fortunate that come to our shores and borders. We’re being tested again, and I know we can pass that test.”
Posted by Steve Bartin at 3:51 PM
Posted by Steve Bartin at 3:41 PM
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City Journal on rent-seeking out of control:
Modern “progressives” are not, as some economic conservatives would say, socialists. In fact, today’s so-called progressives are not even particularly progressive, at least in the usual sense of seeking to redistribute wealth from rich to poor. As Fred Siegel has noted, contemporary progressivism is an upper-middle-class movement that caters to the social libertarianism of coastal elites, while paying lip service to left-wing economic concerns. Even when modern progressives do support economic development, they often do so in ways that stand traditional progressivism on its head—redistributing wealth upward to favored industries.No wonder the entertainment industry wants a statist society: they enjoy ripping off taxpayers. No word yet on when Obama and Dick Durbin will ask the Hollywood types to pay their fair share as an act of patriotism.
It would be hard to find a better example of this than Governor Andrew Cuomo’s announcement last month that New York State will lavish $16 million in giveaways on CBS to keep The Late Show in Manhattan when urbane hipster Stephen Colbert succeeds David Letterman as host next year. The CBS handout follows an even sweeter deal for NBC, which received over $20 million in tax credits and other funding to bring The Tonight Show back to New York from Los Angeles when Jimmy Fallon took over from Jay Leno as host earlier this year. The Tonight Show didn’t actually qualify for the state’s $420 million-a-year film and television production tax-credit program, which excludes talk shows. But Cuomo asked the state legislature to carve out an exception for “a talk or variety program that filmed at least five seasons outside the state prior to its first relocated season in New York” and is “filmed before a studio audience of two hundred or more.” E.J. McMahon of the Empire Center for Public Policy branded the provision “Jimmy’s Law.”
Posted by Steve Bartin at 1:29 PM
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America's New Apartheid: white districts are choosing to break away from black cities and go it alone
The Independent on the move to make cities smaller.
Posted by Steve Bartin at 5:54 AM
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