Going backwards.

At times, going “backwards” is a sound notion – a well-ordered military retreat, for example. The two images below are a testament to the insanity that is the “middle east.” How does one contend with “backwardness?”

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Ans thanks to JM for sending this to me.

Roy Filly

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How different countries “feel” about their economies.

How people feel about the economy in which they live is more visceral than academic. They don’t look at GDP data or read the articles on the Merrill Lynch webpage. They wonder if they can afford to buy a new car or repair the wobbly clutch on the old Ford F150. They check their bank account to see if they can take the children to Disney World this year. If they can do these things, they will rate the “economy” as “good.”

The researchers at the Pew Research Center interviewed 45,435 adults in 40 countries about their economic outlook. The results may surprise you. The Chinese are far and away the happiest, repressive government and all. Why is that, ask you? Because, answer I, the notions that modern Democrats rail against as “outdated” actually work. If an economy is growing at a reasonable pace it has a dramatic effect on the populace. A rising tide does lift all boats. The wealth created by “the rich” does “trickle down” (although I hate that term).

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Roy Filly

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Two photographs worth viewing and thinking about.

China; it has certainly been an amazing story. It has gone from 3rd world poverty to surpassing the US GDP in a remarkably short time. Grasping the magnitude of this change is difficult for the average person to comprehend. These images will cement it in you mind.

The photograph on the left was taken of the Shanghai skyline in 1987. The photograph on the right was taken in 2013 – just 26 years later.

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Roy Filly

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Obamacare shocker!

OK, so my title is a little provocative. But it is time to take a walk down memory lane. Do you remember when the President made the following statements? It was during his final pitch for his health care plan.

“… everybody is covered — and this is a very important thing — unless everybody is covered, we will never be able to fully put the brakes on health care inflation.”

“Some call it an employer mandate, but I think it’s the fairest way to achieve responsibility in the health care system… And it’s the easiest for ordinary Americans to understand, because it builds on what we already have and what already works for so many Americans.”

“If you’re a small business with fewer than 50 employees, you’ll get a subsidy. If you’re a firm that provides only very limited coverage, you may have to pay more… If you’re a young single person in your twenties and you’re already insured, your rates may go up somewhat because you’re going to go into a big pool with middle-aged people and older people,” the president said. “And we want to enable people to keep their insurance even when someone in their family gets sick… If you currently get your health insurance through your job, under our plan, you still will. And for the first time, everybody will get to choose from among at least three plans.”

I am confident that all of those remarks bring back to your mind the run up for final senate vote on Obamacare. But if they did, your memory has failed you!

Those remarks were made by none other than President William Jefferson Clinton on September 22, 1993. In August 1994, Democratic Senate Majority Leader George Mitchell introduced a compromise proposal that would have delayed requirements of employers until 2002, and exempted small businesses. However, “even with Mitchell’s bill, there were not enough Democratic Senators behind a single proposal to pass a bill, let alone stop a filibuster.” What changed? 

My friends, Obamacare is simply Hillarycare with a new bow on it.

[Source: The Clintonian roots of Obamacare, by Scott Gottlieb]

And thanks to HP for sending this to me.

Roy Filly

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I know you want to be PC!

I’m not sure what it is about me, but I hate all this political correctness cr*p! You, however, may feel differently. So here is a chart to help you from a “person of advanced age and a European-American individual who is a resident of the United States. ”

The University of New Hampshire has come up with a new “bias-free language guide.” Praise the Lord!

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If your having trouble with pronouns these days because of gender identity issues, the following chart will help:

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And thanks to ALF for sending this to me.

Roy Filly

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Our President likes to brag!

Our President likes to brag. Examples include that he “cut the deficit in half.” Wow! It’s not that difficult to cut a trillion-dollar deficit “in half,” especially after Sequestration. It still leaves us with a deficit of $500 billion. He bragged that “he brought all the military home from Iraq.” That netted us ISIS and chaos throughout northern Africa and the Middle East.

More recently he has bragged that health care costs are gong down under Obamacare. Let’s look at the data.

[Source: Health Spending Leaps Upward As ObamaCare Takes Effect, by John Merline]

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Health care costs began declining during President Bush’s tenure. No one fully understands why this trend began. Obamacare was signed into law in October of 2010. However, there was a significant lag before its provisions took effect. Many of Obamacare’s provisions are currently in effect, but it is still not fully in effect. The remaining provisions continue to roll out until 2022. October 1, 2013 saw the less-than-spectacular roll-out of HealthCare.gov. Although the bulk of its provisions, taxes and programs rolled out in 2013, it would be difficult to argue that the law had any significant effect on healthcare spending until 2014. These data, you will note, are from the Centers for Medicare and Medicaid Services – CMMS – (i.e., that data was not researched by the Tea Party).

As the graph clearly shows, national health spending jumped 5.5% in 2014. — the steepest climb in seven years — as Obamacare’s Medicaid expansion and insurance subsidies took effect. Worse still, spending by the federal government jumped 10.1% last year. The lesser overall average was because of the PRIVATE SECTOR! CMMS also notes that by 2024, the government will account for 47% of national health spending. 

Our President also bragged that Obamacare would “bend the cost curve down.” Oops!

Can I be certain that the change noted is due to Obamacare. No, I cannot. But it is certainly no reason for the President to brag.

And thanks to HP for sending this to me.

Roy Filly

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Are you a man or a woman? It’s not an easy question anymore!

To say that the University of California is “quirky” would be a monumental understatement. My employer has outdone itself this time. For purposes of full disclosure it matters not a whit to me how individuals “think of themselves.” Individual freedoms that do not hurt another’s individual freedoms are fair game in my book of rules.

This year entering students and applicants will be asked to identify their “gender.” For the most part when this question appears the choices are “man/woman” or “male/female.” Applicants and entering freshman may, however, become confused when they reach this part of the registration process.

They will now be given seven choices (and, no, that is not a misprint). “Gender identity” now requires selection from among the following:

1. Male

2. Female

3. Trans male/trans man

4. Trans female/trans woman

5. Gender queer

6. Gender non-conforming

7. “Different identity”

Of course the travails of the aspiring, eager, prospective applicant do not stop there when it comes to identifying their “gender.” The applicant will also be required to identify “what sex were you assigned at birth.” Here they catch a break. There are only two choices: “male” or “female.”

Further, they must answer a question about sexual preference. There are four possible responses: “heterosexual” or “straight,” “gay or lesbian” or “fill-in-the-blank.” Imagine if you are a “different identity” and believe yourself to be “straight.” The “fill-in-the-blank” answer to that one must be a daunting mental exercise. And, perish the thought of having to be the administrative assistant that must sort through the “fill-in-the-blank” section!

Oh well, I’m not quitting my job at the University of California tomorrow. But they are a source of continuing entertainment.

And thanks to CAG for sending this to me.

Roy Filly

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Apropos of today’s post.

Apropos of today’s post… perhaps the EPA should start here.

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Roy filly

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How bureaucrat collectivists think.

The Soviet Union was eventually crushed by the inability of its statist rulers to accomplish the myriad tasks that controlling everyone in a large nation requires. At one point, for example, Moscow’s apparatchiks were trying to control 2 million prices daily. How is that possible, ask you? It’s not. answer I. The communists must start with the premise that they do not actually need ‘a plan.’ That’s not how it’s done.The parallelism with what you will read below is astonishing.

My thanks to HP for sending this to me. It was testimony by the head of the Environmental Protection Agency before Congress.

EPA ADMITS CLIMATE REGULATIONS WON’T HELP CLIMATE

In testimony before the House Science Committee on July 9, EPA Administrator Gina McCarthy made some telling admissions. Under questioning from Committee Chairman Rep. Lamar Smith (R-TX), McCarthy continued to refuse to provide the committee the raw data and research used to develop its Clean Power Plan. McCarthy said she cannot provide the data because EPA “doesn’t actually need the raw data in order to develop science. That’s not how it’s done.” Rather McCarthy stated EPA used existing research rather than conducting its own research or contracting with others to conduct original research or test existing research to justify the rules. McCarthy claimed releasing the research would violate the confidentiality of those who participated in it.

Really? I recently published my 506th scientific research paper. Anyone with access to a medical library can read any one of them. Publishing a scientific paper is the antithesis of “confidential.” I “violate” my own confidentiality. Perhaps if my research was on how to build a missile defense system it would be secret and confidential, but research on pollution or climate change… get serious!

Smith pointed out other agencies routinely comply with Congressional requests for basic research used to justify expensive regulations and the committee has no difficulty keeping personal information confidential.

McCarthy also admitted she did not know much about carbon dioxide, including what percentage of the atmosphere it makes up or what share humans have contributed. Arguably McCarthy’s most telling admission was her acknowledgment, in a series of exchanges with Smith, the Clean Power Plan may reduce global temperature by a barely measurable amount. Smith stated,

On the Clean Power Plan, former Obama Administration Assistant Secretary Charles McConnell said at best [it] will reduce global temperature by only one one-hundredth of a degree Celsius. At the same time it’s going to increase the cost of electricity. That’s going to hurt the lowest income Americans the most. How do you justify such an expensive, burdensome, onerous rule that’s really not going to do much good …

McCarthy replied, “The value of this rule is not measured in that way [by the amount of warming it prevents] … I’m not disagreeing that this action in and of itself will not make all the difference we need to address climate action, but what I’m saying is that if we don’t take action domestically we will never get started …”

See some of her testimony below (footnote).

Did I read that correctly? “If we don’t take action we will never get started.” Do we really allow logicians of this caliber to run one of our most expensive and intrusive agencies?

Roy Filly

Footnote:

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The presidential elections.

You’ll get a kick out of this.

And thanks to ALF for sending this to me.

Roy Filly

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