My Substitute Reality -You're just jealous cause the little voices only talk to me-

Wednesday April 8, 2020

Fiddling While America Burns

Filed under: Life,Politics — don @ 9:03 am

January 11: Chinese state media report the first known death from an illness originating in the Wuhan market.
January 15: Speaker of the House Nancy Pelosi (D-CA) holds a vote to send articles of impeachment to the Senate. Pelosi and House Democrats celebrate the “solemn” occasion with a signing ceremony, using commemorative pens. That same day, the first person with coronavirus in the United States arrives from China, where he had been in Wuhan.
January 21: The first American case of coronavirus is confirmed at a clinic in Snohomish County, Washington.
January 23: The House impeachment managers make their opening arguments for removing President Trump.
January 23: China closes off the city of Wuhan completely to slow the spread of coronavirus to the rest of China.
January 27: The White House convenes a special task force to deal with the emerging threat of coronavirus.
January 29: The president chairs a meeting of the White House coronavirus task force for the first time.
January 30: Senators begin asking two days of questions of both sides in the president’s impeachment trial.
January 30: The World Health Organization declares a global health emergency as coronavirus continues to spread.
January 31: The Senate holds a vote on whether to allow further witnesses and documents in the impeachment trial.
January 31: President Trump declares a national health emergency and imposes a ban on travel to and from China. Former Vice President Joe Biden calls Trump’s decision “hysterical xenophobia … and fear-mongering.”
February 2: The first death from coronavirus outside China is reported in the Philippines.
February 3: House impeachment managers begin closing arguments, calling Trump a threat to national security.
February 4: President Trump talks about coronavirus in his State of the Union address; Pelosi rips up every page.
February 5: The Senate votes to acquit President Trump on both articles of impeachment, 52-48 and 53-47.
February 5: House Democrats finally take up coronavirus in the House Foreign Affairs Subcommittee on Asia.

It’s pretty clear from this the leaders in this country were not concerned with the coming pandemic.  They were much more concerned with impeaching a President they had hated since his election over 3 years earlier.

Trump hasn’t done everything right but he hasn’t done half the evils the left has accused him of.  The country needs to come together to fight this.  Having TDS makes it a lot harder as people tend to look for “orange man bad” in every story.

Remember the media jumping on the story of the man and women who took “chloroquine” because Trump said it would help?  Lies.  Firstly, they took a fish tank cleaner, not the drug that is typically prescribed for malaria.  Second, the woman at least was a Democrat supporter and not a rabid Trump fan like the media wanted us to believe.  Their desire was to blame Trump for the man’s death so they could discredit him more.

Every time I see a story headline about how the White House is in crisis or how Trump “boiled over” or some other epic meltdown that supposedly happened I simply look at where it came from.  If HuffPo or CNN or MSNBC it’s clear they have an agenda to make him look bad.  Other media outlets except Fox News have an agenda to not make him look good.  Fox News does ignore or twist some stories to make it seem like he’s the messiah.

The bottom line is he’s our President and he isn’t perfect but he doesn’t hate America.  He’s certainly trying to do the right thing and when you listen to the expert Drs like Fauci and Brix they say he listens to them and usually does what they suggest.  He’s not a Darth Vadar regardless of what some think.  I’m still not voting for him in 2020 though.

Wednesday January 24, 2018

This Guy Said It Well

Filed under: Politics — don @ 8:26 am

As I pointed out in the previous post I wasn’t a fan of Trump and didn’t vote for him.  I’m still not a fan but like before I prefer he is in office rather than her.  There is a guy on Quora who posts a lot and he said it very similar to what I feel.  His name is John Cate and here’s his post.

I’ve written quite a bit on the subject before. I had an open mind about his candidacy until he started to embrace the alt-right and people like Steve Bannon, at which point I decided I couldn’t possibly vote for him. Finding both candidates to be totally unacceptable, I voted my principles and cast my ballot for Gary Johnson in the 2016 election.

Insofar as his record as President goes, no one applauded more than me when he demanded that our so-called European allies in NATO pay their fair share of defense expenditures under the treaty they all agreed to. It’s ridiculous that we protected them from Soviet aggression for 45 years after the end of the war, let them get back on their feet and even prosper, and now they basically spit in our faces and won’t even pay their share. I didn’t like the way he went about it, basically playing “ugly American” on Twitter, but he said pretty much the same things I would have said to them behind closed doors. Uncle Sam’s gravy train is done. The EU’s basically at parity with the American economy. Pay your fair share.

And that goes to a lot of my issue with Trump—the man’s lack of diplomacy, both home and abroad, is embarrassing and counterproductive. I’m sure Trump, and a lot of his supporters, would say that he’s getting results. And to an extent, he is. But when you get results by bullying and publicly humiliating other countries, they resent that and they won’t ever forget it. You can sit down with them behind closed doors and say “this is how it’s going to be, if you want to still be allies,” but you don’t read them the riot act on Twitter. Trump is on a power trip and he likes to make people bend to his will. Someday, the bill for his being a dick is going to come due.

It’s already coming due domestically. When Trump became President, he did everything he could via executive orders to enact his agenda, but he quickly found out he could only accomplish so much without support in Congress—and even the Republicans in Congress put limits on his far-right planks, let alone the Democrats. He’s undone a lot of U.S. immigration policy without having a coherent replacement in place, the government is functioning on emergency spending bills, and he’s failed to reform or replace Obamacare. And a big part of the reason why is because he’s such an asshole that people can’t just sit down with him and negotiate a bipartisan solution. Back in the 1980’s, you couldn’t get much further apart politically than President Reagan and House Speaker Tip O’Neill, but guess what? They got stuff done because they weren’t buttheads.

Between Trump’s incessant diarrhea of the mouth, generally reactionary domestic policies, and his tacit support of racists, it’s very hard for me to support him even when he has successes, and he’s actually had more than a few. The freeloaders in NATO are starting to ramp up defense spending to the agreed-to levels. ISIS is all but destroyed, and you couldn’t help but notice that the U.S. and Russia stopped butting heads. And North Korea and South Korea are talking directly to each other for the first time in a long time. He’s starting to make inroads in reducing the size of the federal bureaucracy—even if he’s allowing for the expansion of the Department of Homeland Security, which I despise.

Trump was basically a dick to everyone as a businessman for the last 40 years and got away with it. But that style of “leadership” isn’t suitable for a President. Unfortunately, I don’t think he knows any other way or cares to learn any other way.

Tuesday July 1, 2014

Hobby Lobby is EVIL!

Filed under: Politics — don @ 6:58 am

In light of yesterday’s SCOTUS decision to allow some companies to not provide certain kinds of birth control I got to wondering which ones were still allowed.  Based on the screaming on the left I figured maybe it was condoms or nothing.

Imagine my surprise when I learned there are only 4 forms that Hobby Lobby didn’t want to provide which left 16 that they will.

Here’s an article on which they will and won’t provide.

The Left is foaming at the mouth over the Supreme Court’s Hobby Lobby decision this morning.

“This is going to turn the dial back,” Representative Debbie Wasserman Schultzwarned on MSNBC. The Democratic party’s national chairwoman added: “Republicans want to do everything they can to have the long hand of government, and now the long hand of business, reach into a woman’s body and make health care decisions for her.”

“Today’s Supreme Court decision unfortunately jeopardizes basic healthcare coverage and access to contraception for a countless number of women,”said Democratic senator Jeanne Shaheen of New Hampshire.

Consequently, Senate Democratic leader Harry Reid said that his party now must “fight to preserve women’s access to contraceptive coverage.”

This is not just garbage. It’s an entire landfill on stilts.

Imagine that a woman starts work at Hobby Lobby tomorrow morning — July 1. She joins Hobby Lobby’s health care plan. It includes access, copay-free, to the following categories of FDA-approved birth-control:

  1. Male condoms
  2. Female condoms
  3. Diaphragms with spermicide
  4. Sponges with spermicide
  5. Cervical caps with spermicide
  6. Spermicide alone
  7. Birth-control pills with estrogen and progestin (“Combined Pill)
  8. Birth-control pills with progestin alone (“The Mini Pill)
  9. Birth control pills (extended/continuous use)
  10. Contraceptive patches
  11. Contraceptive rings
  12. Progestin injections
  13. Implantable rods
  14. Vasectomies
  15. Female sterilization surgeries
  16. Female sterilization implants

(This new woman at Hobby Lobby cannot use male condoms or a vasectomy, at least not directly. However, if she chose either contraceptive method, in conjunction with her husband, she would have access to it.)

Further, not only would she have access to these medicines and devices, but Hobby Lobby would fund them. That’s right: while White House press secretary Josh Earnest claims that it “jeopardizes the health of women,” Hobby Lobby’s health plan pays for 16 different kinds of contraceptives for its female employees!

In the Left’s fantasy world, the militant Christians at Hobby Lobby police single female employees to assure that they have not engaged in sinful, pre-marital sex. As for married women, Hobby Lobby deprives them of birth control so that each can deliver a new baby every nine months, for God’s glory, just like in the Old Testament.

Liberals are living in a cartoon of their own making.

Again, Hobby Lobby’s health plan pays for birth-control pills, vaginal rings, contraceptive patches, and other items to help female employees plan their pregnancies. The Left’s arguments to the contrary are — surprise, surprise — lies.

What Hobby Lobby will not cover are four contraceptive methods that its owners fear are abortifacients:

  1. Plan B (“The Morning After Pill”)
  2. Ella (a similar type of “emergency contraception”)
  3. Copper Intra-Uterine Device
  4. IUD with progestin

Rather than simply prevent sperm and ova from uniting, Hobby Lobby’s owners believe that these medications either kill human beings when they are fertilized eggs or prevent them from implanting themselves in utero, whereupon they die.

Hobby Lobby does not prevent its female employees from using any of these four types of contraceptives. However, since they believe these innovations kill babies, they simply require that any employees who want to use them buy them with their own money.

The Left behaves as if Hobby Lobby were forcing their female employees to wear burqas. But Hobby Lobby’s policy is no different than, say, walking into the cafeteria at Yeshiva University and demanding a bacon cheeseburger.

“I am sorry,” the cafeteria manager replies. “We keep kosher. If you want a chicken sandwich or some brisket, we can help. Indeed, our prices are subsidized. So, we will help you buy those items. But if you want to mix milk and meat and bite into a pork product, please purchase a bacon cheeseburger at the restaurant across the street. When you are done, please come back to work.”

Likewise, if one were on staff at People for the Ethical Treatment of Animals and tried to order veal scaloppini at its internal lunch counter, the chef likely would say, “We consider it unethical to kill calves, cook them, and eat them. If you disagree, please enjoy your veal off site and then come back here to help us defend other animals.”

Those who are screaming themselves hoarse after the Hobby Lobby decision would agree that Yeshiva need not serve unkosher food, and PETA need not include calf meat on its menu. Yes, somehow, Hobby Lobby is evil because it pays for 16 kinds of contraceptives, and expects its employees themselves to purchase four others that might kill human babies.

At its core, the Left’s moaning over Hobby Lobby is less about access to medicine and more about access to free stuff.

Tuesday June 24, 2014

Trivia Questions

Filed under: Politics — don @ 12:38 pm

Six trivia questions to see how much history you really know. Be honest, it’s kinda fun and revealing. If you don’t know the answer make your best guess. Answer all the questions (no cheating) before looking at the answers. 
Who said it?
1) “We’re going to take things away from you on behalf of the common good.” 
A. Karl Marx 
B. Adolph Hitler 
C. Joseph Stalin 
D. Barack Obama 

2) “It’s time for a new beginning, for an end to government of the few, by the few, and for the few … and to replace it with shared responsibility, for shared prosperity.” 
A. Lenin 
B. Mussolini 
C. Idi Amin 
D. Barack Obama 

3) “(We) …. can’t just let business as usual go on, and that means something has to be taken away from some people.” 
A. Nikita Khrushev 
B. Josef Goebbels 
C. Boris Yeltsin 
D. Barack Obama 

4) “We have to build a political consensus and that requires people to give up a little bit of their own … in order to create this common ground.” 
A. Mao Tse Dung 
B. Hugo Chavez 
C. Kim Jong Il 
D. Barack Obama 

5) “I certainly think the free-market has failed.” 
A. Karl Marx 
B. Lenin 
C. Molotov 
D. Barack Obama 

6) “I think it’s time to send a clear message to what has become the most profitable sector in (the) entire economy that they are being watched.” 
A. Pinochet 
B. Milosevic 
C. Saddam Hussein 
D. Barack Obama 
(1) None of the above. Statement was made by Hillary Clinton … 6/29/2004 
(2) None of the above. Statement was made by Hillary Clinton … 5/29/2007 
(3) None of the above. Statement was made by Hillary Clinton … 6/4/2007 
(4) None of the above. Statement was made by Hillary Clinton … 6/4/2007 
(5) None of the above. Statement was made by Hillary Clinton … 6/4/2007 
(6) None of the above. Statement was made by Hillary Clinton … 9/2/2005

Friday June 20, 2014

What is a lie?

Filed under: Politics — don @ 6:50 pm

I wrote this post back in October of 2013 but didn’t publish it so as to let some people cool down.  I think it’s quite relevant now.

Definition of LIE

:  an assertion of something known or believed by the speaker to be untrue with intent to deceive

:  an untrue or inaccurate statement that may or may not be believed true by the speaker

:  something that misleads or deceives
:  a charge of lying (see 3lie)
“If you like your Doctor you can keep your Doctor.”
Well that fits 1b and 2 quite nicely regardless of whether you believe Obama knew the truth or not.  The fact is he lied.  Did he know he was lying?  I don’t know how he couldn’t have if he truly understood his bill but even if we accept that he didn’t really know it all that does is show that he is clueless.
“I learned about Fast and Furious when it appeared in the newspapers.”
Again 1b and 2.  Again the same charge.
In fact what becomes quite clear is that our president is either the most clueless president we’ve ever had or the most deceitful.  He is always the last to know if we believe what he tells us.  Do you think he really didn’t know the US was spying on our allies?  We’ve been doing it for decades.  I knew, how could he not know?
This president has run our country into the ground.  Those of you who voted for him have to at least be getting a bit of a clue that he’s not the savior you envisioned.  The light must be coming on that all those things he promised you were just smoke and mirrors.  Yes folks, this president has no clothes.

Do They Think We’re Stupid?

Filed under: Politics — don @ 6:46 pm

The IRS has finally shown just how corrupt this administration is.

The back story:  During the years after Obama took office the IRS targeted Conservative organizations that were trying to get tax exempt status.  They denied it for a long time until they finally had to admit that it had in fact happened.

Lois Lerner was the director of the IRS Exempt Organizations Unit during this time.  She was called to testify before Congress but took the 5th.  In May of 2014 she was held in contempt of Congress.

Now the IRS says they lost all the emails between Lerner and the outside world for a period of 2 years which just happens to have been the 2 years that were of the most interest in the investigation.  “How convenient!” is what The Church Lady would say.

The company I work for is a little place with less than 50 employees but we have all the emails going back to when the company started using Outlook in 2010.  Anyone who believes the IRS really doesn’t have the emails was born in a turnip patch.

But millions of Obama apologists will make excuses and keep supporting this sorry excuse for an administration.  At least America is starting to wake up though as Obama’s approval rating is now about the same as GW Bush’s at the end of his term.  But those same Obama supporters will happily vote for someone who’s almost as bad when they mark their ballots for Hillary Clinton.  I’ll be sharing some info about her past in future blog posts.

Wednesday December 25, 2013

What to Do When ObamaCare Unravels

Filed under: Politics — don @ 11:35 pm

Wait!  It wasn’t my title.  I borrowed it from a guy who wrote a really interesting article on the Wall Street Journal.  It was so interesting I’m going to post it here.  But before I do let me clarify a few things.

I don’t hate Obama.  I don’t like his policies but I think he’s probably a very nice man who would be a lot of fun to be around and it’s clear he loves his wife and kids, and yes even his country.

I believe his problem lies more in his inability to understand what he doesn’t understand.  He’s very smart and very educated but he doesn’t know much about how to lead a country and he sure doesn’t know much about how to get a country out of a recession.  He’s been president for 5 years now and there are less people employed than when he took office.  There are lots more people on welfare than when he took office.  And the average wage is lower than it was when he took office.

If that’s not a failure then maybe I don’t know what a failure is.  When he did the stimulus he said that unemployment would rise above 8% if we didn’t do it.  We did it, and if you add the people who stopped looking for work back in the real unemployment number (U6) is closer to 13%.

And that brings us to health care.  He campaigned on “fixing” healthcare and shortly after getting elected they started writing the Affordable Care Act (Obamacare).  When they had enough votes in the house and senate to pass it without needing a single Republican vote that’s what they did.  When someone on the left wonders why the right is unhappy about Obamacare please take a moment and consider how you would feel if a Republican senate, house, and president pushed through a law that, oh, made abortion illegal.  And to make it worse how about that law required that you also had to get married if you got pregnant out of wedlock or face a “fine”.  You wouldn’t be happy about it.  Think about that for a while and maybe you’ll have an idea why those on the right think the left overstepped a bit.

And finally, Obamacare gets here in October 2013.  And it’s a mess.  The broken website is just the first sign there might be problems.  Then people start getting notices that they are losing their insurance even though they were “promised” if you like your plan you can keep your plan.  By the end of December close to 6,000,000 people have lost their plan and less than 1,000,000 have signed up.

At some point in the last 3 months Obama has changed the law (illegally some suggest) and put off the employer mandate until after the 2014 election.  You have to be really stupid to not realize that’s because he knows it’s going to cause all kinds of problems and would likely cause the Democrats to lose the house and senate.

So tonight I read this article and it’s one of the most unbiased I’ve seen.  I put it here with a link to where I found it.

The unraveling of the Affordable Care Act presents a historic opportunity for change. Its proponents call it “settled law,” but as Prohibition taught us, not even a constitutional amendment is settled law—if it is dysfunctional enough, and if Americans can see a clear alternative.

This fall’s website fiasco and policy cancellations are only the beginning. Next spring the individual mandate is likely to unravel when we see how sick the people are who signed up on exchanges, and if our government really is going to penalize voters for not buying health insurance. The employer mandate and “accountable care organizations” will take their turns in the news. There will be scandals. There will be fraud. This will go on for years.

Yet opponents should not sit back and revel in dysfunction. The Affordable Care Act was enacted in response to genuine problems. Without a clear alternative, we will simply patch more, subsidize more, and ignore frauds and scandals, as we do in Medicare and other programs.

There is an alternative. A much freer market in health care and health insurance can work, can deliver high quality, technically innovative care at much lower cost, and solve the pathologies of the pre-existing system.

The U.S. health-care market is dysfunctional. Obscure prices and $500 Band-Aids are legendary. The reason is simple: Health care and health insurance are strongly protected from competition. There are explicit barriers to entry, for example the laws in many states that require a “certificate of need” before one can build a new hospital. Regulatory compliance costs, approvals, nonprofit status, restrictions on foreign doctors and nurses, limits on medical residencies, and many more barriers keep prices up and competitors out. Hospitals whose main clients are uncompetitive insurers and the government cannot innovate and provide efficient cash service.

We need to permit the Southwest and Apples of the world to bring to health care the same dramatic improvements in price, quality, variety, technology and efficiency that they brought to air travel, retail and electronics. We’ll know we are there when prices are on hospital websites, cash customers get discounts, and new hospitals and insurers swamp your inbox with attractive offers and great service.

The Affordable Care Act bets instead that more regulation, price controls, effectiveness panels, and “accountable care” organizations will force efficiency, innovation, quality and service from the top down. Has this ever worked? Did we get smartphones by government pressure on the 1960s AT&T phone monopoly? Did effectiveness panels force United Airlines and American Airlines to cut costs, and push TWA and Pan Am out of business? Did the post office invent FedEx, UPS and email? How about public schools or the last 20 or more health-care “cost control” ideas?

Only deregulation can unleash competition. And only disruptive competition, where new businesses drive out old ones, will bring efficiency, lower costs and innovation.

Health insurance should be individual, portable across jobs, states and providers; lifelong and guaranteed-renewable, meaning you have the right to continue with no unexpected increase in premiums if you get sick. Insurance should protect wealth against large, unforeseen, necessary expenses, rather than be a wildly inefficient payment plan for routine expenses.

People want to buy this insurance, and companies want to sell it. It would be far cheaper, and would solve the pre-existing conditions problem. We do not have such health insurance only because it was regulated out of existence. Businesses cannot establish or contribute to portable individual policies, or employees would have to pay taxes. So businesses only offer group plans. Knowing they will abandon individual insurance when they get a job, and without cross-state portability, there is little reason for young people to invest in lifelong, portable health insurance. Mandated coverage, pressure against full risk rating, and a dysfunctional cash market did the rest.

Rather than a mandate for employer-based groups, we should transition to fully individual-based health insurance. Allow national individual insurance offered and sold to anyone, anywhere, without the tangled mess of state mandates and regulations. Allow employers to contribute to individual insurance at least on an even basis with group plans. Current group plans can convert to individual plans, at once or as people leave. Since all members in a group convert, there is no adverse selection of sicker people.

ObamaCare defenders say we must suffer the dysfunction and patch the law, because there is no alternative. They are wrong. On Nov. 2, for example, New York TimesNYT +0.93% columnist Nicholas Kristof wrote movingly about his friend who lost employer-based insurance and died of colon cancer. Mr. Kristof concluded, “This is why we need Obamacare.” No, this is why we need individual, portable, guaranteed-renewable, inexpensive, catastrophic-coverage insurance.

On Nov. 15, MIT’s Jonathan Gruber, an ObamaCare architect, argued on Realclearpolitics that “we currently have a highly discriminatory system where if you’re sick, if you’ve been sick or you’re going to get sick, you cannot get health insurance.” We do. He concluded that the Affordable Care Act is “the only way to end that discriminatory system.” It is not.

On Dec. 3, President Obama himself said that “the only alternative that Obamacare’s critics have, is, well, let’s just go back to the status quo.” Not so.

What about the homeless guy who has a heart attack? Yes, there must be private and government-provided charity care for the very poor. What if people don’t get enough checkups? Send them vouchers. To solve these problems we do not need a federal takeover of health care and insurance for you, me, and every American.

No other country has a free health market, you may object. The rest of the world is closer to single payer, and spends less.

Sure. We can have a single government-run airline too. We can ban FedEx and UPS, and have a single-payer post office. We can have government-run telephones and TV. Thirty years ago every other country had all of these, and worthies said that markets couldn’t work for travel, package delivery, the “natural monopoly” of telephones and TV. Until we tried it. That the rest of the world spends less just shows how dysfunctional our current system is, not how a free market would work.

While economically straightforward, liberalization is always politically hard. Innovation and cost reduction require new businesses to displace familiar, well-connected incumbents. Protected businesses spawn “good jobs” for protected workers, dues for their unions, easy lives for their managers, political support for their regulators and politicians, and cushy jobs for health-policy wonks. Protection from competition allows private insurance to cross-subsidize Medicare, Medicaid, and emergency rooms.

But it can happen and the cure for plantar fasciitis got out. The first step is, the American public must understand that there is an alternative. Stand up and demand it.


Friday December 20, 2013

Riddle me This

Filed under: Politics — don @ 8:27 pm

So a large majority of climate change scientists tell us the earth warm up is man caused.  If you argue this you are labeled a denier.  Okay, fair enough.

A large majority of economists believe that raising the minimum wage will hurt the very people you profess you want to help yet you ignore them and push to raise it anyways.

Why are you not called an economic denier?

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