These are my links for December 13th through December 14th:
- U.S. to send troops, Patriot missiles to Turkey – The United States gave the go-ahead Friday to deploy Patriot anti-ballistic missiles to Turkey along with enough troops to operate them as the heavily embattled government in neighboring Syria again vehemently denied firing ballistic missiles at rebels.The United States has accused Damascus of launching Scud-type artillery from the capital at rebels in the country’s north. One Washington official said missiles came close to the border of Turkey, a NATO member and staunch U.S. ally.Syria’s government called the accusations “untrue rumors” Friday, according to state news agency SANA. Damascus accused Turkey and its partners of instigating rumors to make the government look bad internationally.
U.S. Defense Secretary Leon Panetta signed the order while en route to Turkey to send two Patriot missile batteries and 400 U.S. troops to operate them. The surface-to-air interceptors will help in “dealing with threats that come out of Syria,” Panetta said after landing at Incirlik Air Base, a U.S. Air Force installation about 80 miles from Syria’s border.
Panetta was unconcerned about possible reactions from Damascus to the Patriot deployment. “We can’t spend a lot of time worrying about whether that pisses off Syria,” he said, adamant that helping Turkey was the priority.
- Extremism in Defense of Liberty – The rise of the Tea Party, and its swift incorporation into the GOP, can best be understood as a response to a dilemma that presented itself to conservatives 20 years ago. In the wake of the collapse of the Soviet Union in 1991 and the federal government shutdowns of 1995 and ’96, it appeared that the fight against the Evil Empire was Mission Accomplished while the fight to curb the size and influence of the federal establishment was Mission Impossible. Take away the two goals that had defined the conservative movement since the first issue of National Review, and it was unclear what conservatives were supposed to do, and what conservatism was supposed to be about. The innovations proposed to fill this lacuna included national greatness conservatism, compassionate conservatism, and George W. Bush’s call after 9/11 to “support the growth of democratic movements and institutions in every nation and culture, with the ultimate goal of ending tyranny in our world.” These missions proved to be, respectively: vague and pointless; a project of social reinvigoration to which political measures could make no more than a marginal contribution; and an extravagant ambition far exceeding America’s capacity and her citizens’ patience.========A must read for the weekend!
- Only 15 States Opt to Run Obamacare Exchanges – Only 15 states have told the federal government they plan to operate health insurance exchanges under President Barack Obama’s reform law, leaving Washington with the daunting task of creating online marketplaces for two-thirds of the country.On the eve of a federal deadline for states to say whether they will run their own exchanges, a top health care policy official told lawmakers that the exchanges will start enrolling eligible families starting on Oct. 1.”I am confident that states and the federal government will be ready in 10 months, when consumers in all states can begin to apply,” Gary Cohen, director of the Center for Consumer Information and Insurance Oversight, told a House panel.
Cohen was among federal officials who testified alongside state health authorities at a hearing of the House Energy and Commerce Subcommittee on Health.
In written testimony, Cohen said that while 15 states have told the administration they will operate exchanges, 11 others have opted for versions that will require major involvement by the federal government.
Experts say the number of states planning to operate their own exchanges could reach 18, plus the District of Columbia, by the time the deadline arrives Friday.
- Charles Krauthammer: The right-to-work dilemma – For all the fury and fistfights outside the Lansing Capitol, what happened in Michigan this week was a simple accommodation to reality. The most famously unionized state, birthplace of the United Auto Workers, royalty of the American working class, became right-to-work.It’s shocking, except that it was inevitable. Indiana went that way earlier this year. The entire Rust Belt will eventually follow because the heyday of the sovereign private-sector union is gone. Globalization has made splendid isolation impossible.
- Get ready for the costs and chaos of Obamacare – Nancy Pelosi was widely mocked when she said of Obamacare, “We have to pass the bill so that you can find out what is in it.” At the time, March 2010, Pelosi’s words accurately described the Democrats’ just-get-it-done approach to passing a national health care bill. But now it turns out Pelosi was wrong. In fact, we have to implement Obamacare so that you can find out what is in it.Amid the other momentous events coming in 2013 — bitter fights over federal spending, debt, entitlements and immigration — the biggest story of the year, and of 2014 as well, will be the arrival of Obamacare in the lives of every American.
- It’s a Mad, Mad, Mad, Mad ObamaCare – For sheer political farce, not much can compete with ObamaCare’s passage, which included slipping the bill through the Senate before dawn three Christmas eves ago. But the madcap dash to get ready for the entitlement’s October 2013 start-up date is a pretty close second.The size and complexity of the Affordable Care Act meant that its implementation was never going to easy. But behind the scenes, even states that support or might support the Affordable Care Act are frustrated about the Health and Human Services Department’s special combination of rigidity and ineptitude.To take one example, for the better part of a year states and groups like the bipartisan National Governors Association and the National Association of Medicaid Directors have been begging HHS merely for information about how they’re required to make ObamaCare work in practice. There was radio silence from Washington, with time running out. Louisiana and other states even took to filing Freedom of Information Act requests, which are still pending.
- Flap’s Blog @ Flap Twitter Daily Digest for 2012-12-13 – Flap’s Blog – FullosseousFlap’s Dental Blog – Flap’s Blog @ Flap Twitter Daily Digest for 2012-12-13 #tcot
- MichelleFields.com – Rapper’s fans threaten to rape Michelle Malkin for criticizing his album cover « #tcot
- My Daily Twitter Digest for 2012-12-13 – Locum Tenens (Temporary) Dentist – Gregory Cole, D.D.S. – My Daily Twitter Digest for 2012-12-13
- Rapper’s fans threaten to rape Michelle Malkin for criticizing his album cover « MichelleFields.com – RT @chasrmartin: Rapper’s fans threaten to rape Michelle Malkin for criticizing singer
- Obama and Boehner meet again to avert fiscal cliff – President Obama and House Speaker John Boehner met privately Thursday after another day of back-and-forth over tax hikes, spending cuts and efforts to avoid the year-end “fiscal cliff.”Hours earlier, Boehner said that unless Obama makes further concessions on spending cuts, Washington will head over the cliff and into a series of tax hikes and massive budget reductions.”The president wants to pretend spending isn’t the problem. That’s why we don’t have an agreement,” said Boehner, R-Ohio. “Unfortunately, the White House is so unserious about cutting spending that it appears willing to slow-walk our economy right up to — and over — the fiscal cliff.”
- Obama, Boehner meet at the White House | POLITICO 44 – POLITICO.com – RT @politico: RT @jeneps Obama and Boehner spent 50 minutes meeting at the White House today
- Earth to Karl Rove and Sheldon Adelson: Do This – Flap’s Blog – FullosseousFlap’s Dental Blog – Earth to Karl Rove and Sheldon Adelson: Do This #tcot
- Rep. Elton Gallegly and Friends Operation Toy Drop 2012 Edition – Rep. Elton Gallegly and Friends Operation Toy Drop 2012 Edition #tcot
- Top GOP aide: ‘We’ll confirm Hagel, Kerry’ | WashingtonExaminer.com – Top GOP aide: ‘We’ll confirm Hagel, Kerry’ #tcot
- Where big GOP bucks could matter – Mitt Romney and the GOP lost, but it wasn’t for lack of money. They spent a lot; they just didn’t get enough bang for the buck.Billionaire Sheldon Adelson alone donated $150 million. But Romney lost anyway, especially among unmarried women.Which is why I think that rich people wanting to support the Republican Party might want to direct their money somewhere besides TV ads that copy, poorly, what Lee Atwater did decades ago.
My suggestion: Buy some women’s magazines. No, really. Or at least some women’s Web sites.
One of the groups with whom Romney did worst was female “low-information voters.” Those are women who don’t really follow politics, and vote based on a vague sense of who’s mean and who’s nice, who’s cool and who’s uncool.
- Top GOP aide: ‘We’ll confirm Hagel, Kerry’ – The growing possibility of President Obama naming Democratic Sen. John Kerry as secretary of State and former GOP Sen. Chuck Hagel to run the Pentagon is being embraced by Senate Republicans who predict confirmation.”I think both of them will be questioned vigorously but confirmed,” said a top GOP Senate aide, meaning the GOP won’t put up a fight in the Democratically-controlled chamber. That will be a key selling point as Obama considers his choices.Reports emerged Thursday that Hagel, a Vietnam vet from Nebraska, was the frontrunner to replace exiting Defense Secretary Leon Panetta.
- EXCLUSIVE: Susan Rice drops out of running for secretary of state; cites ‘very disruptive’ confirmation process – Rock Center with Brian Williams – Susan Rice drops out of running for secretary of state; saddened by partisan politics #tcot
- Susan Rice drops out of running for secretary of state; saddened by partisan politics – Embattled U.N. envoy Susan Rice is dropping out of the running to be the next secretary of state after months of criticism over her Benghazi comments, she told NBC News on Thursday.“If nominated, I am now convinced that the confirmation process would be lengthy, disruptive and costly – to you and to our most pressing national and international priorities,” Rice wrote in a letter to President Obama, saying she’s saddened by the partisan politics surrounding her prospects.“That trade-off is simply not worth it to our country…Therefore, I respectfully request that you no longer consider my candidacy at this time,” she wrote in the letter obtained by NBC News.
Rice would not be confirmed anyway.
- Latinos didn’t cost Mitt Romney the election – Republicans have a major Latino problem, but it didn’t cost them the 2012 election.According to a Fix review of election results, Mitt Romney would have needed to carry as much as 51 percent of the Hispanic vote in order to win the Electoral College — a number no Republican presidential candidate on record has been able to attain and isn’t really within the realm of possibility these days.Latinos did push President Obama over the top in several key states — including Colorado, Florida, Nevada, New Mexico and Pennsylvania — that he would have lost without them. (Obama also would have lost the popular vote without Latinos.)
But it was a given that Obama was going to win a higher share of their votes; what mattered was the margin. And in order for Romney to have won the presidency, he would have needed to perform far better than any previous Republican presidential candidate.
- Feds Raise Hackles Over 5-Hour Energy Drink | The Weekly Standard – RT @DRUDGE_REPORT: FEDS TO INVESTIGATE 5-HOUR ENERGY DRINKS…
- Day By Day December 13, 2012 – The Big Top – Flap’s Blog – Day By Day December 13, 2012 – The Big Top #tcot
- Flap’s Dentistry Blog: Just Say No to Magnetic Tongue Studs – Just Say No to Magnetic Tongue Studs
- The Morning Flap: December 13, 2012 – Flap’s Blog – The Morning Flap: December 13, 2012 #tcot
These are my links for December 11th through December 12th:
- California: A new ‘Mad Max’ sequel? – Californians increasingly may be on their own against criminals because of state and local budget problems. Two recent reports are scary.KCBS wrote, “Burglaries are up a startling 43 percent in Oakland this year compared to last, part of an ever-growing crime problem in the city…. The city could be down to a little more than 600 [police] officers by February, which would be 200 fewer than in 2008.”In San Bernardino, according to CBS News, “[City Attorney Jim] Penman said the city is dealing with bankruptcy, which has forced officials to cut its police force by about 80 officers.” Consequently, there’s been growing criticism about the police department’s response time.
“Let’s be honest, we don’t have enough police officers. We have too many criminals living in this city. We have had 45 murders this year … that’s far too high for a city of this size,” Penman said.
Talking to a local group, Mr. Penman also said, “Go home, lock your doors and load your gun.”
- $822,000 Worker Shows California Leads U.S. Pay Giveaway – The California payroll totals reflected in the Bloomberg data have their roots in wage negotiations carried out during Davis’s time as governor.One of the first goals of state employee unions when Davis took over in 1999 after 16 years of Republican governors was to unwind curbs on pensions put in place by Governor Pete Wilso n in 1991. Workers also wanted broad wage increases.Unions persuaded the California Public Employees’ Retirement System to sponsor legislation called Senate Bill 400, which sweetened state and local pensions and gave retroactive increases for tens of thousands of retirees. Highway-patrol officers were granted the right to retire after 30 years of service with 90 percent of their top salaries, a benefit that was copied by police agencies across the state.
California’s annual payment toward pension obligations ballooned to $3.7 billion in the current fiscal year from $300 million when the bill was enacted. Some cities that adopted the highway-patrol pension plan later cited those costs for contributing to their bankruptcy filings.
Davis and the Legislature also agreed to labor contracts that gave 164,000 state workers pay increases of 4 percent in 1999 and again in 2000. Those contracts cost the state an extra $1.3 billion within a year, according to the state’s independent Legislative Analyst’s Office.
There were more to come.
- Democrats continue to find out what was in ObamaCare–and try to dismantle it – The Affordable Care Act was bad legislation, in part because it depended on plenty of imaginary budget savings. “This is a coverage bill, not a cost reduction bill,” top Senate staffer David Bowen said to a K Street audience after the bill passed. Bowen said that Senate Democrats had decided to do the same thing Massachusetts had done: “do coverage first, knowing that that would bring on a cost battle second.”But since the passage of Obamacare, the cost-controls and offsets have one-by-one been stripped out.First, Democrats killed the ill-conceived long-term-care-insurance measure, known as the CLASS Act. This provision, which provided government insurance for long-term care, was, amazingly, booked as reducing the deficit. This was ridiculous, and after the bill passed, Democrats realized it was a disaster, and they repealed the provision.
Another reason the bill was supposed to “reduce the deficit” was an unusually onerous tax hike on small businesses. The provision, known as the “1099 provision” would have forced small businesses to file all sorts of new paperwork for all sorts of transactions (sell a digital camera, file a 1099), in the hope of picking up transactions that are taxable. Congress also repealed that provision.
And now the health-care-industry lobbies that supported this subsidy-and-mandate-laden bill are lobbying to kill the cost-controls that offset the costs of its subsidies. All sorts of providers are lobbying to kill the Independent Payment Advisory Board. And the medical-device industry has convinced two Democratic Obamacare-backing Senators to try to kill the medical device tax:
- Krauthammer: Right-To-Work “An Adjustment To Reality” – CHARLES KRAUTHAMMER: This is an adjustment to reality. The fact is that, you know, in the glory days the 40s, the 50s, the 60’s, the UAW was able to give its workers the highest wages, benefits in the world. That was because of an anomaly that we were only industrial country that came out of second World War intact. Europe was on its knees, Germany and Japan were rubble. So, we thought that was the natural order of things. It wasn’t.And when the other industrial countries recovered, we got world competition as we have. We ran into bankruptcies, Chrysler now twice. We see that in the southern states where the transplants are without the unions. They weren’t the ones who went bankrupt last in 2008 and 2009. So it really is a choice. It’s a tough choice, and I sympathize with the unions, but the fact is that in the global economy where you have to compete on wages and other elements, of the units of production, you can you either have, you know, high wages with low employment or you can, as Obama would say, spread around the wealth.The fact is that in the right-to-work states, unemployment is 6.9%. And in the other stays the non-right-to-work, it’s 8.7. So you can choose to have fewer workers who enjoy higher, inflated, unnatural, if you like, wages, uncompetitive wages. Or you can have competitive wages and more people employed, more people with the dignity of a job and less unemployment, more taxation and more activity. I think it’s it the right choice but I understand how it’s a wrenching choice.
- Union bastion Michigan joins right-to-work states –
- Flap’s Blog @ Flap Twitter Daily Digest for 2012-12-11 – Flap’s Blog – FullosseousFlap’s Dental Blog – Flap’s Blog @ Flap Twitter Daily Digest for 2012-12-11 #tcot
- My Daily Twitter Digest for 2012-12-11 – Locum Tenens (Temporary) Dentist – Gregory Cole, D.D.S. – My Daily Twitter Digest for 2012-12-11
- Sitar Master Ravi Shankar Dies at Age 92 – Speakeasy – WSJ – R.I.P. RT @WSJ: Breaking: Indian sitar legend Ravi Shankar dies at 92
- Fiscal cliff: GOP makes another counteroffer – House Republicans say they have sent President Barack Obama a fresh proposal that would “achieve tax and entitlement reform to solve our looming debt crisis and create more American jobs.”“As the speaker said today, we’re still waiting for the White House to identify what spending cuts the president is willing to make as part of the ‘balanced approach’ he promised the American people,” said Michael Steel, Speaker John Boehner’s spokesman. “The longer the White House slow-walks this process, the closer our economy gets to the fiscal cliff.”
- Day By Day December 11, 2012 – Back in the USSR – Flap’s Blog – Day By Day December 11, 2012 – Back in the USSR #tcot
- Wealthy group that includes Warren Buffett, Jimmy Carter calls for heftier estate tax – The Hill’s On The Money – Let them pay it all RT @thehill: Wealthy group that includes Warren Buffett, Jimmy Carter calls for heftier estate tax
- Obamacare fee of $63 per person to begin in 2014 – Your medical plan is facing an unexpected expense, so you probably are, too. It’s a new, $63-per-head fee to cushion the cost of covering people with pre-existing conditions under President Obama’s health care overhaul.The charge, buried in a recent regulation, works out to tens of millions of dollars for the largest companies, employers say. Most of that is likely to be passed on to workers.Employee benefits lawyer Chantel Sheaks calls it a “sleeper issue” with significant financial consequences, particularly for large employers.
“Especially at a time when we are facing economic uncertainty, [companies will] be hit with a multimillion-dollar assessment without getting anything back for it,” said Mr. Sheaks, a principal at Buck Consultants, a Xerox subsidiary.
- Crossroads GPS Targets Democratic Senators Over The Fiscal Cliff – Crossroads GPS Targets Democratic Senators Over The Fiscal Cliff #tcot
- Flap’s Dentistry Blog: American Dental Association Announces Resin Infiltration Procedure Code – American Dental Association Announces Resin Infiltration Procedure Code
- The Morning Flap: December 11, 2012 – Flap’s Blog – The Morning Flap: December 11, 2012 #tcot
These are my links for October 2nd through October 3rd:
- House Appropriators take a shot at ObamaCare, Labor and NLRB – The House appropriations subcommittee on Labor, Health & Human Services and Education is attacking funding for Obamacare, the Labor Department and the National Labor Relations Board (NLRB).
According to subcommittee chairman, Montana Republican Rep. Denny Rehberg, the appropriations bill would prevent the Obama administration from implementing Obamacare until the Supreme Court rules on the case. It also defunds the NLRB’s attempts to implement “quickie elections” for unions and defunds implementation of the NLRB’s “poster rule,” which requires employers nationwide to hang pro-union posters in workplaces.
The “quickie elections” rule the NLRB recently passed allows unions to hold a workforce election within just seven to ten days after requesting one. For decades, unions has to wait about 45 days or longer after requesting an election to hold one. That ensured workers and the company had enough time to catch up and become fully informed on what was happening, as union leaders usually already know what’s going on because they deal with labor relations issues all the time.
Read it all
- Perry, Romney Embrace a National Right-to-Work Law – Texas Gov. Rick Perry and former Massachusetts Gov. Mitt Romney both say they support a national right-to-work law.
Workers outside right-to-work states currently are obligated to pay the union fees as a condition of employment at firms that have unions, which is in accordance with the National Labor Relations Act. But the unions cannot demand membership.
"Gov. Romney … would sign a national right-to-work law if it came across his desk," Romney spokeswoman Andrea Saul told TheStreet in an email.
"Governor Perry would support Senator DeMint's national right to work bill," Perry spokesman Mark Miner told TheStreet in an email.
Sen. Jim DeMint (R., S.C.) introduced the National Right to Work Act in March 2011, which aimed to protect "the free choice of individuals to form, join, or assist labor organizations, or to refrain from such activities."
DeMint's state has seen a heavy labor dispute that concerns a Boeing plant in North Charleston, S.C., as the National Labor Relations Board general counsel ruled in April that Boeing's decision to build the plant represented an illegal retaliation for a 2008 strike by the International Association of Machinists at one of its plants in Everett, Wash.
Read it all
- Craig Becker and Boeing – For the last few months, Boeing has been clashing with the National Labor Relations Board (NLRB) over its decision to locate a plant in South Carolina. The NLRB argues that the airplane manufacturer illegally moved work from union factories in Washington state to a new $1 billion facility in the right-to-work Palmetto State.
NLRB lawyers maintain this is straightforward retaliation against union workers, based on comments allegedly made by Boeing executives themselves. Business leaders have denounced this as an unprecedented bit of federal pro-union advocacy, with the House of Representatives last week voting to halt the Boeing case and others like it.
The battle may soon intensify. Federal financial disclosure forms reveal that Craig Becker, a key union-friendly vote on the NLRB, owned stock in Boeing at the beginning of this year. Becker is one of federal agency's Democratic board members.
Read it all
- @Flap Twitter Updates for 2011-10-03 | Flap’s Blog – FullosseousFlap’s Dental Blog – @Flap Twitter Updates for 2011-10-03 #tcot #catcot
- Obama Supporters "Occupy" DC
– YouTube – Obama Supporters "Occupy" DC
- Flap’s Dentistry Blog: 2011 Wiggle Waggle for the Pasadena Humane Society – 2011 Wiggle Waggle for the Pasadena Humane Society
- Occupy DC Protesters Call for Re-election of Obama and for Government to Use Force to Impose Their Ideas | Flap’s Blog – FullosseousFlap’s Dental Blog – Occupy DC Protesters Call for Re-election of Obama and for Government to Use Force to Impose Their Ideas #tcot #catcot
- Obama Supporters "Occupy" DC
– YouTube – I liked a @YouTube video from @adamkokesh Obama Supporters "Occupy" DC
- Flap’s Links and Comments for October 1st through October 2nd | Flap’s Blog – FullosseousFlap’s Dental Blog – Flap’s Links and Comments for October 1st through October 2nd #tcot #catcot
These are my links for February 28th from 10:01 to 11:04:
- Pelosi splits with Reid, dismisses GOP plan to avoid a shutdown – House Minority Leader Nancy Pelosi (D-Calif.) is showing no enthusiasm for the new proposal from Republicans to avoid a government shutdown, putting her at odds with Senate Majority Leader Harry Reid (D-Nev.).
Pelosi said in a statement that the GOP's plan for a two-week spending bill cuts funding for critical programs.
But, the Senate Dems are going to roll over and Pelosi is in the minority.
- Wisconsin Democrat Legislator GORDON HINTZ: "YOU ARE F’N DEAD!" | Newsradio 620 – Milwaukee, Wisconsin News, Talk, Sports, Weather | Charlie Sykes – Last week, we heard that State Rep. Gordon Hintz (D-Oshkosh) had been busted in a prostitution sting.
State Rep. Gordon Hintz was issued a municipal citation in Appleton earlier this month for violating a city sexual misconduct ordinance.
Appleton police said the citation was issued Feb. 10 in conjunction with an ongoing investigation of Heavenly Touch Massage Parlor, 342 W. Wisconsin Ave., in Appleton. Police searched the business and a nearby residence in the 1300 block of North Division Street Jan. 28, after investigators had staked out the properties for several days after receiving a tip.
Last Friday…. after the Assembly voted to engross the Budget Repair Bill, Hintz turned to a female colleague, Rep. Michelle Litjens and said: "You are F***king dead!"
Nice civlity there from the LEFT……
He is frakking through in politics, baby….
- Unions vs. the Right to Work – Collective bargaining on a broad scale is more similar to an antitrust violation than to a civil liberty – How ironic that Wisconsin has become ground zero for the battle between taxpayers and public- employee labor unions. Wisconsin was the first state to allow collective bargaining for government workers (in 1959), following a tradition where it was the first to introduce a personal income tax (in 1911, before the introduction of the current form of individual income tax in 1913 by the federal government).
Labor unions like to portray collective bargaining as a basic civil liberty, akin to the freedoms of speech, press, assembly and religion. For a teachers union, collective bargaining means that suppliers of teacher services to all public school systems in a state—or even across states—can collude with regard to acceptable wages, benefits and working conditions. An analogy for business would be for all providers of airline transportation to assemble to fix ticket prices, capacity and so on. From this perspective, collective bargaining on a broad scale is more similar to an antitrust violation than to a civil liberty.
In fact, labor unions were subject to U.S. antitrust laws in the Sherman Antitrust Act of 1890, which was first applied in 1894 to the American Railway Union. However, organized labor managed to obtain exemption from federal antitrust laws in subsequent legislation, notably the Clayton Antitrust Act of 1914 and the National Labor Relations Act of 1935.
Read it all