Thursday, October 10, 2013

Obamacare Update: Week 1

Well folks, Obamacare is officially here and open for business. The first week numbers are in, so lets see how they did, shall we?

British newspaper The Daily Mail spoke with two HHS workers with access to the data. (Its incredible how the media from another country does a better job of reporting US news than actual American publications; but anyway) They reported Obamacare's $634million signup engine attracted a whopping 6,200 customers it's first day and a staggering 51,000 in its first week. 51,000. Nationwide.

It is estimated that there are 48.6 million uninsured Americans (more if you ask Barack) who, according to the Obama gang, are in desperate need of health insurance. So out of this desperate, dying bunch, 51,000 filled out applications. Not signed up, and successfully walked away with plans. Filled out applications. 0.1% of them. One tenth of one percent.

Quick shoutout to Kathleen Sebelius. Nice work K-Seebs. Really killed it.

Now. The Congressional Budget Office has stated that about 7 million Americans need to sign up for Obamacare in order for it to stay afloat financially. So lets do some simple extrapolating and see how this program would do over the 6 month enrollment period. If you at applications alone, and you shouldn't, but let's give them the benefit of the doubt here; 51,000 a week- over half a year- carry the 3... just over 1.3 million. With 7 million needed, that puts the Obama gang just a few (million) Americans short of their goal. That's going to be great for our already booming economy, isn't it?

"This was totally worth my premiums skyrocketing!" - said no American anywhere.

Monday, September 30, 2013

The Essentially Non-Essential Federal Government

As we get closer and closer to a government shutdown, the talking heads on television continue to warn us of the impending, incomprehensible disaster that awaits us. The government shutdown represents the end of the world. I, however, am not buying it.

Here's a dirty little secret: The government shuts down every Friday evening, right around 5:00PM EST. Its closed. And yet, somehow, Americans still manage to wipe their own asses. We successfully put our pants on all by ourselves- crazy I know. But the government shuts down ALL THE TIME. And sometimes, for holidays, they are shut down for 3 days in a row (GASP!)

Don't believe me? Call the EPA on a Sunday morning, see who picks up.

Now that doesn't mean that every single government department is closed. The United States military still operates, and the FBI is still open. Vet hospitals still serve patients, and Air Traffic Controllers still oversee runways. Because here's another dirty secret: During a government shutdown, everything doesn't actually turn off. All essential personnel remain on duty.

Essential personnel. Which means there is also non-essential personnel. And THAT, my fellow patriots, is what the bloated masses in DC don't want you to pay attention to.

Representative Nancy "Stretch" Pelosi, in a recent interview on CNN, firmly reminded us about the federal budget concerns, stating that,"The cupboard is bare. There's no more cuts to make. It's really important that people understand that." So according to super genius Nancy Pelosi, there's not a penny to be spared. No cuts can be made, anywhere.

The socialists on the Left, and big government RINOs on the Right, don't want the government to shut down. Not because they won't get paid- because don't worry- they still will. But because they don't want the American people to notice how many things are considered "non-essential." How many "non-essential" departments exist for no reason, and how many "non-essential" federal employees we pay for no reason. They don't want us knowing that we can survive without Big Brother.

Federal spending for 2013 will hit $3.5 Trillion. Thats 3-point-5 Tril-ee-on. Doll-ers. USD.

And every single penny is necessary, according to Stretch. All of it. So in Nancy's honor, here are some of my favorite examples of federal spending from the past few years:

  1. $376 million for a White House (that nobody can tour) renovation including a second "Oval Office" for the President Obama to use while the actual Oval Office is getting a face lift. 
  2. The IRS spent $4.1 million on a now well-known lavish conference for 2,609 in Anaheim including hotel suite upgrades, free meals and cocktails, and $50,000 for "essential" Cupid Shuffle line-dancing and Star-Trek parody videos.
  3. $41,200 for an oil painting of a former Air Force Secretary that will be hung in the Pentagon, with several other oil paintings of other former military members.
  4. $27 million for a 4-year USAID plan to "improve the economic competitiveness of Morocco." A key part of this program? Pottery classes.
  5. The USDA spent $300,000 to promote Idaho-grown caviar.
  6. A $325,000 National Science Foundation grant to construct a robotic squirrel. Why? To better study the interaction between real live squirrels and the wild rattlesnakes in California.
See? Essential.

Thursday, September 19, 2013

The ObamaCare Replacement

Holy shit. John A. Boehner actually did something.

Mr. Boehner, and the highly criticized House leadership have deemed ObamaCare unpopular, and unworkable. Now set, is a vote that would simultaneously provide funding to keep the government open, while stripping away money to implement the ObamaCare law.

They also are offering a replacement plan, currently known as, "The American Health Care Reform Act." There is not a whole lot of information out there on this yet, but here is what I was able to pull together:

  • Americans who purchase through state-run exchanges can claim a $7,500 deduction against their income and payroll taxes, regardless of insurance plan cost. Families could deduct $20,000.
  • To help spur competition and lower health care costs, it allows Americans to purchase health insurance across state lines, and enables small businesses to pool together and get the same buying power as large corporations.
  • Provides tax reform that allows families and individuals to deduct health care costs, which will level the playing field and provide all Americans with a standard deduction for health insurance.
  • The new plan reforms medical malpractice laws in a way that limits trial lawyer fees and non-economic damages, while still maintaining strong protection for patients.
  • Expands access to HSAs, Health Savings Accounts, increasing the amount of pre-tax dollars individuals can deposit into portable savings accounts, which are used for paying health care expenses.
  • Pre-existing condition safeguards, that prevent high risk discrimination when Americans go to purchase health insurance.
  • No federal funding for abortion.

  • So there is a stand, and now a plan. But October 1st is just around the corner. Time is running out, and so is the patience of most Americans...

    Monday, August 5, 2013

    The Boiling Frog

    Perhaps you are familiar with the story of the boiling frog. The premise is that if a frog is placed in boiling water, it will immediately recognize danger, and it will jump out. If that frog instead is placed in cold water that is slowly heated, it will not be able to perceive it's impending doom, and it will be cooked alive.

    A short while ago, the mainstream media and elected officials across the country decided it was inappropriate to refer to anyone as an illegal immigrant. Apparently too many people found it offensive. Now see, here's the thing, we referred to individuals as "illegal immigrants" because they immigrated to this country ILLEGALLY. They broke the law. And some of them continued to break laws after they got here; kidnapping and raping women and children, smuggling and running guns and drugs across the country, murdering innocent Americans, committing acts of terror, and all sorts of other "illegal" things.

    But the media, and the "smart" people did their best to convince us that this term is no longer acceptable. It is only proper to refer to them unauthorized or "undocumented" workers. Some even refer to them as "Dreamers." See? Doesn't that sound better? Dreamers. Now it's like they didn't even do anything wrong.

    So Americans went along with it, or they ignored it, and the water temperature continued to rise.

    Fast forward to a few days ago, when United Press International provides us with this gem. The Seattle Office for Civil Rights released a statement urging the public, and government employees to avoid using two new "offensive" terms: Citizen (as in American citizen) and Brown bag (as in brown-bag lunch).

    Now I want to focus on the term "citizen." But before I do, a quick note on brown-bag. According to this proclamation by "genius" Elliot Bronstein:
    "For a lot of particularly African American community members, the phrase brown bag does bring up associations with the past when a brown bag was actually used, I understand, to determine if people's skin color was light enough to allow admission to an event or to come into a party that was being held in a private home."
    Yep. That is what Mr. Bronstein understands to be true. So that's it. No more brown bags- now we all have to "lunch-and-learn" it. Absolutely outrageous.

    But don't let brown-baggin it distract you from the bigger issue- the inappropriateness of the term, citizen. See, not all of us are citizens and some people might get upset. So now we can't even use the word?!? I find that very interesting, because denoting the term "citizen" offensive would mean that the next step is to remove it from public documents. Kind of like the state of Washington when they did with that with gender-offensive words like, "penMANship" and "fisherMAN."

    So if you remove the term "citizen" from all public documents and laws, then you make it impossible to ask someone about their "citizenship."

    I mean after all, we're all just Dreamers. Aren't we?

    Waaaait a minute......

    Monday, July 29, 2013

    The Derek Jeter - Ronald Reagan Parallel

    Yesterday, Derek Jeter made his return off the disabled list. He re-joined a Yankees squad that was 8 games out of first place, a team decimated by injury, that had won just 3 of its last 10 games. A team having one of the worst offensive years in recent history, and a team that was desperate for a leader. These were not good times in Yankee Nation.

    Jeter fearlessly walked up to the plate in the 1st inning, and crushed the very 1st pitch he saw. Home run. Opposite field. Vintage DJ. Derek had made his statement, he was back, and his team was too.

    After his homer, his teammates, and Yankee nation responded. The hapless offensive was suddenly alive again, the frustrated fans were suddenly on their feet. The slumping Alfonso Soriano- hitless since his return to pinstripes, had 4 hits, including a walk-off single to win it in the bottom of the 9th. The Yankees bullpen held the surging Rays offense scoreless, with Mariano Rivera nailing down the win. Yankee nation rejoiced, and left oozing with optimism, convinced this was the start of better days.

    Now stick with me here.

    When Ronald Reagan became President, he inherited a broken nation. Just like Yankee nation, the American people were beaten, they felt hopeless, and they wondered if the greatness of their nation had disappeared for good. The former President Carter didn't leave Americans much to be proud of. A struggling economy paired with high unemployment, the Iran hostage situation, and energy uncertainties, left the American people exhausted and searching for answers. President Reagan unified his spiritless nation, he invigorated them. Like Derek Jeter, he inspired his team, the American people, to be better than themselves, to play at a higher level. He reminded them of the good times, the shining city on the hill. He promised that better days were ahead and like Jeter, he led by example.

    What is important to remember is that this Yankees win was a team effort. Derek Jeter didn't take the bat out of his teammates hands. He didn't go out there and pitch. Just like Reagan in his presidency, Jeter trusted his teammates to succeed individually. Jeter didn't go out on the field and regulate every swing his teammates took, or critique every step they took. He trusted that they were smart enough, and he knew they were talented enough, they just needed a little inspiration. Like President Reagan, Jeter believed his team could win.

    Then we have Barack Obama, the antithesis of Ronald Reagan, the opposite of Derek Jeter. Obama doesn't trust his teammates. He doesn't think they can win. He hopes for a rain-out, and asks the other team to spot him a few points. According to him, the American people aren't smart enough and they're not talented enough to succeed on their own. They can't possibly run their own businesses, or make the right decision on what kind of automobile to buy, or what type of energy to heat their homes with. He knows whats best for everyone. Barry wants to bat, and he wants to pitch too. Hell, he wants to play all 9 positions, DH, coach, and be umpire. Obama is not interested in unifying his team. In fact, he is the locker room cancer, pitting people against one another.

    A little over a week ago, Barack Obama made a statement regarding Trayvon Martin. It was the perfect opportunity to re-focus a conflicted nation. He could have turned our attention forward, to better days, together as one people. Did he do that?

    Of course not.

    Instead he race-baited. He pushed the American people even farther away from one another. He didn't inspire, he attacked. He didn't offer a helping hand, he fanned the flames.

    Barack Obama is not a leader. And it's about time that team America gets a new captain.

    Wednesday, July 17, 2013

    The Founders Have Got Your Back

    There is no shame in admitting that things seem really bleak right now. It is easy to feel helpless with a gigantic, bloated, overreaching federal government that seems to get bigger and more menacing by the second. As citizens we watch in horror, as our country spins out of control. We have no voice, and our cries of help to Washington are ignored.

    But what if I told you that the Founding Fathers left us with a way out- a Constitutional loophole. Would that make you feel a little better?

    Well, its true, they did. These magnificent bastards thought of everything!

    Article V of the United States Constitution lays out the procedures for ratifying constitutional amendments. It reads:
    The Congress, whenever two thirds of both houses shall deem it necessary, shall propose amendments to this Constitution, or, on the application of the legislatures of two thirds of the several states, shall call a convention for proposing amendments, which, in either case, shall be valid to all intents and purposes, as part of this Constitution, when ratified by the legislatures of three fourths of the several states, or by conventions in three fourths thereof, as the one or the other mode of ratification may be proposed by the Congress... 
    Here is the important word; OR. It appears twice. But it is there because there are two Constitutionally approved methods.

    So there it is. The State Convention. Our loophole. State ratifying conventions give the regular, everyday American, a way to bypass the federal leviathan. The states propose an amendment, and state delegates- regular everyday people- vote on it. But is this possible? Can the American people ratify an amendment without Congress?

    They sure can. And it has happened.

    In 1933 the 21st Amendment was passed by the state convention process. Which one was that, by the way? The 21st Amendment repealed the 18th Amendment; Prohibition.


    So there it is, the Article V loophole. An option rarely used, but an option nonetheless. In times like these, it sure is nice to know we have a way out. Think about it, we could draw up a balanced budget Amendment. Or we could repeal the 16th Amendment- income tax, or the 17th Amendment- the direct election of Senators. Be afraid, John McCain, be very afraid.

    I told you the Founding Fathers got our back...

    Injustice in the Department of Justice

    I would like to alert everyone to an email address set up by Eric Holder and the Department of Justice:

    What is this you ask? This is a public email address to get tips for federal charges on George Zimmerman. Zimmerman, who was just found NOT guilty of 2nd degree murder and manslaughter, is now being probed AGAIN by the DOJ. This time for hate crimes.

    This move appeals to the community organizers and civil rights groups who apparently have an issue with the judicial system. The government obviously does not have enough to meet the standard on their own, so they reached out to the mob. This gives the public a chance to offer up a "one time George Zimmerman..." story to prove this was a racially motivated hate crime. It is a straight up witch hunt. And Attorney General Eric Holder is cheering it on.

    Take race out this whole thing, and ask yourself. Is this justice? Is this the proper way for our government to spend our money? To attack innocent individuals? Imagine if there was a public hotline for you- where people could call in and report anything you ever said or did. Does this seem like the American dream to you?

    This isn't justice. This is a win-at-all-costs mentality.