Tag Archives: Blogger

Paul Krugman says that public option would lead to single-payer health care

Video from Verum Serum.

Morgen writes:

And so here, once again, is our gregarious friend from the NY Times, Paul Krugman, speaking about healthcare reform. This is a segment from an interview which aired on Democracy Now! in October 2007.

[…]Paul Krugman is a well-known economist who writes regularly for the NY Times. The fact that almost 2 years ago Krugman so willingly conceded information that conservatives have had to dig to uncover is a damning indictment of the bias and/or incompetence of the media. (And Krugman made this same point in a February 2007 NY Times column.)

The public option has now been the central controversy of healthcare reform for what…at least 3 months? And yet up until very recently, did anyone in the MSM think of looking into or reporting on how the idea came about? And whether conservative assertions that it is a trojan horse for single payer had any merit? Does it really take bloggers doing research in their spare time to discover and document information of such national importance?

Verum Serum rocks!

Hugo Chavez shuts down 34 radio and TV stations in Venezuela

Story from Reuters, via Fausta’s blog. Obama’s bosom buddy has been busy.

Excerpt:

CARACAS, Aug 1 (Reuters) – More than a dozen of 34 radio stations ordered shut by the Venezuelan government went off the air on Saturday, part of President Hugo Chavez’s drive to extend his socialist revolution to the media.

The association of radio broadcasters said 13 stations had stopped transmitting, following an announcement Friday night by government broadcasting watchdog Conatel that 34 radio outlets would be closed because they failed to comply with regulations.

Critics said the crackdown infringed on freedom of speech and that owners were not given the right to a proper defense.

“They’re closing the space for dissidents in Venezuela,” William Echeverria, head of the National Council of Journalists, told RCTV, a private cable TV station, which did not have its broadcasting license renewed in 2007.

Chavez defended the closures, calling them part of the government’s effort to democratize the airwaves.

“We haven’t closed any radio stations, we’ve applied the law,” Chavez said on state television. “We’ve recovered a bunch of stations that were outside the law, that now belong to the people and not the bourgeoisie.”

Chavez supporters say they are waging a “media war” against private news companies and have denounced in recent days what they say is a renewed offensive by privately owned domestic and international media to discredit Venezuela.

The Road to Serfdom. Venezuela is just a little further along the road than we are. For now.

Obama’s appointee supports regulating free speech on the Internet

Consider this article by Kyle Smith. (H/T Jihad Watch)

Excerpt:

When it comes to the First Amendment, Team Obama believes in Global Chilling.

Cass Sunstein, a Harvard Law professor who has been appointed to a shadowy post that will grant him powers that are merely mind-boggling, explicitly supports using the courts to impose a “chilling effect” on speech that might hurt someone’s feelings. He thinks that the bloggers have been rampaging out of control and that new laws need to be written to corral them.

…Sunstein is President Obama’s choice to head the White House Office of Information and Regulatory Affairs.

Cass Sunstein’s new book explains how he would like to regulate free speech.

Sunstein questions the current libel standard – which requires proving “actual malice” against those who write about public figures, including celebrities. Mere “negligence” isn’t libelous, but Sunstein wonders, “Is it so important to provide breathing space for damaging falsehoods about entertainers?”

Recall my previous post about the Democrat bill that would criminalize blogging.

Excerpt:

Under a recently-introduced bill, H.R. 1966, bloggers would face up to two years in prison if they “harass” public figures by criticizing them in a “severe, repeated, and hostile” manner, and thereby cause them “substantial emotional distress.”

This makes me think also about my previous post about the Democrat Speaker of the House in California who said that dissenting speech is terrorism.

The Road to Serfdom

The greatest economics book of the 20th century was F.A. Hayek’s “The Road to Serfdom“, which is analyzes the history of socialism and fascism in Nazi Germany and Russia. This book is #1 on Human Events’ Top 10 books every Republican should read.

Human Events writes:

Friedrich Hayek (1899-1992) was an Austrian economist awarded the Nobel Prize in 1974. He defended capitalism and individual liberty against collectivism. In “The Road to Serfdom,” he describes how government planning of the economy leads to tyranny. President Reagan cited Hayek as one of his favorite economists. “To decentralize power is to reduce the absolute amount of power, and the competitive system is the only system designed to minimize the power exercised by man over man,” wrote Hayek. “Who can seriously doubt that the power which a millionaire, who may be my employer, has over me is very much less than that which the smallest bureaucrat possesses who wields the coercive power of the state and on whose discretion it depends how I am allowed to live and work?”

I have a friend who is a Democrat, and every time I run these steps toward fascism by him, he never objects to them. There is a powerful impulse on the left towards controlling people’s choices to reproduce, earn, spend and work. Democrats believe that they are enlightened, so enslaving others is permissible for them. People today are willing to trade their liberty for a government handout, such as socialized health care.

Free speech in Canada, the United Kingdom and Cuba

My friend Jojo writes to inform me that I must blog about the state of free speech in Canada, so I will do it. But I am worried that my readers do not like to hear about other countries, like Canada. Just last week I blogged about Stephen Harper traveling to visit the Canadian troops in Afghanistan, and did not see a big hit count on that story, even thought I thought it was awesome!

Here is Jojo’s article on free speech. In the most Conservative province of Alberta, the “conservative” Ed Stelmach that they elected in the primaries is blocking HRC reform, and increasing the HRC budget! Since only the Conservatives can win in Alberta, all the Liberal and NDP (socialist) people vote in the primary and they end up with the equivalent of Arlen Specter as the Conservative nominee!

I had blogged about Ezra Levant’s support for Stephen Boissoin before, and about Lindsay Blackett’s intent to reform the Alberta HRC. But it looks like Stelmach is going to block Blackett’s effort to reform the Alberta HRC!

And here is the excerpt for Alberta:

Lindsay Blackett, Minister of Culture and Community Spirit, oversees Alberta’s Human Rights Commission. He announced plans to reform the human rights code and commission. He disparagingly called the commission a “Kangaroo Court,” and hinted at the likelihood that the government would repeal the censorship provisions in the provincial human rights code so that the commission could not be used as a weapon against free speech.

Bu Premier Stelmach sent his black Culture Minister to the back of the bus. The government’s set of amendments to Alberta’s human rights industry is preserving the censorship provisions.

Not only that, but professing Christian Premier Stelmach is rewarding the anti-Christian bigotry of Alberta’s HRC by giving them a raise – a budget increase of $1.7 million – in the middle of a recession – in a deficit budget.

Note to conservatives: have some sort of ideology test for delegates. And then we move to Ontario, where one the 4 candidates I blogged about before is promising to abolish the Ontario HRC entirely:

The fight against human rights commissions moves to Ontario with Ontario Progressive Conservative leadership candidate Randy Hillier advocating the elimination of that province’s Human Rights Commission. Mr. Hillier’s leadership campaign platform includes a number of freedom-oriented and private property rights entrenching proposals. Mr. Hillier recognizes that the Human Rights Commission is guilty of serious violations of Ontarians’ fundamental freedoms. Additionally, defending his proposal to abolish Ontario’s HRC, Mr. Hillier said that real human rights are so important that they should be defending in real courts, not delegated to Kangaroo Courts.

To vote in Ontario’s provincial PC leadership campaign, you need to be a member of the PC party by May 14th.

I haven’t heard any pro-freedom comments from the other three leadership candidates, especially in reference to human rights commissions. In fact, there seems to be a real paucity of tangible policy proposals from the other three candidates, so I don’t know where they stand, or what I can hold them accountable to, if any of them become the next leader of the Ontario PC Party.

Now on to the UK, where things are definitely taking a turn for the worst! The Australian has this report about Britain.

This is scaring the snark out of me:

Countryside Restoration Trust chairman and columnist Robin Page said at a rally against the Government’s anti-hunting laws in Gloucestershire in 2002: “If you are a black vegetarian Muslim asylum-seeking one-legged lesbian lorry driver, I want the same rights as you.” Page was arrested, and after four months he received a letter saying no charges would be pressed, but that: “If further evidence comes to our attention whereby your involvement is implicated, we will seek to initiate proceedings.” It took him five years to clear his name.

And this is worse still, because she just a child:

In September 2006, a 14-year-old schoolgirl, Codie Stott, asked a teacher if she could sit with another group to do a science project as all the girls with her spoke only Urdu. The teacher’s first response, according to Stott, was to scream at her: “It’s racist, you’re going to get done by the police!” Upset and terrified, the schoolgirl went outside to calm down. The teacher called the police and a few days later, presumably after officialdom had thought the matter over, she was arrested and taken to a police station, where she was fingerprinted and photographed. According to her mother, she was placed in a bare cell for 3 1/2 hours. She was questioned on suspicion of committing a racial public order offence and then released without charge. The school was said to be investigating what further action to take, not against the teacher, but against Stott. Headmaster Anthony Edkins reportedly said: “An allegation of a serious nature was made concerning a racially motivated remark. We aim to ensure a caring and tolerant attitude towards pupils of all ethnic backgrounds and will not stand for racism in any form.”

The article is filled with anti free speech madness:

A bishop was warned by the police for not having done enough to “celebrate diversity”, the enforcing of which is now apparently a police function. A Christian home for retired clergy and religious workers lost a grant because it would not reveal to official snoopers how many of the residents were homosexual. That they had never been asked was taken as evidence of homophobia.

Muslim parents who objected to young children being given books advocating same-sex marriage and adoption at one school last year had their wishes respected and the offending material withdrawn. This year, Muslim and Christian parents at another school objecting to the same material have not only had their objections ignored but have been threatened with prosecution if they withdraw their children.

And naturally, Christian lambs are the target of atheist wolves:

There have been innumerable cases in recent months of people in schools, hospitals and other institutions losing their jobs because of various religious scruples, often, as in the East Germany of yore, not shouted fanatically from the rooftops but betrayed in private conversations and reported to authorities. The crime of one nurse was to offer to pray for a patient, who did not complain but merely mentioned the matter to another nurse. A primary school receptionist, Jennie Cain, whose five-year-old daughter was told off for talking about Jesus in class, faces the sack for seeking support from her church. A private email from her to other members of the church asking for prayers fell into the hands of school authorities.

Maybe things are different in the UK, which may explain a recent exchange I had with a British atheist about a recent audio debate regarding that nurse. Read the exchange and consider how far gone the UK must be when the mere fact that a non-Christian hears something they don’t like is grounds for removing fundamental rights to free speech and freedom of religious expression.

I also noticed some comments from Ed West, who blogs for the UK Telegraph here, talks about the SECULAR THEOCRACY or ATHEOCRACY.

Excerpt:

Lib Dem MP Evan Harris felt very smug about overturning Britain’s long disused blasphemy laws last years, and was made “Secularist of the Year”, even though Britain hasn’t been in any way an Anglican theocracy since the early Victorian era. This – arresting people for having unfashionable views, however objectionable – is a real theocracy. If you want to fight for freedom, Dr Harris, fight for the peoples’ right to be racist or sexist or Islamophobic or simply rude.

This atheocracy derives from the incredibly liberal but also incredibly intolerant anti-discrimination morality that spread through Britain’s universities in the 1970s, 80s and 90s.

It became known as “political correctness”, which itself became a tedious cliche because we journalists overused it…. The point of political correctness was that it closed down debate. Political correctness sought – in true Orwellian fashion– to make contrary ideas utterly verboten.

Everyone is so surprised to find out that atheist rule is totalitarian. Excuse me? Who do you think killed 100 million people in the 20th century alone? (Hint: It was wasn’t followers of Jesus, who are obligated to love their enemies). Atheism leads to fascism! Wake up!

Where on the planet are atheists in charge of states? Well, there’s North Korea, Cuba, Venezuela… Hey! What’s going on in atheistic Cuba? (H/T Mere Rhetoric)

Cuba is further limiting access to the World Wide Web for its citizens, in what many believe is an effort to rein in a small but increasingly popular group of bloggers who are critical of the government. In a move seen as aimed at anti-government bloggers, Cuba is further limiting access to the World Wide Web Only government employees, academics and researchers are allowed their own Internet accounts, which are provided by the state, but only have limited access to sites outside the island. Ordinary Cubans may open e-mail accounts accessible at many post offices, but do not have access to the Web. Many got around the restrictions by using hotel Internet services. But a new resolution barring ordinary Cubans from using hotel Internet services quietly went into place in recent weeks, according to an official with Cuba’s telecom monopoly, hotel workers and bloggers.

What does Santayana say about those who are ignorant of the lessons of history?

UPDATE: Just a reminder that the Democrats are trying to pass a hate crime bill and a bill to criminalize blogging as well, in the USA.

Are Obama’s bailouts just pay-offs to left-wing special interest groups?

We looked at whether Al Gore’s global warming alarmism was just a scam to increase his already considerable wealth by misleading people desperate to find meaning in life with a bunch of faith-based lies. This time, let’s take a look at Obama’s bailout activities and see whether the the bailouts are to stimulate the economy, or to reward people who voted for him.

For instance, California recently cut $74 million from its state budget by lowering the salaries of unionized workers. How did Obama respond? By threatening to withhold stimulus money unless the unions got the money back.

The radically leftist Los Angeles Times has the story. (H/T Hot Air)

Reporting from Sacramento — The Obama administration is threatening to rescind billions of dollars in federal stimulus money if Gov. Arnold Schwarzenegger and state lawmakers do not restore wage cuts to unionized home healthcare workers approved in February as part of the budget.

Schwarzenegger’s office was advised this week by federal health officials that the wage reduction, which will save California $74 million, violates provisions of the American Recovery and Reinvestment Act. Failure to revoke the scheduled wage cut before it takes effect July 1 could cost California $6.8 billion in stimulus money, according to state officials. …

The wages at issue involve workers who care for some 440,000 low-income disabled and elderly Californians. The workers, who collectively contribute millions of dollars in dues each month to the influential Service Employees International Union and the United Domestic Workers, will see the state’s contribution to their wages cut from a maximum of $12.10 per hour to a maximum of $10.10.

And we know from Michelle Malkin that Obama is pressuring private companies to shaft their shareholders in order to give his union buddies a better deal than they deserve.

Greed is good – until it gets in the way of a union-friendly restructuring deal. President Obama, generous recipient of Wall Street largesse, angrily derided a group of hedge fund managers this week as “speculators.” The miffed president suggested that uncooperative firms were selfish for holding out on the government’s Chrysler bankruptcy plans and refusing to make “sacrifices” to benefit the United Auto Workers.

The “sacrifices” involved Chrysler debt holders agreeing to sell the debt to the government at prices determined by union-beholden bureaucrats instead of bankruptcy courts. The hedge firms balked. Obama sneered that the dissenters were looking for “unjustified taxpayer-funded bailout.” But the holdouts never took banking bailout funds from Washington. And the targeted financial executives were simply doing what good money managers are supposed to do: put their clients’ fiduciary interests first.

Michelle Malkin also reports on how Obama wants another $19 billion for his peeps at Fanie Mae. Remember, democrats caused this recession by forcing banks via regulations to make loans to Democrat voters against all common sense. Obama gets happy leftist feelings of superiority by redistributing wealth from the producers to the victims. And he thinks that if you went to expensive private schools and Harvard thanks to a rich grandmother, then you would feel good about him redistributing your money, too.

The story from Yahoo News Michelle links to says:

Fannie Mae (FNM.P), the largest provider of U.S. home mortgage funding, said on Friday it needs more capital from the U.S. Treasury after a $23.2 billion loss in the first quarter, and warned government housing programs would cut deeper into its profitability.

The government-controlled company said its regulator requested $19 billion from the Treasury under a funding commitment that on Wednesday was doubled to $200 billion. The credit, in the form of senior preferred stock purchases, was established as soaring losses led the government to push the company into conservatorship in September.

As the nation’s housing market reels in its worst downturn since the 1930s, credit-related expenses accounted for the majority of Fannie Mae’s loss, at $20.9 billion. It also took a $5.7 billion loss on mortgage securities.

Provisions for credit losses soared 85 percent as the U.S. economy faltered, expanding delinquencies — which have wreaked havoc on the entire financial system — to consumers with better credit, it said.

Oh, and here is news of a prospective bailout of Obama’s buddies in the left wing media.

Inquisitr.com and Free Republic reported: (H/T Gateway Pundit)

At the annual White House Correspondents Dinner in Washington DC Saturday evening (May 9), President Barack Obama ended on a serious note, pledging his undying support for journalists and specifically newspapers.

President Obama spoke about media job losses and changes in the industry, then quoted Jefferson, “if he had the choice between Government with newspapers or newspapers without Government, he’d choose the latter.” The gushing was perhaps understandable at a press function, but it’s what he said next that foretold of a newspaper bailout.

Obama told the crowd “Your ultimate success is essential to success of our democracy” before shortly saying “Government without a tough and vibrant media is not an option for the United States of America.”

The notable thing in context is that Obama primarily in the speech talks about newspapers, with other media outlets being mentioned second (collectively), or when making a joke (for example, noting that Jefferson hadn’t seen Cable News.) It would appear from the speech clearly that Obama holds the mainstream media, and particularly newspapers above online media. It is clear that when he talked about “tough and vibrant media” that he is referring to mainstream media, and newspapers in particular.

He concludes with the line that the problems in the media industry are “problems worth solving,” which sounds an awful lot like the final word that there’s going to be a newspaper bailout.

And remember I blogged recently about Michele Bachmann’s effort to prevent taxpayer money from going to ACORN while they are facing criminal charges.

It’s like Bush and Haliburton. Only that Bush stuff never actually happened, but this Democrat stuff is actually happening. Everything the Democrats hated about Bush? Like opposing dissent and free speech? Bush never did any of it. Democrats are the ones who are authoring hate crime bills and criminalizing blogging. Yeah, fascism is a solely a phenomenon of the left. Always has been, always will be.