Despite Recent Tragedies involving NFL Players an NFL Player is Less Likely to get in Trouble

Posted by PITHOCRATES - December 8th, 2012

Week in Review

NFL players have a reputation as bad boys.  Domestic violence.  DUIs.  Brandishing guns.  Or worse.  And a little substance abuse of the illicit kind.  So there are a lot of NFL players who behave poorly and serve as horrible role models for the kids that idolize them.  And some do some things that they just can’t walk away from (see Cowboys death, arrest serve as another sad reminder that DUIs are a major problem for NFL by Dan Wetzel posted 12/8/2012 on Yahoo! Sports).

For the second consecutive week, the NFL was broadsided with a tragedy – a preventable, painful tragedy.

On Saturday, Dallas Cowboys nose tackle Josh Brent was charged with intoxication manslaughter after what Irving, Texas, police described as a high-speed early morning crash on State Highway 114 that caused his car to flip at least once before winding up on a service road.

His victim was teammate Jerry Brown, a 25-year-old linebacker from St. Louis. Brown, a passenger at the time of the crash, was a teammate of Brent’s at the University of Illinois.

This comes on the heels of Kansas City Chiefs linebacker Jovan Belcher committing suicide in front of his coach and general manager last Saturday after murdering Kasandra Perkins, his girlfriend and the mother of his 3-month-old daughter…

Even Belcher drove after drinking last week. Police discovered him at 3 a.m. last Saturday sleeping off a night of partying in his Bentley, which was parked yet running. The cops gave him a break; he was allowed to go inside a nearby apartment complex and get some rest. Hours later, he went home and shot Perkins nine times…

DUI is the league’s biggest legal issue. A study by the San Diego Union-Tribune found that 112 of the 385 NFL player arrests (29 percent) between 2000 and 2008 involved drunk driving.

Belcher’s crime was spectacular but beyond rare. The NFL doesn’t have a murder problem. It doesn’t even have a gun problem. If anything, the league’s players are better behaved than the general public. That same Union-Tribune study found players arrested at a rate of one per 47. The U.S. population was one per 21, more than twice as often.

Yes, there is a problem in the NFL.  But it turns out that if the general population would behave as well as these NFL players it would be a better world.  Imagine that.

There are some bad boys in the NFL.  But by and large NFL players are better role models for the kids that idolize them than people in the general population.  It doesn’t seem like that because when they do something horrific it’s the lead on the national news.  When someone else does it their actions only get as far as the local news.

Perhaps it’s time we stop picking on the NFL.  And start discussing the individuals who also happen to be NFL players.  For despite the hard-hitting and violent nature of the game they probably make better next door neighbors than most.  Based on the numbers, at least.  Which is probably a shock to most.  But it does bring to our attention that everything we hear in the news may not be the crisis they say it is.

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Canadian Doctors have to Shut Up or the State won’t let them be Doctors Anymore

Posted by PITHOCRATES - December 8th, 2012

Week in Review

Proponents of Obamacare wanted more than what they got in Obamacare.  They wanted a single-payer system like in Canada.  Where they know how to do national health care right.  Where everyone gets whatever they need.  And patients, doctors and nurses live happily ever after.  Just like in a fairy tale.  And they do.  In the minds of those in the United States.  But that’s not quite how it is in Canada (see Doctors urged not to sign ‘muzzle’ contracts posted 12/5/2012 on CBC News).

The New Brunswick Medical Society is urging doctors not to sign any contracts with the province’s regional health authorities because they contain a gag order…

The medical society spoke out on the issue in June, accusing the regional health authorities of trying to muzzle doctors in an effort to avoid public criticism and embarassment…

Existing physicians will begin to reapply for their privileges in the January. If doctors protest the new bylaws by not signing, the medical society says they could start losing hospital privileges and possibly even their billing numbers, as soon as the spring…

Critics have suggested the bylaws are a push-back following some public challenges.

Doctors in Saint John have recently spoken out against the decision to allow Canadian Blood Services to remove some of its services from New Brunswick.

They were also vocal about a lack of access to operating rooms. And, the doctors loudly opposed the government’s initial position to deny Saint John a high-resonance imaging machine called a 3T MRI.

You see, national health care is not the utopia those who want it think it is.  Health care is expensive.  But when it’s free at the time of treatment people like to use as much of it as they can.  Which causes a problem.  Especially when you have an aging population.  Which most advanced economies have.  Including Canada.  The Canadians are having the same problem the British have.  And the same problem the Americans will have under Obamacare.  They have more people consuming health care resources than they have paying for them.  Which calls for budget cuts.  Longer wait times.  And rationing of services.  As well as indifferent attitudes to the falling quality as the doctors and nurses are overworked, underpaid and increasingly left with less of a say in how things should be.

Now the state doesn’t like anyone telling them that they are doing a bad job.  First of all their job isn’t easy.  Doing more with less.  Second, those in power feel a bit elitist.  And their egos don’t take kindly to criticism.  So when they’re in a position to do something about it they do.  Which is the great tragedy of national health care.  When the state pays the bills the state can pretty much do whatever they please.  For where else are those doctors going to work?  Crossing the border into the United States isn’t much of an option anymore.  For Obamacare will even push doctors around more.  If you don’t believe that just ask a US doctor about his Medicare reimbursements.

So this is our future under Obamacare.  Which will be sort of like Medicare.  Only with longer wait times and rationing.  And unhappy doctors.  Who will, too, probably sign gag orders.  Because once the government takes over health care, where else are they going to work?

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A War Against Women exists…in Egypt

Posted by PITHOCRATES - December 8th, 2012

Week in Review

The Left unleashed a war against Republicans by claiming they were waging a war against women.  They shouted from the rooftops the evil that would befall women should Republicans get elected.  Scaring women with the specter of having to pay for their own birth control.  And paying for their own abortions.  Scaring a lot of women with the fear that should Republicans get elected they would force women into marriages against their will.  Raising a family against their will.  Cooking, cleaning and having sex with husbands against their will.  So women voted for President Obama.  To keep their birth control and their abortions.  So they wouldn’t ever have to get married.  So they could have happy fulfilling careers.  Instead of a loving family.  So they can die alone some day.

So this was the silly war the Republicans were waging against women.  It’s a pity the Left doesn’t speak out against a real war on women (see ‘Men don’t have to worry about being caught’: Sex mobs target Egypt’s women by Charlene Gubash posted 12/4/2012 on Workd News).

In the post-Mubarak era, activists and protesters have reported many particularly violent assaults on women. Some experts allege the government and security officials are failing to take the problem seriously. More than 700 claims of harassment were filed across Egypt over the four-day Id al-Adha holiday in late October.

“It is not a country of law, not a state of law anymore. It has given men a chance to harass women without being accused,” said Afaf Marie, director of the Egyptian Association for Community Participation and Enhancement, an NGO.

Some activists fear that women’s rights will suffer under the rule of President Mohammed Morsi, who is an Islamist.

Government inaction has allowed the problem to spiral out of control, Heba Morayef, director of Human Rights Watch for the Middle East and North Africa, told NBC News. Police no longer inspire fear as they did before the revolution. In addition, locals say it appears there are fewer police on the increasingly lawless streets — and often none in Tahrir Square.

“The state is failing to respond,” she said. “Men don’t have to worry about being caught.”

Interestingly, President Obama helped bring President Mohammed Morsi to power.  By telling President Hosni Mubarak that he had to step down from power.  When there was no organized opposition save the Muslim Brotherhood.  Who said they would not try to seize power.  Who the American Left said they would not seize power.  That it wouldn’t be another Iran.  But in the resulting power vacuum left with the fall of Mubarak the Muslim Brotherhood stepped into that vacuum.  And now their man, Mohammed Morsi, an Islamist, is now President of Egypt.

And any women who dare to leave their homes alone are being sexually assaulted.  As the Muslim Brotherhood want women in Egypt to be like women in Iran.  Oppressed and subservient.  And everything the Left accused the Republicans of wanting to do with women they’re actually doing in Egypt.  And worse.  Including sexual harassment and rape in public.  But where is the American Left?  Keeping their eyes on those rascally Republicans.  While their sisters suffer unspeakable cruelties in Egypt.  Suffering in large part due to the actions of President Obama and his misguided Mideast policies.  Who helped to make Egypt a less safe place for women.  By telling Mubarak he had to go.

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The Unemployment Rate Falls but the Economy is Still Horrible

Posted by PITHOCRATES - December 8th, 2012

Week in Review

The Labor Department released the official unemployment rate (U-3) for November.  It fell from 7.9% to 7.7%.  Hurrah.  Sadly, the U-6 unemployment rate remains north of 14%.  Which is a better reflection of the economic climate as it shows basically everyone who can’t find a full-time job.  That’s about an 8 point gap between U-6 and U-3.  When George W. Bush was president this gap was only about 4 points.  Which means the economy is far worse than the official unemployment rate tells us it is.   In fact, if you plot these numbers along with the labor force participation rate (the percentage of people who can work that are actually working) the employment picture gets even worse (see Alternative measures of labor underutilization and Labor Force Participation Rate on the Bureau of Labor Statistics).

The only reason why the unemployment rate has been falling is that people are disappearing from the labor force.  Since President Obama took office the labor force participation rate has fallen from about 66% down to 63.5%.  A decline of 2.5 points.  Or a fall of some 3.79%.  Which is more than President Obama has been able to lower the unemployment rate.  Worse, the labor force participation rate has fallen at a greater rate than the unemployment rate.  Which explains why there are fewer people working today than when President Obama took office.

Why the horrible numbers?  Is it because of George W. Bush?  No.  People aren’t working because this is one of the worse business climates in U.S. history.  Higher regulations.  And higher taxes on the horizon.  And, of course, Obamacare.  The great job killer.  Businesses have basically frozen all hiring in the face of the impending Obamacare new taxes, fees and penalties.  And started reducing their full-time workforce.  Cutting hours of their workers to push them into part-time status.  As they cannot pass these costs on to their customers without losing their customers.  For people just aren’t going to pay $9.50 for a Big Mac.  If they do they will be spending less at McDonald’s overall.  And everywhere else.  Because they simply won’t be able to afford as much as they used to.

You will hear economists saying how much better things are getting.  But they’re not.  And won’t be for a long, long time.  At least not under this president.  Or his Keynesian policies.  For President Obama is a Keynesian.  But there is a problem with Keynesian stimulus spending.  It doesn’t work.  As proven by his $800 billion stimulus bill that failed to create any jobs.  At least, based on the historical data from the Bureau of Labor Statistics.

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President Obama’s Economic Recovery is worse than Ronald Reagan’s and George W. Bush’s Combined

Posted by PITHOCRATES - December 8th, 2012

Week in Review

President Obama has said time and again that we can’t go back to the failed policies of the past.  Referring to Ronald Reagan and George W. Bush and their tax cutting ways that stimulated real job creation.  Not the Obama administration Keynesian stimulus spending which has the absolute worst record of job creation in post-war America (see THE SCARIEST JOBS CHART EVER by Joe Weisenthal posted 12/7/2012 on Business Insider).

Despite the strong jobs report, the employment situation in America remains depressing.

Once again, we go back to Calculated Risk, which compares the trajectory of this recovery (red line) with all other post-WWII recoveries.

As you can see, the pace of the downturn was far more severe than anything in previous recessions, and the long march back to pre-recession levels remains incredibly slow.

The chart tells a dismal story.  Ronald Reagan chose tax cuts to pull us out of the 1981 recession.  That recession saw a peak job loss of just over 3%.  And a duration of just over 27 months to recover ALL the jobs that we lost in that recession.

George W. Bush chose tax cuts to pull us out of the 2001 recession following the bursting of Bill Clinton’s dot-com bubble.  That recession saw a peak job loss of just over 2%.  And a duration of about 46 months to recover ALL the jobs lost in that recession.

Bill Clinton’s Policy Statement on Discrimination in Lending basically created subprime lending.  As the Clinton administration pressured lenders to find a way to qualify the unqualified for mortgages.  And the real estate market boomed in the 2000s.  But much like the economic boom in the 1990s it was just a bubble.  That inflated to dangerous heights thanks to Fannie Mae and Freddie Mac buying those toxic subprime mortgages from lenders so they could approve more of them.  Unloading those toxic mortgages on unsuspecting investors.  Sending this toxic contagion throughout the world.  The resulting 2007 recession saw a peak job loss of about 6.5%.  And a duration of about 58 months AND counting to recover all those  jobs lost in the current recession.  We still have another 3% to go.

This postwar recession is the worst by whatever metric you measure it by.  But the singular aspect of it that makes this recession much longer and deeper in job losses is the Obama administration’s choice of using Keynesian stimulus to try to end it.  Instead of tax cuts.  Which is why the Obama recovery is far worse and more long-lasting in misery than both the Reagan and Bush recoveries added together.  Proving the current economic disaster is an Obama disaster.  For his insistence on using the failed policies of Keynesian stimulus spending instead of the time proven policies of tax cuts.

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