Two-Year old Colorado Girl Eats Pot-Laced Cookie when Marijuana was still Illegal

Posted by PITHOCRATES - January 4th, 2014

Week in Review

Pot smokers everywhere hail Colorado’s decriminalization of marijuana so responsible adults can enjoy this harmless substance.  As only responsible adults will be using it.  And they will keep it away from children (see Two-year-old girl who was acting ‘odd’ after eating cookie tests positive for marijuana in Colorado one day before the drug is legalized by Daily Mail Reporter posted 1/3/2014 on the Daily Mail).

Police are investigating how a two-year-old Colorado girl who spent New Years Eve in hospital came to test positive for THC, the primary psychoactive ingredient in marijuana.

The incident started on Tuesday when Aida Hernandez stumbled upon her daughter eating a cookie left sitting in the front yard of an apartment complex in Longmont.

Hernandez told police she instructed the toddler to stop and throw the random sweet back in the garden…

The incident occurred the day before Colorado ended prohibition laws on Marijuana.

This happened while marijuana was still an illegal substance.  And it was left sitting in the open in the neighbor’s front yard.  Where a two-year-old girl surprisingly picked it up and put it in her mouth.  Just imagine how more often this will happen now that marijuana is no longer illegal.  As people can eat their pot-laced cookies and brownies in the open. Lucky for Coloradans that people high on marijuana are very sharp-witted and sober.  So they can make sure there are no uneaten pot-laced cookies and brownies left anywhere where a child can get to it and put it into his or her mouth.  Like they could when it was illegal to use.  Something they’re not likely to do with a bottle of beer or a glass of bourbon lying around.  Because these will taste icky to a child.  Unlike a cookie or a brownie.  Yet marijuana is no worse than alcohol.

www.PITHOCRATES.com

Share

Tags: , , , , ,

Governments turn People into Addicts to generate Tax Revenue

Posted by PITHOCRATES - January 4th, 2014

Week in Review

During the days of the British Empire Great Britain had a problem.  They loved Chinese tea.  But the British had nothing the Chinese wanted in trade.  Except for one thing.  Silver.  Hard money.  Which was a problem for Britain.  They were running out of hard money.  So they came up with an ingenious way to solve that problem.  By getting as many Chinese hooked on opium as possible.  So they could trade Indian grown opium for Chinese tea.  It worked out great for the British.  But the Chinese didn’t like it.  And fought two opium wars with the British.  Which did not end well for them.

North Korea has a hard money problem, too.  And they, too, turned to drugs.  Crystal meth.  Which North Korea manufactured in state-run labs.  Destined for China.  Where they tried to get as many people addicted to crystal meth as possible.  So they can sell it in exchange for Chinese currency.  Which they could use to buy Chinese food.  To help ward off famine in North Korea.  This worked pretty well for North Korea.  But only gave China another addiction problem.

In the United States the government found other ways to raise revenue.  The first two big sources of addiction-revenue were cigarette and alcohol taxes.  But it soon proved not enough.  They then got people addicted to playing the lottery.  When that revenue proved to be insufficient they then got people addicted to casino gambling.  But government spending had grown so great that this revenue was still not enough.  So the government is looking at other things to get people addicted to (see Why Legalizing Marijuana Is a Smart Fiscal Move by Bruce Bartlett, The Fiscal Times, posted 1/3/2014 on Yahoo! News).

Perhaps the dominant factor driving marijuana legalization is the desperate search for new revenue by cash-strapped state governments. The opportunity to tax marijuana is potentially a significant source of new revenue, as well as a way of cutting spending on prisons and law enforcement. The California Secretary of State’s office, for example, estimates savings in the hundreds of millions of dollars from both factors. The following summary is from a proposed state ballot initiative in California (No. 1617)…

It is not surprising that revenue considerations should be critical in the marijuana legalization movement. That was previously the reason why cigarettes were not banned until the 1920s despite a strong nationwide movement to do so. In the wake of Prohibition, governments simply needed cigarette tax revenue too badly. And when Prohibition ended, the need for new revenue after the Great Depression decimated government budgets was a driving force.

Indeed, according to author Daniel Okrent, expectations of the revenue from taxing legal liquor were so great in 1932 that some people thought it might permit the repeal of income taxes. It’s worth remembering that in 1900, taxes on alcohol and cigarettes constituted half of all federal revenues. Indeed, the only reason Prohibition was possible in the first place was that the income tax established in 1913, which was greatly expanded by World War I, would replace the revenue lost from the liquor tax after Prohibition.

There have been no great cuts to revenue like that following Prohibition.  Government spending has just grown so great that it far exceeds the nation’s ability to pay for it with current taxes and borrowing.  So they are looking to make people addicted to marijuana to help pay for their large public sectors.  As well as their vote-buying welfare state.  And when this proves insufficient they can turn to other sources of revenue.  Such as decriminalizing and taxing heroin.  Cocaine.  Crack.  Crystal meth.  Opium.  Even prostitution.  People are already doing these things.  So they can’t be any worse than marijuana.  As long as only responsible adults indulge in these activities.  Just as only responsible adults will smoke marijuana in Colorado.  For think of the tax revenue heroin, cocaine, crack, crystal meth and opium could generate.  For those drugs are really addictive.  And just think how much old rich men would enjoy 18 year old prostitutes.  Prostitution would be a booming business to tax.  These young women could generate great tax revenue for the government by just doing what consenting adults want to do.

We could do these things to find new sources of revenue.  Or we could NOT make people addicts.  Or NOT sell women into prostitution.  Instead we could cut the size of the public sector and the welfare state.  So we can cut spending.  Which would eliminate the need to produce new tax revenue in the first place.  Allowing people to keep their hard-earned money instead of handing it over to the government.  To pay for generous pensions and retiree health care for others.

www.PITHOCRATES.com

Share

Tags: , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , ,

Oil Trains Derail as President Obama tries to Enrich his Rich Billionaire Friends

Posted by PITHOCRATES - January 4th, 2014

Week in Review

If there are two things President Obama doesn’t like they are rich people and oil.  Well, at least he acts that way.  Espousing more concern for the working man.  And clean energy.  Which is why President Obama said “no” to the Keystone XL pipeline.  Or could there have been another reason (see BNSF opens North Dakota track as oil by rail faces more scrutiny by Nicholas Sakelaris posted 1/2/2014 on the Dallas Business Journal)?

Burlington Northern Santa Fe re-opened the double track Thursday morning outside Casselton, N.D., where an oil train collided with a grain train, causing a massive fireball-like explosion earlier this week…

Fort Worth-based BNSF hauls an estimated 750,000 barrels of crude oil per day. The railroad carried an estimated 100 million barrels of crude oil out of the Bakken in 2012, a massive increase from previous years.

You know who owns Burlington Northern Santa Fe (BNSF)?  Warren Buffett.  For BNSF is a wholly owned subsidiary of Berkshire Hathaway.  So Warren Buffet is profiting greatly from President Obama’s rejection of the Keystone XL pipeline.  One can’t help to wonder if that has anything to do with the Buffett Rule (see Buffett would profit from Keystone cancellation by Dave Boyer posted 1/24/2012 on The Washington Times).

Warren Buffett, whom President Obama likes to cite as a fair-minded billionaire while arguing for higher taxes on the wealthy, stands to benefit from the president’s decision to reject the Keystone XL oil pipeline permit.

Mr. Buffett’s Berkshire Hathaway Inc. owns Burlington Northern Santa Fe LLC, which is among the railroads that would transport oil produced in western Canada if the pipeline isn’t built…

If completed, the $7 billion Keystone XL would deliver 700,000 barrels a day of crude from oil sands in Canada to Texas refineries on the coast of the Gulf of Mexico. It would traverse about 1,600 miles.

The State Department’s review of the project said shipping oil via rail is more costly than delivering it to refineries by pipeline.

Mr. Obama often cites Mr. Buffett as an example of a civic-minded billionaire because the entrepreneur has said he should pay a higher tax rate than his secretary. Mr. Buffett and the president like to tell the story of how Mr. Buffett pays a 15 percent effective tax rate, while his secretary pays a higher rate even though she earns only a fraction of what he does.

The president has called his push for higher taxes on the wealthy the “Buffett rule.”

Funny.  Warren Buffett says we should tax rich people more and the Keystone XL pipeline doesn’t get built.  Instead that oil goes on Buffett’s trains.  Making him a lot of money.  Just like the president’s rich friends on Wall Street are making a lot of money.  Who have all gotten richer under the Obama presidency while median family income fell for Main Street.  So more oil is traveling across the country.  Some of which is derailing and soaking into our pristine environment.  Or exploding.  While rich people are getting richer.  And President Obama would have us believe he’s for the working man and clean energy.

It would seem President Obama is more for getting Democrat supporters rich than helping Main Street.

www.PITHOCRATES.com

Share

Tags: , , , , , , , , , , , , , ,

Health Care is Expensive because the Government doesn’t pay their Bills in Full

Posted by PITHOCRATES - January 4th, 2014

Week in Review

Health care is expensive.  It’s why we have Obamacare.  To lower the cost of health care.  And give quality health care to everyone.  But why exactly is health care so costly?  And who’s to blame?  Well, let’s take a look at the cost of an appendectomy to get an idea (see Reddit User Posts $55,000 Hospital Bill for Appendectomy by SYDNEY LUPKIN, ABC News, posted 1/1/2014 on Yahoo! News).

When a 20-year-old man got over the pain of having his burst appendix removed in October, he got hit with a hospital bill he wasn’t expecting.

The bill from Sutter General Hospital in Sacramento, Calif., said the total charges were $55,029.31 but that the patient owed only $11,119.23 because his insurance had covered the rest.

Shocked, the patient took to Reddit to post the bill and vent his frustrations.

“I never truly understood how much health care in the U.S. costs until I got appendicitis in October,” he wrote on the social media site. “I’m a 20-year-old guy. Thought other people should see this to get a real idea of how much an unpreventable illness costs in the U.S…”

But the bill was not so unusual, given recent studies that showed how the cost of medical procedures could vary from hospital to hospital, said Timothy McBride, a professor and health policy analyst at Washington University in St. Louis….

Sutter General Hospital spokeswoman Nancy Turner said hospital billing is complicated, and that the hospital has people available to help patients navigate it. She said hospitals often serve many patients who don’t pay at all or don’t pay the actual cost of treatment because they are on Medicare or Medi-Cal, California’s version of Medicaid.

“Sutter Health agrees that an improved billing structure is needed, where published charges are more closely aligned with actual costs,” Turner said. “And a more straightforward pricing system is only possible when reimbursement from government-sponsored patients covers actual costs.”

How much did your television cost?  How much is your cable bill?  How much was your laptop?  Your tablet?  How much was your mobile device?  How much is your cable bill?  How much is your cellular bill?  People know these costs very well.  For they are very discerning shoppers.  And because they are manufacturers and providers bend over backwards to give their customers what they want at the lowest possible price.  This is free market capitalism at work.  Competition for our dollars makes businesses try to give us the highest quality at the lowest price.  But none of this happens in health care.  Because there are no free market forces in health care.

No one knows what their health care costs are.  Because they don’t pay the bill.  So they don’t know.  And they don’t care.  It’s so bad today that most couldn’t shop and pay for the own health care if they tried.  On the rare occasion they pay attention to their bill what do they do?  Blame the hospital for gouging on their bill.  But there is a reason they do this.  And it’s not because they’re greedy.  They do it because it’s the only way they can keep their doors open.  Thanks to the people who don’t pay their bills.  And the government who doesn’t pay all of their bills.  Leaving no choice for health care providers but to over-bill the insurance companies.  Who are the only people paying their bills in full and then some.

Obamacare will only make this worse.  By giving ‘free’ health care to more people.  Health care that the government won’t pay in full.  Which will force the health insurers to raise their premium prices further.  Until it is so expensive that no one will buy it anymore.  The so-called death spiral.  Opening the door for single-payer health care.  And Medicaid-quality health care for everyone.  Well, perhaps not quite Medicaid-quality health care.  With more people in the program wait times and rationing will be greater than they are currently in Medicaid.  So it will be worse than Medicaid.  The worse-quality health care currently available in the United States.

www.PITHOCRATES.com

Share

Tags: , , , , , , , , , ,

Democrats will Condone any Bad Behavior if it advances their Power

Posted by PITHOCRATES - January 4th, 2014

Week in Review

The government has long warned us not to eat or drink things that are bad for us.  They banned Saccharin after mega doses in rats caused cancer.  They then determined that a rat’s physiology is different from humans.  And removed their ban.  They banned the use of Alar (used in apples and other fruits to provide a better harvest) when mega doses proved to be carcinogenic.  The consumption of healthy apples fell.  They told us not to eat eggs as they had cholesterol.  Even though no study showed egg cholesterol was bad for you.  So people quit eating eggs.  And many lost an excellent source of protein.  And it turned out saturated fats play a larger role in our cholesterol levels.  And that eating eggs really doesn’t affect our cholesterol levels.  So we’re eating eggs again.  Because they are good for you.

Mayor Bloomberg wanted to make large sugary beverages illegal in New York.  There have been bans on trans-fats.  They have tried to take toys out of McDonald’s Happy Meals to make them less attractive to children.  And let’s not forget the war on smoking.  They have put pictures of diseased lungs on the packaging to get us to quit.  They have made it illegal to smoke a cigarette pretty much everywhere to protect others from second-hand smoke (though no studies exist showing that there is even a risk due to second hand smoke just as there was no study showing egg cholesterol was bad for you).  They have even discussed bans on third-hand smoke (the ashtray smell you leave behind after smoking).

Government is regulating our lives to save us from ourselves.  Because we engage in behavior too risky for our own good.  Except for two behaviors.  Drugs.  As Colorado has decriminalized marijuana (without any regard to our diseased lungs, second-hand smoke or third-hand smoke).  And sex.  As they give out free birth-control to encourage our young people to have as much sex as they so desire.  And provide access to abortion when that fails.  Despite the slew of venereal diseases all that sex has given our young people.  Including AIDS (see A Resisted Pill to Prevent H.I.V. by DAVID TULLER posted 12/30/2013 on The New York Times).

Over a cup of tea at a downtown Starbucks, Michael Rubio recalled how four friends became H.I.V. positive through unprotected sex, all within a year…

The very existence of that option represents a startling turn in the too-long history of the AIDS epidemic. Many health experts hoped that the medication — Truvada, a combination of two antiviral drugs that has been used to treat H.I.V. since 2004 — would be exuberantly embraced by H.I.V.-negative gay men. Instead, Truvada has been slow to catch on as an H.I.V. preventive in the 18 months since the strategy’s approval by the Food and Drug Administration. In some quarters, the idea that healthy gay men should take a medication to prevent infection — an approach called pre-exposure prophylaxis, or PrEP — has met with hostility or indifference…

For 30 years, public health officials have aggressively promoted condom use during every sexual encounter as the only effective method, apart from abstinence, for preventing H.I.V. transmission. Still, 50,000 new infections are occurring annually in the United States; sexual transmission between men accounts for more than half of them, and a disproportionate number among African-Americans and other minorities.

Many experts hailed Truvada as an opportunity to reduce new infections among high-risk groups like young gay men, people in relationships with H.I.V.-positive partners, and prostitutes. The F.D.A. called for prescriptions to be accompanied by counseling, frequent H.I.V. testing, and continued promotion of safer sex, although research suggests that daily use of the pill alone confers close to full protection.

But a generational shift in attitudes toward H.I.V. among gay men may also be playing a role, some experts say. With advances in treatment, many younger men who did not experience the worst years of the epidemic are less fearful of the consequences of infection. Moreover, current medications can lower viral levels in H.I.V.-positive people to the point where the risk of transmission is negligible, further reducing the perceived need for PrEP among H.I.V.-negative partners…

Certainly, “condom fatigue” among gay men is real. The proportion who reported unprotected anal sex in the previous year rose to 57 percent in 2011 from 48 percent in 2005, according to the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention.

Obamacare will pay for AIDS and HIV treatment.  But will people with AIDS/HIV pay more for their Obamacare?  Probably not.  Smokers will pay more, though.  Despite it being easier to prevent AIDS/HIV than lung cancer from smoking.  For you can still have anal sex without being at risk for catching AIDS/HIV if you wear a condom.  But you can’t smoke without putting yourself at risk every time.  Because when you smoke you pull in that cancer-causing smoke into your lungs.  Yet as preventable as AIDS/HIV is 57% of gay men have unprotected sex.  Which you can’t define as anything but willful and dangerous behavior.

But the left has no harsh words for the gay community.  Unlike they do for smokers.  Why?  Because the gay community votes Democrat.  As do young people.  Who believe that 30% or more of the population is gay.  While a 2010 study by the Williams Institute put the number at 3.5%.  But the young believe that 3 out of every 10 people (instead of 3.5 out of 100) identify themselves as lesbian, gay, or bisexual.  And want to be progressive and enlightened and cool and so unlike their parents that they want to show their enlightened support for them.  Which is another reason why they vote Democrat.  In addition to the sex and drugs the Democrats encourage.

Until gay men wear condoms all of the time or abstain from willful and dangerous unprotected anal sex AIDS/HIV will spread.  (If these young gay men were in monogamous relationships they wouldn’t be spreading AIDS/HIV).  And it won’t be just in the gay community.  Thanks to bisexuals, intravenous drug users and prostitutes the disease will migrate to others who think they are being progressive and enlightened to have as much sex as the Democrats encourage them to have.  Guaranteeing a large voting block for the anti-parents (i.e., Democrats) come Election Day.  And they don’t care how many lives they destroy in the process.  But if you want to enjoy a cigarette or a big juicy burger look out.  They are coming after you and your reckless lifestyle.  Unless, of course, you’re smoking a marijuana cigarette.  And eating that big greasy burger afterward because you have the munchies.  Because there’s nothing wrong with that lifestyle.  Because you’re likely a Democrat voter.

The temperance movement took off in large part due to the STDs husbands brought home to their wives after drinking away their paychecks at the local saloon.  And then making bad decisions when drunk.  Like spending what money they didn’t spend on alcohol on prostitutes.  Bringing home syphilis to many an unsuspecting wife.  Who passed it on to their unborn children.  It was the progressives that try to put a stop to that with Prohibition.  Including women like Susan B. Anthony.  Now look at the progressives.  Who are a far cry from those who once wanted to protect women and children.  Who now champion some of the most dangerous behavior women and children can face.  Sex and drugs.  Just to win elections.  Something Susan B. Anthony would not likely approve of if she were alive today.

www.PITHOCRATES.com

Share

Tags: , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , ,