President Obama is Exasperated with the Republicans for not giving him Absolute Power

Posted by PITHOCRATES - October 6th, 2013

Week in Review

Barack Obama promised in the 2008 presidential campaign that there weren’t any blue states or red states, only purple states.  That he would be the president for all Americans.  And that they would all work together.  Democrats and Republicans.  After the election (and the Democrats won the House and Senate) Eric Cantor (Republican) met with President Obama to work together on the stimulus bill.  When discussing the merits of a small business tax cut President Obama had had enough and said, “Elections have consequences, and at the end of the day, I won.”  And because he had won the election the Republicans could go [deleted expletive] themselves.

Okay, so elections have consequences.  And the winners can do whatever they please.  Apparently.  Well, the Republicans won enough elections to hold the House in the 2012 elections.  So they don’t have to bend willingly to the executive branch of government according to the Obama doctrine.  Which really annoys the president (see Obama Says He’s Exasperated With House Republican Faction by Roxana Tiron, Kathleen Hunter & Michael C. Bender posted 10/2/2013 on Bloomberg).

President Barack Obama, declaring himself “exasperated,” said he won’t negotiate with Republicans on the U.S. budget until they reopen the government and raise the debt ceiling without conditions…

Michael Steel, a spokesman for Boehner, said negotiating after Democrats get what they want is “not much of an offer…”

Both sides are jockeying for the political high ground in the standoff. Democrats said the nation was being taken hostage by the Republicans’ Tea Party faction, while the Republicans faulted Senate Democrats and Obama for being unwilling to negotiate over any proposal to delay or curtail the health-care act, which opened for insurance enrollment yesterday…

The U.S. budget deficit in June was 4.3 percent of gross domestic product, down from 10.1 percent in February 2010 and the narrowest since November 2008, when Obama was elected to his first term, according to data compiled by Bloomberg from the Treasury Department and the Bureau of Economic Analysis.

The House of Representatives is the people’s house.  It’s not the king’s Privy Council.  Or an extension of the executive branch.  Exasperated?  Sorry President Obama.  You are not a king.  You do not wield absolute power.

Since President Obama took office he has run record deficits.  And raised the national debt to record levels.  That’s one of the reasons for the Republican opposition to Obamacare.  The nation can’t afford it.  Because it won’t be deficit neutral.  The CBO has revised the cost of Obamacare to be three times what the Democrats said it would originally cost.  To sneak it by the people.  Lying to them that they were going to get more for less.  When in fact they’re going to get less for more.  The people understand this.  Which is why they are mad as hell and are urging their representatives to do everything to prevent Obamacare from both destroying the American health care system and bankrupting the United States.

Exasperated?  It is the American people who are exasperated with a president that continues to govern against their will.

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Collective Bargaining in Wisconsin – Greed versus the Taxpayers

Posted by PITHOCRATES - February 25th, 2011

Democracy in Action and Whiny Democrats in Wisconsin

The Wisconsin Democrats need to take a refresher course in democracy.  Because democracy isn’t oligarchy.  The minority power can’t have its way.  No matter how unhappy they are.  Elections have consequences.  Like Obama said.  The Obama Administration governed without the consent or input of the minority power.  It may not have been nice or what he said he would do during the campaign.  But it was legal.  And democratic.  So Obama governed against his campaign platform.  And the American people.  The people didn’t like that.  And gave the House back to the Republicans in the 2010 mid-term elections.

You see, that’s how democracy works.  You don’t whine and cry when you can’t have your way.  You compete in the arena of ideas.  Win elections.  And govern accordingly.  And when you lose elections you don’t govern any more.  Unless you’re a bunch of whiny cry babies in Wisconsin (see Capitol Chaos: Assembly Passes Budget Repair Bill by Charles Benson, Jay Sorgi and the Associated Press posted 2/25.2011 on todaystmj4.com).

Shortly after 1:00 a.m., after more than 60 hours of debate on this, the Republicans quickly called for the vote, which ended all debate.

Some of the Democrats were so taken aback by what had happened, they didn’t get a chance to vote. 

The vote happened so fast, within seconds, that the bill pass with Republican voting for it, but while they were voting, Democrats kept yelling, “No!  No!  You can’t do this!”…

After it passed, Republicans started walking off the floor, and the Democrats started yelling “Shame!  Shame!  Shame!” as Republicans walked off, one by one, and left the Assembly floor.

Obamacare was hustled through a lot faster with a lot of bribes.  There was no debate.  Nancy Pelosi said we had to pass it to learn what was in it.  The Democrats had no problem with that vote.  The vote in Wisconsin, on the other hand, they do. 

The people of Wisconsin, unhappy with the Democrats, voted in a Republican controlled legislature.  And a Republican governor.  The Republicans had the majority.  The Democrats didn’t.  It’s called democracy.  Which they’re all for.  When they are in power.  But when they’re not in power democracy just isn’t fair.  And they whine.

Of Course they’re Over-Compensated

After the vote layoff notices went out.  The UPI reports teachers are so anxious that they were breaking out in tears.  And for good reason.  They have some pretty nice jobs.  All public sector workers do.  I mean, they wouldn’t be making such a big fuss if those jobs were as bad as they would have us believe.

We the taxpayers pay public sector workers well.  And we’ve been giving them the best of benefits.  Well, yes and no, say the critics.  They’re smart.  Well educated.  And underpaid for their brains.  The critics say people in the private sector with the same education are compensated more.  That’s a little hard to believe.  Because few give up those public sector jobs once they get them (see Everything You Need to Know about Whether State and Local Bureaucrats Are Over-Compensated, in One Chart by Daniel J. Mitchell on 2/25/2011 on CATO@Liberty).

The data on total compensation clearly show a big advantage for state and local bureaucrats, largely because of lavish benefits (which is the problem that Governor Walker in Wisconsin is trying to fix). But the government unions argue that any advantage they receive disappears after the data is adjusted for factors such as education.

This is a fair point, so we need to find some objective measure that neutralizes all the possible differences. Fortunately, the Bureau of Labor Statistics has a Job Openings and Labor Turnover Survey, and this “JOLTS” data includes a measure of how often workers voluntarily leave job, and we can examine this data for different parts of the workforce…

Not surprisingly, this data shows state and local bureaucrats are living on Easy Street. As the chart illustrates, private sector workers are more than three times as likely to quit their jobs.

The reason someone doesn’t quit a job is simple and straight forward.  They can’t find a better one.  Over in the private sector, they say the way to increase your compensation is to make a few moves to other companies.  Let private employers bid up your salary.  This isn’t how it works in the public sector.  Pay and benefits have nothing to do with ability.  You get in and you stay put.  And let the union shake down the taxpayers for ever more generous pay and benefits.

Greedy Teachers and the Poor Taxpayers they Shake Down

Wisconsin teachers are calling in sick to show up at these protests.  They are using fraudulent doctor’s notes handed out at the protests to excuse their ‘sick’ days.  That’s not very ethical.  And probably not very legal.  Or a good lesson for the children they teach (some of which have joined them in the protest as useful pawns for the children can’t possibly understand what’s really at stake here).  So why would they go to these lengths?  Will the governor force them to choose between food and medicine?  Will they have to eat cat food?  I doubt it.  For it looks like they’re currently enjoying champagne and caviar (see Oh, To Be a Teacher in Wisconsin by Robert Costrell posted 2/25/2011 on The Wall Street Journal).

The average Milwaukee public-school teacher salary is $56,500, but with benefits the total package is $100,005, according to the manager of financial planning for Milwaukee public schools.

Wow.  That’s like having one job and getting two paychecks.  And they only work 9 months out of the year.  And get a lot of time off when they do work.  That is some pretty sweet compensation.  I can see why they protest.  They are a privileged elite.  And like elites, they don’t like giving up their elitism.

So how do the benefits add up to $100,005 in total compensation for an average public-school teacher?  Well, thanks to collective bargaining, they get pensions and health care benefits like no one does in the private sector.

•Social Security and Medicare. The employer cost is 7.65% of wages, the same as in the private sector.

•State Pension. Teachers belong to the Wisconsin state pension plan. That plan requires a 6.8% employer contribution and 6.2% from the employee. However, according to the collective-bargaining agreement in place since 1996, the district pays the employees’ share as well, for a total of 13%.

•Teachers’ Supplemental Pension. In addition to the state pension, Milwaukee public-school teachers receive an additional pension under a 1982 collective-bargaining agreement. The district contributes an additional 4.2% of teacher salaries to cover this second pension. Teachers contribute nothing.

•Classified Pension. Most other school employees belong to the city’s pension system instead of the state plan. The city plan is less expensive but here, too, according to the collective-bargaining agreement, the district pays the employees’ 5.5% share.

•Health care for current employees. Under the current collective- bargaining agreements, the school district pays the entire premium for medical and vision benefits, and over half the cost of dental coverage. These plans are extremely expensive.

This is partly because of Wisconsin’s unique arrangement under which the teachers union is the sponsor of the group health-insurance plans. Not surprisingly, benefits are generous. The district’s contributions for health insurance of active employees total 38.8% of wages. For private-sector workers nationwide, the average is 10.7%.

•Health insurance for retirees. This benefit is rarely offered any more in private companies, and it can be quite costly. This is especially the case for teachers in many states, because the eligibility rules of their pension plans often induce them to retire in their 50s, and Medicare does not kick in until age 65. Milwaukee’s plan covers the entire premium in effect at retirement, and retirees cover only the growth in premiums after they retire.

No one in the private sector gets these benefits.  No one.  Unless they make very large contribution towards them.  Whereas the teachers get them totally free.  Is that fair?  People bitch about CEO compensation but at least it’s the shareholders who have last say on that.  In Wisconsin it is doubtful the taxpayers even know what their public-school teachers are making.  Courtesy of their tax dollars.

Overall, the school district’s contributions to health insurance for employees and retirees total about 50.9 cents on top of every dollar paid in wages. Together with pension and Social Security contributions, plus a few small items, one can see how the total cost of fringe benefits reaches 74.2%.

What these numbers ultimately prove is the excessive power of collective bargaining. The teachers’ main pension plan is set by the state legislature, but under the pressure of local bargaining, the employees’ contribution is often pushed onto the taxpayers. In addition, collective bargaining led the Milwaukee public school district to add a supplemental pension plan—again with no employee contribution. Finally, the employees’ contribution (or lack thereof) to the cost of health insurance is also collectively bargained.

As the costs of pensions and insurance escalate, the governor’s proposal to restrict collective bargaining to salaries—not benefits—seems entirely reasonable.

And there you have it.  Why the Left is panicking about what’s going on in Wisconsin.  And it ain’t about the children.  Health care benefits and pensions can’t get any less about the children.  Collective bargaining has given the public sector workers great pay and benefits at the taxpayer’s expense.  All without having the taxpayer to approve these generous compensation packages.  Unlike shareholders in private corporations. 

Collective bargaining for public sector workers enables the transfer of huge sums of money from the private sector (the taxpayers) to the public sector.  Union members pay dues.  And guess who unions support in elections.  Democrats.  If other states follow suit the Democrats stand to lose a lot of campaign cash and foot soldiers.  And this is what it’s really about in Wisconsin.  Greed.  The greed of public sector workers.  And the greed of Democrats.

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Obama Calls for Dems and GOP to Cooperate, Wants to Keep Governing against the Will of the People

Posted by PITHOCRATES - January 1st, 2011

Liberals Always Call for Bipartisanship when they Lose Elections

When Nancy Pelosi and her Democrats won in the 2006 midterm elections, it was the end of conservatism.  They said so.  When Obama won in 2008, he advised those across the aisle that elections have consequences (see The roots of Obama’s demise by Marc A. Thiessen posted 10/25/2010 on The Washington Post). 

The decline of the Obama presidency can be traced to a meeting at the White House just three days after the inauguration, when the new president gathered congressional leaders of both parties to discuss his proposed economic stimulus. House Republican Whip Eric Cantor gave President Obama a list of modest proposals for the bill. Obama said he would consider the GOP ideas, but told the assembled Republicans that “elections have consequences” and “I won.” Backed by the largest congressional majorities in decades, the president was not terribly interested in giving ground to his vanquished adversaries.

When the far left lies and tricks voters to elect them, they confuse that for a mandate.  When the truth of their policies comes out, though, they lose subsequent elections.  Then demand that Republicans work with them.  For the best interests of the American people.  Unlike Nancy Pelosi.  Or President Obama.

When liberal Democrats have the majority in Congress, bipartisanship means that Republicans should accept being the Democrats’ bitch.  When they’re out of power, it means something completely different.  That Republicans shouldn’t govern like Democrats.  Governing roughshod all over the opposition party.  Why?  “Because,” they say.  Pouting.  (They really don’t have anything better.  They just HATE not having power.)

It was Always about Growing Government, not Improving the Economy

And as the new year begins, President Obama is giving us a Bill Clinton wag of the finger (figuratively), telling us to play nice.  Which is what bullies typically do when they lost their power to bully (see Obama: Dems, GOP must cooperate in new year by Julie Pace, Associated Press, posted 1/1/2011 on Yahoo! News).

In his weekly radio and Internet address, Obama said Saturday that lawmakers must return to Washington next week prepared to make serious decisions about how to grow the economy in the short run and stay competitive in the future.

“I’m willing to work with anyone of either party who’s got a good idea and the commitment to see it through,” Obama said. “And we should all expect you to hold us accountable for our progress or our failure to deliver.”

Not quite the ‘thanks but no thanks’ he told the Republicans 3 days after his inauguration.  And all that talk about jobs being job one?  And that laser like focus on jobs?  It was all bull [deleted expletive].  Unemployment went up after his stimulus plan to keep unemployment under 8%.  It’s still flirting with 10% some 2 years later.  But the size of government spending exploded.  Which is what the Left wants.  It’s what they always want.  So they got what they wanted.  The only problem is that some of their supporters believed they were trying to improve the economy.

The Public Sector’s Message to the Taxpayers:  Let Them Eat Cake

The liberal left comprises approximately 20% of the population.  That’s why it’s hard for them to win elections.  Especially after they’ve exploded government spending following an election win.  And that spending is bankrupting the country.  Our states.  And our cities.

A big chunk of that spending goes to support the public sector.  Public sector unions have made public sector jobs very cushy.  No one in the private sector comes close to their wage and benefit packages.  And no one in the private sector enjoys job security like they have in the public sector.  Until now.  In Wisconsin, the Republicans are in power.  And the public sector is getting nervous (see Wisconsin State Workers Fret, as G.O.P. Takes Over by Monica Davey posted 1/1/2011 on The New York Times)

But it’s just not in Wisconsin.  Public sector unions are nervous wherever Republicans have ascended to power.  Because they worry that the good times may come to an end.  And they may have to live like the rest of us.  Some are even predicting that we may see a little European rioting here in the United States (see Topic A: What will be 2011’s biggest political surprise? by Ed Rogers posted 1/2/2011 on The Washington Post).

The biggest political surprise in 2011 may come in the form of the shock produced by public-sector labor strikes and demonstrations that could stray into civil disorder as state and local governments cut budgets. Government workers could be laid off by the thousands, and millions of the beneficiaries of government-supplied salaries, pensions and benefits could see reductions in pay and program allowances they have been told to expect.

The same kind of protests that have rocked Paris, London and Rome could erupt in California, New York and Illinois.

When European Socialism cuts back on pensions, college tuition assistance, health care, etc., the beneficiaries of European Socialism burn cities.  And this anarchy may be coming to a city near you.

The schism between the governed and those governing could become greater than ever as the government tries to protect itself for its own sake and not for the public good. The millions of Americans who have lost jobs or face increasing economic uncertainty resent the relative posterity and security that government now provides for itself. President Obama will say he is for more “stimulus,” but even the money-making printing presses in Washington are at their limits.

It’s a master-slave mentality.  The masters are the public sector.  The slaves are the taxpayers.  And the masters have lost touch with reality.  They laugh at the poor suffering masses struggling to pay their taxes.  When advised of the taxpayer’s plight what do they say?  “Let them eat cake.”  (A reference to what Marie Antoinette reportedly said during the French Revolution.  While the upper classes had food, the lower classes were to be satisfied with oven scrapings.)

Pennsylvania Liquor Stores a Microcosm of Public Sectors Everywhere

Of course, the poor, suffering taxpayers would probably not be in such a foul mood if it wasn’t for the value they were getting for those high taxes.  That public sector sucks.  As any enterprise without competition does.  Why give a damn about what you’re doing if you’re the only caterer in town?

In Pennsylvania, you can only buy wine and liquor in a government store.  And the service stinks to high heaven.  The good people of Pennsylvania want to privatize their booze.  But the public sector union oppose privatization (see A Push to Privatize Pennsylvania Liquor Stores by Julie Pace, Associated Press, posted 12/31/2010 on The New York Times).

Like prisoners in the gulag, consumers here can only fantasize about buying their wine and liquor in a competitive free market. The Commonwealth of Pennsylvania has run the liquor stores for eight decades, a relic of the post-Prohibition era, when government thought controlling the sale of alcohol would limit consumption.

The legislature has consistently dismissed talk of privatizing the system, mainly because of opposition from the union representing the store workers and from groups like Mothers Against Drunk Driving and conservative teetotalers, all influential in the state.

And what’s the recourse for an angry people?

“This is insane!” said Bill Conrad, 68, a retired electrical engineer. “People are going to New York and Jersey” to buy alcohol.

And there it is.  Competition makes everything better.  Should you be lucky enough to live close to the state border.  Where I live, I can go to most any party store, some drugstores, even some supermarkets.  And you know what?  I can go to anyone and buy whatever I want whenever I want.  Private stores have competition so they have an incentive to keep their shelves stocked.  And their doors open for customers.

If you want to get an idea about how Obamacare will be, you can look at the liquor stores in Pennsylvania.  That’s what happens when the governments tries to run anything.

The Taxpayers Message to the Public Sector Employees:  Get a Job

The Democrats took a shellacking at the 2010 midterm elections.  The people have rejected their Big Government liberal agenda.  And they know it.  So they’re now trying to shame the Republicans into working with them to keep their Big Government dreams alive.  It’s either that or they have to figure out a way to get rid of those pesky elections.

But the public sector is bankrupting the country.  And the people paying the taxes to support that public sector are saying enough is enough.  They don’t like making sacrifices in their own life so others in government can live a better life.  Especially when they have to settle for such rotten service from the public sector they’re paying more and more to fund.

Their message to these pampered public sector employees?  The same parents have been telling their kids for ages.  Get a job.

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Republicans and Obama Compromise to Extend the Bush Tax Cuts

Posted by PITHOCRATES - December 8th, 2010

It’s not that the American People Disagree with Obama.  They’re just not Smart enough to know what’s Best for Them.

Well, problem solved.  Sort of.  For a year or so.  Then they’ll have to do it all over again.

Obama will extend the Bush tax cuts.  And it will only cost another year of unemployment benefits.  That’s good because we have all grown weary of this recession (see Obama defends tax deal, says he’s kept promises by Ben Feller, AP White House Correspondent, posted 12/7/2010 on Yahoo! News).

With fellow Democrats balking, President Barack Obama declared Tuesday that a compromise with Republicans on tax cuts was necessary to help the economy and protect recession-weary Americans. He passionately defended his record against Democrats who complain he’s breaking campaign promises.

What’s this?  Some of that bipartisanship he was talking about when Obama ran as a moderate during the 2008 presidential campaign?  Can you feel the love?  You better pinch me because I must be dreaming.

Obama cast his decision to accede to the GOP position on extending the tax cuts in stark terms.

“It’s tempting not to negotiate with hostage takers — unless the hostage gets harmed. Then, people will question the wisdom of that strategy. In this case, the hostage was the American people, and I was not willing to see them get harmed.”

He said the American people agree with his position, but “I haven’t persuaded the Republican Party.” Reflecting the newly increased Republican clout in Congress, he said: “I haven’t persuaded (Senate Republican leader) Mitch McConnell and I haven’t persuaded (House GOP leader) John Boehner.”

Now there’s the Obama we all know and…., well, know.  Who else could suffer such a categorical rejection of his polices and still think the American people agree with him?  Talk about illusions of grandeur. 

It reminds me of that line in the movie Tootsie where some aging soap opera star was lamenting about being an old has-been.  Dorothy (Dustin Hoffman) soothed his feelings by saying he wasn’t an old has-been.  He couldn’t be.  Because you had to be famous first to be a has-been.

Or that scene in that classic movie This is Spinal Tap, the fake documentary about a fake, aging rock band.  The interviewer noted they were playing smaller venues instead of arenas like in their heyday and asked if that was a reflection on their popularity.  They said ‘no’.  Their audiences weren’t getting smaller.  They were just becoming more selective.

And you can forget about pinching me.

Americans Lose Faith in the Unmanly Obama

Unhappy with this compromise, the Left is questioning Obama’s manliness (see Left sees tax surrender, says Obama reelection bid now crippled by Sam Youngman posted 12/7/2010 on The Hill).

“President Obama has shown a complete refusal to fight Republicans throughout his presidency even when the public is on his side — and millions of his former supporters are now growing disappointed and infuriated by this refusal to fight,” said Adam Green, co-founder of the Progressive Change Campaign Committee.

The public is with Obama?  Talk about a struggle with reality.  Or a very, very short memory.  If the midterm elections weren’t a rejection of Obama’s liberal agenda I don’t know what rejection is.  So, no, the public is not with Obama on this.  Only the far Left is with Obama.  That 20% of the population that the other 80% can’t stand.

“This is only a tough fight [now] because Americans have lost faith that President Obama is fighting for their economic futures,” said Jamal Simmons, a Democratic strategist and former official with the Clinton administration.

Do you think?  Things have gotten worse under Obama.  Even after he spent billions of dollars to make things better.  So, yeah, most Americans have lost faith in Obama.  If they even had any in him in the first place.

Compromise is a Four-Letter Word on the Left

Bipartisanship is all well and good.  As long as you can make the other guy be bipartisan, that is.  The Democrats aren’t happy.  Especially the leadership, who usually march in lockstep with Obama (see Obama defends tax deal while Reid seeks changes by Charles Babington, Associated Press, posted 12/7/2010 on Yahoo! News).

“It’s something that’s not done yet,” said Senate Majority Leader Harry Reid, D-Nev. “We’re going to have to do some more work,” Reid said after a closed-door meeting with Vice President Joe Biden and members of the Democratic rank-and-file.

Reid isn’t happy.  Neither is Pelosi.

Across the Capitol, House Speaker Nancy Pelosi, normally one of Obama’s staunchest allies, made plain her unhappiness, issuing a statement that contained no commitment to help pass the plan. “We will continue discussions with the president and our caucus in the days ahead.”

Yes, Reid and Pelosi are all for compromise.  As long it’s not them doing the compromising.  Typical liberals.  Never happy.  Even with the most liberal president ever to inhabit the White House.  He just isn’t liberal enough for them.

The Really Sad thing is that Pelosi got Reelected with 80% of the Vote

Furious, Pelosi vented on Twitter (see Pelosi attacks Obama-GOP tax plan as House Democrats signal fight by Russell Berman posted 12/7/2010 on The Hill).

In a post on Twitter, Pelosi said the GOP provisions in the tax proposal would add to the deficit and help the rich without creating jobs. The GOP provisions “help only wealthiest 3%, don’t create jobs & add tens of billions to deficit,” the Pelosi tweet said.

Then issued a statement.

“We will continue discussions with the president and our caucus in the days ahead,” Pelosi said. “Democratic priorities remain clear: to provide a tax cut for working families, to promote policies that produce jobs and economic growth, and to assist millions of our fellow Americans who have lost their jobs through no fault of their own.”

Nevadans barely reelected Reid.  Pelosi, on the other hand, got something like 80% of the vote.  Scary.  So that means about 80% of the people in her district agree with the political philosophy of about 20% of the country.  That screwball far Left.  The same people that supported Joseph Stalin.  And Fidel Castro.  Is it any wonder that Pelosi doesn’t have the foggiest idea about creating jobs?

Pelosi and the Democrats have been in power since 2006, 2 years before Obama’s election.  That’s 4 years of legislative control.  And things have declined during those 4 years.  So why in the world would anyone believe that she and her Democrats know anything about jobs and economic growth?  I’m sure she believes they do.  They just need more time.  Because that fifth year is always the charm.  Stalin, Mao, Castro – they all had 5 year plans.  And all the magic happens in that fifth year.  Apparently. 

Elections Have Consequences

The 2010 midterm elections were a mandate to shrink the power and scope of government.  Yet you wouldn’t know that listening to Obama, Pelosi and Reid.  Even some Republicans seem a little too eager to reach across the aisle. 

The Republicans need to acknowledge that Obama was right.  Elections have consequences.  And they won this time.  Not the Democrats.  And they need to legislate like they got a pair. 

Many feel the extension of the Bush tax cuts came at a high price.  No doubt they’re wondering what they will pay to repeal Obamacare.

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Broke and Inefficient: Medicare, Social Security, Liberalism and (soon to be) Obamacare

Posted by PITHOCRATES - November 15th, 2010

The Washington Post Thinks President Obama can be Great.  If he Quits being President.

The Washington Post says the American people have rejected President Obama and his policies.  But they still think he’s the bee’s knees.  The great man can still be great.  If he quits (see Opinion | One and done: To be a great president, Obama should not seek reelection in 2012 by Douglas E. Schoen and Patrick H. Caddell posted 11/14/2010 on The Washington Post).

Obama himself once said to Diane Sawyer: “I’d rather be a really good one-term president than a mediocre two-term president.” He now has the chance to deliver on that idea.

In the 2008 presidential campaign, Obama spoke repeatedly of his desire to end the red-state-blue-state divisions in America and to change the way Washington works. This was a central reason he was elected; such aspirations struck a deep chord with the polarized electorate.

But that’s not the reason the people elected him.  They simply didn’t know any better.  No one knew anything about him.  He had no track record.  No experience.  A barren resume.  Questionable associations with radicals.  And he went to church run by a racist and anti-American pastor. 

The liberal mainstream media simply failed to vet this candidate.  And now that he has governed as one would expect with such a past, the people have rejected him at the 2010 midterm elections.  As they would have during the campaign.  Had the media vetted him like they vet Republican candidates.  But they didn’t.  Because they were already in love with him.

Should the president do that, he – and the country – would face virtually no bad outcomes. The worst-case scenario for Obama? In January 2013, he walks away from the White House having been transformative in two ways: as the first black president, yes, but also as a man who governed in a manner unmatched by any modern leader. He will have reconciled the nation, continued the economic recovery, gained a measure of control over the fiscal problems that threaten our future, and forged critical solutions to our international challenges. He will, at last, be the figure globally he has sought to be, and will almost certainly leave a better regarded president than he is today. History will look upon him kindly – and so will the public.

No.  They won’t.  President Obama wasn’t succumbing to pressure from his liberal base.  He wanted to remake America into a quasi-socialist state like those social democracies in Europe.  The American people don’t.  Hence the 2010 midterm election results. 

More Obamacare Waivers to Companies that can’t Afford Obamacare

Obama lied during the 2008 presidential campaign.  He said he was a centrist.  He said he didn’t want to nationalize health care.  Well, after winning he said elections have consequences.  There would be no reaching across the aisle.  It would be his way.  Because the Republicans lost.  And what did he want more than anything else?  A Big Government takeover of health care. 

And he lied again.  He said they would provide health care to more people and bring total costs down.  Well, Obamacare forced private insurers to provide more benefits.  So, of course, they raised their premiums.  Some dropped children-only policies because Obamacare basically made those pure unfunded welfare.  And McDonald’s asked for, and got, waivers for their min-med plans.  As did others.  Why?  Because Obamacare increased the cost of those plans so much that they would have dropped health insurance for their employees without the waivers. 

Obamacare is forcing higher costs on others, too.  To date the government has issued another 111 waivers (see Approved Applications for Waiver of the Annual Limits Requirements of the PHS Act Section 2711 as of November 1, 2010 from the U.S. Department of Health & Human Services website).  And because the unions didn’t get the public option to offload their health care burdens, a lot of them want out of Obamacare.  They can’t afford it.  And if they can’t, you know others without big legal staffs who have no idea what’s coming can’t afford it either.

Medicare:  Broke and Inefficient

Besides out of control costs what can we expect with government managed health care?  Well, I guess we can look at government managed health care we have now.  Medicare.  And what’s it like working in that government run system (see Doctors brace for possible big Medicare pay cuts by Ricardo Alonso-Zaldivar, Associated Press, posted 11/13/2010 on Yahoo! News)?

“My frustration level is at a nine or 10 right now,” said Wagner, who practices in San Antonio. “I am exceptionally exhausted with these annual and biannual threats to cut my reimbursement by drastic amounts. As a business person, I can’t budget at all because I have no idea how much money is going to come in. Medicine is a business. Private practice is a business.”

Yeah, well, she’s probably just another greedy doctor.

Last summer, when Congress missed the deadline for an extension, Wagner had to tap her line of credit to pay the salaries of her nurses and office staff. Medicare is only a fraction of her practice, but the cancer surgeon said private insurance companies also held up payments waiting to see what would happen. “I didn’t get a check in the mail for almost a month,” she said.

Well, maybe not.

Social Security:  Broke and Inefficient

How about Social Security?  Sure, that’s been flirting with bankruptcy for like forever.  But it works, doesn’t it?  On the benefit side?  Providing a swift and life-saving safety net for those most at risk?  Yeah, pull the other (see Social Security judges facing more violent threats by Sam Hananel, Associated Press, posted 11/14/2010).

Judges who hear Social Security disability cases are facing a growing number of violent threats from claimants angry over being denied benefits or frustrated at lengthy delays in processing claims.

And how long are they waiting?

Nearly 2 million people are waiting to find out if they qualify for benefits, with many having to wait more than two years to see their first payment.

Wow.  Even renewing your driver’s license is less painful than that.

Obamacare:  Soon to Become Broke and Inefficient

And this is what President Obama wants to give us.  He wants to take over health care and make it like Medicare and Social Security.  Chronically on the verge of bankruptcy.  And grossly inefficient. 

The social democracies of Europe are imploding under their own weights.  People are rioting.  Cities are burning.  And while they desperately try to reverse direction, Obama is dragging a reluctant America in the other direction while whistling a happy tune.  And unless history is a product of our liberal public school system, there’s no way in hell it will look kindly on the man that so greatly damaged America.

It’s not the partisanship causing the trouble in Washington.  It’s an ideology.  Liberalism.  Which is broke and inefficient.  It’s time to get rid of it.  And a good place to start would be to repeal Obamacare.  If he did that, perhaps history would look kindly on him.

www.PITHOCRATES.com

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