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Posts Tagged ‘Medicare for All’

Erie Times E-Edition Article – Kamala Harris part of leftist Trojan horse operation

Posted by M. C. on August 19, 2020

If Harris really were a moderate, progressives would be up in arms over her choice. But they are not.

The left sees Biden as their Trojan horse. They want voters to look at his inoffensive, moderate, bipartisan exterior, and decide it is safe to let him inside the White House gates. But as soon as they do, an army of socialists will rush out — led by Sanders, Sen. Elizabeth Warren, D-Mass., and Rep. Alexandria Ocasio-Cortez, D-N.Y. — to impose a radical progressive agenda on America.

This coming from WaPo! I am surprised it is permitted.

https://erietimes-pa-app.newsmemory.com/?publink=1700df0f9

Kamala Harris a moderate? Not even close. Welcome to the leftist Trojan horse operation.

In case you haven’t noticed, there is a not-sosubtle campaign afoot to paint Sen. Kamala Harris, D-Calif., as a centrist — an effort that exposes the left’s strategy to fool the American people into giving them political power in November.

After presumptive Democratic presidential nominee Joe Biden announced Harris as his running mate, the New York Times immediately declared her a ‘pragmatic moderate,’ the Los Angeles Times called her a ‘centrist’ and ABC News anchor George Stephanopoulos told his viewers ‘Kamala Harris comes from the middle of the road, moderate wing of the Democratic Party.’

No, she doesn’t. Harris was the ‘most liberal compared to all senators’ in 2019 according to Gov-Track, the nonpartisan government transparency watchdog — to the left of even her democraticsocialist colleague, Sen.

Bernie Sanders, I-Vt.

Harris wasn’t ‘pragmatic’ either. GovTrack found she ‘joined bipartisan bills the least often compared to Senate Democrats.’

According to Manhattan Institute budget expert Brian Riedl, Harris has proposed a mind-numbing $46 trillion in new spending over the next decade.

She supports the economically ruinous Green New Deal, Medicare-for-all and free taxpayer funded health care for undocumented immigrants. She is also an abortion zealot who has suggested that a faithful Catholic who belongs to the Knights of Columbus is unfit to serve as a federal judge. She opposes deportation of those who illegally enter the United States and once compared Immigration and Customs Enforcement agents to the Ku Klux Klan.

If Harris really were a moderate, progressives would be up in arms over her choice. But they are not. Leftists understand that to win in November, they must be able to peel away reluctant Trump voters in key swing states who are uncomfortable with the leftward lurch of today’s Democratic Party. These voters need to believe that a Biden-Harris administration will be centrist and reasonable, so they can give themselves permission to defect and vote Democrats into power. So progressives and their allies in the mainstream media have tried to portray Biden’s choice of Harris as another example of how he has kept the left at arm’s length.

Progressives know it is a lie. Congressional Progressive Caucus co-chair Rep.

Pramila Jayapal, D-Wash., recently said the left need not worry about Biden’s moderate veneer because ‘he is movable.’ As she told ‘The Daily Show’ host Trevor Noah, ‘As soon as we get him in the White House, and even before with these task forces that we had, we were able to significantly push Joe Biden to do things that he hadn’t signed on to before.’

The left sees Biden as their Trojan horse. They want voters to look at his inoffensive, moderate, bipartisan exterior, and decide it is safe to let him inside the White House gates. But as soon as they do, an army of socialists will rush out — led by Sanders, Sen. Elizabeth Warren, D-Mass., and Rep. Alexandria Ocasio-Cortez, D-N.Y. — to impose a radical progressive agenda on America.

They have every reason to believe that will happen, because Biden has already given in to their demands. For more than 40 years, Biden supported the Hyde Amendment, which bars federal funding for abortions, even writing a constituent to say, ‘Those of us who are opposed to abortion should not be compelled to pay for them.’ When he reiterated his support for the Hyde Amendment last year during the presidential primaries, he was chastised by none other than Harris, who declared, ‘No woman’s access to reproductive health care should be based on how much money she has. We must repeal the Hyde Amendment.’

Biden quickly surrendered to Harris and the party’s pro-abortion radicals.

If Biden will capitulate to his party’s left wing on a fundamental moral question like abortion, what makes anyone think he won’t do the same when it comes to Medicare-for-all or the Green New Deal?

Most candidates tack to the center after securing their party’s nomination, but Biden has already gone to the left, forging a ‘unity platform’ with Sanders.

The platform was a wink and a nod to democratic socialists — embracing a number of their demands and promising to ‘study’ others once Biden is in the White House.

The left got the message: Once the election is over, Biden will move even further in their direction.

Besides, progressives in Congress believe that they will be setting the agenda anyway, and Biden’s job will be to autopen whatever they pass and put on his desk. What is he going to do, stand with Republicans and veto their legislation?

Progressives are more than comfortable spreading the myth of moderation, while they hide inside the belly of the Democratic ticket waiting for voters to open the White House gates.

Marc A. Thiessen is a Washington Post columnist. Contact him on Twitter, @marcthiessen.

Marc Thiessen

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This Should Really Scare You About Joe Biden Domestic Policy

Posted by M. C. on May 17, 2020

As a wise man once said-Deja vu all over again.

Fast and Furious

https://www.economicpolicyjournal.com/2020/05/this-should-really-scare-you-about-joe.html

On Thursday, the Biden campaign revealed the members of six “Biden-Sanders Unity Task Forces” that will develop his policy platform for the general election run, according to a press release.

The six groups will focus on immigration, climate change, criminal justice, the economy, education, and health care. There does not appear to be a sound advisor among them.

Democratic Socialist  Alexandria Ocasio-Cortez will co-chair the working group on climate change.

House Progressive Caucus co-chair Rep. Pramila Jayapal, D-Wash., will co-chair the health care group.  He campaigned for Sanders in early primary states and supports “Medicare for All.”

Former Attorney General Eric Holder, who was part of the Obama administration, will be part of the criminal justice reform group.

And, most concerning, the eonomics task force includes Stephanie Kelton, who promotes modern monetary theory–the idea that you can just print and print and print money out of thin air to solve all the country’s problems.

Let’s hope that these groups won’t actually have any influence over the platform that Biden and the DNC adopt and that it is just a reach out to these mad people.

If Biden’s team actually supports any of the stuff coming out of these groups and he is elected, we will be in worse trouble than we are now.

RW

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The Libertarian Case for Bernie – LewRockwell

Posted by M. C. on April 16, 2020

Sanders may have 3 admirable qualities but only foreign policy is anything close to being Libertarian.

No libertarian can support Bernie’s economic policy. Socialism will cost our country hundreds of billions in terms of lost productivity. But his foreign policy prescriptions will likely save trillions. Not only in the cost of weapons, but also in terms of lives saved.

Considering the choices we are allowed, you gotta take what you can get.

https://www.lewrockwell.com/2020/04/walter-e-block/1293-63-the-libertarian-case-for-bernie/

By

There are several reasons for my stance.

1. Courage

Bernie has the courage of his convictions, something not all that prevalent amongst our politicians. He has never “run away from” any of his heartfelt principles. He didn’t “run away from” the economic philosophy of Socialism, in 2016 and before, when it was far less acceptable than it is now, thanks in no small part to his own advocacy of this system. He never “ran away from” his backing, not for allowing ex-convicts to vote in elections, but also prisoners now incarcerated, despite the extreme unpopularity of this viewpoint. Nor has he shrunk from his positions on any number of other issues which are extremely out of favor in many quarters: abortion, taxing the wealthy, labor unions, $15 minimum wage, Medicare for all, free college tuition, etc. Senator Sanders knows full well that if he garners the Democratic nomination he will have to face an electorate a large part of which vociferously disagrees with him on these issues. Does he pull his punches? To ask this to answer it: of course not.

In fact, I can think of only one thing, well, person, from whom he does indeed “run away from”: me. We were both members of Brooklyn’s James Madison High School track team a few decades ago and ran in the same long distance events. Senator Sanders was one of the best track athletes in the entire city at the time, I was a mediocre runner. We both began every race at the same starting line, but when the gun sounded, he soon “ran away from” me.

2. Desert

I don’t say my old buddy Bernie deserves to become President of the United States.  But he certainly warrants the nomination of the Democratic Party. Why? In a word: Hillary. The leaders of this party in the 2015 run-off pressed their big fat thumbs on the balance wheel of justice in her favor until they blistered. If Bernie had enjoyed fair treatment in this nomination race, he might well have beaten Hillary. In the event, she won, but there will always be an asterisk placed next to her victory in this regard. Fair is fair. If there are any reparations for this unseemly practice, it would be to award Bernie the nomination.

3. Foreign policy

Of all the major candidates, Bernie has by far the best policies in terms of U.S. relations with other countries. Everyone else acts almost as if you don’t want to risk a nuclear exchange with Russia, you are practically an agent of that nation. Not Bernie. This Vermont Senator has also

. voted to end U.S. funding for the Saudi war in Yemen

. voted to decrease U.S. military aid to Israel

. inveighed against U.S. efforts to topple the Maduro regime in Venezuela

. come out against our “long history of inappropriately intervening in Latin American countries

Speaking in 2017 at Westminster College, he opposed U.S. interventions in Iran, Chile, El Salvador, Guatemala, Vietnam. He advocated adopting a policy predicated on “partnership rather than dominance.” He challenged the notion of “American exceptionalism.”

Here’s Bernie on Hillary: “I do question her judgement. I question a judgement which voted for the war in Iraq; the worst foreign policy blunder in the history of the country.”

More from Bernie on this crucially important issue:

. “A sensible effective foreign policy recognizes that our safety and welfare is bound up with the safety and welfare of others around the world.”

. “Every person on this planet shares a common humanity. We all want our children to … live in peace.”

He descried

. “… almost 7,000 young Americans being killed in Iraq and Afghanistan and tens of thousands coming home wounded in body and spirit from a war we should never have started.”

. “… hundreds of thousands of people in Iraq and Afghanistan dying in the same war.”

. The fact that “… we already spend more on defense than the next 12 nations combined…”

He supported Eisenhower’s warning about the takeover of the “military industrial complex.”

Bernie is not a radical libertarian on this issue. He favors the United Nations. My old high school buddy never quite calls for bringing all the U.S. troops home, every last one of them, but of all the major Democratic contenders, he is clearly closest to the libertarian ideal of non-interventionism, anti-colonialism, opposition to imperialism. The U.S. has almost 700 military bases in almost 130 foreign nations. The Vermont senator would sharply move us in the direction of sanity.

4. Economics

No libertarian can support Bernie’s economic policy. Socialism will cost our country hundreds of billions in terms of lost productivity. But his foreign policy prescriptions will likely save trillions. Not only in the cost of weapons, but also in terms of lives saved.

Go, Bernie! Well, compared to Biden, in any case.

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Politicians Are Calling for Lots of “Bold” Plans. Watch Out. | Mises Wire

Posted by M. C. on March 20, 2020

https://mises.org/wire/politicians-are-calling-lots-bold-plans-watch-out?utm_source=Mises+Institute+Subscriptions&utm_campaign=c43ff63108-EMAIL_CAMPAIGN_9_21_2018_9_59_COPY_01&utm_medium=email&utm_term=0_8b52b2e1c0-c43ff63108-228343965

Today’s stock of progressive politicians seeks “bold” action to combat the laundry list of ills of which they believe the United States is guilty. From perpetuating economic racism to environmental racism to criminal justice racism to healthcare racism, as Elizabeth Warren noted during the July 2019 Democratic debate, the list that needs “solving” is endless. This phenomenon is not new or exclusive to the social media era of politics. Politicians react to the preferences of voters, and social media has a tendency to amplify the voices of those with the most extreme views. These politicians, however, are responding with “bold” plans to spend the United States off a fiscal cliff. The term “bold” has become a stand-in term for outrageously expensive and expansive government action. The true costs associated with these plans are typically underestimated due to the nature of unintended consequences.

From Bernie Sanders’s plan to eliminate private health insurance with Medicare for All to Elizabeth Warren’s plan to end fracking on day 1, there seems to be no lack of “bold” action being recommended. This escalation of radical ideas began during the 2016 Democratic presidential nomination process. Former secretary of state Hillary Clinton complained about Sanders’s proposals, even comparing them to a hilarious scene from There’s Something About Mary: “Instead of the famous ‘eight-minute abs’ exercise routine, he’s going to market ‘seven-minute abs’…On issue after issue, it was like he kept proposing four-minute abs, or even no-minute abs. Magic abs!”

Clinton perfectly encapsulated the problem with politicians promising grandiose programs. However, this analysis fails to recognize the problem with presidential top-down authority. Most of today’s presidential candidates have failed to realize that they are not, in fact, “benign elective dictators,” as Tablet describes them, although many presidents have sought to evade restrictions on executive powers. Presidents must request that Congress allocate taxpayer funds through the annual budget process. A divided Congress is less likely to be open to creating divisive, costly, and ineffective programs.

“Bold” Plans Require Lots of Taxpayer Money

The direct and indirect consequences of the 2020 presidential candidates’ proposed plans are noticeably absent from the mainstream discussion. These plans require significant taxation of productive monies, as “government is not a wealth generating entity—the more it spends, the more resources it has to take from wealth generators,” writes Frank Shostak at the Mises Wire. Taxes are involuntary fees enforced by the government. Tax revenues fund programs that government officials deem to be in the “public interest,” which practically means programs that voters and campaign donors want. Taxes are direct fees levied on transactions or on consumers unwilling to transact, but they have downstream effects throughout the economy.

How Taxes Hikes Increase Waste

For example, at the Foundation for Economic Education, I outlined how a wealth tax would affect investments, individual investors, and the presence of wealthy Americans. In other countries, wealth taxes led to capital flight and did not produce estimated revenues because of the difficulty of enforcing them. One would assume that a proponent of a wealth tax could point to the successes of such a measure in other countries, but, in fact, this has not happened. Why? Because the wealth tax inevitably fails to produce the estimated tax revenues to cover the costs of proposed programs.

The same can be said of increases in the top marginal income tax rate for corporations and individuals. Estimates will tend to overestimate the tax revenues generated, because individuals and corporations will utilize “tax loopholes” to shield themselves from higher tax burdens. The Center for American Progress does not sense the irony of high taxes; they write, tax gaming “constitutes economically inefficient behavior pursued solely for reducing taxes.”

Fundamentally, taxpayers seek to avoid paying taxes. If this were not so, even the so-called patriotic millionaires, millionaires who want higher taxes, would not utilize tax loopholes. The direct consequences of taxation are largely measurable even if the projected revenues are overestimated.

The indirect consequences or downstream effects of taxation are more difficult to comprehend. Taxes levy an involuntary fee on goods or services, but these taxes can significantly hamper the ability to purchase goods or services. For example, CNN ran an article about California gasoline prices “soaring well above what most Americans are paying.” The article attributes high gasoline prices to refinery outages; however, it omits California’s high gasoline taxes, special gasoline requirements, and its other policies to reduce smog and haze. California’s mission to curb carbon emissions and to produce cleaner air has created a costly condition for less wealthy Californians, which will in part amplify income inequality. Regulatory restrictions also impose costs, albeit indirectly, on consumers. When the progressives running for the Democratic presidential nomination discuss climate change and clean air, voters should understand the impacts that their policies may have.

MMT and the High Cost of Inflationary Monetary Policy

Conservative media pounced on the Green New Deal when it was first introduced by Representative Alexandria Ocasio-Cortez as a government initiative to alleviate the climate crisis. In many ways, they were right to do so; voters should be worried that at the time every 2020 Democratic presidential candidate backed the proposal.

How do progressives seek to pay for this program? Modern monetary theory, or MMT. MMT relies on the government printing “as much [money] as they need,” according to Investopedia. The central tenet of this theory is that governments using fiat currency systems can spend as much money as they need “because they cannot go broke or be insolvent.” A Congressional Research Service report states the following:

MMT is largely focused on short-run management of the economy [emphasis mine], with tax and spending policies aimed at maintaining a fully employed economy without inflation….Underlying this policy is the assumption that Congress can act quickly to counteract deficit-driven inflation with tax increases or spending cuts [(which practically means through tax increases)].

In addition to pushing for confiscatory tax rates, some progressives seek to inflate away the value of the dollar. Anyone skeptical of the current practices of the Federal Reserve understands the sheer ridiculousness of this concept. Taxes are much easier to understand since they levy a direct, involuntary fee; however, inflation is a much more subtle cost and it affects anyone who is involved in the market.

What is so problematic about this theory is that at its core is the belief that governments cannot go bankrupt, even though reality says otherwise. The government itself may not go bankrupt; however, the ability to print unlimited amounts of money while not being pegged to any realized assets can be disastrous for individuals.

Proponents of MMT look to it as a tool for achieving their political goals of Medicare for All, debt-free higher education, the Green New Deal, etc. In other words, it is a means to an end. Inflation, however, would have the most significant impact on those who are economically insecure, a phenomenon that The Atlantic refers to as “inflation inequality.” This is a much more subtle cost. Together, higher taxation on the economy at large, higher inflation, and expansive government would, in effect, create a perpetual underclass unable to escape the rut of the lower class. Fortunately, this monetary theory is not mainstream, and it would be aggressively challenged by the private sector and other governments that rely on a stable American central bank.

Good Politics = Bad Economics

Proponents of higher taxes and increased central bank activism often evade the downstream effects of their policies. Instead, they’ll deflect and blame their opponents for some alleged misdeed. Republicans and Democrats alike are guilty of raising taxes through direct taxation or tariffs and of lobbying (a nice way to put it) the central bank to sway monetary policy in their political interest. Politicians will always be sure to deflect whenever a question pokes a hole in their theory or policy. It is in their nature as politicians.

Election cycles feature politicians making promises to voters, even if those promises are likely to fail. Few 2020 Democratic presidential candidates seem willing to combat soaring federal budget deficits, as most are “busy promising to spend ungodly amounts of the taxpayers’ money on any conceivable scheme that they think might win them a few more voters,” writes the National Review. Donald Trump and congressional Republicans have largely been willing to look the other way. Trump even dismissed any concerns, saying, “Who the hell cares about the budget? We’re going to have a country.”

With both major political parties seemingly uninterested in the long-term fiscal stability of the United States, the only near-term solution for the spendthrift class, or uniparty, in Washington, DC, is to either raise taxes or increase the money supply. Politicians will dismiss such claims and instead insist that some other group will pay the cost, but the reality is far different. Taxation and inflation affect all Americans. Next time a politician promises some elaborate new program and promises that you won’t pay a dime for it, remember the line about the infamous con man George C. Parker: “and if you believe that, I have a bridge to sell you.”

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Bernie’s Socialism vs. Trump’s Socialism | Mises Wire

Posted by M. C. on March 20, 2020

https://mises.org/wire/bernies-socialism-vs-trumps-socialism?utm_source=Mises+Institute+Subscriptions&utm_campaign=b171366e07-EMAIL_CAMPAIGN_9_21_2018_9_59_COPY_01&utm_medium=email&utm_term=0_8b52b2e1c0-b171366e07-228343965

Is reelecting Donald Trump the only way to stem the tide of socialism in America? With self-described “democratic socialist” Bernie Sanders still a strong contender for the Democratic nomination, many on the right, including the president himself, argue that only by voting for Trump can socialism be abated. “America will never be a socialist country,” Trump confidently declared in his most recent State of the Union address.

Fighting Socialism?

The problem is that the United States is, in some respects, already a socialist country, at least if we define socialism broadly enough to encompass federal welfare programs. Though the president may lambast progressive policy proposals as intolerable socialist impositions, in reality these programs are mere expansions of policies that have existed for a long time.

Bernie Sanders’s assertion that public universities ought to be “tuition free,” for instance, is hardly a radical departure from traditional government education policy. Indeed, local and state governments already provide “free” education for students from kindergarten through high school and have done so for well over a century. For its part, the US Department of Education spends about $41 billion on elementary and secondary schooling. Almost $30 billion are awarded to college students in the form of Pell grants, while other students receive federally subsidized loans.

The most glaring example of an expansion of an already existent socialist policy is “Medicare for All.” The plan is clearly not novel; after all, the program it seeks to expand is right there in the name. President Trump may not want to extend Medicare coverage to every citizen, but he has shown no interest in rolling it back. In fact, the president’s 2021 budget proposes to increase Medicare spending every year for the next decade, nearly doubling its expenditures by 2030. So much for fighting against socialism.

Trump’s Flirtation with Socialism

To be fair, Trump’s budget proposal does contain certain reforms to Medicaid and other entitlement programs. These reforms would lower federal expenditures relative to current budget projections but would nonetheless increase spending on those programs overall. Despite a few small cuts, the federal government under Trump’s 2021 Budget would continue to run a deficit, albeit a shrinking one, through 2030.

Considering that the president has been incredibly harsh in his antisocialist rhetoric, his plans to downsize the federal government appear weak.

Indeed, aside from some modest deregulation, Trump has tended to increase the power and scope of government. While the president did implement somewhat substantial corporate tax cuts and personal income tax cuts, he then turned right around and raised taxes, imposing billions of dollars in tariffs on Chinese imports. The trade war, now in its third consecutive year, has cost individual American consumers thousands.

After the Chinese began imposing their own tariffs in retaliation, American farmers found it increasingly difficult to export their products. So, the president simply bailed them out. Without congressional authorization (and perhaps even without the legal authority to do so), the Trump administration doled out $28 billion of taxpayer money to farmers and is now promising to send more.

In classic socialist fashion, the bailouts appear to be going to a fairly small set of farmers. According to a recent NPR analysis, “100,000 individuals collected just over 70% of the money.” One giddy farmer interviewed by NPR referred to the bailouts as “Trump money,” a term reminiscent of the now infamous “​Obama money” woman. Unsurprisingly, many of these farmers were wildly overpaid compared to the actual harm they’ve suffered due to the president’s trade policies.

A Tale of Two Socialisms

For all of his antisocialist bluster, Trump has hardly been a friend to the free market. On the contrary, the president has pursued an agenda of economic nationalism, recycling old mercantilist policies intended to “protect” American industry from insidious foreign competition, even going so far as to explicitly order American companies not to do business with the Chinese.

But rather than fight back against Trump’s socialist tendencies, his administration has emboldened nascent nationalists within the conservative movement and has even encouraged former friends of the free market to embrace government interventions. Once a nominal defender of liberty, Senator Marco Rubio, for example, is now firmly in the economic nationalist camp, arguing that the government needs to subsidize special companies and engage in massive wealth transfers in order to further the “common good.” Other Republican legislators, such as freshman Senator Josh Hawley, have pushed for more government regulation of social media. And just recently the president’s attorney general, Bill Barr, suggested that the federal government purchase major American tech companies, essentially turning them into state-run enterprises.

In point of fact, Trump has succeeded in shifting the Overton window in Republican politics toward socialism, not away from it. The choice facing voters in 2020, therefore, is not between capitalism and socialism, but merely between two different kinds of socialism.

 

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Nit

 

 

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Elizabeth Warren Has a Bad Plan for Everything – LewRockwell

Posted by M. C. on January 1, 2020

Rest assured someone has to pay for all this “Free Stuff”.

Even the Leftist UK party figured this out when they trounced Corbyn.

Independents and moderates will be highly unlikely to support Marxist nutcases.

Count the times you read “tax”.

As George Will is fond of saying-Corporations are tax collectors, not tax payers. Taxes like most government mandates (minimum wage) are costs of business that get passed on.

https://www.lewrockwell.com/2020/01/mike-mish-shedlock/elizabeth-warren-has-a-bad-plan-for-everything/

By

Mish’s Global Economic Trend Analysis

Elizabeth Warren wants to steer the US to the Left, radical Left.

If you are looking for ideas, Elizabeth Warren has a ton of them. All of them are bad. Please consider Elizabeth Warren’s Plan.

  1. Wealth tax: Tax net worth over $50 million at 2% a year, and 6% above $1 billion. To prevent the rich from yachting off, add a 40% “exit tax” on assets over $50 million upon renouncing U.S. citizenship. Estimated revenue: $3.75 trillion over a decade from 75,000 households. Most economists, including many Democrats, call that number a fantasy. Courts might also find the tax unconstitutional.
  2. Medicare for All tax: Mandate government coverage for everyone, including for illegal immigrants, with no copays or deductibles. Phase out the private plans of 170 million Americans. She says this would cost $20.5 trillion over a decade, which most economists say is $10 trillion short of reality. Keep the growth of health spending below 4% a year with tools like “population-based budgets” and “automatic rate reductions.” Pay doctors at “Medicare rates” and hospitals at 110% of that. Charge companies with at least 50 workers an “Employer Medicare Contribution,” equal to 98% of their recent outlays on health care, while adjusting for inflation and changes in staff size. These varying fees “would be gradually shifted to converge at the average health care cost-per-employee nationally.”
  3. Global corporate tax: Raise the top business rate to 35%. Apply this as a world-wide minimum on overseas earnings by U.S. companies. Businesses would “pay the difference between the minimum tax and the rate in the countries where they book their profits.” Apply a similar minimum tax to foreign companies, prorated by the share of their sales made in the U.S. Estimated revenue: $1.65 trillion over a decade.
  4. Corporate surtax: Tax profit over $100 million at a new 7% rate, without exemptions. This would go atop the regular corporate rate. Estimated revenue: $1 trillion over a decade from 1,200 public companies.
  5. Slower expensing: “Our current tax system lets companies deduct the cost of certain investments they make in assets faster than those assets actually lose value.” Closing this “loophole,” she says, would raise $1.25 trillion over a decade.
  6. Higher capital gains taxes: Tax the investment gains of the wealthiest 1% as ordinary income, meaning rates near 40% instead of today’s 23.8%. Apply the tax annually on gains via a “mark to market” system, even if the asset hasn’t been sold. Estimated revenue: $2 trillion over a decade.
  7. Finance taxes: Tax the sale of bonds, stocks and so forth at 0.1%. Estimated revenue: $800 billion over a decade. Charge big banks a systemic risk fee, raising $100 billion more.
  8. Individual tax increases: There’s no detailed proposal, but Ms. Warren’s clean-energy plan is “paid for by reversing Trump’s tax cuts for the wealthiest individuals and giant corporations.” She’s budgeted $1 trillion.
  9. Social Security: Increase benefits by $2,400 a year across the board. Raise them further “for lower-income families, women, people with disabilities, public-sector workers, and people of color” by changing “outdated” rules that Ms. Warren says disadvantage them.
  10. Lobbying tax: Tax “excessive lobbying” over $500,000 a year at rates up to 75%. Ms. Warren says this would have raised $10 billion over the past decade, although it probably runs headlong into the First Amendment’s right to petition the government. Use the revenue for “a surge of resources to Congress and federal agencies.”
  11. Green New Deal: Spend $3 trillion, including $1.5 trillion on industrial mobilization, $400 billion on research, and $100 billion on a Marshall Plan. By 2030 hit 100% carbon-neutral power and 100% zero-emission new cars. Retrofit “4% of houses and buildings every year.” For “environmental justice,” put a third of the funds into “the most vulnerable communities.”
  12. An end to fossil fuels: Ban fracking. Halt new drilling leases on federal land. “Prohibit future fossil fuel exports.” Kill the Keystone XL and Dakota Access pipelines. “Subject each new infrastructure project to a climate test.” Give “workers transitioning into new industries” a “guaranteed wage and benefit parity” and “promised pensions and early retirement benefits.”
  13. K-12 education: Add $450 billion to Title I, $200 billion for students with disabilities, $100 billion for “excellence grants,” and $50 billion for school upgrades. “End federal funding for the expansion of charter schools.”
  14. A “right” to child care: Build a federal network of local providers, subject to national standards. Give free care to the “millions of children” whose households are under 200% of poverty, or $51,500 for a family of four. For everyone else, cap child-care spending at 7% of income. Estimated cost: $700 billion.
  15. Free college: “Give every American the opportunity to attend a two-year or four-year public college without paying a dime in tuition or fees.” Add $100 billion to Pell Grants and $50 billion for historically black colleges, tribal schools and more. Estimated cost: $610 billion.
  16. Student-debt forgiveness: Write off $50,000 for households with incomes under $100,000. This would phase out as income rises toward $250,000. Estimated cost: $640 billion.
  17. Housing: Spend $500 billion “to build, preserve, and rehab” millions of affordable-housing units. Condition such funding “on repealing state laws that prohibit local rent control.” Paid for by lowering the death-tax exemption to $7 million from $22 million per couple. At the same time, “raise the tax rates above that threshold.”
  18. Unions: Overturn “so-called ‘right to work’ laws” in 27 states. Guarantee public employees an ability to “bargain collectively in every state.” Amend labor law to aid “sectoral bargaining.” Give the National Labor Relations Board “much stronger” powers, such as “to impose compensatory and punitive damages.”
  19. Corporate governance: Make companies with revenue over $1 billion obtain a new federal charter—separate from the current state charter system—that requires them to “consider the interests of all corporate stakeholders.” Give workers 40% of board seats, and put CEOs under “a new criminal negligence standard.”
  20. Industrial policy: Manage the dollar’s value “more actively” to “promote exports and domestic manufacturing.” Create a Department of Economic Development, and have it write a National Jobs Strategy. Expand the Export-Import Bank. Impose a “border carbon adjustment” fee—that is, new tariffs—on imports from countries that don’t align with U.S. climate policies.
  21. Antitrust: Break up AmazonFacebook and Google. “Unwind” their mergers with Whole Foods, Instagram, DoubleClick and more. Regulate as a “platform utility” any online marketplace with global revenue of $25 billion. Reverse agriculture consolidation, “including the recent Bayer-Monsanto merger,” and create a “supply management program” to “guarantee farmers a price at their cost of production.”
  22. Banking: Pass “a 21st Century Glass-Steagall Act that breaks up the big banks.” Let the U.S. Postal Service “partner with local community banks” to provide “basic banking services like checking and savings accounts.”
  23. Gun control: Create a “federal licensing system for the purchase of any type of firearm or ammunition.” Raise taxes to 30% on guns and 50% on ammo. Ban sales of “assault weapons,” and make current owners “register them under the National Firearms Act.” Pass a law to let shooting victims “hold the manufacturer of the weapon that harmed them strictly liable.”
  24. Centralized elections: Use federal money to “replace every voting machine in the country.” For federal elections, mandate early voting and same-day registration. If state elections follow the same rules, they can be “fully funded by the federal government,” with “a bonus for achieving high voter turnout.” Estimated cost: $20 billion, paid by “closing loopholes” in the death tax.
  25. Miscellaneous: Spend $100 billion “to end the opioid crisis,” $85 billion “to massively expand broadband access,” $25 billion on “health professional shortage areas,” and $7 billion “to close the gap in startup capital for entrepreneurs of color.” Double the foreign service and the Peace Corps.

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Doug Casey on the Crisis “Medicare for All” Will Cause

Posted by M. C. on December 6, 2019

https://internationalman.com/articles/doug-casey-on-the-crisis-medicare-for-all-will-cause/

by Doug Casey

…The system revolves around the FDA. In theory, it should protect the consumer, but in fact it does the opposite. The FDA should be renamed the Federal Death Authority, because it kills more people every year than the Defense Department does in a typical decade.

Why do I say that? For one thing, it takes 10 years for a new drug to be approved, and it averages not just $1 billion dollars, but now more than $2 billion for the typical drug to be approved—and only very few are ever approved. That’s because there’s only a minimal risk to the FDA in not approving them but a huge risk that they’ll be embarrassed if something goes wrong with one that is approved.

Second, the whole system is very bureaucratized. When you go to a doctor’s office, you’ll notice that probably half the staff is not engaged in delivering medical services. They’re shuffling papers: insurance forms, regulatory forms, and various cover-your-ass records.

Third, the medical system is law driven more than science driven. Doctors have to be very careful about what they say and do; the society has become very litigious. One of the major expenses of being a doctor is malpractice insurance. Particularly for some specialties.

There are thousands of lawyers in the US who specialize in suing doctors for real or imagined mistakes. For that reason, some specialists pay hundreds of thousands of dollars per year for their malpractice insurance.

Because of the dangers of being sued, doctors are practically forced to engage in defensive medicine. They prescribe all kinds of tests that don’t make sense, but they figure that it’s better to be safe than sorry—not for the patient’s sake but for the sake of a potential lawsuit.

All of this started with Franklin Delano Roosevelt. During World War II, he installed wage and price controls, and it was impossible for companies to give raises to workers. So they substituted benefits for cash, namely employer-paid medical insurance. One of the many disastrous distortions FDR cranked into the US economy.

On the bright side, despite these things, medical care has gotten much better because of advances in science and technology. The cost of medical care should have and would have been dropping—like the cost of computers—if not for State intervention. But that’s beside the point we’re discussing…

It’s a subtle corruption of the language to call “medical insurance” “health insurance.” It doesn’t insure your health. All it does is cover medical expenses. But they like to use the term “health care” because it sounds friendly and loving. “We’ll care for your health.” That sounds great! Sign me up! “Medical,” however, implies surgery, dangerous drugs, hospitals, and pain.

It’s a euphemism, and like all euphemisms, it’s dishonest. Health care or health insurance should always be called “medical insurance,” because it will at best cover your medical expenses. Calling it “health care” and saying it’s “free” is just dishonest marketing…

Doug Casey: To start with, the 34% of Americans who are “insured” through a government plan aren’t actually insured. They’re not paying market-based premiums based on actuarial tables—considering age, preexisting conditions, and the like—intended to spread the risk of serious sickness or injury.

Medicare and Medicaid are actually welfare programs. They have nothing to do with insurance. Using that term gives them and those who use them undeserved respect.

Medicaid is one hundred percent welfare, and Medicare is mostly a welfare program. They shouldn’t be termed “insurance.”

The important point is that they shouldn’t exist. Why should the State cover a person’s medical costs? If it should, maybe it should also cover their food, shelter, and clothing—oh, wait, I forgot, it does. And even the cost of their cellphones. But cars are also important. When someone’s car stops working, shouldn’t that be covered as well?

How about their dog? How about farm animals?

Is somebody else’s bad health a mortgage on my life?

Bad things happen. That’s why you buy insurance. If you can’t afford insurance, that means you managed your life badly. It’s not up to strangers to kiss it all and make it better for you.

Most diseases and many injuries are a result of people not taking care of themselves. They overeat, don’t exercise, use alcohol and drugs, and engage in bad lifestyles. Those are moral failures. I don’t want to pay for those people’s moral failures. Neither should you.

International Man: Over 59 million Americans are on Medicare. Bernie Sanders and other presidential candidates have made “Medicare for all” one of their biggest campaign promises.

What type of care can Americans expect to receive in a single-player system, with national coverage for all?

Doug Casey: It would mean disastrous and degenerating care.

They like to bring up Canada and Britain as examples—and they’re very good examples.

The medical systems of both countries are in crisis. If you need an operation, it can be delayed for many months, sometimes more than a year. Forget about something that’s noncritical. The reason is simple: When you have scarce commodities like a doctor’s time and medical equipment, they have to be rationed.

There are three ways you can ration a commodity. By dollars, time, or political connections. In other words, you can pay for it and get it when you want it. Or you can wait in line—for who knows for how long. Or if you’re a VIP with friends in high places, you’re moved to the front of the line.

In places like Canada and Britain, you hardly have a choice. The single payer determines if you get treated, when you get treated, and how you get treated.

Furthermore, if something is “free,” which care from a single payer supposedly is—although it’s paid for by taxes—everybody wants as much as they can get. And as with any free good, people won’t economize.

Certain people are going to live at the doctor’s office. It’s going to turn some people into hypochondriacs. The idea of Medicare for all—or for that matter, Medicare for oldsters—is stupid and uneconomic from every point of view. More important, it’s morally depraved, because it uses the State to force some people—namely doctors and productive people—to pay for those who were too imprudent to provide for their own care.

As a fringe benefit, it will destroy the medical system. Doctors will wind up as veritable government employees. That will discourage them from spending six years and hundreds of thousands to learn their trade. There will be a lot more demand but a much smaller supply of doctors. At the same time, the amount of capital available for developing new drugs, new technology, and basic research will collapse. Why? All governments today are running gigantic deficits. This is likely to get much worse. They’ll put off the important in favor of the urgent, and the results are inevitable…

Just the other day I got an email from someone in Aspen who’s a member of a luncheon group I attend. Most of the guys are typical Aspen rich guys. One member, who’s in temporary (I presume) financial straits, wrote that his dog has a type of operable cancer. But it’s an expensive operation, and he can’t afford to pay for it.

He’s asked the guys at the luncheon group and his other friends to contribute to the cost of the surgery.

I have zero doubt he’ll raise the money. I don’t believe in charity, for reasons I’ve spelled out in the past. But I sent him a hundred dollars.

I wouldn’t, however, send anything to someone in the Third World with a problem (not to mention the fact it’s probably a scam run by some Nigerians). There are roughly 7.5 billion people on this planet. They all have problems and would all like $100.

But I sent him $100 for his dog. Why?

The fact that I did might generate further good feelings between us. (He seems like a decent guy, although I don’t know him well.) If I had just sent it into the ether for the medical care of some person in Africa, as opposed to this man’s dog, I know I’d be getting nothing back for it. In fact, maybe the African is a member of Boko Haram and would want to kill me just on general principles. This is one of many reasons giving money to “charity” is usually a mistake. Giving to an individual, even as a test of their character, is much wiser

Frankly, sometimes you value the life of a dog more than the life of some poor person outside of your circle. And sometimes you should. If it were my dog, there’d be no question about it.

That’s what this whole thing about insurance, Medicare, and a single-payer system is all about. It’s up to individuals—not State bureaucrats, not “the system”—to decide who lives and who dies. Including you yourself.

Be seeing you

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You Can Learn a Lot About Socialized Care From Prison – LewRockwell

Posted by M. C. on November 12, 2019

Here at the prison, it takes us over two years to get an annual dental check-up or cleaning, usually over three years to get a filling, two years to get eyeglasses, and five years for dentures. But it’s fair. Everyone experiences the same service even though it’s bad service. Everyone in Russia got the same amount of bread—not much. Was it Marx or Lenin who said: “Be careful what you ask for, you just might get it.”

https://www.lewrockwell.com/2019/11/david-gornoski/you-can-learn-a-lot-about-socialized-care-from-prison/

By

“I was naked and you clothed me, I was sick and you visited me, I was in prison and you came to me.” – Matthew 25:36

The following is an article by Craig J. Cesal, a federal prisoner sentenced to life without the possibility of parole as a first-time offender convicted of conspiring to distribute marijuana.

You would think a federal prisoner, especially a marijuana conspirator sentenced to life imprisonment, without the possibility of parole, is cut off from the world, but quite the opposite is true. The world at large is actually cut off from the prisoner, although in many instances, the world is prudently shielded from the prisoner. Federal prison is the epitome of the US government’s hegemony over its citizens and residents.

The feds decide what medical care I get and when I get it. Also, they control what foods I eat, what clothes I wear, when I sleep and wake, and even what news I receive. Our communications, both incoming and outgoing are censored, and we are virulently disciplined if we try to communicate to someone outside the fence that we have been beat up by a guard. North Korea and Cuba have nothing on us.

We can soak up radio and TV news that is broadcast free of charge, and thus tightly government regulated. Lately, we have heard a lot of talk about Medicare For All, which we prisoners know more about than anybody. Clearly, the ideology driving socialized medical care is that socializing it will make it fair, that is, no one will be jealous of what another person can buy. Everyone will get the same care. We, the 900 prisoners held in the medium custody prison at Terre Haute, Indiana, go to the same medical facility, stand in the same lines, and are treated by the same people. It is fair, I suppose, in that we are not envious of others buying better medical care or faster care, but it is neither utopia or even good care.

As a business major in college, and as a business owner for many years until my arrest, I was amazed at how well equipped the FCI Terre Haute Medical Services Department is. There’s the x-ray equipment, complete optometry stations, four complete dental stations with big, fancy x-ray machines, and even the most fancy defibrillator machinery. But to me, from years of watching the bottom line at a business, the medical staffing levels were the most astonishing sight. The full-time medical staff consists of two doctors, two physician assistants, six RN nurses, one EMT, an x-ray technician, one dentist, two dental hygienists, one dental assistant, five clerks, and two administrators. This doesn’t count the part-time contract staff including the optometrist, physical therapist, two pharmacists, heart surgeon, orthopedic surgeon, MRI and ultrasound technicians, and even more. I harken back to business school: a city of 900 people could never afford this.

I sit back, scratch my chin, and ponder why they employ so many medical professionals—all highly paid with huge retirement benefits. Then the epiphany struck: it’s the bread factory in the USSR! In that Soviet socialist system, the bakers at the bread factory were required to go to work every day, and if they did so, they got their government ration book. They did not have an annual performance review, where they could get a raise if they were making lots of tasty bread. Their jobs required them to go to the factory, nothing more.

With no incentive to make a lot of bread—they spied the few who did little or no work and received the same ration book, and reckoned, “Why should I bust my…?” This became the rally call. Well, before long, they didn’t make much bread at the bread factory. Townspeople stood in line for days to scarf up their ration of the meager amount of loaves that were produced. The prison medical department is the USSR bread factory.

Here’s how the socialized medical treatment works. Suppose a medical condition arises, for example, an inmate feels lethargic, and he notices blood with his stool. He figures he likely needs some sort of treatment. The first step is called “sick call.” For sick call, where we request medical care, for four days per week inmates line up at 7:10 AM, with the prescribed form filled out identifying the complaint, and notifying us of the two dollar fee.

Over the next hour or so, each inmate is called into an examination room to be triaged by a nurse. The nurse makes a cursory evaluation to determine if there is a medical emergency, meaning the inmate would perish before the day is out. If not, he is told to watch the “call out,” which is a list of appointments for each day. The bleeding inmate would be put on the list to be further triaged by the PA in the next two to four weeks.

The PA does a more comprehensive evaluation and determines that since the blood is coming from within the inmate, he needs to be further evaluated by a specialist, rather than more evaluation by the prison doctor. A request for approval for an outside doctor to evaluate the inmate is written up and sent to the Utilization Committee.

Typically within the next two to six weeks, the committee approves or denies the request, and the choice seems to be based on a coin toss. If denied, the inmate is told to go to sick call if the condition persists. If approved, the medical clerk schedules an appointment with the lowest cost doctor, usually within the next six months.

After a blood test and some poking and prodding from the specialist, it is determined the inmate suffers from Crohn’s disease. The specialist precsribes Humera, take once per day. The medicine would likely render his Crohn’s into virtual remission. Back at the prison, the inmate lines up every day to pick up his new medication but none arrives. He is told to go to sick call again.

Three weeks later, the PA advises Humera is not on the federal government drug formulary, a list of drug the Bureau of Prisons can provide inmates. Humera is likely considered too expensive to put on the list. The PA prescribes the formulary medicine for Crohn’s and tells him if it doesn’t work, he should return to sick call. Of course, the specialist didn’t prescribe it because it doesn’t work.

At least the USSR bread factory made bread, but American civil service employees are virtually impossible to fire from their jobs, if anyone cared enough to do so. Even with two full-time doctors and PAs working every day, there is less than twenty inmates scheduled to be examined each day. Most of them are scheduled every six months, like me, to get insulin or other prescriptions renewed. This is an average of five office visits per physician per day. If a private doctor in the city of Terre Haute saw only five patients per day, they couldn’t afford to keep the lights on.

Since I’ve been in prison for nearly eighteen years, I have no idea how to use an Iphone, and I’ve never seen a tweet. I know very well what socialized medical care is, as championed by all the candidates at the Democratic debates. Even folks who rely on Veteran’s Administation care have the option of hiring their own doctor or paying for their own Humera. Even active duty military can see private doctors. Those of us enjoying socialized medicine don’t have the option of paying those bills, or seeing those doctors, but too often, we would love to. But again, that might not be fair, or may make someone green with envy.

Here at the prison, it takes us over two years to get an annual dental check-up or cleaning, usually over three years to get a filling, two years to get eyeglasses, and five years for dentures. But it’s fair. Everyone experiences the same service even though it’s bad service. Everyone in Russia got the same amount of bread—not much. Was it Marx or Lenin who said: “Be careful what you ask for, you just might get it.”

Craig Cesal is serving a sentence of life without the possibility of parole in Indiana’s Terre Haute prison for a “marijuana” offense. He co-owned a towing company that recovered and repaired trucks for a rental company, some of which were used by smugglers to transport marijuana. He graduated from Montini High School in Lombard, Illinois in 1977. His daughter, Lauren, has obtained more than 300,000 signatures on a petition calling for clemency.

 

 

 

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EconomicPolicyJournal.com: Warren Admits Universal Medicare Would Result in Two Million Lost Jobs

Posted by M. C. on November 2, 2019

He has calculated that Medicare for All would result in job losses (mostly among administrators) “somewhere in the range of 2 million” — about half on the insurers’ side and half employed in hospitals and doctors’ offices to argue with the former.

Mostly?

That’s a real hard number! It suggests some layoffs will be among actual medical staff.

Truly amazing.  They are going to make healthcare free and actually think they will be able to get away with less medical staff.
Elizabeth Warren is quickly climbing the ladder to becoming the most dangerous woman in the world

https://www.economicpolicyjournal.com/2019/11/warren-admits-universal-medicare-would.html#more

Elizabeth Warren has agreed with an assessment that a “medicare for all” plan would eliminate roughly two million jobs, reports National Review.

Warren was speaking during an interview at New Hampshire Public Radio.

“An economist at the University of Massachusetts, Amherst, told Kaiser Health News earlier this year that that could result in about 2 million jobs lost,” mostly within the healthcare industry, said NHPR reporter Casey McDermott.

“So I agree,” Warren replied. “I think this is part of the cost issue and should be part of a cost plan.”

The economist cited by McDermot is Robert Pollin of the extreme left Political Economy Research Institute at the University of Massachusetts.

“Every proponent of Medicare for All — including myself — has to recognize that the biggest source of cost-saving is layoffs,” Pollin said. He has calculated that Medicare for All would result in job losses (mostly among administrators) “somewhere in the range of 2 million” — about half on the insurers’ side and half employed in hospitals and doctors’ offices to argue with the former.

Mostly?

That’s a real hard number! It suggests some layoffs will be among actual medical staff.

Truly amazing.  They are going to make healthcare free and actually think they will be able to get away with less medical staff.

These people actually think they can plan the entire healthcare sector with giveaways to all and get better healthcare!

And further, they appear to have no clue as to what their oppressive central planning would do to innovation in medical care.

These are extremely dangerous people with a dangerous desire to control. This type of extreme planning always gets very bad when it gets implemented. It would put healthcare on the Venezuela economic model.

Elizabeth Warren is quickly climbing the ladder to becoming the most dangerous woman in the world. I have her ranked just under Cristina Fernández de Kirchner who was just elected vice-president in Argentina, and Alexandria Ocasio-Cortez who sure is able to rally the youth to her mad central planing deires.

RW

Be seeing you

Faux

Identity Politics

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EconomicPolicyJournal.com: Socilaists Are Now Pitching Universal Healthcare as a “Jobs Program”

Posted by M. C. on October 23, 2018

The only thing that socialist healthcare can do is shift jobs in a distorted manner that will result in greater inefficiencies in the jobs market and in healthcare.

http://www.economicpolicyjournal.com/2018/10/socilaists-are-now-pitching-universal.html

Alexandria Ocasio-Cortez tweets:

Alexandria Ocasio-Cortez

@Ocasio2018

US House candidate, NY-14

Medicare for All is a bill on the floor of Congress.
It means:
✅ Single-payer healthcare
✅ Physical, mental, & dental coverage
✅ Payment-free at the point of service, so we don’t delay care for large cash payments
✅ A jobs program to transition + expand healthcare work

Shefali Luthra

@shefalil

Medicare-for-all is increasingly popular — but it turns out, candidates often mean wildly different things when deploying the phrase. @RosenthalHealth and I went long in the @nytimes about why this mattershttps://www.nytimes.com/2018/10/19/opinion/sunday/medicare-single-payer-health-care.html?action=click&module=Opinion&pgtype=Homepage 

Which means she is as dumb as Trump when it comes to jobs.

Markets clear, including the jobs market. No “jobs programs” are required.

The only thing that socialist healthcare can do is shift jobs in a distorted manner that will result in greater inefficiencies in the jobs market and in healthcare.

Be seeing you

0e923-free-sign-797711

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