American Elephants


A Baby Elephant Meets the Sea by The Elephant's Child
September 21, 2013, 8:19 pm
Filed under: Freedom, Fun n Games, Heartwarming, Humor | Tags: , ,

Do you remember

the first time you saw the sea?

Waves rushing in,

salt foam racing up grabbing for your feet

I remember, though

It was very long ago.



The Consistently Divisive Rhetoric of President Obama by The Elephant's Child

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Have you seen pictures of Obama lately? He looks haunted, and his rhetoric has slipped into overdrive, as he told employees at a Ford Motor Company plant that Republicans are willing “to send our economy into a tailspin.” The House had just voted to deny 2014 funding for Obama’s primary legislative accomplishment, ObamaCare. “They’re actually willing to plunge America into default if we can’t defund the Affordable Care Act” the formal name for ObamaCare.

“They’ve tried to repeal or sabotage this — more than 40 times they’ve had these repeal votes. Every time they fail,” said Obama. In fact Obama has signed seven bills that Republicans passed to change unpopular or unworkable portions of the ObamaCare mess.

Obama defended his network, saying it is getting health-care services to millions of Americans, and he charged that the GOP wants to stop Americans from getting health care services.

There’s part of the problem. ObamaCare does not offer health care services. It is a vast, messy,  intrusive “health insurance” plan that does not control costs and offers no assured access to medical care. Many doctors refuse to take on Medicaid patients because the government does not pay adequately for their services. We already do not have enough doctors to serve the population. That means that those who are now forced on to Medicaid — all those newly part-time workers —will have long waits to get care.

The theory is that all the young healthy people who sign up will not use medical care much, and their over-payment for services will help pay for the greater use of medical care by old people. It remains to be seen if they will. Or they can just pay a fine that is cheaper than a year’s insurance and count on the emergency room if the worst happens.

Obama is enraged that Republicans would disagree with him. He reads, it was just reported, only the New York Times, and has no real understanding of the positions of the other party.  Richard Epstein, who knew him at the University of Chicago, said he would never participate in the lunchtime faculty debates, he was always too busy. “The problem with keeping to yourself, is that you don’t get to hear strong ideas articulated by people who disagree with you.  If you don’t put your idea out to be shot down, you’re never going to figure out what kind of revision you need.” You have probably noticed that , for Obama, everything is always about him. He described Republican efforts to defund ObamaCare as “Republicans trying to mess with me.”

The American people hate ObamaCare. That’s the ones who are paying attention. A surprising percentage think ObamaCare was ended by the Supreme Court, don’t know what it is, and don’t know that it is the law of the land and about to go into effect. Wait till they find out.

Democrats passed the law, claiming that health care costs were spiraling out of control, and they had to do something to stop it. This was specifically false, Health care costs began declining back in 2006 when Barack Obama was still am unknown senator from Illinois. Health care costs are driven by technology. A great fear about ObamaCare is that as it becomes imperative to cut costs, and it will — life-saving technology and innovation will decline.

Democrats’ great illusion is that (because they are smart) they can administer the health care of everyone in the country with rules and regulations and make it better and cheaper. Republicans understand that you cannot take the American health care system (which is outstanding) and add a vast government enterprise with hundreds of new agencies and bureaus and employees on top of it, and make it less costly and more efficient. It cannot be done.

Government has no skill in administering health care systems. Look closely at the Indian Health Service, and The Veterans Administration’s Health Care Services. The federal government’s resume leaves a great deal to be desired.

The incentives are all wrong in ObamaCare, and that matters. Because ObamaCare shelters consumers from the cost of health care, consumers are apt to rush to the doctor for every little thing. You will get over a cold in roughly 7 days without a doctor’s attention. When consumers know how much things cost, they use the health care system more sensibly. The incentive for the medical profession is to get adequately paid in spite of the regulation,  So farewell to  the nice family physician who really was concerned about your health.

In contrast to Obama, Republicans don’t want to shut the government down. They would like to negotiate some cuts to spending, for enormous amounts of waste need to be ended. But Obama has said flatly that he will not negotiate. An odd understanding of the office of the presidency.



America in Decline. Thanks a Bunch, Obama! by The Elephant's Child


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America, Land of the Free, Home of the Brave, right?  America is no longer the home of a free economy. We now rank internationally 17th in economic freedom — a truly shameful situation. The United States should have the freest economy in the world, and constantly be encouraging other nations to catch up.

In 2013, the United Arab Emirates, Mauritius and Bahrain are judged to have freer economies. Also Hong Kong, Singapore, and New Zealand. “The Economic Freedom of the World: 2013 Annual Report,” a joint effort of the Cato and Frazer institutes, even judges Chile, Jordan and Estonia to have freer economies.

What happened? The explanation rests on a government than cannot resist its urge to expand. America has fallen in every area that the report measures. In size of government, it is ranked 59th out of 152 countries. Our property rights and legal system  rank 30th, and our freedom to trade internationally is 43rd.

Now the U.S. has become a true regulatory state, ranking 121st in credit market regulation and 33rd in business regulations. And Obama can’t find any regulations to get rid of, except the same old spilled milk one.

Economies that are less free have universal poor performance. The more free a country’s economy, the more prosperous her people. The less free, the more miserable. That old “pursuit of happiness” thing —nevermind.

ISSfree_130923.png.cmsAt the bottom are nations like Venezuela, Myanmar, Republic of Congo, Zimbabwe and Chad, countries that are clearly wretched places to live.

Economic freedom makes people richer, but also happier. In spite of the clear advantages of an open economy and freedom, the United States is moving in the wrong direction. We have an administration in the White House and its allies in Congress who clearly want greater government control of the economy. You can question whether they believe that an administrative state is a preferred form of government, or if they just think they’re smarter than the rest of us, and it’s an exercise in hubris.

Hope and Change isn’t what it was cracked-up to be.



The Anti-Science EPA Pushes On, Destroying the American Economy by The Elephant's Child

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Global warming is a religion, sustained by pure faith in the IPCC, the Sierra Club, Greenpeace and dozens of other well-heeled radical Green organizations, who are supported in turn by all sorts of city people who love polar bears and want to save them, though they are inconveniently flourishing. It’s a very leftist religion, for when Communism failed, many true believers moved to environmentalism as “our best chance for social justice.” That’s why some refer to them as “watermelons”— green on the outside and red on the inside.

The UN’s Intergovernmental Panel for Climate Change (IPCC) was founded as a political organization. The organization does not do science. They assemble the results from a number of computer climate programs, and publish an assessment every four years, which most governments consider as holy writ on climate change. Government bureaucrats are not scientists, nor do they have much ability to correctly assess the pronouncements of the IPCC or Al Gore.

The computer models (called Global Climate Models) represent speculative thought experiments by modellers who often lack a detailed understanding of underlying processes. The results of GCMs are only as reliable as the data and theories fed into them, which scientists widely recognize as being seriously deficient. “Unexpectedly,” the global climate has stopped warming — for 16 years, and possibly even longer. The upcoming  IPCC assessment to be published on September 27, is forced to admit that all four previous reports had seriously over-estimated the rate of decadal warming since 1951. Ooops. They have, according to a leaked copy, had to admit that computer modeled forecasts failed to factor in the “natural variability” of the climate. The main criticism made by climate skeptics for the past two decades.

So how come not a single model predicted a “pause” in warming. And when does a “pause” become a trend? In 1989, researchers concluded that anthropogenic global warming would raise the global temperature by a full 2 degrees. The Greens and their sycophants are not about to give in gracefully,  but facts will prove uncomfortable for the certainties of the Obama administration. All that stopping the seas from rising, saving the world, saving mankind from the “pollution” of carbon dioxide — that polluting gas that we exhale each time we breathe.

Connie Hedegaard, Europe’s climate policy chief, has dumped any pretense of intellectual coherence in announcing that even if the science was, and is, wrong on global warming, the EU’s energy policies — driven almost entirely by anti-CO² panic about — man-made warming — are still right, even if they lead to higher prices and  energy poverty. Governments, unable to distinguish between “capacity” which the alternative energy promoters talk about, and actual output, have gone for solar energy and wind energy in a big way, and they are s-l-o-w-l-y learning that solar energy is too diffuse and wind energy is too intermittent, it costs too much,  and is unreliable and must be backed up 24-7 by a standard coal or gas-fired power plant.

The Obama administration has not even noticed that the science was wrong on global warming.

EPA Chief Gina McCarthy (a bureaucrat, not a scientist) linking global warming to public health, disease (they make up those statistics) and extreme weather (weather is not climate) is pressing ahead with requirements to limit “carbon pollution” from new power plants despite protests from industry, scientists and Republicans.

The proposal, which would set the first national limits on “heat -trapping pollution” from future power plants, is intended to make America dependent on wind turbines and solar arrays for life-saving power. Where the backup for inefficient wind and solar is supposed to come from is unknown. Since almost half our national electricity is supplied by cheap, efficient coal-fired plants, the price we pay for power will skyrocket, and we can expect brownouts and blackouts. The wind does not blow all the time, particularly in winter, there can be no wind at all for days.

The federal government’s own analysis of the new power plant proposal concludes that it would have a “negligible ” impact on carbon dioxide emissions, pose little to no costs for the industry and provide no additional benefits to the public by 2022.

“The EPA…does not anticipate this rule will have any impacts on the price of electricity, employment or labor markets or the U.S. economy,” the EPA wrote in it analysis. Odd, the EPA has stated previously that they have no responsibility for considering the impact on employment— which considering the number of plants being closed and those that will not be built is preposterous.  But then the EPA estimates just how many children will be saved from dying from asthma from carbon pollution — a disease for which medical science has been unable to determine the cause.

Atmospheric carbon dioxide (CO²) is a mild greenhouse gas that exerts a diminishing warming effect as its concentration increases. Doubling the concentration of atmospheric CO² from its pre-industrial level, in the absence of other forcings and feedbacks, would likely cause a warming of ~0.3º to 1.1ºC, almost 50% of which must have already occurred. CO² is a vital nutrient used by plants in photosynthesis. Increasing CO² in the atmosphere “greens” the planet and helps feed the growing human population.

The revised standards, said Southern Co., essentially eliminate coal as a future generation option.

Brilliant, and for no legitimate reason at all, except political pressure from Big Green. Obama promised “change,” we just didn’t realize national poverty was what he had in mind.

 




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