masthead-highres

Thursday, December 31, 2009

Deneen Borelli on Hannity's Great American Panel

I forgot to alert readers earlier this week that Project 21's full-time fellow, Deneen Borelli, would be on Sean Hannity's "Great American Panel" on December 28 with guest host Tucker Carlson (apologies!). For Deneen's fans -- and based on the emails, I know there are a lot of you out there -- here are videos of her appearance, courtesy of "WebSurferGuyMN," who uploaded them to YouTube.






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Posted by Amy Ridenour at 11:34 AM

Tape of Tom Borelli on Glenn Beck

For any of you who missed it, here is a tape of Tom Borelli's appearance on the Glenn Beck Show Tuesday, with guest host Charles Payne.

The quality of the tape is not great, for which I apologize, but the substance of the interview comes through fine.

Addendum, 1/6/10: I changed the video link to a better copy, posted on YouTube by GlennBeckClips. The original video I had posted here is still available on YouTube at http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=XS31VFLabWE.


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Posted by Amy Ridenour at 11:26 AM

Tuesday, December 29, 2009

Tom Borelli on Glenn Beck Today

GlennBeckLogoTom Borelli, director of the National Center for Public Policy Research's Free Enterprise Project, will be a guest today, December 29, on the Fox New Channel's Glenn Beck Show.

Tom will be discussing the relationship between GE, President Obama and climate change policies.


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Posted by Amy Ridenour at 2:57 PM

Saturday, December 26, 2009

Michigan Forces Business Owners Into Unions

Yet another appalling scam by organized labor.


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Posted by Amy Ridenour at 11:02 PM

Friday, December 25, 2009

Unto You Is Born This Day

Luke 2: 1-14

And it came to pass in those days, that there went out a decree from Caesar Augustus that all the world should be taxed.

(And this taxing was first made when Cyrenius was governor of Syria.)

And all went to be taxed, every one into his own city.

And Joseph also went up from Galilee, out of the city of Nazareth, into Judaea, unto the city of David, which is called Bethlehem (because he was of the house and lineage of David) to be taxed with Mary his espoused wife, being great with child.

And so it was, that, while they were there, the days were accomplished that she should be delivered.

And she brought forth her firstborn son, and wrapped him in swaddling clothes, and laid him in a manger; because there was no room for them in the inn.

And there were in the same country shepherds abiding in the field, keeping watch over their flock by night.

And, lo, the angel of the Lord came upon them, and the glory of the Lord shone round about them: and they were sore afraid.

And the angel said unto them, Fear not: for, behold, I bring you good tidings of great joy, which shall be to all people.

For unto you is born this day in the city of David a Saviour, which is Christ the Lord.

And this shall be a sign unto you; Ye shall find the babe wrapped in swaddling clothes, lying in a manger.

And suddenly there was with the angel a multitude of the heavenly host praising God, and saying,

Glory to God in the highest, and on earth peace, good will toward men.

_____

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Posted by Amy Ridenour at 12:04 AM

Tuesday, December 22, 2009

ObamaCare - All the Hallmarks of a Scam

MPatterson102209b.jpgA couple of summers ago, I moved from New York City to Washington, D.C.

Now, finding a new home long distance can be a tedious and enervating task -- train rides to unfamiliar cities, cab rides in unfamiliar neighborhoods, lots of wasted time and money. Fortunately these days online real estate listings make the process somewhat easier; at the very least it is another resource available to the prospective renter/buyer.

But online offers pitfalls of its own. During my search, I would often inquire via email about an online ad for what seemed like a nice apartment, only to get a response along these lines:
"Dear Sir,

I am overseas, but will send you the keys for apartment as soon as you send me check."
Of course, there was always a reason why I couldn't see the apartment first; there was no one available to show it; the apartment was about to be sold and so I had to send the check right away in order to secure it, etc.

ObamaCare is me reminding more and more of these online swindles. Consider, for example, the staggered nature of the proposed Senate bill (if passed and signed into law, of course) -- new taxes starting right away in 2010, with most of the costs and benefits delayed until after 2014. The Democrats seem to be saying: "Send us your money now, then you'll get your health care."

But it's much worse than that, of course. With the real estate scammers, I had the choice to not send them my money -- and then to report them to the authorities. Congress will not ask for our money -- they will take it. And if the delivered program does not operate as advertised -- if it busts the budget, or leads to rationed care -- who do we report Congress too?

Unfortunately, thomas.gov does not come with a "flag" button for rotten or dishonest legislation.

Written by Matt Patterson, policy analyst at the National Center for Public Policy Research. Write the author at [email protected]. As we occasionally reprint letters on the blog, please note if you prefer that your correspondence be kept private, or only published anonymously.

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Posted by Matt Patterson at 4:16 PM

Doubletalk

Policy Analyst Matt Patterson, working with research compiled by Executive Director David Almasi, exposes some joint Obama-ABC News doubletalk in the Washington Examiner op-ed pages today.


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Posted by Amy Ridenour at 12:01 AM

Monday, December 21, 2009

Senator Whitehouse's Hysteria

Project 21's Bob Parks is not at all thrilled with Senator Sheldon Whitehouse (D-RI), for saying this about people who don't want to cripple our health system, bring forth the date of Medicare's bankruptcy and spend ourselves into perdition:
They are desperate to break this president. They have ardent supporters who are nearly hysterical at the very election of President Barack Obama. The birthers, the fanatics, the people running around in right-wing militia and Aryan support groups, it is unbearable to them that President Barack Obama should exist. That is one powerful reason. It is not the only one.
To this, Bob replies:
President Obama's almost-constant apologies to the world for the our nation's actions and his socialist economic policies at home have energized a normally lethargic American people into gathering in American cities and storming the steps of the Capitol in protest. Senator Whitehouse would have us all just shut up and give Obama his political victories unchallenged. Not doing so makes us all guilty of unprecedented rudeness and - dare I say it - racism.

Despite liberals' historically dismal and revisionist civil rights history, when things with this President fall apart, they are all too willing to resort to playing the race card. The problem is - whether it's the Black Panthers in Philadelphia or Professor Gates in Cambridge - Barack Obama and his administration have conducted themselves so poorly in office that the race label really doesn't bruise the skin anymore.

If President Obama had not entered the presidency with his signature arrogance, the American people may have had more patience, but he and his liberal allies have talked down to the American people like we were stepchildren they were forced to tolerate. Statements like those of Senator Whitehouse only further harden the opposition's resolve.
For myself, I believe Senator Whitehouse has perceptions that are no more reliable than those of a gnat. Too bad this gnat has power and spending ability.

P.S. Here's what Mark Tapscott had to say about it.


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Posted by Amy Ridenour at 9:12 AM

Sunday, December 20, 2009

An Environmentalist is Asked About Climategate


A global warming activist at the UN's COP-15 climate conference is asked by David Ridenour about Climategate, and whether it is ever proper for scientists to destroy their raw data.


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Posted by Amy Ridenour at 12:25 AM

From Hopenhagen to Nopenhagen

Copenhagen, Denmark - The climate change conference in Copenhagen adopted a new, bold, historic agreement...

... to continue to talk. Wow, and accomplished in just two weeks!

The last-minute deal, helped along by our deal-closer-in-chief Barack Obama, was three-pages long (not counting appendices) and included a number of non-binding commitments, including...
* The U.S. and other developed countries will help raise $100 billion per year by 2020 to help developing nations with climate change mitigation and adaptation. In return, these nations agreed to accept the cash. The cash specifies on that "[m]itigation actions... be subject to... domestic measurement, reporting and verification."

* Developed nations also agreed to provide some $30 billion in aid between 2010 and 2012, with the U.S. pledging $3.6 billion of that amount.

* China and other developing countries agreed to what is being widely reported as international verification of their action to address climate change, but they agreed to do nothing of the kind. The agreement calls for the establishment of "guidelines" for international "consultations and analysis," but significantly, no international verification. And, lest there be any doubt that China won't tolerate such verification, the agreement specifies the guidelines it issues "will ensure that national sovereignty is respected."

* China, now the world's largest emitter of carbon, agreed to cut its "carbon intensity" by between 40% and 45% by 2020. Sounds good, doesn't it? But there's a difference between reducing carbon intensity (the amount of carbon emitted per dollar of GDP) and overall carbon reduction, which the U.S., EU and other large emitters committed to undertaking. India, too, vowed only to reduce its carbon intensity by between 20% and 25% by 2020. Both countries could meet these targets and still see their emissions grow substantially.

* State parties agreed to a goal of limiting global warming by 2 degrees Celsius, but as the above makes plain, they didn't establish a blue print – certainly not one that is binding to achieve this goal.
Obama hasn't had such a stunning success in Copenhagen since he closed the deal for Chicago to host the next Olympic games. Oh right - scratch that.

Though the climate summit was a spectacular failure for President Obama, it was a great victory for the American people.

The Heritage Foundation estimates that the imposition of the Waxman-Markey cap-and-trade regime, the type of system most likely to be imposed to ensure the U.S. meets its carbon reduction targets under a binding treaty, would destroy an average of 1.15 million jobs every year between 2012 and 2030. So President Obama's failure to deliver a treaty may have been his single biggest contribution to fighting unemployment in the United States.

Even if he didn't mean to do it.

Written by David A. Ridenour, vice president of the National Center for Public Policy Research. Write the author at [email protected]. As we occasionally reprint letters on the blog, please note if you prefer that your correspondence be kept private, or only published anonymously.



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Posted by David A. Ridenour at 12:05 AM

COP-15: A Chance to See What Life Would Be Like...

COP15WaitinginLine121409.jpgCopenhagen, Denmark - COP-15 has provided a glimpse of what life might be like under a global climate change agreement... and it isn't "A Wonderful Life." It's been a real Frank Capra moment, only in reverse.

I've already reported that some 45,000 people representing accredited non-governmental organizations (NGOs) had registered to participate in the conference and that some 38,000 of that number were turned away the first few days of this week. Many had flown thousands of miles to participate at great expense and were forced to wait up to 10 hours in the cold before being told they wouldn't be admitted.

As my colleague Tom Borelli noted, "It was easier to get out of Casa Blanca than to get into the Bella Center."

On Monday, one person standing in line ahead of us collapsed.

This was completely unnecessary. The UNFCCC knew that they weren't going to allow additional people in for at least hours before announcing their decision. One Canadian NGO representative told me that she'd learned from one government delegate that the decision had been made before the conference began.

But the UNFCCC wanted to break the spirit of those gathered so that they would go away -- not just for this COP meeting but future ones.

Decisions by the UNFCCC were arbitrary, subject to constant change and it provided no information to those left in the cold and no mechanism for redress of legitimate grievances.

UNFCCC staff did offer a telephone number to those in line on Tuesday morning that instantly went to voice mail, which NGOs were told to expect. I called the number and left messages numerous times before an UNFCCC staffer -- apparently in error -- answered. Here's how my conversation went.
Me: Hello. I'm calling because we're having a problem registering for COP-15 because we need a secondary pass to enter the building. How can I obtain one?

UNFCCC staff: We don't do that here.

Me: Isn't this the UNFCCC?

UNFCCC staff: Yes. I said we don't do that here.

Me: Okay. Can you provide me with the right telephone number?

UNFCCC staff: No.

Me: But if you work for the UNFCCC, why can't you?

UNFCCC staff: Click.
None of my messages were ever answered.

Then on Wednesday night, the UNFCCC Secretariat decided -- or so they said that's when they decided -- to restrict the number of NGO representatives to 300 (about 0.6 % of those who showed up).

Speaking at a meeting of Research and Independent Non-Governmental Organizations (RINGO), RINGO's Marilyn Averill reported that the UNFCCC had obtained emails in which some of the more radical environmental organizations detailed plans to hide in the Bella Center throughout the night and then take over the building by opening the door to all their activists on the outside. This is what the secretariat said prompted the decision to so severely restrict access.

I'm no fan of the environmental left. But how is it that the UNFCCC intercepted these emails -- through infiltration of these groups or by reading private emails sent through the center's "free" WiFi?

Either way, it should frighten all civil libertarians.

The environmental left created a monster and that monster -- as conservatives and libertarians could have told them -- has now turned on them.

Having provided the political pressure needed to create this treaty process, the environmental serfs have now been instructed to return to the manor while the nobility divvy up the spoils.

Since the Magna Carta was forced upon King John in 1215, political and economic power has been on a more or less steady path toward decentralization.

That could be all about to change.

Global climate change regulation is about returning to the old economic and social order.

Regulation of fossil fuels -- and thus power -- is about political power. The preservation of our right to keep and bear fossil fuels is every bit as important to the preservation of our liberty as the preservation of our right to keep and bear arms.

Our liberty is inextricably linked to our economic well-being as well as our ability to move freely to wherever we choose. An energy-restricted world will mean greater dependence on government for our transportation and such dependence increases the ability of governments to control us.

What government gives, it can easily take away.

The COP-15 meeting gave us a taste of what could be in store for all of us. When the UNFCCC wanted to stop political protests, they had the Metro station at the Bella Center closed down. They could have closed down the entire government-run transportation system upon which so many hapless Danish citizens now depend.

The UN body did everything in its power to limit participation of anyone not part of a government delegation while limiting press access to heads of state so the citizens of the world saw exactly what they wanted them to see.

There was no transparency and no accountability. Even environmentalists now recognize this. Two Canadian environmentalists to whom I spoke very early on Thursday morning suggested that it was time to abandon the UN process in favor of more productive uses of their time.

I agree.

It's time to return power to the people... in more ways than one.

Written by David A. Ridenour, vice president of the National Center for Public Policy Research. Write the author at [email protected]. As we occasionally reprint letters on the blog, please note if you prefer that your correspondence be kept private, or only published anonymously.

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Posted by David A. Ridenour at 12:00 AM

Saturday, December 19, 2009

Hypocrisy Offsets, Anyone? A Video


David Ridenour asks some global warming activists at the COP-15 climate conference about their use of fossil fuels to travel to the conference, and offers them some Hypocrisy Offsets.


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Posted by Amy Ridenour at 11:11 PM

Copenhagen Accord

David Ridenour e-mailed me a final copy of the so-called Copenhagen Accord; you can download a PDF of it here if you are interested.


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Posted by Amy Ridenour at 2:40 PM

Vision of the Future?

MayfairHotel4AdelgatanMalmoSwedenA.jpg

At least one member of the National Center's delegation to the COP-15 climate conference figures this is what the area around their hotel -- the Mayfair, at 4 Adelgatan in Malmo, Sweden -- will soon look like if the anti-energy global warming activists get their way.


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Posted by Amy Ridenour at 7:48 AM

Friday, December 18, 2009

Offsets Help Environmentalists With Feelings of Guilt

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Open Hypocrisy Offset in a new window or tab to see full size

The National Center for Public Policy Research is showcasing the hypocrisy of the carbon-emitting travels of global warming activists at COP-15 in Copenhagen by offering conscience-clearing "hypocrisy offsets" (as a humanitarian act) to attendees.

The hypocrisy offsets parody carbon offsets sold and traded allegedly to allow people to live carbon-neutral lives. The hypocrisy offsets also highlight the insincerity of world-traveling, energy-guzzling COP-15 delegates.

In a press release we issued about the offsets, David Ridenour, who has personally distributed the offsets in Copenhagen, explained, "Many of those in attendance to press for additional commitments for carbon reductions traveled thousands of miles and used substantial amounts of carbon-emitting jet-fuel just to get to the conference. We are exposing the hypocrisy by offering them 'hypocrisy offsets' to alleviate their green guilt. As one who is skeptical of the necessity of draconian carbon cuts, I plan to do my part to ensure plenty of hypocrisy offsets are available. I'll refrain from reducing my own personal carbon footprint."

Environmentalists are in Copenhagen demanding global limits on emissions, but they don't want to follow the very rules they are proposing for the rest of the world. Their participation may earn them some media coverage, but it is having no effect on an agreement. In fact, the United Nations mostly banned them from even entering the conference, so their voluntary contribution to carbon emissions -- emissions they insist imperil the planet -- from this unnecessary travel is a stunning act of hypocrisy.

Because we know they must be feeling very guilty about what they've done, and in most cases intend to continue doing indefinitely, we invented hypocrisy offsets as a humanitarian act.

Aren't we nice?


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Posted by Amy Ridenour at 5:29 PM

We May Know Why Conservatives Were Locked Out of ABC's Health Care Programming in June (Aside From ABC Being Liberal)

Last June, ABC allowed President Obama to pitch his health care proposal in a special edition of ABC's Primetime hosted by retiring World News anchor Charlie Gibson and (now incoming anchor) Diane Sawyer. Obama was given additional airtime to pitch his health care agenda that evening on Nightline.

Conservatives didn't get equal time.

Worse, ABC News even refused to allow the conservative group Conservatives for Patients Rights to purchase paid advertising to put out an alternative perspective.

Immediately afterward, the National Center began a multi-month review of the commercials run on World News. We found something interesting.

In the 98 broadcast days of ABC World News advertising logged by National Center Executive Director David Almasi and analyzed by Policy Analyst Matt Patterson, ABC's World News broadcast featured 1,102 commercials, 597 of which were placed by member companies of the Pharmaceutical Research and Manufacturers of America (PhRMA) trade association, representing 54.17 percent of total commercials aired.

PhRMA very aggressively supports President Obama's health care agenda.

David Almasi doesn't think it's a coincidence.

"It's clear that World News relies on the members of PhRMA to sponsor it," Almasi says. "Ford and Proctor and Gamble are reliable sponsors, but the overwhelming amount of paid ads were for drugs pushed by the members of this very powerful and very political trade association. Ad after ad on World News comes from members of the drug lobby group PhRMA. It's almost laughable how many ads they run each day. If they were to stop, it would seem doubtful the broadcasts could continue."

Says Matt Patterson, who analyzed and wrote a report on the findings, "ABC News seems to have a significant financial stake in the success of ObamaCare. Should we be surprised that they hand over an hour to Obama to promote his plan, while shutting out opposing views?"

"There was not one day in which the members of PhRMA were not major advertisers on World News," Almasi adds. "It's hard to believe that the producers of the program don't have this on their minds when they are selecting the issues they cover. CBS burned off the series Swingtown two summers ago because the network found advertisers weren't interested... NBC cancelled Southland before the second season even aired because of concerns the show... would be unacceptable to advertisers. The concerns of advertisers do drive content. With so many PhRMA members sponsoring World News, it would be hard not to think that people at the network are always mindful of who is paying their bills. PhRMA makes no bones about its support for ObamaCare, and PhRMA's member companies appear to be the lifeblood of ABC's flagship World News program."

Patterson recalls something Newsbusters readers won't have forgotten: White House Communications Director Anita Dunn attacked the legitimacy of Fox News in October and White House Senior Advisor David Axelrod said of Fox's news programming, "it's really not news." Patterson notes that the White House has shown no similar concern for objectivity at ABC: "ABC appears willing to turn over large chunks of its news programming to a politician, if that politician is backed by companies representing more than half of their advertisements. And for the President, it seems it's OK for a news organization to support a point of view - so long as it's his."

Cross-posted, more or less, on Newsbusters


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Posted by Amy Ridenour at 6:52 AM

Thursday, December 17, 2009

Green Activist: "We're Going to Stay Until We Can't Stay Anymore"


The National Center's David Ridenour talked to some protesters at the COP-15 climate conference in Copenhagen. The protesters were carrying signs announcing their sit-in protest: "We will stay until you reach a fair, ambitious and legally binding agreement."

David asked them what they planned to do if conference officials clear the building.

Turns out, they're protesting until they're asked to leave.


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Posted by Amy Ridenour at 10:37 PM

Learning from Medieval Copenhagen

MedievalCopenhagen121709.jpg
A model of Copenhagen during medieval times. Note the sandbags around the perimeter. Green activists had planned to flood the area with water to show the devastating consequences of failing to take action on global warming now.

Note that the area isn't flooded. It seems the model -- like the greens' dire predictions -- doesn't hold water.

Written by David A. Ridenour, vice president of the National Center for Public Policy Research. Write the author at [email protected]. As we occasionally reprint letters on the blog, please note if you prefer that your correspondence be kept private, or only published anonymously.

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Posted by David A. Ridenour at 6:15 PM

The Poet Al Gore

Al Gore is testing out a new strategy to incite fear of catastrophic global warming. Not content to be a seer limited to prophecies in prose, Gore has treated us to a rare glimpse of his more sensitive, artistic side.

Yes, Al Gore has penned a poem (included in his most recent book, "Our Choice - A plan to solve the climate crisis"), detailing his apocalyptic forecast for a planet subjected to human progress based in carbon consumption.

...And for your viewing pleasure: a reading by the author himself (feel free to follow along):
Untitled

by Al Gore

One thin September soon
A floating continent disappears
In midnight sun
Vapors rise as
Fever settles on an acid sea
Neptune's bones dissolve
Snow glides from the mountain
Ice fathers floods for a season
A hard rain comes quickly
Then dirt is parched
Kindling is placed in the forest
For the lightning's celebration
Unknown creatures
Take their leave, unmourned
Horsemen ready their stirrups
Passion seeks heroes and friends
The bell of the city
On the hill is rung
The shepherd cries
The hour of choosing has arrived
Here are your tools
In celebration of America's most recent climatological poet laureate, I too have penned a poem -- albeit a short and quick limerick (...but praise is in order for the self-restraint I marshaled to keep such a notoriously obscene style of poetry clean) and I encourage anyone with a moment of artistic inspiration to take a dive into this new world of Algoretry - poetry pertaining to, addressed to, or by the great Al Gore and his hypocritical liberty-hampering plans for we plebs.
Al Gore's Motivation

by Caroline May

There once was a huckster named Gore
Whose speeches were oh such a bore
He spoke nothing but lies
And filled us with "whys?"
Seems his green eyes just wanted more!
Written by Caroline May, policy analyst at the National Center for Public Policy Research. Write the author at [email protected]. As we occasionally reprint letters on the blog, please note if you prefer that your correspondence be kept private, or only published anonymously.


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Posted by Caroline May at 10:31 AM

More on COP-15 Walk-Out

Climate Justice Action vowed Wednesday to take over the COP-15 meeting in Copenhagen, Denmark to convene a "people's assembly." Hundreds of people who'd been denied badges to attend Wednesday's events reportedly met at nearby Oredstad and Sundby metro stations, the two closest metro stations to the Bella Center (the Bella Center station had been closed by police), to converge on the center.

They were met by heavily fortified Danish police. So many police converged on the area that the police had to convert rental cars into police cars.

COP15Securitycars121609.jpg

An estimated 250-300 people were arrested.

The protestors were joined by delegates and NGO representatives who'd already gained admittance to the conference. The UNFCCC responded by not permitting them to return to the Center.

Evidence of this can be seen throughout the Bella Center as booths set up by environmental groups remain empty (see pictures below).

Many side events at the conference had to be canceled.

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Written by David A. Ridenour, vice president of the National Center for Public Policy Research. Write the author at [email protected]. As we occasionally reprint letters on the blog, please note if you prefer that your correspondence be kept private, or only published anonymously.

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Posted by David A. Ridenour at 12:20 AM

Wednesday, December 16, 2009

USA! USA! America Wins Climate Award Three Days Straight!

It's not meant to be a compliment, but it is.


Forget Climategate; all you need to know to be skeptical of the global warming theory is that the people starring in this ghastly Climate Action Network production believe in it.

They even have an anthem, which you can hear on the video if you can stand to watch it to the end.

(Video shot at the COP-15 conference on December 16 by David Ridenour)


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Posted by Amy Ridenour at 10:52 PM

Non-Governmental Organizations Kicked Out of Global Warming Conference - Again




The UNFCC Secretariat decided late tonight to kick out most participants from non-governmental organizations, claiming the action is necessary due to security concerns.

After spending most of the day waiting for details on how I could obtain one of the prized 1,000 passes to enter the Bella Center for the Thursday session (down from 7,000 passes awarded today), the UNFCCC once again broke its word by reducing the number of passes it will award tomorrow from 1,000 to 300.

I attended a meeting of the Research and Independent Non-Governmental Organizations (RINGOs) group (of which the National Center for Public Policy Research is a member), which is tasked with distributing passes to groups such as ours. RINGO was given 20% of the passes.

Attached is video in which Marilyn Averill of RINGO describes how its 60 slots will be divied up. Twelve passes were to be used by leaders of RINGO, 40 would be given by lottery to RINGO groups that attended the group's meetings this session, and just eight would be distributed by lottery to those that are on the RINGO membership list, including those that attended the group's meetings.

Special consideration was given to groups that participated in RINGO's meetings because RINGO wanted to encourage greater participation – something that should have been irrelevant to the decision.

Significantly, due to the utter incompetence of the UNFCCC (or perhaps feigned incompetence), many members of RINGO (including yours truly) were unable to participate in the meetings because they were standing outside the Bella Center trying to gain entry.

The RINGOs lottery was clearly a sham. The Pew Center, Stanford University, U of California Santa B and others advocating action on climate change received more than one pass – statistically, a rather unusual result. Not a single one of the 60 passes went to an organization from the right.

(Please note: Marilyn Averill appears on my video because she announced the decisions of the RINGOs management, but she is not responsible for what it decided.)

The security concern cited was the growing violence from environmental organizations, including the environmental organizations' vow to take over the Bella center.

If that was the case, why did they restrict the number of passes available to RINGOs, and not just put a limit on those awarded to environmental activist groups?

A response to a question I posed is illuminating.

The sharp limits on participation weren't about ensuring security. They were about stifling voices.

And that may be the best reason of all to stop this treaty dead in its tracks.

Written by David A. Ridenour, vice president of the National Center for Public Policy Research. Write the author at [email protected]. As we occasionally reprint letters on the blog, please note if you prefer that your correspondence be kept private, or only published anonymously.

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Posted by David A. Ridenour at 10:34 PM

Agreement Reached in Copenhagen... The U.N. Shouldn't Be in Charge of Climate Change Policy

After waiting hours in the cold with intermittent periods of snow on Monday and Tuesday in unsuccessful bids to get into the 15th Conference of the Parties (COP-15) of the United Nations Conference on Climate Change, many of those who have long-supported a strong global response to the threat of global warming began questioning the wisdom of leaving these decisions to the United Nations.

The venue for the conference, the Bella Center in Copenhagen, has a maximum occupancy of 15,000, yet the U.N. organizers permitted some 45,000-50,000 people to register.

If they can't get something as simple as math correct, why should be expect them o get anything as complicated as climate science correct?

To resolve the problem, the organizers decided to scale back the size of delegations by cutting their size by - according to some reports - up to 80% after they'd already travelled vast distances at great expense to be here by requiring them to obtain highly-rationed "secondary passes." To say Non-Governmental Organizations were angry about the cuts would be an understatement.

On Monday, those who'd waited for up to 10 hours before being turned away began chanting "Shame on You U.N.," while others yelled "the U.N. Sucks."

Hmm... People angered about rationing... an 80% cut... something sounds very familiar about that figure.

One woman from the World Business Council on Sustainable Development, a group that has long supported climate change action, told me that if the U.N. can't handle something as simple as a conference, how can we trust them to set the right emissions levels and enforce compliance.

Quite.

She, like other environmental activists, was also concerned about accountability. There seemed to be no one to which they could address their grievances.

When some tried to find out, they were hauled away by security.

Last night, one man, one of the last to get into the Bella Center to receive his credentials, was turned away when his name did not appear on the UNFCCC's list of registrants.

The UNFCCC has a policy of not acknowledging receipt of delegation lists, increasing the possibility of problems.

When officials told the man he would have to leave, he asked for the UNFCCC official's name and was told, "I'm not allowed." When the man pressed further explaining calmly that he needed it because he intended to file a complaint, the official summoned security and had him thrown out.

Another climate change conference like this, and the entire world will be filled with skeptics.

Written by David A. Ridenour, vice president of the National Center for Public Policy Research. Write the author at [email protected]. As we occasionally reprint letters on the blog, please note if you prefer that your correspondence be kept private, or only published anonymously.

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Posted by David A. Ridenour at 1:44 PM

"Carbon Credit Gum: World's Biggest Bubble"

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Caption on gum packages reads: "Carbon Credit Gum: World's Biggest Bubble"



The National Center for Public Policy Research is warning of the dangers of creating a new "carbon bubble" based on an artificial market in carbon credits by distributing bubble gum balls bearing the warning: "Carbon Credit Gum: World's Biggest Bubble."

The Bubble gum is being distributed at the COP-15 climate meeting in Copenhagen by Project 21 Fellow Deneen Borelli (seen in video, above), National Center Vice President David Ridenour, and National Center Free Enterprise Project Director Tom Borelli.

Distributing candy is a light approach to a serious policy question, but bubbles are bubbles. If our government creates an allegedly-tradable product in carbon allowances, it will be creating an artificial market that eventually will burst. Seasoned policy pros such as Al Gore presumably will leave the market long before that, their money made, but what will be the impact on regular folks? As we saw with the mortgage bubble, regular folks get hurt -- including very many who never profited from the original bubble.

We already know an artificial carbon market won't make a measurable difference in the planet's temperature -- even if all the dire but often contradictory warnings by global warming theory believers somehow turned out to be true. It very likely would not make even an unmeasurable difference. All a carbon market would do is move money around. I understand why designated recipients and profiteers are in favor of this, but that doesn't make it a good idea.


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Posted by Amy Ridenour at 12:59 PM

The Church of Global Warming

It is a lie that the United Nations wants to maintain religious neutrality at COP-15. No, Global Warming is the established religion at this international event.

This was made especially clear when, days before the event's commencement, the Denmark Foreign Ministry rejected a donated delivery of Christmas fir trees. "We have to remember that this is a U.N. conference and, as the [Bella] center then becomes U.N. territory, there can be no Christmas trees in the decor, because the U.N. wishes to maintain neutrality," explained Ministry official Svend Olling.

Religious objectivity, however, is impossible at a conference explicitly engaged in blind adherence to an unproven premise - a faith in the veracity of global warming. For though the science is not settled, participants have convened to devise strategies for what they believe will be the world's environmental salvation, the capping of carbon dioxide emissions.

Global Warming devotees' religious fervor commands action, even if their deliverance comes at the expense of economic devastation. American disciples such as Al Gore and President Barack Obama are more than willing to sacrifice economic stability at the altar of Global Warming.

The faith dictates absolute advocacy for draconian carbon dioxide regulations such as the cap-and-trade scheme detailed in the House-passed "American Clean Energy and Security Act of 2009." To Warming enthusiasts, the $9.4 trillion reduction in aggregate GDP, increase in annual unemployment by 2.5 million jobs, and increase in inflation-adjusted electricity prices by 90 percent, gasoline prices by 58 percent, and residential natural gas prices by 55 percent, all estimated to occur within the first 24 years under such a cap and trade scheme, are merely an afterthought.

Though economists have highlighted the dire financial implications of energy restriction ad nauseam and questions remain about the actual science behind the Global Warming Theory, adherents are steadfast in their belief. Ironically, it seems that most of these Warmers - many of whom are often quick to proclaim creationists as backward - stick to their faith with the unbending will of a St. Paul.

Even in the wake of Climategate and new peer-reviewed studies (which give lie to the notion that apocalyptic climate forecasts are supported by consensus) by such renowned scientists as Brookhaven National Laboratory's Dr. Stephen E. Schwartz, MIT's Dr. Richard Lindzen, and the University of Auckland's Dr. Chris de Freitas, Warming adherents remain loyally convinced that man's evil energy usage is destroying Mother Earth.

Faith is belief without verifiable evidence. The unquestioned adherence to the theory of Global Warming bears all the markings of what traditionally would be recognized as a religion. Complete with sin (the emitting of carbon dioxide), scriptures (Intergovernmental Panel on Climate Change assessment reports), commandments (drive a Prius, use Compact Florescent Light bulbs, do not eat meat, etc.), indulgences (carbon offsets), proselytism and prophets (Al Gore), priests (scientists), prophecy and apocalypse (floods, hurricanes, dead polar bears), infidels (Warming skeptics), and salvation (the halting of carbon-emitting industrial progress), the religion of Global Warming fits the mold.

Great Britain has already recognized belief in anthropogenic Global Warming as a religion. In November, in a landmark case brought before the UK Employment Appeal Tribunal, the court found that under the "2003 Religion and Belief Regulations," "belief in man-made climate change, and the alleged resulting moral imperatives" qualified for the same employment discrimination protections as a traditional religion.

Though we have yet to see Al Gore or James Hansen walk on water, COP-15 is far from religiously-neutral. Instead, participants are expected to adhere to their one true faith: Global Warming.

Consequently, it makes sense that Christmas trees are welcome at the Church of Global Warming. When was the last time you saw a menorah in a Cathedral?

Written by Caroline May, policy analyst at the National Center for Public Policy Research. Write the author at [email protected]. As we occasionally reprint letters on the blog, please note if you prefer that your correspondence be kept private, or only published anonymously.

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Posted by Caroline May at 12:18 PM

Not British Health Care


If the United Nations can't run a climate conference, how could it possibly run climate policy? This video of the waiting line outside the COP-15 UN climate conference in Copenhagen on 12/15/09 shows the United Nations is equipped for neither task.

As David Ridenour notes in the video, which he shot, this may look like a waiting line for health care in a country with government-run medicine, but it's actually a waiting line for a conference attempting to establish a world government-run energy rationing scheme.

This liberal scheme is so badly thought-out, even the left is walking out on it.


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Posted by Amy Ridenour at 10:50 AM

Environmental NGOs Walk Out of COP-15 in Protest


Environmental non-governmental organizations staged a walk-out of the COP-15 climate conference in Copenhagen today, protesting the fact that so many of their properly-registered fellow NGO delegates were banned from entering the conference.

I wonder if some of these individuals and organizations are beginning to re-think their desire to have the world run by the United Nations.

Video shot by David Ridenour


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Posted by Amy Ridenour at 10:03 AM

Tuesday, December 15, 2009

Kookookaburras Advocating that Australia Abandon Coal


David Ridenour shot this video of a group of Australians at the COP-15 climate conference protesting Australia's use and sale of coal. Coal is very important to Australia's economy, and, I believe, is that country's largest energy source.

I can't improve on commentary someone going by "Noodles691" posted on YouTube about this video: "How much CO2 did it take to fly these 4 idiots from Australia to Copenhagen to put on this pathetic display?"


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Posted by Amy Ridenour at 5:35 PM

''The Struggle Does Not Stop Here,'' Say Witnesses, Apparently Seriously

The propaganda in this reminds me of the fictional Nobel Peace Prize-winning left-wing "biography" I, Rigoberto Menchu.

People often believe dumb stuff because they want to believe it. Whether it is accurate is of no account to them.


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Posted by Amy Ridenour at 4:21 PM

Environmental Activism: Think Globally, Act Locally (Or Not)

Although I still have every sympathy for members of environmental groups that had to stand outside in the cold for eight hours outside the COP-15 climate conference in Copenhagen yesterday, only to be turned away at the end of the day anyway, I am still going to post two short videos my husband David shot on the scene.




Apparently, when a green group says it wants to clean up the planet, it doesn't intend to be taken literally.


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Posted by Amy Ridenour at 3:30 PM

COP-15 Climate Conference Admittance Update

Thanks to CNSNews.com (and many bloggers) for covering the story of the National Center for Public Policy Research's efforts, and the efforts of very many thousands of accredited NGO delegates, to gain admittance to the COP-15 climate conference.

Thanks also to those of you who wrote us to express support.

I am pleased to report that the National Center for Public Policy Research delegation of David Ridenour, Deneen Borelli and Tom Borelli did (finally!) gain admittance to the COP-15 Bella conference center at about 5:45 PM Copenhagen time Tuesday. They also apparently had the opportunity to distribute educational materials (about which, more later) earlier in the day to relevant parties as those officials and media representatives entered the building.

Unfortunately, the news is not so good for all accredited organizations. Although others got in, still others did not.

I had not realized this yesterday, but I learned today that the many thousands of NGO delegates forced to stand in line for eight hours yesterday in 32 degree F cold before being turned away at nightfall also had one other indignity to deal with: if they left the line to use one of the outdoor portable toilets, they lost their spot in line.


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Posted by Amy Ridenour at 1:33 PM

Video: United Nations Rep Tells NGOs They Are Out of COP-15 Climate Conference


American conservatives aren't the only ones booing the United Nations. Here's a group of (mostly) liberal environmentalists doing it.

This is video of the announcement Monday at the COP-15 climate conference that non-governmental organization (NGO) delegates who had not yet been admitted to the conference would not be admitted for the rest of the week.

Crowd members booing are accredited NGO delegates who had waited eight hours in line in 32 degree F cold to get into the conference and (mostly) travelled long distances to be there. To be accredited, they would have applied for and received credentials more than a month ago.

The U.N. later announced it would permit each accredited NGO to have four members attend the conference, and said it would send an email to each NGO with the new credentials, without which, they cannot get in.

This is welcome news, but it may well not be true. We are an accredited NGO and our delegation stood out in the cold for eight hours Monday, but we have received no email from the United Nations containing the new credentials needed to get in on Tuesday. My inquiry to the United Nations has met with no reply, and the conference starts in less than an hour.

(Video shot by David Ridenour)


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Posted by Amy Ridenour at 1:24 AM

Monday, December 14, 2009

United Nations Kicks NGOs Out of COP-15 Climate Conference

Here's a press release on the COP-15 climate conference we are putting out about now...
United Nations Kicks NGOs Out of COP-15 Climate Conference

Washington DC: The United Nations announced today it is permanently banning thousands of accredited non-governmental organizations* from the COP-15 climate conference in Copenhagen.

The restriction was announced today outside the Copenhagen conference center after several thousand accredited NGO conference delegates, including three from the National Center for Public Policy Research, waited outside for eight hours or longer in 32-degree F temperatures for admission.

NGOs apparently are being banned because the United Nations accredited 45,000 people for a building with a capacity of 15,000, although the stated reason was "security concerns." The "security concerns" may be related to the fact that, after waiting several hours in the cold, delegations began to chant, "Let us in! Let us in!"

"To be an "accredited" or "admitted" NGO to a COP conference, NGOs must apply months in advance, and typically only make travel plans to attend after receiving complete credentials from the United Nations," said Amy Ridenour, president of the National Center for Public Policy Research, an accredited COP-15 NGO organization that is as of now banned from the conference. "To give credentials to 45,000 people while choosing a building that holds 15,000 people is insane, though the United Nations, to be fair, has never been known for competence."

"What makes this an even greater travesty," said Ridenour, " is the COP-15 conference ostensibly is trying to find ways to reduce the burning of fossil fuels. If 30,000 people fly to Copenhagen for no reason, doesn't that put unnecessary greenhouse gases into the atmosphere?"

Ridenour has formally asked the U.N., which is permitting some NGOs to have many delegates inside while others are permitted none, to limit each NGO to one representative as long as space limitations remain a concern.

"Some of these NGO delegations are from rich countries like our own," said Ridenour, "but for some NGOs, raising the funds to attend a conference in Copenhagen is a real financial hardship. The least the U.N. can do is let in at least one member of these delegations so all of their money won't be wasted."

For more information, visit http://www.nationalcenter.org or call.

-30-


* Non-governmental organizations, or NGOs, are usually referred to as "non-profit organizations" in the United States.



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Posted by Amy Ridenour at 2:21 PM

COP-15 Observation: So These Are The People We're Going to Let Run the World Economy?

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Waiting line to get into COP-15 conference at about 4 PM Copenhagen time

I heard this morning from the National Center for Public Policy Research's delegation to the COP-15 climate conference in Copenhagen. Seems they've been standing in line outside the conference (in 32 degree F weather!) for nearly six hours (so far) in a so-far fruitless effort to get insie.

No, they didn't forget to get credentials. It seems the geniuses at the United Nations selected a building site for the conference that holds 15,000 people, and then gave credentials to 45,000 people. So, naturally, at any given time, two-thirds of the people (almost all of whom used carbon-intensive energy to travel to Copenhagen) are unable to participate.

Such incompetence highlights the idiocy of the entire enterprise. Climate science, especially when done honestly, is immensely complicated -- so complicated, anyone who tells you that humanity understands how the climate works is either deluded or lying to you. Likewise, every proposed "solution" to global warming is complicated -- far more complicated than figuring out that 45,000 people cannot fit into a building designed for 15,000.

If the United Nations can't manage the simple conference logistic of making sure the building facility is large enough to handle the number of people to whom it handed out credentials, why should we assume it can handle correctly interpreting the nuances of climate science and the regulation of a significant portion of the world economy?

The U.N.'s COP-15 climate conference organizers may face the irony of having global warming conference attendees hospitalized for exposure -- assuming that hasn't happened already. Six hours is a long time to stand outside in 32 degree weather, and many of the people forced to wait outdoors presumably dressed for the commute to the conference, not for a day standing outside.


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Posted by Amy Ridenour at 9:58 AM

Sunday, December 13, 2009

Green Weenie

As John Hinderaker reports on Powerline, longtime global warming alarmist Stephen Schneider spoke at a press conference at the COP-15 climate conference in Copenhagen.

When journalist Phelim McAleer asked a polite question about Climategate, Schneider's staff called in security to shut down the questioning. A United Nations security officer actually tells the journalist, "If you don't shut that [the camera] off, I'm going to take it away from you." (How typical of the corrupt United Nations!)


Stephen Schneider is too scared to answer a simple question, which tells you all you need to know about Climategate: If it wasn't a big deal, the global warming alarmists wouldn't be so afraid of it.


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Posted by Amy Ridenour at 12:01 AM

Saturday, December 12, 2009

Which Group Is Really Grassroots?

John Hinderaker has posted a photograph of a leftie rally at the COP-15 climate conference under the headline "What Astroturf Looks Like."

Check out his post to see that picture. Then compare that picture to some David Almasi took at the 9-12 Tea Party in Washington, D.C. and decide for yourself: Which group is really "grassroots"?

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Posted by Amy Ridenour at 11:04 PM

Thursday, December 10, 2009

Everyone Must Buy a Chevy Malibu

I heard a very good point from radio host Sean Casey on WCBN radio (Baltimore) today on the question of the constitutionality of the health care insurance mandate.

He asked (paraphrase), "would it be constitutional if the federal government said we all had to buy a new Chevy Malibu every year?"

I think that's the fastest explanation of the idiocy of the individual mandate I have heard yet.

One can, after all, build a solid case for mandating frequent purchases of Chevy Malibus: the taxpayers are invested in General Motors and would like their money back; new engines burn cleaner than old engines so it would be (on one level) good for the environment; people in Michigan and elsewhere need jobs and car manufacturing and selling creates them; old Chevy Malibus could be given to the poor, etc.

There are many good reasons to mandate annual purchases of Chevy Malibus, but that wouldn't make a federal requirement that we must do so constitutional, and an individual mandate that we must buy health insurance isn't constitutional, either.


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Posted by Amy Ridenour at 10:25 PM

Wednesday, December 09, 2009

Media Matters Tries to Blame Climategate on Exxon Mobil, Fails Utterly

MediaMattersActionNetworkLogo.jpgThe Media Matters Action Network has a page up claiming we at the National Center for Public Policy Research are "doing everything in [our] power" to draw "attention to the so-called 'Climategate' scandal" and implying that the fact that Exxon Mobil has donated to us is the reason.

What dishonest dopes. We've barely touched on Climategate. A few sentences here and there. In fact, given the gravity of the scandal, we really should have done more.

Media Matters is trying to claim it is relevant that handful of groups that have in the past received funding from Exxon Mobil have mentioned Climategate, which is a huge, major story (not broken by any of these groups, incidentally) repeatedly covered by every major newspaper in the English-speaking world and in many many newspapers and other media elsewhere. Hello? Are all the major papers in Britain, including the openly left-wing Guardian and its most famous ultra-green columnist (who takes Climategate very seriously indeed), in the pockets of Exxon Mobil?

Sorry, Media Matters, your desperate ploy won't work. Climategate has shown the unreliability and unprofessionalism of some Ph.Ds the U.N.'s IPCC and other organizations -- including yours, Media Matters -- have relied on for many years to help prove to the world that massive job-killing, government-growing treaties and policies are necessary. This is YOUR scandal, not ours, and even if you put a nice pretty red bow on it, we aren't going to accept it from you as a gift.

Yes, Exxon Mobil has contributed to us and we appreciate its support as we do the support we receive from any of our 100,000+ supporters. (Without Exxon Mobil, the whopping approximately 1.5 percent of our annual revenue that comes from corporate sources would be a little smaller. How much corporate support do you get, Media Matters?)

But Exxon Mobil's funding does not specifically support our work on climate nor has the corporation suggested in any way, shape or form that we mention, promote, acknowledge or otherwise notice Climategate, a scandal that is getting worldwide attention because it is newsworthy.

And we remind Media Matters that the only reason Media Matters knows about Exxon Mobil's gifts to public policy institutions is because Exxon Mobil and many of the recipient foundations (including us) freely and voluntarily disclose this information. (Does Media Matters CEO David Brock voluntarily disclose which corporations and special interests help pay for his nearly $300,000 salary?)

Which reminds me. Media Matters found eight public policy groups that have received at least one contribution from Exxon Mobil since 2001 that either have mentioned Climategate or, in the case of one, are affiliated with an individual who wrote a story about Climategate in an unaffiliated opinion journal (wow, there's a smoking gun for you). Here's a seven-page list of all the public policy institutions that received gifts from Exxon Mobil in 2008 alone. Over 130 institutions, some of them very liberal, are listed, and yet Media Matters could only find eight public policy groups receiving such gifts since 2001 that have mentioned Climategate or work with someone who has? Only eight?

P.S. to Media Matters: Have you guys apologized yet for promoting environmentally-useless climate policies that can hurt people based on unverifiable information? People really do rely on the jobs you want to kill, you know.


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Posted by Amy Ridenour at 1:14 AM

Quote of Note: The True Cost of ObamaCare

MPatterson102209b.jpg"Far from providing "affordable" care for everyone, ObamaCare would come at a painful price -- higher insurance premiums, more and higher taxes, fewer jobs, lower wages, a reduced standard of living and an erosion of privacy and individual liberty."

-Matt Patterson, Policy Analyst, The National Center for Public Policy Research, "No Free Lunch: The True Cost of ObamaCare," Townhall.com, November 13, 2009


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Posted by Amy Ridenour at 12:05 AM

Monday, December 07, 2009

Quote of Note: George Will on Climategate

"The Washington Post learns an odd lesson from [Climategate]: 'Climate scientists should not let themselves be goaded by the irresponsibility of the deniers into overstating the certainties of complex science or, worse, censoring discussion of them.' These scientists overstated and censored because they were 'goaded' by skepticism?

Were their science as unassailable as they insist it is, and were the consensus as broad as they say it is, and were they as brave as they claim to be, they would not be 'goaded' into intellectual corruption."

George Will, "Earth's Next Last Chance," TownHall.com, December 6, 2009


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Posted by Amy Ridenour at 11:14 PM

Quote of Note: Democrats' Health Care Sleight of Hand

MPatterson102209.jpg"As a former (recovering) professional magician, I've seen and perpetrated my share of sleight-of-hand. But I have never seen anything quite like the linguistic and budgetary legerdemain Democrats have performed to make President Obama's health-care plan appear 'affordable.'

Congressional Democrats have been forced into such chicanery because of the price goal the president set for his reform, which, he claimed in September, 'will cost around $900 billion over 10 years' -- less than we have spent on the Iraq and Afghanistan wars. This $900 billion target is seemingly arbitrary, but is psychologically important - the president must know that the trillion dollar mark would be a deal breaker for many citizens and lawmakers. (Retail goods are labeled 'only' $9.99 instead of $10 for the same reason.)

Congressional Democrats have bent over backwards, sometimes painfully, to accommodate the president's target price. For example, the $848 billion price tag that Senate Majority Leader Harry Reid claims for his new health care overhaul package is a mirage, produced by 'assuming unrealistic tax increases and Medicare cuts that members of Congress will not be willing to follow through on,' as spoiler-sport Sen. Judd Gregg (R-N.H.) points out.

This sort of trickery has been going on all year long. On October 29, House Speaker Nancy Pelosi crowed that her new health-care reform bill 'meets President Obama's call to keep the costs under $900 billion over 10 years.' -- The claim was pure misdirection, a wild gesticulation to distract from the Congressional Budget Office's estimate that the gross total cost of the bill is $1.05 trillion over ten years. But don't look there!

And even that astronomical $1.05 trillion figure is only arrived at because Pelosi's bill backloads the spending in the 2010 to 2019 timeframe - in fact, the vast majority of the spending in that period would not kick in until after 2013!  That's three years of little or no spending to artificially bring down your cost. Ta dah!"

-Matt Patterson, Policy Analyst, The National Center for Public Policy Research, "Democrats' Health Care Sleight of Hand," FOXNews.com, November 29, 2009


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Posted by Amy Ridenour at 10:30 AM

Sunday, December 06, 2009

Obama Must Nix Cap-and-Trade If He Cares About Jobs, Says Deneen Borelli on Fox

If you weren't watching the Fox News Channel at 7:15 AM Sunday morning you missed Deneen Borelli explain how cap-and-trade would lead to more unemployment, but thanks to the magic of online video, we have her interview here:


Thanks to YouTube user WebsurferguyMN for posting the video on YouTube.


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Posted by Amy Ridenour at 11:25 PM

Consolation Prize: Gropenhagen

GoreBoxerWarner.jpgSadly for COP15 attendees willing to shell out 5,999 Danish Kroner ($1,209) to shake hands and get their picture taken with the illustrious Al Gore, the profiting prophet's expensive VIP appearance in Copenhagen has been cancelled.

Berlanski Media, the event's Danish coordinators, announced Thursday that, despite enthusiasm and high ticket sales, the affair will no longer take place due to complications with the monotonous mountebank's Copenhagen schedule (but for my money, the real reason is the potential for questions by/confrontations with rogue attendees about Climategate).

Though they can no longer pay to meet their hefty hero at the Climate Conference, there is still a conciliation prize awaiting devastated Gore acolytes needing stimulation in Copenhagen...

It seems that actual prostitutes have taken up where Gore left off... only these ladies are offering more than a handshake to attendees of the U.N. Climate Summit. And, unlike Gore, the women are providing their time and services gratis.

The "working girls" of Copenhagen are offering this... well... carbon-negligible activity for free in order to protest admonitions from the Copenhagen city government that COP15 attendees should "Be sustainable - don't buy sex."

The mayor and city council have especially focused on urging hotels in the area "not to arrange contacts between hotel guests and prostitutes," even going so far as to send out postcards with the anti-brothel message. The women have responded in kind by offering any delegate with an official COP15 tag and one of the cautionary postcards an evening that will perhaps make up for a Copenhagen fortnight without Gore for far less than $1,209 -- for free, in fact.

So there it is... along with all the other nicknames for the events in Copenhagen, such as Hopenhagen, Nopenhagen, and Dopenhagen, we now have... GROPENHAGEN.

Fabulous.

Written by Caroline May, policy analyst at the National Center for Public Policy Research. Write the author at [email protected]. As we occasionally reprint letters on the blog, please note if you prefer that your correspondence be kept private, or only published anonymously.

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Posted by Caroline May at 10:44 PM

Deneen Borelli on Fox Sunday

FoxNewsLogoProject 21 full-time fellow Deneen Borelli will be a guest on the Fox News Channel on Sunday, December 6 at 7:15 AM Eastern, discussing what President Obama should -- and should not -- do if he really wants to see the jobs situation in the U.S. improve.

You can read more about Deneen's views on the subject in
this Dallas Morning News op-ed.


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Posted by Amy Ridenour at 1:03 AM

Max Baucus

Interesting news has broken about Senator Max Baucus (D-MT). Apparently he has committed a severe conflict of interest in the performance of his senatorial duties and what a future investigation could determine to be honest services fraud, a felony.

Baucus has successfully cultivated a reasonable, moderate and even thoughtful reputation. In fact, he runs an unprofessional staff and is extremely partisan. He has managed not to develop the reputation of a Charles Schumer (D-NY), Chris Dodd (D-CT) or Dick Durbin (D-IL) in part by maintaining reasonably cordial relationships with some key Republican Senate enablers and in part because he crafts his public statements with the sensitivities of his constituents his very red state in mind.

No doubt the mainstream media will drop the Baucus story as soon as possible, though I suppose we should be grateful it has covered it as much as it has. The story deserves continued scrutiny and, in my view, an investigation into whether criminal activity has occurred.

Mr. Baucus is somewhat between a rock and a hard place in terms of the excuse he gives for nominating a woman with whom he was and is in an intimate relationship for the very significant post of U.S. Attorney.

The Senator has more or less announced that the two are now cohabitating, aka, a near-marriage relationship. Yet had the Senator nominated his own wife for the post of U.S. attorney, the conflict of interest would have been obvious.

But if the relationship was not so serious, that raises the Elizabeth Ray question, for the lady in question was a member of his taxpayer-financed staff. It was said of Elizabeth Ray that she could not type, but it wasn't her lack of typing skills that made her employment a scandal. Public officials are not supposed to use tax monies to pay people with whom one is sleeping.

Blogger and former Colorado Springs Gazette editorial page editor Sean Paige and the website GovExec.com recently reported the felony conviction of a climate scientist at the avowedly pro-alarmist NASA Goddard Space Flight Center. It seems the climatologist directed government business to his wife.

Prosecuting U.S. Attorney Rod Rosenstein said of the case, according to Gov.Exec.com, "It is illegal for any federal employee to make an official decision that directly affects their financial interest, unless they disclose that conflict of interest and get approval from the government."

Did Congress exempt itself from the conflict of interest laws that applied to this climatologist?

Or might Senator Baucus get off the hook here because he hasn't married his lady? Because he hasn't made an honest woman of her, does that make him an honest man?

Conflict of interest guidelines, however, are not the only cause Baucus has for concern. "In 1988," reported the Wall Street Journal before the revelations in the Baucus case, "Congress criminalized 'a scheme or artifice to deprive another of the intangible right of honest services... Conviction carries a maximum sentence of 20 years.'" The Journal continued, "In the public sector, cases typically involve bribery or some other personal gain by a public official, such as a failure to disclose a conflict of interest that benefited the official."

Does a man benefit when the woman with whom he is living gets a position more prestigious than any she has ever held before? Some might say no, but...


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Posted by Amy Ridenour at 12:45 AM

Friday, December 04, 2009

Centenarian Told to Wait 18 Months to Get Hearing Aid

ShatteredLivesCover100w.jpgThe British government's health care system put 108-year-old Olive Beal on an 18-month government waiting list for a new hearing aid.

Longevity apparently does not count for much in Britain's government-managed National Health Service.

Much of 108-year-old Olive Beal's hearing was gone. The one-time suffragette and former piano teacher from Kent, England was unable to enjoy music or hear conversations clearly with her five-year-old analog hearing aid. A modern digital device would improve Beal's hearing - and life - tremendously, but she was having difficulty receiving a replacement.

Beal's granddaughter, Maria Scott, explained: "Her analog hearing aid does not filter out background noise so it makes it very difficult for her to hear clearly. But the digital one would allow her to hear people talking to her and to CDs. She loves music hall numbers."

Beal was administered a hearing test in late July 2007, and a hearing expert recommended a digital hearing device. However, the local health authority, Eastern and Coastal Kent Primary Care Trust, has an 18-month waiting list for new hearing aids provided through the NHS. Despite her age and despite contributing income taxes that fund the government's universal health system into her late 60s, Beal was told she must wait her turn in line. A spokesman for the Eastern and Coastal Kent Primary Care Trust explained: "[P]riority is given to patients who do not have an existing hearing aid..."

Under the government system, Beal would be 110 years old by the time the new hearing aid was scheduled to arrive.

Beal expressed her fear: "I could be dead by then."

Maria Scott added, "I would have thought they would take her age into account as she probably has not got 18 months to wait... Her eyesight is falling [sic], and if she cannot hear then she will be isolated from the outside world."

Fortunately, widespread press attention and concern about Beal's situation prompted Phillip Ball, a private audiologist, to assist Beal voluntarily. Ball said:

"I can see no reason why a lady of her age should be fobbed off by her NHS Trust and told to wait at least 18 months, so I immediately got on the phone to offer my services. I visited Olive this week and she should have a fully functioning digital aid in a matter of days [early August 2007]. She will now be able to hear a great deal better."

A digital hearing device costs approximately 1,000 British pounds (~$1,600) each, and wait times for hearing aids can be over two years in some parts of Britain.

"The new digital hearing aids can really transform people's lives," said Donna Tipping of the Royal National Institute for the Deaf, a British charity. "It is an issue of quality of life, with isolation, frustration and withdrawing from society caused by loss of hearing, and it is sad because this is reversible."

As her grandmother is one of Britain's oldest living citizens, Maria Scott added, "I thought a 108-year-old deserved to be treated better than this."

Learn the truth about government-run medicine from the National Center for Public Policy Research's new book, Shattered Lives: 100 Victims of Government Health Care, by Amy Ridenour and Ryan Balis. Complete PDF copies are available free or you can buy a copy now at Amazon.com.

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Posted by Amy Ridenour at 7:00 AM

Thursday, December 03, 2009

A Public Option in Health Care Doesn't Mean Low Overhead

One of the arguments proponents of the so-called "public option" in health care reform often make is that health insurance company executives make too much money.

I wonder how many of these people realize that almost 60 administrators in the British government's National Health Service are paid more than the British prime minister?

The prime minister earns 194,000 British pounds (presently equivalent to $322,816 U.S.) a year.

An additional 290 NHS administrators earn more than 150,000 pounds (present U.S. equivalent = $249,600) annually.

But these public sector employees, being public servants, are more dedicated to their jobs than the average money-grubbing private health sector employee, right?

Maybe not. Seems NHS employees call in sick at one-and-a-half times the rate of private sector employees in Britain.


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Posted by Amy Ridenour at 10:50 PM

Climategate Should Put a Halt to Duke Energy's Lobbying for Cap-and-Trade

The National Center's Free Enterprise Project has called on Duke Energy CEO Jim Rogers to cease lobbying for cap-and-trade in the wake of revelations regarding the integrity of processes underpinning the United Nations Intergovernmental Panel on Climate Change’s climate conclusions.

In the Climategate scandal, released documents from a British university reveal what appear to be efforts to manipulate data to support the preexisting views of leading climate researchers.

Raw data without which it is impossible to confirm the accuracy of IPCC findings also has been destroyed.

Duke Energy has said the company's decision to lobby for cap-and-trade is based on the very IPCC report whose conclusions have now been called into question. A company report says: "...our policy positions are driven by the IPCC peer-reviewed science and by our judgment that this science is not only credible, but that it is accepted by the vast majority of public policymakers who will shape U.S. climate legislation in the years to come."

"Rogers must exercise his fiduciary responsibility to shareholders by carefully assessing whether he has been duped by a group of rogue climate change scientists," said Tom Borelli, Ph.D., director of the Free Enterprise Project. "The burden of proof is now on Rogers to show his global warming policy is sound and Duke Energy's board of directors must hold him accountable."

Rogers has taken a high-profile role in lobbying for cap-and-trade, including testifying in Congress and appearing in advertising.

"If climate change is proven to be a fraud, the billions of dollars of carbon credits Rogers is seeking from cap-and-trade legislation will be worthless. There is no secondary market for a government contrived commodity such as carbon dioxide," added Borelli.

Go here for a Free Enterprise Project press release.


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Posted by Amy Ridenour at 6:28 PM

Hypocrisy, Thy Name is United Nations

Go here.


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Posted by Amy Ridenour at 12:19 PM

Engineer Left Blind for Three Years Awaiting 20-Minute Operation

ShatteredLivesCover100w.jpg85-year-old Richard Adams went blind because the British government's health care system delayed his cataract surgery. Said Adams, "I've been waiting for three years but they don't seem to care. I think they're just waiting for me to die or something."

According to Britain's state-managed health service, cataract surgery is a "common" and "straightforward" operation that usually should last between 15 and 20 minutes. But such a quick turnaround would have been news to Richard Adams of London, who went blind in both eyes while waiting three years for cataract surgery.

The 85-year-old retired engineer and award-winning dancer began losing his vision in 2004. That year, doctors diagnosed Adams with cataracts, but an operation to remove them was not scheduled until March 2007.

His excitement in 2007 at the prospect of getting his sight and livelihood back was short-lived because doctors cancelled the surgery.

"I was over the moon when I found out I had an appointment in March [2007] but when it was cancelled I just went downhill," Adams said at the time.

Stuck in a wheelchair and suffering from asthma as well as kidney stones (also left untreated by the NHS, he said), Adams had difficulty performing everyday tasks. "I never cook anything," Adams explained then. "It always has to be cold things like sandwiches or salad. I can't go to the shops because I can't see where I'm going."

In despair, Adams said his life was "being wasted": "I have all these ideas in my head but I can't see to write and I can't see to draw. All I can do is sit in my house and listen to the TV. I can't see it and I have to turn up the volume because I can't hear well."

Spokesman Mark Purcell of Ealing Hospital, one of several hospitals that refused Adams treatment for his eyes, offered no sympathy. "If [Adams] has a complaint about the standard of care he has received he should write to the chief executive of the Ealing Hospital Trust." (Whether this bureaucratic solution, which asked a blind man to write, was intentionally or inadvertently cruel is unknown.)

Adams was scheduled to receive treatment in late May, but this was little consolation for him. "I've been waiting for three years but they don't seem to care. I think they're just waiting for me to die or something," Adams complained.

Finally, after Adams' plight received attention from the British press, doctors removed the cataracts in one of his eyes in June 2007.

"He was really pleased with the result of the operation," said Roger Woolsey, a family friend. "When I went to visit him he would raise the eye-patch and say: I really can see again."

Tragically, four days after the procedure that restored his sight, Adams died. He had a heart attack after developing blood poisoning in the hospital.

Learn the truth about government-run medicine from the National Center for Public Policy Research's new book, Shattered Lives: 100 Victims of Government Health Care, by Amy Ridenour and Ryan Balis. Complete PDF copies are available free or you can buy a copy now at Amazon.com.

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Posted by Amy Ridenour at 7:49 AM

Wednesday, December 02, 2009

"An Animal Would Have Been Treated with More Compassion"

ShatteredLivesCover100w.jpgDebra Luck, the widow of Ian Luck, believes the medical staff at the British government's Princess Alexandra Hospital was so neglectful of her late husband's care during his last days that he effectively "was murdered... because people couldn't be bothered to do their job properly."

Ian Luck spent the last weeks of his life in agony because of lack of care at the government-run Princess Alexandra Hospital in Essex, UK, where he died in 2002.

For over five years, Luck's widow, Debra, and nine-year-old son, Ben, fought for answers as to why hospital staff neglected Luck, frequently leaving him to lay in his own vomit and waste and failing to realize the severity of his increasingly-desperate state.

Luck checked in to the Princess Alexandra on June 12, 2002 after being too weak to eat and vomiting heavily. He had suffered for several years from gastric problems, and was treated twice in 2002 for lost fluids because of vomiting and diarrhea. This time, an endoscope discovered an ulcer. Doctors prescribed antibiotics to Luck, gave him fluids and sent him home after a six-day stay.

On June 20, Luck returned to the hospital for a second endoscope exam when the inflammation in his stomach had not cleared up. However, the ulcer ruptured during the procedure, and emergency surgery had to be performed to repair it.

Following surgery, Debra Luck was effectively left to look after his health and comfort.

"No one wanted to help us. Every time we asked for pain relief, or to see a doctor, we were told to wait, or that we didn't know what we were talking about," she said.

Luck's condition continued to decline, but hospital staff showed an utter lack of sympathy. Debra Luck recalled that the staff failed to or were slow to perform basic functions, such as cleaning up after her husband.

"He was vomiting ten times an hour, and there were bowls around his bed to catch it," she said. However, "Often they weren't emptied for more than an hour and they smelled awful. The first time that happened I found a nurse and asked if she could empty them. When she said she was too busy, I offered to do it myself."

Debra Luck began resorting to bringing in clean pillowcases, shirts and pants, and having to change her husband herself. "As fast as I changed him he was sick again. The nurses were not interested in helping me," she said. "An animal would have been treated with more compassion."

Meanwhile, it was not known if the bleeding from the ulcer had stopped. "I made two appointments to speak to a consultant during the course of those ten days," she said, "and both times he didn't turn up. When I tried to talk to junior doctors they were either too busy or didn't know enough."

Frustrated and fearing for her husband's life, Debra Luck attempted to have Ian transferred to a local private hospital. Though the private hospital agreed, staff at the Princess Alexandra rejected the move because Luck was not stable.

On June 28, at the request of a junior doctor, a consultant at last saw Luck. But the consultant failed to follow up on the suggestion that a laparotomy (surgical examination), which might have determined the definitive cause of Luck's bleeding, be carried out. On June 29, a second junior doctor called for a consultant's review, which was never performed.

Two days later, after a particularly agonizing night in which nurses forgot to inject painkillers, Luck began to lapse in and out of consciousness and struggle to breathe. That morning, "He was covered in vomit and had wet himself," remembered Debra. "I changed him, but when I asked for clean surgical stockings the nurse said there were none left in his size... I couldn't change his T-shirt without help... but I was told by the nurse she was too busy and to leave him dirty."

That evening, a junior doctor suspected that Luck had suffered a collapsed lung and ordered a chest X-ray. But Luck went into cardiac arrest during the procedure and had to be resuscitated. By the time family members arrived, Luck already suffered a second, fatal cardiac arrest.

"I actually feel that Ian was murdered," Debra said. "He died because people couldn't be bothered to do their job properly."

Debra Luck contends that the hospital did not carry out necessary tests. "What I've learned since is that his urine and vomit should have been monitored continuously. Both were vital to working out just how ill he was and whether he would need further investigations. The fact that no one kept a record probably added to his lack of correct treatment."

In October 2007, the Princess Alexandra Hospital NHS Trust agreed to compensate Debra and Ben a combined sum of £225,000 (~$366,000), though the National Health Service refused to accept liability for Luck's death.

For her part, Debra Luck remains angry, telling Britain's Daily Mail, "No one has been punished or sacked. No one from the hospital has offered to meet me and tell me how things went so wrong, let alone offered an apology. For all I know, the same appalling standard of care is still acceptable in that hospital. If that is the case, then there will be more unnecessary deaths."

Learn the truth about government-run medicine from the National Center for Public Policy Research's new book, Shattered Lives: 100 Victims of Government Health Care, by Amy Ridenour and Ryan Balis. Complete PDF copies are available free or you can buy a copy now at Amazon.com.

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Posted by Amy Ridenour at 1:36 PM

Project 21's Council Nedd on MSNBC's "Dr. Nancy" on Wednesday

Project 21 member Bishop Council Nedd II is scheduled to appear on MSNBC's "Dr. Nancy" program that airs at 12:00 PM eastern on Wednesday, December 2. Council's segment is expected to be in the second half of the program.

Council is set to discuss the religious considerations at stake with regard to the health care reform debate. For instance, the Catholic Church and observant health care professionals are seeking conscience clauses that will prevent any requirements to perform or provide coverage for abortions. Additionally, Christian Scientists are now reimbursed by some private insurers and Medicare for their religion's prayer-based care, but there is no provision for such coverage in legislation currently under consideration.

In addition to being a member of the Project 21 black leadership network, Council is a traditional Episcopal priest serving as the Bishop of the Chesapeake and Northeast for the Episcopal Missionary Church. He is also the chairman of In God We Trust, a group that seeks to stop efforts to completely separate religion from government.

Check your local listings for MSNBC on cable. MSNBC is available on channel 209 on Dish Network and channel 356 on DirecTV.

This post was written by David Almasi, executive director of the National Center for Public Policy Research. Write the author at [email protected]. As we occasionally reprint letters on the blog, please note if you prefer that your correspondence be kept private, or only published anonymously.

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Posted by David W. Almasi at 10:47 AM

Tuesday, December 01, 2009

Health Care Bombshell: ObamaCare Would Doom Medicaid

Writing for the Heritage Foundation, Dennis Smith and Ed Haislmaier have today exposed a huge political drawback to the liberal health care bill: ObamaCare -- without intending to -- could, almost certainly would, be the death knell of Medicaid, America's health care safety net for the poor.

Smith and Haislmaier convincingly demonstrate that the states can't afford Medicaid under an ObamaCare regime -- costs to the states would reach $725 billion over the 2013-2019 period alone. What's more, staying in Medicaid under ObamaCare effectively puts the federal government in charge of about a quarter of each state's budget, and every state except North Dakota would come out better financially by abandoning Medicaid.

Fiscally and logically, withdrawing from Medicaid would be a no-brainer for the states. It could even be seen as a compassionate choice, as ObamaCare provides subsidies to help low-income people buy health insurance unless they receive Medicaid. So, a state legislature or governor could reason, why not get rid of the burdensome, unaffordable and -- let's be frank, substandard -- Medicaid program? The poor of my state will still get help with their health care bills, because Washington D.C. will provide it!

The Heritage paper explains all this in far greater detail, and it is a must-read for anyone following the health care debate. (The paper is quite readable for people who aren't health care wonks, by the way.) If the mainstream media has any competence at all (I doubt it very strongly), it will cover this heavily, as the repercussions are immense.

A closing thought (from me): When Barack Obama was running for president, I don't recall him promising an end to Medicaid and steep cuts in Medicare, but if he gets ObamaCare through, it looks like that's what he'll be delivering. Surprise!

Full disclosure: Ed Haislmaier is a member of the National Center for Public Policy Research's board of directors.


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Posted by Amy Ridenour at 7:16 PM

Britain Investigates Deaths in Government Hospitals

From the Times in Britain, November 28:
An immediate investigation to uncover the true extent of death rates across the [British government's National Health Service] has been ordered by the Health Secretary after scandals at two hospital trusts.

Amid claims that patients are dying due to poor care in at least 27 hospitals around the country, Andy Burnham said that patient safety was paramount and must take precedence above all else.

His comments come after the head of a foundation trust in Colchester, Essex, was sacked over concerns about high death rates, leadership and waiting times.

Failings in patient care had previously been linked to the deaths of between 70 and 400 patients at Basildon and Thurrock NHS Foundation Trust, also in Essex...
Read the rest here.


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Posted by Amy Ridenour at 12:49 AM

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