Interesting Items 8/06 -
Howdy all, a few Interesting Items for your information. Enjoy -
In this issue:
2. Stress Test
9. Medical Devices
1. CFA. Chick-fil-A (CFA) is the latest target of the fascists comprising the gay rights movement. Last week we saw a pair of protests; one huge an unreported; and one tiny and hugely reported. The CFA CEO was asked about his views of marriage. The gentleman, who is an evangelical who lives his beliefs, gave the expected answer. He spoke for himself and not for his company. Homo-friendly politicians like Rahm Emanuel, Mayor of Chicago, an Chicago Alderman, and the Mayor of Boston chose to grandstand to the homo mob and all chimed in with fascist threats to withhold approval of permits to open new CFA businesses in their towns. Emanuel prattled on about CFA not holding â€œChicago valuesâ€, whatever the H__ those are. In response, Mike Huckabee suggested a support CFA Day. On Wednesday there was a nationwide turnout in support of CFA with epic, record shattering sales. And the protest against overbearing politicians and in your face gay activists went precisely as you would expect - just like the TEA Party rallies, with hundreds of thousands of happy people and well behaved crowds. The gay activists responded with a call for a kiss-in with same sex kissing (and harassing) at CFA franchises nationwide two days later. A few thousands showed up to do their deed. They were likely outnumbered by media breathlessly covering the event. This is another bridge crossed in the culture wars. Perhaps it will be a bridge too far for the homosexual activists.
2. Stress Test. First they came for breast cancer screening for women under the age of 50. Now they are coming after stress tests and EKGs for people with no known risk factors for heart disease. The US Preventative Services Task Force, previously a fairly decently operating group of medical professionals has been infested with the green eyeshade, cost shaving, cost control disease inherent in ObamaCare, came out Monday with a recommendation against regular use of the treadmill based stress test / EKG combination as a screening device for heart disease. I guess we will just have to wait until the Big Surprise. Penny wise is always pound foolish. And ObamaCare is nothing if not pound foolish.
3. TSA. Anyone else know that the TSA is ignoring a court order to hold hearings and accept public comment on their new backscatter machines and patdown techniques? Anyone else know that court order is over a year old? A federal appeals court in DC ordered the TSA to explain why it had not complied with the court order. And it gave the TSA until August 30 to comply. The TSA has been slow-rolling its response and hoped to do it for the next several months. Time to start jailing TSA administrators for contempt. Perhaps the cavity searches those administrators get as they are pulled in to jail will focus their attention on more pressing matters like perhaps actually following the law. Hot Air, Friday.
4. Polling. Last week had release of a number of polls which showed sharp improvement in the political fortunes of Barack Obama, especially in swing states of Ohio, Florida and Pennsylvania. Where previous polling has showed Romney even to slightly ahead in all three states, this time around, Obama was polled as comfortably ahead. So what has changed? Perhaps it was the +19% sample size advantage for democrats that tended to skew the numbers. Laura Ingraham interviewed Byron York this morning on the polling. York acknowledged that the polling numbers had indeed been skewed. But he noted the underlying problem that Romney has with people who have simply given up and don’t believe that it is possible for any candidate to make things better. This is a reaction that the Obama campaign is counting on, destroying the economy to the point where it seems that it is impossible to do anything about it. People who believe this tend to support Obama as the â€œdevil you know is better than the devil you don’t know.â€ And the supportive media echo chamber does nothing but echo this message time after time after time. York noted that this was also the situation in 1980, which accounted for Jimmy Carter’s lead. Reagan was able to convince voters that things could improve which was one of the reasons for the huge last-minute swing in his favor. Romney needs to do the same thing. Unlike Carter, the Obama campaign is actively trying to suppress the turnout by people who think that things will get better, giving Romney a steeper hill to climb.
5. Johnson. I had the pleasure of spending an hour with former NM Governor Gary Johnson (R) Friday afternoon. He is running for president under the flag of the Libertarian party and was in Anchorage on a campaign trip. He spent an hour on the Glen Biegel Show (KBYR, Anchorage) and mostly sparred with the host over drugs. With Johnson, you tend to get what you see, and it was my impression that he gives relatively straight forward responses to direct questions. He did not beat around the bush on anything, even when it would have been politic to do so. Though he did run for president as a Republican and was at a number of the early debates last year, I believe he is in the right party, as he is strongly libertarian. He is also a Ron Paul fan, which does not set well with me. All in all, this was an hour well spent.
6. Buckyballs. Michelle Malkin wrote Wednesday about the Consumer Product Safety Commission (CPSC) assault against the manufacturer of small magnetic toys for adults called Buckyballs. Buckyballs are intended for adult use on office desks. The CPSC points to the danger of small children swallowing the magnets. There have been a dozen incidents since 2009. On the other hand, during that time, there have been over 30,000 emergency room visits for swallowing coins - something I defy the CPSC to ban. The CPSC filed only the second administrative complaint filed in the last 11 years against a company with the intention of forcing a complete shutdown of future production, bankruptcy, and refund of all customer money spent on a product they are happy with. Did I also mention that the product carries no less than five, count â€˜em, five â€œdon’t swallow these you idiotâ€ warning labels? The reason that the CPSC has brought out the nuclear weapon against the manufacturer is because the manufacturer chose to fight back and not kowtow at the first threat by the feds. THE CPSC has become nothing more than another job killing agency aimed squarely aimed at small businesses. It is time to shut them down and sow salt on the ground where they stood.
7. Cruz. TEA Party favorite Ted Cruz won the Republican nomination for US Senate Tuesday night in Texas. He is running to replace Kay Bailey Hutchison (R, TX) who is retiring after this session is over. Cruz is the son of Cuban immigrants who is marginally more tied to former Texas governor Bush. He defeated the sitting LtGov Dewhurst who was strongly supported by current governor Rick Perry. The campaign during the runoff was particularly nasty, and the Perry people came out of the race with a bad taste in their mouths. Cruz did well in the urban areas and among Latinos. Dewhurst did well in the rural areas. Cruz unfortunately made some mealy mouthed weasel worded statements about wanting to work across party lines right before and just after the election. We will hope that the TEA Party types in Texas chose wisely on this one. For now, I believe we are in Trust but Verify land on this candidate.
8. Ohio. From Breitbart, Thursday we get a story about the Obama campaign going to court to overturn a provision of Ohio voting law that allows military members three additional days of early voting. The DNC and Ohio Democrat Party have also joined the suit. The attempt by Ohio to make it easier for military members to vote is viewed by the Obama campaign and democrat parties as "arbitrary" and having "no discernible rational basisâ€¦â€ Obama is hitting on all cylinders with the military ion Ohio, holding a campaign stop on a National Guard base in Mansfield that will be closed via defense budget cuts this year. This guy redefines the term â€œtin ear.â€ Given that Ohio is a swing state with a substantial coal mining and coal-fired electrical generation that is rapidly being shut down by the EPA, I dot no think he will be doing as well as he thinks he will if he keeps this stuff up. The lawsuit will be very ugly and very public and will hopefully backfire nicely on them.
9. Medical Devices. One of the best ways to get less of anything is to tax it. The other best way is to regulate it out of existence - not unlike what the feds did to the station wagon of 40 years ago; and what they are doing to the SUV via CAFÃ‰ standards today. But I digress. Back to taxation. One of the more evil provisions in ObamaCare is a 2.3% excise tax levied on all medical devices. This includes but is not limited to such things as prosthetic devices, wheelchairs, stents, dentures, crowns, bridges, and pacemakers. The democrats did exempt eyeglasses and contacts. Oh joy. The new tax is already hitting medical device businesses mostly in purple and blue states by forcing shutdowns of existing plants, layoffs of employees (I refuse to use the term â€œworkerâ€), and cancellation of new plants for expansion of business and new jobs. Even proto-Marxist Fauxahontas democrat candidate for US Senate from MA, Elizabeth Warren has called for repeal of these provisions. Other unexpected blue state democrats like Amy Klobuchar (D, MI) has called for its repeal. The House repealed the tax in June and sent the legislation on to the senate for action. As usual, Harry Reid (D, NV) and his democrat majority are stonewalling the vote on a repeal of this outrage.
More later -