Thursday, April 18, 2013

Cruising the Web

Was yesterday's fiasco of news reporting that there had been an arrest in the Boston bombing the day that news died? If someone had wanted to sabotage all the major news organizations, could they have done any better than to have leak faulty reports of how the investigation was proceeding? It almost makes one long for the days when we didn't have 24-hours news reporting and we had to actually wait for someone authoritative to tell us what was happening with a crime investigation.

George Will has a depressing explanation of how so much of our lives are being regulated by government beyond the purview of the public or even of Congress. Congress delegates powers to the bureaucracy which creates all sorts of regulations that no politician has had a real say in. Meanwhile, "[f]unding the welfare state by vast borrowing and regulatory taxation hides the costs from the public. Hence its political potency. Until the implosion."

Megan McArdle ponders a question I've been wondering about: "It would be easy to kill lots of people every day in a place as open as America. How come it doesn't happen?"

President Obama is proposing to fund a universal preschool program with increased taxes on cigarettes. This is a really lousy way to fund government programs. It is a simple principle to understand that increased taxes will lead to decreased smoking. While that is all very good, it also means that there will not be the revenue to continuing funding the new program.

Jacob Sullum rightly scores President Obama's response to the defeat of the gun control bill by assuming that his opponents had no rational reason to oppose the bill.
Obama does a fine job of empathizing with the parents of Adam Lanza's victims. But that is something any decent human being should be able to manage. Where he has trouble, despite his lip service to the idea of putting himself in the other guy's shoes, is in empathizing with his opponents. He not only says they are wrong, which is to be expected. He refuses to concede that people who disagree with him about gun control are acting in good faith, based on what they believe to be sound reasons—that they, like him, are doing what they think is right. His self-righteous solipsism is striking even for a politician.
And it is too bad that the bill he so angrily supported wouldn't have done anything at all to have stopped the attacks on the victims that he loves to use for his political purposes. And remember that the amendment was defeated with the votes of red-state Democrats. Does Obama include them in his insults? You know, whenever a single Republican votes with the Democrats, we hear that there is bipartisan support for whatever bill is in question. By that standard it seems that there was bipartisan opposition to this proposal.

Daniel Henninger looks at who are really the ones clinging to guns and abortion.

For all those on the left like Nicholas Kristof and Congressional Democrats who were blaming Republicans and sequestration for the Boston bombing might want to try to explain away how Obama cut domestic bomb prevention by 45% long before the sequester was ever thought of. Instead, let everyone stop playing politics with the bombing.